From Esquire, Noah Feldman on the end of the war on terror. Is Petraeus "beyond naive"? He thinks we should negotiate with our enemies — just like Barack Obama. Retired generals of the Israeli Defense Forces and high-ranking Mossad officials on Obama. Shashi Tharoor on why India loves Bush. An interview with Andrew Bacevich on the end of exceptionalism (and more). Dahlia Lithwick on bringing Guantanamo home: The lawlessness abroad was never very far from home. A review of Bush's Law: The Remaking of American Justice by Eric Lichtblau (and more). Spying on Americans without warrants, charges based on secret evidence: Welcome to the world of Bush's "specially designated global terrorists". The next president must free us from Bush's freedom agenda, but that's not an excuse to disengage from the world. A review of The Freedom Agenda: Why America Must Spread Democracy (Just Not the Way George Bush Did) by James Traub. George W. Bush as Harry S. Truman? Robert Dallek says no. Here's an extremely abridged history of the George W. Bush presidency. In his final months in office, Bush is burdened but still confident. Arianna Huffington thinks George Bush is a criminal. The Bush administration prized loyalty over competence; the next White House team will do the opposite. More and more and more and more and more on Angler by Barton Gellman. 

From LRB, having fully indulged their greed on the way up, and created the risks, the bankers are now fully indulging their fear on the way down, and allowing the system to seize up. How fear is making the financial catastrophe worse than it needs to be. Don't watch the Dow: Here’s the number that really captures the financial crisis. The Fed has historically been the lender of last resort to banks — now it’s becoming the lender of last resort to everyone. From Counterpunch, Chris Floyd on The God That Failed: The 30-year lie of the market cult. More on The Partnership: The Making of Goldman Sachs by Charles D. Ellis.  A review of Transcending Capitalism: Visions of a New Society in Modern American Thought by Howard Brick and American Capitalism: Social Thought and Political Economy in the Twentieth Century. From YaleGlobal, article on the global crisis: How far to go? (and part 2 and part 3). From Big Think, Joseph Stiglitz links the economy to the Iraq war; and why Niall Ferguson is a pessimist: The economic historian outlines the three historical factors that lead to international conflict. An interview with George Soros: The end of the financial crisis could be in sight. The current crisis is clearly one of those times when we can’t wait for science to catch up to common sense. Rick Shenkman on American democracy and the 10 alarm fire we're ignoring (and more).

From NPQ, a special section on the fraying seams of globalization, with essays by Naomi Klein, Robert Reich, Francis Fukuyama and Joseph Stiglitz. From New Internationalist, what are the West’s nuclear weapons actually for? From Wired, an article on how to visit a secret nuclear bunker. Terry Eagleton on how the age-old conflict between civilisation and barbarism has lately taken an ominous turn. A review of Vote For Caesar: How the Ancient Greeks and Romans Solved the Problems of Today by Peter Jones. From TLS, an article on Clive Sinclair's po-mo Wild West. Can there be great composers anymore? Webster Young wants to know. A review of Philosophical Perspectives on Art by Stephen Davies. More on Planet Google: One Company’s Audacious Plan to Organize Everything We Know by Randall Stross. A review of Lenin's Brain and Other Tales from the Soviet Archives by Paul R. Gregory. An article by Alain de Botton on the idea of home. A closet full of monsters is a scary place where "straight people" can safely negotiate and articulate their fascination and/or dread of "difference" in sexual preferences. Sorry, Fido, it’s just a guy thing: More men are unabashedly embracing their love of cats. Creative thinking key to economic future: "Mickey Mouse" courses are the first to respond to worldwide shortages of graduates vital to the creative economy.

Andrew Koppelman (Northwestern): Is Pornography "Speech"? As more countries move to ban or restrict hate speech, some legal scholars say the US should reconsider the broad scope of First Amendment protection.  An excerpt from Shock Jocks: Hate Speech and Talk Radio by Rory O'Connor with Aaron Cutler. How did Stephen Colbert become a progressive political force? An interview with Theodore Hamm, author of The New Blue Media. A review of Germany's New Right as Culture and Politics by Roger Woods. Cultural Learnings of Kazakhstan: Officials are frustrated by their most famous "citizen", Borat. Human rights campaigner Fiona Watson went to Brazil to meet recently contacted tribespeople. A review of The Sovereign Map: Theoretical Approaches in Cartography through History by Christian Jacob.  From Vox, the economic case for prompt and powerful measures to mitigate climate changes is overwhelming once discounting and equity concerns are properly modelled. Harnessing the weather: Could new technology help humans eliminate "acts of God"?  Today's government systems were built to cure the ills of the 19th century's spoils system, but what was a good idea a hundred years ago is not what we need now. A review of The Art of Strategy: A Game Theorist's Guide to Success in Business and Life by Avinash K. Dixit and Barry J. Nalebuff.