From the Mises Institute, an essay on what libertarianism is; an article on the trouble with democracy; it started with Plato: The issue is whether in the game of life the government shall captain the national team or shall act as referee; a review of How Capitalism Saved America: The Untold History of Our Country, From the Pilgrims to the Present by Thomas J. DiLorenzo; and why is capitalism so unpopular? From The New Individualist, a special section on self-ownership; and the 20th century brought sexual liberation, but it also brought anti-capitalism — so we now have the inverted situation in which sexual desire is fine and open, but the profit motive is the dirty secret: everyone does it but no one wants to say so. From Reason, "what you're left with is libertarianism": Greg Gutfeld on what guys like to read, what meth addicts do to toasters, and why liberals and conservatives are so annoying; and are property rights enough, or should libertarians care about cultural values? Richard Hoste on Ron Paul’s The Revolution and libertarianism’s fatal flaw. Do market libertarians believe their own hype?: Sticking to shareholder-value theories is nearly impossible. A review of The Libertarian Illusion: Ideology, Public Policy, and the Assault on the Common Good by William E. Hudson. Atlas Drugged: Her fans still find her intoxicating, but will the right ever truly embrace Ayn Rand, and are her new fans radical enough for capitalism? (and more and more and more and more and more and more and more and more and more and more and more and more and more) Will everyone please stop freaking out over Ayn Rand?

Are we all mythtaken about Star Wars? Fans are mistaken about Return of the Jedi and Luke Skywalker (dismissing the Ewoks, and Skywalker is deemed a wuss); might they also be wrong about the prequel trilogy? How does one age within a style tribe?: Linda Grant writes that the mods and punks still look good, but pity the poor hippies. Can America afford the "vanity tax"? We're all paying the price for goods that are more about fashion than function. The art of the chart: How we fell in love with ranking the world. Albert Mobilio reviews Umberto Eco's The Infinity of Lists: An Illustrated Essay. Thomas P.M. Barnett on seven reasons to give thanks that the world didn't end this year. Wise Guys in Cambridge: What Cornel West and Larry Summers actually agree about. Alain De Botton on the Legend of the Human Resources Crypt: To rebel against the HR department is to misunderstand one's era and the deeper currents of history. Learning how to count to 350: Remembering people power in Seattle in 1999 and Berlin in 1989. Tattoos, dueling scars, and other rational acquisitions: More on Codes of the Underworld: How Criminals Communicate by Diego Gambetta. Upper-class eco-warriors: Distancing themselves from their ultra-wealthy backgrounds, a small band of people have set themselves the task of saving the world. From Scientific American, an in-depth report on the future of trains. From young Mozart to black holes, 350 years of the Royal Society go online. "Death of God Guy Dies": John T. Elson was a journalist best known for penning the story behind Time magazine’s wildly controversial cover "Is God Dead?"

From First Things, Robert P. George (Princeton): What Marriage Is — And What It Isn't. Can you really improve your marriage or is it risky to try? One wife takes her husband through the world of marriage therapies. If your ex-spouse has run off and taken your children abroad, what are you to do? Femina sapiens in the Nursery: The conflict between parenting and career is hardwired in the female brain. Everybody hates mommy: We're "stroller Nazis" and whiny "breeders" — why is there so much contempt for mothers these days? Fatherhood gets hip: The rush of literary fathers gushing about how to raise their perfect children is upending gender stereotypes and ruining childhoods. A review of Manhood for Amateurs: The Pleasures and Regrets of a Husband, Father, and Son by Michael Chabon (and more and more and more and more and more and more and more). Is my kids making me not smart? Stay-at-home fatherhood dulls my intellect to a nub. DNA testing has led more men to discover that their children are not biologically theirs; families are upended, and so is the law. New research suggest that “bad genes” can in fact be the keys to adult achievement — but only with the right parenting. An interview with Sue Palmer on books about toxic boys. A new study links bullying behavior by adolescents to the perception they are not treated fairly by their parents. An interview with Elizabeth Beckwith, author Raising The Perfect Child Through Guilt and Manipulation (and an excerpt). A look at 7 things "good parents" do (that screw kids up for life). Family freeloaders: When is it okay to tell your family, "Get the hell out"?

A review of Catastrophe in the Making: The Engineering of Katrina and the Disasters of Tomorrow by William Freudenberg. Why do Italian disasters kill so many people? Earthquakes, tsunamis: We know they're coming — why won't we prepare? Natural disasters you never heard about: Only when the death toll shatters records does the media pay attention to devastation and destruction by natural calamities. The first chapter from Megadisasters: The Science of Predicting the Next Catastrophe by Florin Diacu. 21st century threats: It’s useful to classify threats to human civilization not only on their potential severity, but also on their relative certainty. Why is everyone so eager to predict the end of the world? Apocalypse, Wow: Western filmgoers increasingly like to see it all come down as apocalypse become hot box office. A review of 2012: Science or Superstition by Alexandra Bruce. From Killing the Buddha, a series of articles in honor of 2012. First, the good news: “2012 is not a date of destruction”. 2012 or bust: Talking down to prophecy nuts is a delicate art. A look at how the Maya really did warn us about our future (unintentionally). Is Doomsday coming? Perhaps, but not in 2012. What if the world doesn’t end in 2012? Five backup cataclysms, just in case. While the apocalypse is pretty unlikely to come in 2012, it does have to happen sooner or later — here are five possible scenarios for the end of humanity. National Geographic on 10 failed Doomsday prophecies. A look at ten notable apocalypses that (obviously) didn’t happen. Here is an iPhone app for iPopUp Comics' graphic novel "Apotheosis 2012".