Richard Schragger (Virginia): Is a Progressive City Possible? Reviving Urban Liberalism for the Twenty-First Century. Gianpaolo Baiocchi (NYU), Alissa Cordner (Whitman), and Elizabeth A Bennett, Peter Taylor Klein, and Stephanie Savell (Brown): The Civic Imagination: Political Culture in Contemporary American Cities. Dysfunctions and divisions of Israel’s largest city: Yonatan Mendel diagnoses the incoherent urbanism produced by its history of occupation and segregation, and by the vast, settlement-driven distension of its boundaries after 1967. Could a private university have made a difference in Detroit? Brad Plumer on the 20 cities that have the most to lose from rising sea levels. A beacon of hope: John Patrick Pullen on how a dying city glows with optimism over its plan for a giant lava lamp. Can one man change the shape of an entire city? Emily Badger investigates. A love letter to small-town America, Local Quarterly is the New York-based magazine that sets off to discover the stories of a different town each issue. John Quiggin on cronyism and the global city (again). Richard Florida on how the most famous models for how cities grow are wrong. Fergus Alexander reviews A History of Future Cities by Daniel Brook. How many gentrification critics are actually gentrifiers themselves? Ron Johnston reviews Cities: An Environmental History by Ian Douglas. The Manchester model: When considering cities, never underestimate the importance of football and pop music.

From Google’s Think Quarterly, a special issue on the idea of openness. It’s simply presumed to be a positive when a president shows “strength” by “not changing his mind”, and it’s simply presumed to be a negative when he shows “weakness” by changing course in midstream — that’s “indecisive”, and that’s bad, you see. Women are covering the hell out of the Syria War, so why haven’t you noticed? Sheera Frenkel wants to know. Jargon — it’s not the business world’s fault: Joshua J. Friedman on why we blame the wrong people for our most annoying phrases. Laura Beck: “Writing about Fashion Week has made me feel like shit about myself”. Tyler Cowen on a simple theory of recent American intellectual history. David A. Graham on how a small team of Democrats defeated Larry Summers — and Obama. Ezra Klein on five reasons Obama should name Janet Yellen to chair the Federal Reserve. With the October 1 implementation of the Affordable Care Act looming, conservatives are doubling down on their efforts to stop it yet again — a diagnosis of their peculiar (but not completely illogical) obsession. Jonathan Cohn on five things we know about Obamacare — and one we don't (and more). From Buzzfeed, a lot of people are very upset that an Indian-American woman won the Miss America Pageant (and more); and confessions of a former toddler in a tiara: Ashley McCollum on a defense of the beauty pageant. Alex Balk on the utter tragedy of modern Western existence unwittingly summed up in 15 words.

From Reason, Nick Gillespie and Matt Welch interview George Will on Obama, Syria, and the power of choice; and Matt Welch interviews Matt Kibbe: “This is the libertarian moment”. Mark Ames on the true history of libertarianism in America: A phony ideology to promote a corporate agenda. Matt Bruenig on libertarianism's battle with history: The creeping expansion of free market tendencies always comes up against the forces of individuals fighting for their own freedoms and keeping the economic system in check. Is libertarianism impossible? Marcus Hunt on the empty promises of individual freedom. Nick Hanauer and Eric Liu on why libertarians are the new communists. Alex Ruthrauff on how Ayn Rand Nation: The Hidden Struggle for America’s Soul, by Gary Weiss, is a good read even if you are fully, horribly aware that Rand’s fevered visions of utopian feudalist capitalism are even now being advanced as mainstream “principled” conservative economic thinking. John Mackey on why he’s not an Ayn Rand libertarian. RJ Eskow on 11 questions you should ask libertarians to see if they're hypocrites — there’s an easy way to find out. Paul of the Wild: Ron Paul may be out of office, but he's still trying to save the country from itself. Is Ron Paul a political liability for his son? Keith Wagstaff wonders. Peter Suderman on the endless lives of Iain M. Banks: The late science fiction novelist grappled with a fundamental existential — and libertarian — question.