Margaret Boyd (Stonehill): “I Love My Work But”: The Professionalization of Early Childhood Education. From The New York Times Magazine, a special issue on education. John Cook on the simple solution to the public schools crisis: Ban private schools. Abolish public schools: Kevin Carey reviews Ron Paul’s The School Revolution. Felix Salmon on why charitable donations to public schools are OK. Only a few countries are teaching children how to think: A review of The Smartest Kids in the World: And How They Got That Way by Amanda Ripley. My daughter’s homework is killing me: Karl Taro Greenfeld on what happens when a father, alarmed by his 13-year-old daughter's nightly workload, tries to do her homework for a week. American schools are failing nonconformist kids: Elizabeth Weil writes in defense of the wild child. New evidence: Nora Caplan-Bricker on how there is no science-education crisis. Olivia Blanchard on why she quit Teach for America: “Five weeks of training was not enough to prepare me for a room of 20 unruly elementary-schoolers”. The two faces of American education: Andrew Delbanco reviews Reign of Error: The Hoax of the Privatization Movement and the Danger to America’s Public Schools by Diane Ravitch and Radical: Fighting to Put Students First by Michelle Rhee. Robert L. Hampel reviews Testing Wars in the Public Schools: A Forgotten History by William J. Reese. Test our children well: Ezekiel J. Emanuel on why American schools need more testing, not less.

A new issue of Psychological Thought is out. Paul Babbitt (Southern Arkansas): Bullshit, Politics, and the Democratic Power of Satire. Margo Kaplan (Rutgers): Sex-Positive Law. From The Baffler, they pretend to think, we pretend to listen: Ken Silverstein on liberalism in the tank. Bryan Bender on how many D.C. think tanks are now players in partisan wars. A newly released secret opinion shows surveillance courts are even worse than you knew. Mark Thoma on the real reason for the fight over the debt limit. Counterintuitively, the best way for Congress to prevent Obama from bombing Syria may be to unanimously authorize him to do just that; similarly, Putin's best way to prevent a bombing of Syria may be by promising not to veto a UN resolution authorizing the bombing of Syria. Henry Blodget on how the selfish Ayn Rand business philosophy is ruining the US economy. Obama: The law's harshest critics will eventually embrace Obamacare, call it something else. Paul Berman on wny Bill de Blasio should embrace democratic socialism in New York City. David Mikics reviews Isaac and Isaiah: The Covert Punishment of a Cold War Heretic by David Caute. It's a neo-conservative nightmare: In Iran and China, Western sexual values are bringing about real change. From Roar, what would real democracy look like? Camilla Hansen wonders. Joshua Mostafa reviews Against World Literature: On the Politics of Untranslatability by Emily Apter.

Joseph E. Uscinski and Joseph Parent (Miami): American Conspiracy Theories. A nation of truthers: Jesse Walker, author of The United States of Paranoia, lays out five conspiracy theories (and more and more and more). A brief history of conspiracy theories: Throughout our history, Americans have been sure someone was plotting against us. The Area 51 truthers were right: The government misled us about Area 51 for decades — why aren't we outraged? David Suzuki on how conspiracy theories fuel climate change denial and chemtrail beliefs. A look at how conspiracy theorists are more focused on discrediting official accounts than proposing their own. Derek Beres on the conspiracy of conspiracy theorizing. Josh Marshall on health care reform and the brilliant and notorious “Kristol Memo”, the initial manifesto of manufactured gridlock as a political strategy that now rules our national politics. Sandy Rios uses Kenya massacre to promote birther conspiracy theories. Thomas Pynchon on 9/11: American literature’s greatest conspiracy theorist finally addresses his country’s greatest trauma. You can’t handle the truther: CIA agents plot the 9/11 attack on the Twin Towers and Pentagon. Francis Wilkinson on why Benghazi conspiracy theories don't catch on. Larry Klayman, the conservative attorney and birther who called for a coup against President Barack Obama earlier this month, has scheduled what he's describing as a "day of reckoning". Erika Eichelberger on the 7 craziest Obamacare conspiracy theories and why they're wrong.