From Parameters, a special section on American Power in Transition. From PUP, the introduction to America in the World: A History in Documents from the War with Spain to the War on Terror; and the first chapter from Good-Bye Hegemony! Power and Influence in the Global System by Simon Reich and Richard Ned Lebow. Marcus Brauchli reviews Maximalist: America in the World from Truman to Obama by Stephen Sestanovich. From The Economist, no other country comes close to America’s hard power, but its lead is slipping; America is no longer as alarming to its foes or reassuring to its friends; and a nagging doubt is eating away at the world order — and the superpower is largely ignoring it. Sorry, America, the New World Order is dead. Who can control the post-superpower capitalist world order? In a divided and dangerous world, we need to teach the new powers some manners, says Slavoj Zizek. America the Gentle Giant: Kristin Lord and Stephen J. Hadley on how the United States can shape the world without boots on the ground and bombs in the air. Superpowers don't get to retire: Robert Kagan on what our tired country still owes the world. Robert Kaplan writes in defense of empire: It can ensure stability and protect minorities better than any other form of order — the case for a tempered American imperialism. Curtis F. Jones on the anachronism of empire. Against disengagement: Brian Katulis on how today’s progressives are often as muddled in their thinking about U.S. involvement in the world as conservatives are divided. Obama vs. the Hawks: Critics have branded him weak and feckless on foreign policy, but an inside look reveals how the president faced down the war machine. No hawks here: Stephen Walt on how when it comes to conflict in world politics, realists are the peaceniks of post-Cold War America. As George Kennan inspired Truman’s foreign policy, now Stephen Walt inspires Obama’s.

The inaugural issue of Ergo: An Open Access Journal of Philosophy is out. Joseph Raz (Oxford): A Hedgehog's Unity of Value. Nicholas Riegel (Brasilia): Goodness and Beauty in Plato. There’s another scandal in American health care: It would be nice to see bipartisan outrage extend to another unfolding health-care scandal in this country — the 4.8 million people living under the poverty line who are eligible for Medicaid but won't get it because their state has refused Obamacare's Medicaid expansion. Giovanni Tiso on making real a Fascist puppet. Political economy is political: The best explanation of the current Piketty-Financial Times brouhaha was written by Mike Konczal a few weeks before it actually happened. Thomas Piketty's real challenge was to the FT's Rolex types: If the FT's attack on the radical economist's “rising inequality” thesis is right, then all the gross designer bling in its How To Spend It section can be morally justified. Pikettymania must stop: A plea for calm in the debate over Capital — the book is neither gospel nor garbage. At last, a history of magazines: Tony Quinn reviews Revolutions from Grub Street: A History of Magazine Publishing in Britain by Howard Cox and Simon Mowatt. Not just a “white guy killer”: Hua Hsu on Elliot Rodger's perverse sense of racial hierarchy — and his uncertain place in it (and more). “No way to prevent this”, says only nation where this regularly happens. Gokce Gunel on the soul of carbon dioxide. My country right or righter: Under Shinzo Abe the national broadcaster is stalked by ghosts of the past. Conservatives are now bashing Maya Angelou on Twitter.

Joyce E. Salisbury (Wisconsin): Do Animals Go to Heaven? Medieval Philosophers Contemplate Heavenly Human Exceptionalism. Robert J. Delahunty (St. Thomas): Does Animal Welfare Trump Religious Liberty? The Danish Ban on Kosher and Halal Butchering. The Church of Animal Liberation: Bruce Friedrich on animal rights as “religion” under the free exercise clause. From The Scavenger, Alison Waters on killing in the name of conservation; and Susannah Waters goes behind the scenes of the dog meat trade. Independent ranchers and animal rights activists don’t agree about much, except that it’s time to stop using federal tax dollars to support the meat lobby. How much meat is too much? Bee Wilson reviews Farmageddon: The True Cost of Cheap Meat by Philip Lymbery, with Isabel Oakeshott and Planet Carnivore by Alex Renton. Bruce Friedrich on why it’s time to stop the chicken industry from boiling birds alive. Tristan McConnell on 20 numbers to make you appreciate the extent of the world's poaching problem. Should a chimp be able to sue its owner? Steven Wise is arguing for the legal “personhood” of chimps and other animals — and no one is laughing him out of the courtroom. Brandon Keim on how dogs and cats are blurring the lines between pets and people. Dogs (and cats) can love: Neurochemical research has shown that the hormone released when people are in love is released in animals in the same intimate circumstances. Richard Hertzberg interviews Virginia Morell, author of Animal Wise: The Thoughts and Emotions of Our Fellow Creatures, on the frontiers of animal research. Do animals have a sense of humour? Tickling rats can tell us a lot about the ability of animals to laugh and joke. Animal magnetism: Humans are fascinated by our fellow animals — is that just an evolutionary hangover or something more profound?