From Politico, do ideas still matter in the Year of Trump (and Clinton)? One candidate has no ideas, the other has old ones — so what’s going to shape politics next? Donald Trump, Sex Pistol: James Parker on the punk-rock appeal of the GOP nominee. Kurt Eichenwald on how the Trump Organization’s foreign business ties could upend U.S. national security. Forget Trump’s health records — his hidden business interests are what really matter. Of course Hillary Clinton went to work sick — that’s the American way. Could a Clinton presidency unleash a post-gender society? Not a chance. How Clinton’s allies are embracing her mistake: “The country is actually debating how many of Donald Trump’s supporters are anti-Semitic, racist, sexist”. The race is tightening for a painfully simple reason: People don’t like Hillary Clinton very much.

There’s a reason that very young millennials are strongly anti-Clinton even though the same age group supported Obama energetically during his elections — most of it can be laid at the feet of Bernie Sanders. Michelle Goldberg on Ralph Nader and the tragedy of voter-as-consumer politics: In the 2000 election, the high priest of anti-consumerism turned politics into the very thing he hated most. Dara Lind on moving to Canada, explained.


Matthew H. Kramer (Cambridge): The Concept of Law and Political Philosophy. Humanity is driving an unprecedented extinction of sealife unlike any in the fossil record. Christine Owens on how Gretchen Carlson’s $20 million settlement is a rip-off. Wesley Morris on Colin Kaepernick and the question of who gets to be called a “patriot”. Cecily McMillan was arrested during the protest in Zuccotti Park and spent 58 days in jail; five years after it began, she considers what Occupy achieved — and why it didn’t go far enough. Pepe the Frog’s creator, Matt Furie, discusses Trump memes (and more and more and more and more). The Politico 50 Reading List: The smartest minds in politics name the best books they read this year. A legendary American miracle worker claimed to read books without opening them — a trick researchers have just pulled off in the lab; Scott McLemee looks from inside a lattice of coincidences.


From the Journal of Chinese Governance, a special issue on Francis Fukuyama and discourse on Chinese governance. The introduction to The Beijing Consensus? How China Has Changed the Western Ideas of Law and Economic Development by Weitseng Chen. William Partlett (Melbourne) and Eric C. Ip (CUHK): The Death of Socialist Law? Tongdong Bai reviews The China Model: Political Meritocracy and the Limits of Democracy by Daniel A. Bell. David Wertime on the Chinese democratic experiment that never was: Hong Kong protesters get most of the press, but the latest conflict in Wukan means more to mainlanders. Orville Schell on the crackdown in China: Worse and worse. No country for academics: Chinese crackdown forces intellectuals abroad. China’s scary lesson to the world: Censoring the Internet works.

Jeffrey Wasserstrom and Kate Merkel-Hess on how Xi Jinping’s authoritarianism does a disservice to China’s nuanced political tradition. From NYRB, who is Xi? A review essay on Xi Jinping by Andrew J. Nathan. China’s state media try to make thoughts of President Xi cool with rap video about his political theory. Ryan Mitchell on lessons from the Xi Jinping Book Club. Evan Osnos on the cost of the Cultural Revolution, fifty years later. Mao’s life after death: An excerpt from China and the New Maoists by Kerry Brown and Simone Van Nieuwenhuizen. Across the broken bridge: Suki Kim on spies and smugglers in the shadowy underworld of the China-North Korea border. Few expect China to punish North Korea for latest nuclear test.

Back at it with North Korea’s nuclear weapons. Javier Zarracina on 3 charts that explain the North Korean nuclear tests. North Korea’s nuclear test was a sales pitch to other rogue states. North Korea nuclear test: South would reduce Pyongyang “to ashes”. At a North Korean nursery school, tots get an early education in weaponry. Is it time to intervene in North Korea? Negotiations and sanctions haven’t stopped the country from being a menace and human rights abuser. How “crazy” are the North Koreans? North Korea asks for help in the wake of its devastating flood. After North Korea flooding, relief agencies help tens of thousands.

Who is Kim Jong-un? Andrew J. Nathan reviews Tyranny of the Weak: North Korea and the World, 1950–1992 by Charles K. Armstrong; Marked for Life: Songbun, North Korea’s Social Classification System and Pyongyang Republic: North Korea’s Capital of Human Rights Denial by Robert Collins; and The Real North Korea: Life and Politics in the Failed Stalinist Utopia by Andrei Lankov.

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