From The New York Observer, Gillian Reagan on how his book deal ruined his life: Taxes, weight gain, depression, loneliness—book advances are like lottery payoffs; and for four days, booksellers, book lovers, book publishers and book grabbers descended on New York to... what? Meet God, check out wildlife, spy shrunken heads and otherwise distract themselves from their struggling industry. A look at how right-wing publishing struggles to find its political voice. Without credential except a high school diploma and courage, Cindy Brown Austin became a byline known to many readers. One of the the week's best invented words: "Foxymoron".

From PopMatters, a review of At the Same Time: Essays and Speeches by Susan Sontag. A review of The Gravedigger's Daughter by Joyce Carol Oates. Oprah Winfrey got Pulitzer Prize-winning novelist Cormac McCarthy to do the one thing he hates most: talk about his work, but He's No Salinger

From The Walrus, An American Type of Sadness: A review of Oblivion and Consider the Lobster by David Foster Wallace; The Discomfort Zone by Jonathan Franzen; The Diviners by Rick Moody; and The Disappointment Artist by Jonathan Lethem.

From Boston Review, a review of Peter Gizzi's The Outernationale; a review of Carol Frost's The Queen's Desertion; and a review of Tomas Tranströmer’s The Great Enigma Katie Peterson.

From Arts & Opinion, an article on the Art of Raka B. Saha: Her still life is more compelling than real life — in colours mixed with moon and monsoon; and an article on the Art of Purvis Young: He hails from the down but never out of Miami. "I work to support my habit and my habit is painting," says Urban Expressionism's powerful new truthsayer.

From Slate, a slide show essay on Richard Serra, the sculptor who reinvented space. Art to the rescue: The "Art goes Heiligendamm" G8 exhibition deals with irony, utopia and overcoming borders. A review of Hogarth, France and British Art by Robin Simon and Hogarth by Mark Hallett and Christine Riding. Bohemian Breaks: A set of "cultural economy" tax credits could help New Orleans realize a number of its development goals, from arts and architecture to entertainment and culinary delights.

From TLS, a review of Good Bread is Back: A contemporary history of French bread, the way it is made, and the people who make it by Steven Laurence Kaplan. An interview with Michael Pollan, author of The Omnivore's Dilemma. Diet and Genetics: If protein, fat, and carbs are bad, what do you eat? When Teflon-coated pans were first introduced, they practically sold themselves. Two generations later, we are once again learning that better living through chemistry often carries a hidden price.


From Prospect, with Fidel Castro apparently on the verge of death, Bella Thomas returned to Cuba to visit old friends. Little has changed over recent years and life for most Cubans remains harsh. Yet western visitors continue to romanticise the place. A review of Exposing the Real Che Guevara and the Useful Idiots Who Idolize Him by Humberto Fontova. A review of The Origins of the Cuban Revolution Reconsidered by Samuel Farber. A review of Unvanquished: Cuba's Resistance to Fidel Castro.

Ever since the time of Juan Perón corruption has permeated Argentine society. Fraud and bribes are part of everyday life, and anyone wishing to do business compromises. Sometimes corruption may be a shortcut through bureaucracy, but when the system is both inefficient and dirty, there are no justifications. The Venezuelan government recently took over the nation's most popular TV station. Was it a move to return the airwaves to the people — or political retribution for airing anti-Chavez programming? Latin America cannot remain indifferent to Venezuelan president Hugo Chávez’s threats to close media outlets. Troubling Roots: How did Islamic radicalism grow in Guyana? A terrorist hub? The Caribbean region comes under scrutiny. 

A new issue of the United States Army's Soldiers is out. Seduced by War: An interview with Andrew J. Bacevich, author of The New American Militarism: How Americans Are Seduced by War. A review of Humanitarian Imperialism: Using Human Rights to Sell War by Jean Bricmont. Freedom's Just Another Word: Fred Kaplan on Bush's deluded speech to the world's oppressed. President Bush has delivered some of the most rhetorically unstable statements of this era — creating a world where power determines reality and words follow meekly behind. Who will be the last Bush loyalist? Whoever you are, don't forget to kill the lights.

There's one thing the US presidential contenders all have in common: God. The 2008 race is already well under way, and the first signs are of a resentful, defensive America. Ben Adler on how conservatives can't figure out why they hate TV. Beware the Bloggers' Bile: Liberal pundits are now as enraged as their foes. That may be a problem for the Democrats. 

A review of No Excuses by Bob Shrum. When Barack Obama launched into his keynote address at the 2004 Democratic National Convention, he was still an obscure state senator from Illinois. By the time he finished 17 minutes later, he had captured the nation's attention and opened the way for a run at the presidency. A behind-the-scenes look at the politicking, plotting, and preparation that went into Obama's breakthrough moment. A review of A Woman in Charge: The Life of Hillary Rodham Clinton by Carl Bernstein; and a review of Her Way: The Hopes and Ambitions of Hillary Rodham Clinton by Jeff Gerth and Don Van Natta Jr. (and more). 


From Arena, while it may be too early to bury neo-conservatism, the signs are that it is imploding as it eats away at its own foundations. A review of Are We Rome? by Cullen Murphy. Niall Ferguson reviews The Price of Liberty: Paying for America's Wars by Robert D. Hormats. Financing the Imperial Armed Forces: A trillion dollars and nowhere to go but up. A review of Freedom Next Time: Resisting the Empire by John Pilger. Anti-war crowd fires at the wrong target: Among turncoat Democratic Senators in the Bush era, there was Zell Miller first, and then Joe Lieberman. And now … Carl Levin?

From Ship of Fools, lost for a smart remark to see off your enemies? Unable to deliver that killer insult? Put an end to unscriptural restraint with the amazing Biblical Curse Generator, which is pre-loaded with blistering smackdowns as delivered by Elijah, Jeremiah and other monumentally angry saints. Is anti-Semitism good for the Jews? Eugene Volokh says yes, but only when expressed in moderation. From Jewcy, Who’s Afraid of Paul Berman? How the Terror and Liberalism author gets Islamism wrong — again.

From Arts & Opinion, is Islam the problem, or can it be part of the solution? Phyllis Chesler on secular Islam; and an interview with Rawi Hage on the long journey into secularism. From Policy Review, How the West Really Lost God: Mary Eberstadt on a new look at secularization. A review of The Cambridge Companion to Atheism.

From Truthdig, an interview with Christopher Hitchens on how religion poisons everything. Here's the video of the Hitchens vs. Hedges debate on religion. A review of The End of Faith: Religion, Terror, and the Future of Reason and Letter to a Christian Nation by Sam Harris; The God Delusion by Richard Dawkins; and Atheist Manifesto: The Case Against Christianity, Judaism, and Islam by Michel Onfray.

From Touchstone, Simply Lewis: Reflections on a Master Apologist After 60 Years; Over the Counterculture: Wilfred M. McClay on Transgressive Bohemians as Regressive Bobos; and Distant Neighbors: Amanda Witt on Keeping Children Innocent When Lesbians Move In. Who says all gay men are stylish? The idea that all homosexuals are fashionable is bull—just look at all the friends of Dorothy who dress like they're still in Kansas.


From Daedalus, a special issue on the Humanities, including Patricia Meyer Spacks (Virginia): Revolution in the humanities; Steven Marcus (Columbia): Humanities from classics to cultural studies: notes toward the history of an idea; Andrew Delbanco (Columbia): American literature: a vanishing subject?; Pauline Yu (ACLS): Comparative literature in question; Anthony Grafton (Princeton):  History's postmodern fates; Thomas Crow (USC): The practice of art history in America; Gerald Early (WUSL): The quest for a black humanism; Jack Balkin (Yale) and Sanford Levinson (UT-Austin): Law & the humanities: an uneasy relationship; Dagfinn Fřllesdal and Michael Friedman (Stanford): American philosophy in the twentieth century.

From Cosmos, there's nothing quite like Einstein and his theories of relativity to bring out the doubters, the cranks and the outright crackpots. Do they have a point? Was Einstein a fake? Given what is happening in Babylon (Iraq) and biotechnology today, we may be witnessing the fulfillment of Biblical prophecy. From Skeptic, who designed that? An article on Creationism v. Intelligent Design. A review of Darwin’s Gift: To Science and Religion by Francisco J. Ayala and The Creation-Evolution Debate by Edward J. Larson. Don't Know Much About Biology: Suppose we asked a group of Presidential candidates if they believed in the existence of atoms, and a third of them said "no"? Jerry Coyne wants to know. Tyrannosaurus sex: They dominated the Earth for 150 million years, but we know little about how they reproduced. Now, a band of brave scientists is trying to find out.

From Policy Review, Lawrence Chickering (Hoover) and P. Edward Haley (Claremont): Strong Society, Weak State; and Peter Berkowitz reviews Betraying Spinoza: The Renegade Jew who Gave us Modernity by Rebecca Goldstein. Stanley Rosen remembers Leo Strauss in Chicago.

From the International Social Science Review, a review of Herbert A. Simon: The Bounds of Reason in Modern America by Hunter Crowther-Heyck; and a review of Knowing Capitalism by Nigel Thrift. Learning with The Price Is Right: Thirty-five years of lessons on economics and class from retiring host Bob Barker.

From Academe, what does "Academic Freedom" mean? Michael Bérubé wants to know; and a review of The Making of Princeton University: From Woodrow Wilson to the Present. A consumer’s guide to the college of your choice: Thousands of American students are heading off to college for the first time in a few weeks. Have they made the right decision?


From Axess, a special issue on Reality Invades Fiction, including an editorial; and self-representational literature erases the boundaries between reality and fiction. Is reality being depicted or created? Instead of basing their identity on memory, today’s writers choose to construct new images of themselves; a strange sub-genre of 18th and 19th-century literature gave voices to objects. Critics have usually viewed this as the manifestation of a commodified world, but it may represent something deeper, springing from the philosophies of Locke and Burke, about the nature of property, and the inextricable mingling of the human self and the physical world; and the virtual world did not become the socially liberated universe that many people believed. At meeting places on the internet patterns of behaviour from the physical world are reproduced. And the virtual economy is becoming more closely linked to the real economy.

An interview with Elaine Dundy: "Gore Vidal introduced us. He said, 'Here are the two funniest women writers around.' We just looked at each other. It was a real conversation stopper". The hardest part of Sally Reus' job is, in her words, "trying to figure out what to do with all the sexy books".

Ten years ago, men's monthlies were making fortunes for publishers on both sides of the Atlantic. And FHM editor Ed Needham was at the heart of it. But, he says, the internet and trashy weeklies have destroyed all that: the party's over, and it's time to move on. Story of the blues: Rugged and hard-wearing, Levi's were the original American jeans. But they couldn't keep up with the designer ranges or the supermarket bargains, and have spent a decade in the doldrums. 

From Nextbook, Shalom Auslander on what he's going to write this summer: Time has arrived to rock the world of fiction. From The Observer Magazine, a special issue on How To... for the summer. 

A review of Deeper Than Reason: Emotion and Its Role in Literature, Music, and Art by Jenefer Robinson (and chapter 4: "The Importance of Being Emotional"). Fifty years after the publication of Jack Kerouac's Beat novel On the Road, a new dispute has erupted around the famously peripatetic writer. 

Jay Rosen on how a blog is a little First Amendment machine. A review of The Myths of Innovation by Scott Berkun.

The first chapter from The Seven Hills of Rome: A Geological Tour of the Eternal City. A team of scholars traveled to a medieval library in Venice to create an ultra-precise 3-D copy of an ancient manuscript of Homer's Iliad — complete with every wrinkle, rip and imperfection — using a laser scanner mounted on a robot arm.

A review of Crashing Through: A True Story of Risk, Adventure, and the Man Who Dared to See by Robert Kurson. A review of Sleeping Buddha: The Story of One Family's Past, and Afghanistan's Search for a Future by Hamida Ghafour. 

A review of Empire of Blue Water: Captain Morgan’s Great Pirate Army, the Epic Battle for the Americas, and the Catastrophe That Ended the Outlaws’ Bloody Reign by Stephan Talty; The Sack of Panama: Captain Morgan and the Battle for the Caribbean by Peter Earle; and The Republic of Pirates: Being the True and Surprising Story of the Caribbean Pirates and the Man Who Brought Them Down by Colin Woodard. A review of Justinian's Flea: Plague, Empire and the Birth of Europe by William Rosen. A review of The Eye: A Natural History by Simon Ings and Vanities of the Eye: Vision in Early Modern European Culture by Stuart Clark. A review of A Guinea Pig's History of Biology: The Plants and Animals Who Taught Us the Facts of Life by Jim Endersby. A review of The Neddiad: How Neddie Took the Train, Went to Hollywood, and Saved Civilization by Daniel Manus Pinkwater.


From PUP, the first chapter from Promoting Peace with Information: Transparency as a Tool of Security Regimes by Dan Lindley. Norman Geras on Thresholds of Inhumanity. A review of Trafficking and Prostitution Reconsidered: New Perspectives on Migration, Sex, Work, and Human Rights. Ron Deibert on the looming destruction of the global communications environment. How the mighty are falling: The end of impunity for once-powerful thugs across the world.

For World Environment Day, The Age approached prominent Australians to predict what the nation will be like in 2027. Their message, almost universally, was that Australia is at a crossroads - down one path is optimism and opportunity while down the other is a future of climate chaos. Greenpeace likes to think big — its latest publicity stunt is the recreation of Noah's Ark on Mount Ararat. The idea is to focus the attention of world leaders on the need to address climate change and to prevent major catastrophes — including floods — in the future.

From TNR, Paul Berman on the revolutionary beginnings of postmodern politician Bernard Kouchner and the genesis of Doctors Without Borders. From n+1, wither the French Left? Jules Treneer investigates. An article on how to reinvent and reinvigorate the right and Sarkozy’s old familiar song. From Mute, an essay on Grassroots Political Militants: Banlieusards and Politics. Re-Arming Europe: Pascal Bruckner on why Europe needs an intellectual revolution to meet the challenges ahead. Farewell, New Europe: How Bush administration blunders destroyed the budding pro-American alliance.

It is straight from the pages of the Cold War era — a dour Russian leader in ramped-up rhetoric threatening to target Europe. So what is President Putin playing at? From Der Spiegel, an interview with Vladimir Putin: "I am a true democrat". A review of Chechnya: The Case for Independence by Tony Wood. A review of Beslan: The Tragedy of School No 1 by Timothy Phillips (and more).

From National Journal, The Utility Man: Sen. Charles Schumer has parlayed his party's 2006 victory into a unique role for himself. He's a savvy spokesman, strategist and Harry Reid confidant. What Democrats need to learn about power: The former communications director for Newt Gingrich compares the Democratic takeover of 2007 to the Republican takeover of 1995.  Look Back in Anger: John B. Judis on the unmooring of Chuck Hagel. When the Presidential hopefuls talk to God: As the Democratic contenders lined up to lay bare the details of their faith at a "religious left" forum, they revealed how faith-based forces frame our politics. Political business: Corporate America weighs in on the presidential race.

How David Gregory saved the press corps: The NBC News correspondent may be pompous, but thanks to him the White House press corps has regained its gumption. From The Hill, a look at how interns are the most bothersome to service-sector employees on and around Capitol Hill. Headed Southwick? Emily Bazelon on the case against Bush's latest controversial judicial nominee.

The great right-wing fraud to repudiate George W. Bush: The same movement that propped up and glorified Bush as a Reagan conservative now pretends that he was never a conservative at all. In an first interview as the chairman of the Arkansas Republican Party, Dennis Milligan says America needs to be attacked by terrorists so that people will appreciate the work that President Bush has done to protect the country. What's the Matter With New Hampshire? The liberaltarian dream dies in the Granite State. In Vermont, nascent secession movement gains traction. Local area network: Can technology save the town meeting?


From Scientific American, if cutting carbon isn't enough, can climate intervention turn down the heat? Geoengineering could help stave off global warming, but it could also create some big problems (and more from The New Scientist). Earth has a natural transport system standing ready to get rid of carbon dioxide. Here is how it might be turned on. Green Wall of China: Officials in Inner Mongolia say they have established a living barrier of trees, grass and shrubs wide enough to hold back the Gobi.

From LA Weekly, Peddling Smart Growth: Call your project "smart" — even when it isn't — and get millions in public funds; smart growth’s biggest boosters still love suburban living; and what's smart about smart growth? Emily Yoffe goes drilling for natural gas on a rig in the Gulf of Mexico. Was Thomas Edison, the godfather of electricity-intensive living, green ahead of his time?

From Salon, how is an AK-47 like a QWERTY keyboard? An economist looks at the market for the world's most popular assault rifle. Splash, Splash, You're Dead: An article on the military's Next-Gen Water Gun. A review of The Changing Face of War: Lessons of Combat, From the Marne to Iraq by Martin van Creveld. Dennis Ross on how to contain the conflict in Iraq. Is there a nationalist solution in Iraq? The ethnic and sectarian conflict engulfing the country has gotten the most attention. But under the radar, a rough coalition of nationalist political elements in Iraq has been emerging.

Coercion doesn’t work. Empathy is a more powerful tool than you might think. A veteran Air Force interrogator who grilled prisoners in Iraq talks about how to gather information during wartime. Have the Guantanamo judges soured on the president's war tribunals? Dahlia Lithwick wants to know. Capitalism vs. Terrorism: More and more American companies are buying terrorism insurance. Uh-oh.

From Writ, John Dean on the Bush administration's dilemma regarding a possible Libby pardon. Sentencing for Dummies: Elizabeth de la Vega on the fate of I. Lewis Libby. Hustler magazine is looking for some scandalous sex in Washington again, and willing to pay for it.

From The New Yorker, George Packer on presidents and history. A review of Andrew Jackson and the Constitution: The Rise and Fall of Generational Regimes. Ron Rosenbaum reviews JFK assassination books Reclaiming History by Vincent Bugliosi and David Talbot's Brothers. Nicholas von Hoffman |inprint/issue=200703&id=269|reviews| Kenneth D. Ackerman's Young J. Edgar: Hoover, the Red Scare, and the Assault on Civil Liberties and Burton Hersh's Bobby and J. Edgar: The Historic Face-Off Between the Kennedys and J. Edgar Hoover That Transformed America. Alan Wolfe reviews Presidential Courage: Brave Leaders and How They Changed America, 1789-1989 by Michael Beschloss. A review of Age of Betrayal: The Triumph of Money in America, 1865-1900 by Jack Beatty.

From FrontPage, an evening with Christopher Hitchens. Peter Hitchens reviews his brother's book, God Is Not Great (and more and more). Masonry, Atheism and Catholicism: An interview with Father Manuel Guerra Gómez, author of The Masonic Plot. More on In Defence of Reason by Michel Onfray. More on The God Delusion by Richard Dawkins. When tolerance becomes dangerous: In a civil society, decency must rank ahead of just about everything else, sacred and not. Thomas Sowell on how we're surrounded by adolescent intellectuals.

From Governing, John D. Donahue on The End of the End of Government. Mark Schmitt on how the answer to big-government conservatism is neither a promise to shrink government nor expand it, but a promise that public institutions will serve the public. Hillary was Right: Jonathan Cohn on the health care that dare not speak its name (and a response by Elizabeth McCaughey). Get in that bubble, boy! When can the government quarantine its citizens?


From the inaugural issue of Affinities: A Journal of Radical Theory, Culture, and Action, Nathan Rambukkana (Concordia): Is slash an alternative medium? "Queer" heterotopias and the role of autonomous media spaces in radical world building; an essay on "Outlaw" Bicycling; and an interview with Roberto Ciccarelli on "social centers" in Italy.

Form Canadian Journal of Sociology, a review of Structures of Memory: Understanding Urban Change in Berlin and Beyond by Jennifer A. Jordan; The New Berlin: Memory, Politics, Place by Karen E. Till; and Traumascapes: The Power and Fate of Places Transformed by Tragedy by Maria Tumarkin; a review of Medicalized Masculinities; and a review of Negotiating Transcultural Lives: Belongings and Social Capital among Youth in Comparative Perspective; a review of Serious Leisure: A Perspective for Our Time by Robert A. Stebbins.

Micah Schwartzman (Virginia): The Principle of Judicial Sincerity. A review of Enforcing Equality: Congress, the Constitution, and the Protection of Individual Rights. From Commonweal, an article on Daniel Callahan & bioethics: Where the best arguments take him. Message in a Bacterium: Researchers use DNA as a post-human time capsule.

An interview with Michael Clark, author of Paradoxes from A to Z. A review of Culture and Philosophy in the Age of Plotinus by Mark Edwards. Here are 5 sample chapters from History of the Ancient World by Susan Wise Bauer. The first chapter from The Telescope: Its History, Technology, and Future by Geoff Andersen. Prehistoric Polynesians beat Europeans to the Americas, according to a new analysis of chicken bones. One of the greatest collections of historical letters ever amassed has been found in a laundry room, with one filing cabinet holding 500 years of history.

From Discover, here are 20 things you didn't know about Nothing: There's more there than you think. The introduction to How Mathematicians Think: Using Ambiguity, Contradiction, and Paradox to Create Mathematics by William Byers.

From The Chronicle, The Heart of a Campus: A college's main building, often imposing and ornate, is a fondly regarded symbol to alumni. A new book highlights the architecture of Old Main. Could RateMyProfessors.com be right? A study finds correlation between ratings professors receive on much-derided site and through official student evaluations.

From FT, Martin Wolf reviews Happiness: Lessons from a New Science by Richard Layard. The pursuit of happiness: The science of wellbeing must turn to philosophy in order to understand the true nature of friendship.  It's Called Sexsomnia: People with this rare disorder engage in sexual activity while asleep, but don't remember it later. No-one wants to talk seriously about toilets. Poke around in the hidden corners of The Poop Report, and you’ll come to see there's a lot more to it than tales about the trots.


At BookExpo America, conservative publishers worry about future. If you think speed-dating is tough, try selling your book to an editor in three minutes. Scholarly presses offered catalogs and the occasional bowl of tiny candy bars. None of the publicists were dressed as life-sized cartoon characters. Imagine, if you will, walking into a hall with displays of thousands upon thousands of books...

Waxing philosophical, booksellers face the digital: John Updike would not be pleased. Bound miniature books were common in medieval and Renaissance times as illuminated manuscripts, and in the 18th and 19th centuries as everything from alphabet primers to novels. Literary festivals used to be humble gatherings of authors and fans. But now they are undergoing a boom, with new events opening and everyone from politicians to pop stars getting in on the act. Fighting talk: How Chuck Palahnuik became the Marilyn Manson of the literary circuit. An article on literary love: What happens when the writer you admire most becomes your friend? Why do the archives of so many great writers end up in Texas?

From CT, an article on Remembering Auden: And learning how to make sense of his renunciations. Almost 70 years after her first publication, Nadine Gordimer is still breaking new ground as a writer. No difference between politics and art: A review of Touchstones: Essays in Literature, Art and Politics by Mario Vargas Llosa (and more). A review of Fathers and Sons: The Autobiography of a Family by Alexander Waugh. From The New Yorker, Marie Micheline: A life in Haiti by Edwidge Danticat.

A review of From a Cause to a Style: Modernist Architecture’s Encounter With the American City by Nathan Glazer. A review of Contested Waters: A Social History of Swimming Pools in America by Jeff Wiltse.  A review of Leaving Dirty Jersey: A Crystal Meth Memoir by James Salant; Another Bloody Love Letter by Anthony Loyd; Wasted by Mark Johnson; and All of Me by Patsy Palmer. A review of Shroom: A Cultural History of the Magic Mushroom by Andy Letcher (and more). A review of The Strange World of David Lynch: Transcendental Irony from Eraserhead to Mullholland Dr. by Eric G. Wilson.

From The Believer, Ker-Chunk! A hit making keyboard made of 8-track car stereos? Meet rock's rarest instrument. Wouldn't it be ironic if you could download a song using an umbrella? It's a not-too-far fetched prospect. A review of The Horse God Built: The Untold Story of Secretariat, the World’s Greatest Racehorse by Lawrence Scanlan. The Lack of the Irish: Long before baseball ruled, the quirky sports of Gaelic football and hurling provided Irish arrivals with a vital link to their homeland. But now, with fewer and fewer legal - and illegal - immigrants washing ashore, these Gaelic games are in the fight of their lives.

The man who discovered flight (and his name isn't Wright): Almost 200 years ago, George Cayley pioneered aviation; and flying is a simple idea, but hardly anything's as complex as a jet – or as difficult to restore to its natural state: airborne. An interview with Eduardo Xol, author of Home Sense: Simple Solutions to Enhance Where and How You Live. A review of The Dip: A Little Book That Teaches You When to Quit (and When to Stick) by Seth Godin. A review of U-Turn: What If You Woke Up One Morning and Realized You Were Living the Wrong Life? by Bruce Grierson. A review of Girls Who Like Boys Who Like Boys: True Tales of Love, Lust, and Friendship Between Straight Women and Gay Men.


From Commentary, Norman Podhoretz on Jerusalem and the Scandal of Particularity: Thinking about the future of Israel's capital city—and about the mystery of Jewish survival. A review of The Last Resistance by Jacqueline Rose. Three for Thought: What you need to read about the Six-Day War. Forty years ago next week, Israel and its Arab neighbours went to war. Harvey Morris explores the causes and the consequences. The introduction to Barriers to Democracy: The Other Side of Social Capital in Palestine and the Arab World by Amaney A. Jamal.

A pair of histories show the unprecedented effects of two technologies of terror: A review of Buda's Wagon: A Brief History of the Car Bomb by Mike Davis and On Suicide Bombing by Talal Asad. Iraq’s Curse: No faction has been able to secure absolute power, and that has only sharpened the hunger for it. Life in the Inferno of Baghdad: Political reconciliation will take years. Cleansing Baghdad's soul will take generations. Patrick Cockburn interviews Moqtada al-Sadr. If President Bush is committed to fighting on in Iraq, then he needs a fundamentally different military strategy — one that offers the only realistic chance of compelling a ceasefire between Iraq's warring factions.

Hillary’s War: Hillary Rodham Clinton’s decisions on Iraq may point to what sort of president she would be. Will the real Hillary please stand up? Elizabeth Kolbert reviews Carl Bernstein's A Woman in Charge (and an excerpt) and Jeff Gerth and Don Van Natta's Her Way: The Hopes and Ambitions of Hillary Rodham Clinton.

From New York, a covers story on The Politics of Personality Destruction: Candidates for president are asked hundreds of times a day to feign every possible emotion. Such a task should be repugnant to any authentic human—but do we really want a normal person in the world’s most stressful job? Can conservative Protestants vote for a member of what they consider a cult? An article on Mitt's Mormonism and the evangelical vote. Romney candidacy has resurrected last days prophecy of Mormon saving the Constitution. Is Fred Thompson too lazy to get nominated? John Dickerson investigates. Ron Paul wants to drag the U.S. out of Iraq, can the war on drugs, and overturn the Patriot Act. No wonder Republican power brokers want to boot him off the stage. Here's a question for Giuliani: What, exactly, do you want government to stop doing? Or do you simply want all of government to be less effective and more wasteful? Imagine how the media would cover the divorced rich Republican presidential candidates, if they were Democrats.

From The Politico, an interview with Al Gore and more and more on The Assault on Reason. Al Gore has more to lose than to gain from running for president, and the response to Al Gore’s new book helps prove his point. We need a brainiac president, a regular Mister or Miss Smarty-Pants. We need to elect the kid you hated in high school, the teacher's pet with perfect grades.  The quixotic political startup known as Unity08 is not the first third-party movement in the United States, but it may be one of the brashest and most original.

Forget the campaigns. Disregard the position papers and attack ads. One of the best ways to tell who's going to win an election is to see the candidates on TV, watching them for 10 seconds and keeping the sound off. The Brookings Institution creates a special project designed to inject ideas into the 2008 presidential debate, with papers on nuclear proliferation, the budget deficit, U.S.-Muslim world relations, and more. Will electronic voting reform create new ways to steal elections? Steven Rosenfeld investigates. As a candidate for the U.S. Senate in Minnesota, Al Franken has become painfully aware of the role money plays in politics.

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