Tag: July-August 2021

The Liberals Who Weakened Trust in Government

There were, in other words, many good reasons to have become deeply skeptical of and alienated by the promises of the postwar order and the political constraints upon which it relied—even before, and beyond, the growth of the public-interest movement. That was true some time before the economic problems of the 1970s, which made clear […]

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The Rise of the Very Online Novel

Lockwood joined Twitter in May 2011. That year, she also placed poems in Poetry and The New Yorker, the peak of institutional credibility, but the social network is where she developed both her sensibility and her audience (currently over 96,000 followers). She is fluent in the morass of images, references, and jokes that have accrued […]

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Can Zola Capture the Delights of A’Ziah King’s Twitter Saga?

This hot-girl road movie opening feels delightfully retro and familiar, though cut to resemble life online. With notifications pinging on the soundtrack, iPhone-font time stamps, and camera flashes, the film initially evokes the addictive thrills of social media—connection, attention, a panoply of possible selves to inhabit—without the anxious vulnerability. The light, the colors, the half-naked […]

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The Swashbuckling Lawyer Who’s Taking on the Sackler Family

The settlement was a powerful aid to Purdue and the Sackler family members to get what they wanted in bankruptcy court. It boils down to this: The DOJ settlement contains a “poison pill” that could leave victims and states and other creditors with nothing unless they approve the bankruptcy deal Purdue offers. And oddly, it […]

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Video Games Are a Labor Disaster

Unfortunately, the skepticism might be warranted. At this moment, it is hard to envision a video game worker guild amassing the power and influence of the Hollywood guilds. If Hollywood had come into existence as an economic and cultural force at any other time in American history, it’s difficult to imagine writers, actors, and technical […]

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The Rise and Fall of an Herbal Viagra Scammer

Nationally, just 26 percent of Republicans have a great deal of trust in medical scientists to act in the public’s interests. That lack of trust is expressed in the push for medical freedom, a bedrock libertarian principle that coalesces around various hot-button issues: access to medical marijuana, abortion, choice of doctors, and assisted suicide, among […]

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The Millionaires Who Want to Abolish Extreme Wealth

The extreme concentration of wealth, the millionaires point out (or admit), wasn’t inevitable. Payne writes that “a small group of very wealthy people spent a huge amount of money over a very long period of time to influence a political system to write tax laws to ensure that the economy would deliver most of its […]

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Can Criminal Justice Reform Survive a Wave of Violent Crime?

City leaders today have ways to address this ambivalence that were simply not available in the 1970s. While people in higher-crime neighborhoods may hold complex and ambivalent views about the police, they understandably want someone to rein in the violence their communities face. Traditionally, law enforcement has shouldered that task, but we understand better now […]

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The Performative Rhetoric of “Allyship”

In the September 1970 issue of the radical feminist magazine off our backs, an anonymous author asked, “Who are our real allies in a revolutionary struggle?” Half a century later, a writer posed a similar question in Marie Claire: “How Can I Become a Better Ally?” That subtle shift in rhetoric, from “allies” to “ally,” […]

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The IRS Could Be a Force for Social Good

On June 10, 2019, John Lewis took to the floor of the House of Representatives to tout a piece of legislation that he and his colleagues, including some Republicans, had worked on for years. It was to be a major legislative achievement, and he wanted the public to know it. “This is not a Republican […]

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The End of Friedmanomics

Volcker did it almost immediately. That fall, he gave a press conference stating that he would curb growth in the money supply no matter what the implications might be for interest rates. The results were horrific. When Volcker ascended to the chairmanship of the Federal Reserve, the unemployment rate had been slowly but steadily declining […]

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A Third Reconstruction, or a Second Civil War?

The election of 1868, which propelled Ulysses S. Grant to the presidency and an overwhelming majority of Republicans into Congress, seemed a major leap forward in the battle for Reconstruction at the time, maybe even a decisive one. In retrospect, however, it might be viewed as the beginning of the end of the organized effort […]

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How Deep Is America’s Reckoning with Racism?

If Annette Gordon-Reed had written nothing more than that book—or its 1997 predecessor, Thomas Jefferson and Sally Hemings: An American Controversy—she would still be among the most significant historians in the country, a remarkable analyst of the American archive whose gift for storytelling is matched only by her prolific range. But On Juneteenth—part memoir, part […]

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The Fox News Guest Behind the Republican Frenzy Over Critical Race Theory

Last September, an obscure, 36-year-old documentarian named Christopher Rufo landed a slot on Tucker Carlson Tonight. Knowing the president would be watching, he sounded the alarm about an ideology almost as obscure as he was: “critical race theory.” Rufo, who describes the theory as the notion that the United States was “founded on white supremacy […]

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Why Ted Cruz and Josh Hawley Won’t Be Punished for Fomenting a Riot

Baker’s self-dealing became a national scandal, and the Senate’s investigation became such a farce—it was led by a senator widely seen as a nitwit, and entrusted to a committee whose main purpose, as Newsweek put it at the time, was approving Senate press passes—that Senate reformers and liberals decided the body needed a more professional […]

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Biden’s Foreign Policy Doctrine Is Stuck in the Twentieth Century

As Israel prepared to remove Palestinian families to make way for settlers in East Jerusalem, and launched airstrikes on Gaza that demolished homes and killed hundreds of Palestinians, including scores of children, Democrats in Washington experienced what one pollster called a “tectonic” shift. Newly elected representatives such as Cori Bush and Marie Newman were calling […]

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Oligarch of the Month: Bill Gates

Not so long ago, you could be forgiven for thinking of Bill Gates as the good tech billionaire. Microsoft, the software company he co-founded in 1975, was a juggernaut, but hardly the big bad of the business world; Facebook, Apple, Amazon, and Google had all surpassed it as symbols of technology’s malign influence. And while […]

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