Category: America

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The World As It Is

We don’t normally feature in this space books that are more than five years old. But “The World As it Is: Dispatches on the Myth of Human Progress” seems to us a most necessary read in these preposterous times. Authored by the brilliant journalist, social justice advocate and cultural critic Chris Hedges, “The World” is...

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A More Exceptionally Perfect America

Experts on matters patriotic, including members of Congress and the corporate oligarchs for whom they toil, believe that those of us who are fortunate enough to live in the greatest country on Earth benefit from a magical phenomenon known as American Exceptionalism. According to those who have made a kind of casual study of our glorious history,...

Further Refinements to the NFL Anthem Policy

The National Football League recently announced a change in their rules regarding the playing of “The Star Spangled Banner,” that great paean to durable fabric. They understand the symbolic importance of standing and pretending to know the words to a song about a symbol. It’s symbolism: Singing a song that pays homage to a symbol...

Kevlar for Kids

When news of the latest school shooting reached us, our first impulse, of course, was to offer “thoughts and prayers,” and to make sure via social media everyone understood that we were offering thoughts and prayers. Our second impulse — and this seems to happen every time there’s another mass murder involving an angry white...

Why Every Man, Woman and Child Needs a Gun

We feel terrible for the children (and parents, and teachers, and everyone else) killed or wounded in the latest mass shooting. We’re not talking about the one at Parkland, in Florida; we mean the four subsequent mass shootings that have happened since, albeit not at schools. Terrible. Just terrible. But instead of crying and wailing...

Denying the Dastardly Duopoly

When your country’s government seems to be controlled by characters from professional wrestling competing in a “loser retires” bout, it’s easy to ascertain villainy in every unfair maneuver. The people in the Trump Administration: bad guys. Heels. They cheat. They lie. They’ll do anything to win. Who are the (baby) faces in this charade? Democrats,...

Role Models

By many measures, Donald Trump, his entire cabinet of self-dealing robber barons, Speaker of the House Paul Ryan, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell — the whole lot are extraordinarily successful people. (By many other measures, they’re wildly unsuccessful, but let’s not quibble.) We can all agree that when our children are grown, when they become...

My Talk With Jesus

Had a talk with my friend Jesus a couple of days before his birthday. It wasn’t pleasant. He could barely stop crying. I tried to console him. “Look how many millions of people are celebrating you, man!” I pointed out. “You’re bigger than the Beatles.” He sniffled and wiped his mustache with the sleeve of...

The War on Christmas

The War on Christmas is not a fictional narrative promulgated by not-very-bright demagogues and lazy journalists. The War on Christmas is real. For several years now, we’ve witnessed an orchestrated, elaborately planned assault on one of our country’s top-four most important holidays. The malefactors behind this outrage remain unknown, though we suspect in our gut...

Pizza Protest

Finally, what many of us long suspected has been categorically confirmed. No, not that the Democratic primary was rigged by the Clintons and their vassals at the DNC, rendering the millions of us who contributed to and volunteered for Bernie Sanders into suckers at a carnival midway trying to knock down milk bottles nailed to...