Tagged: adam gopnik

The Endless Empire

According to demographers who are supposed to know about such things, by the year 2050 whites will no longer be the majority in the United States of America. Latinos and Asians will be. Unless our country is willing to practice a low-grade form of Apartheid, these former minorities will likely possess the kind of economic...

Insider Trading

The U.S. stock market is the world’s largest casino, except in this particular gambling den players don’t know the odds on their wagers. They just bet and hope. There’s very little correlation between a company’s real value and its stock price or between its earnings and its stock price. If there were, anyone could safely...

If Trees Could Live Forever

I think that I shall never see A poem as lovely as a tree. A tree whose hungry mouth is prest Against the earth’s sweet flowing breast; A tree that looks to God all day, And lifts her leafy arms to pray; A tree that may in summer wear A nest of robins in her...

Blackjack Questions Answered

Last night I appeared on GSN’s premiere episode of “World Series of Blackjack,” in which 25 of the world’s top players compete in 30-hand, five-person tournament matches. Each week’s winner gets $10,000, and the ultimate winner earns $100,000. (I finished second in my heat and qualified for a “wild card” episode that airs later this...

Everybody is Entitled to an Opinion

One of the gratifying liberties we enjoy as citizens of the United States is the freedom to express our opinions without fear of jack-booted thugs kicking down our doors, spiriting us away in the middle of the night, and dumping our iconoclast bodies in the Pacific Ocean. As talk radio proves on a daily basis,...

Things Versus Experiences

We work to make money so that we may clothe, feed and shelter our family and ourselves. We also work so that we may acquire things: baubles, gadgets, appliances, games, art, and more clothes, food, and shelter just in case we run out. Sometimes a good life is measured by how many things we’ve managed...

Why Gays Should Be Permitted to Marry

Yesterday the Massachusetts legislature voted down a constitutional amendment that would have limited the august institution of marriage to people of the opposite sex. Hateful religious types traveled from out-of-state to protest at the Senate steps, outraged at the erosion of “family values” propagated by egalitarian lawmakers who inexplicably think the laws of our nation...

Janet Jackson’s Breast

During the halftime show at last weekend’s Super Bowl, Janet Jackson, a not very good singer who compensates for her dearth of musical talent with ribald gyrations and costuming befitting a budget-priced dominatrix, exposed her right breast on live television. She was assisted by Justin Timberlake, a similarly uninteresting singer bleating with faux passion about...

Mars Versus Earth

Like millions of others, I watched with fascination and wonder as NASA’s space probe Spirit touched down safely on Mars and began to transmit back to Earth images of our planetary neighbor. As a child who enjoyed reading the science fantasies of Arthur Clarke and Ray Bradbury, among others, I didn’t imagine that sending a spaceship...

Helping by Hurting

The 7-11 store in our neighborhood dispenses cigarettes, sodas, chips, hot dogs, coffee, cookies, and most every other snack food that can be fashioned out of partially hydrogenated oil and other trans-fats. This convenience outlet offers most of the noxious poisons people ought to ingest if they wish to slowly kill themselves. Though the products on...