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Tuesday, December 31, 2002


McDonald's Opponents Jump On Anti-American Bandwagon
by Daniel Finkelstein, The Times
Far from McDonaldís being some evil giant, I think its opponents are much more dangerous.

It's Time To Do The Math
by E.J. Dionne Jr., Washington Post
The federal government is in a fiscal mess that will only get worse if political plans now on the table come to fruition. The federal mess is compounded by disasters at the state and local level.

Tech & Science

E And Mc2: Equality, It Seems, Is Relative
by Dennis Overbye, New York Times
Guided by ambiguous signals from the heavens, and by the beauty of their equations, a few brave ó or perhaps foolhardy ó physicists now say that relativity may have limits and will someday have to be revised.


Does Anybody Really Know What Time It Is?
by Bart Kosko, Los Angeles Times
Our Gregorian choice of the year 2003 appears to be nothing more than entrenched cultural prejudice in a truly multicultural world.

Voluntary Service
by Philip Pullman, The Guardian
Can literature change the world? Or should it be above the concerns of society?


Class Picture
by Tobias Wolff, New Yorker
Robert Frost made his visit in November of 1960, just a week after the general election. It tells you something about our school that the prospect of his arrival cooked up more interest than the contest between Nixon and Kennedy, which for most of us was no contest at all.

Monday, December 30, 2002


A Few Final Words As Editor
by Robert L. Bartley, Wall Street Journal
Thoughts on running the only editorial page that sells newspapers.

Next Move For Transportation
by Hank Dittmar, Washington Post
We need an integrated network for trains, planes and automobiles.

Middle Earth Enchants A Returning Pilgrim
by Kathryn Kramer, New York Times
While re-reading Tolkien's trilogy, I found myself astonished by how integrally involved the plot is with the landscape.

The Great Novelists Not Fit For Duty In This War Of Words
by Ben Macintyre, The Times
According to the Pentagon, war — at least the impending war in Iraq ó- is Shakespeare, the 5th-century BC Chinese military strategist Sun Tzu and two modern bestsellers about heroism and wartime correspondence.


Getting To The Bottom Of 2002
by Dave Barry, Miami Herald
Iraq flare dup and the economy teetered, but Dave Barry just wants to focus on his salad.

Sunday, December 29, 2002


A History Course For 2003
by Jim Hoagland, Washington Post
The relationship between the then and the now is more mysterious than either historians or journalists like to admit.

The Target
by Scott Anderson, New York Times
Daniel Pearl's murder does carry an important message.

States Of Alarm
by Bob Herbert, New York Times
There is something eerie, even a little unnerving, about the budget crises that continue to spread, like a contagious, crippling disease, to states and cities across the U.S.

Tech & Science

Vernor Vinge
by John Hind, The Observer
He predicted the internet, but will his notions about the post-human era be as exact?

Who Owns The Internet? You And I Do
by John Schwartz, New York Times
Mr. Turow, a professor at the Annenberg School for Communication at the University of Pennsylvania, studies how people use online technology and how that affects their lives. He has begun a small crusade to de-capitalize Internet ó and, by extension, to acknowledge a deep shift in the way that we think about the online world.


Playing With Billions
by D.C. Denison, Boston Globe
Who wants to be a millionaire? No one. That's so last millennium. Today, it's all about billions, whether we like it or not, in every aspect of our lives. But do we understand everything that a billion means? A portrait of the new big number.

by Dan Ackman, Wall Street Journal
Enron's Sherron Watkins doesn't deserve to be "man of the year."

Heart And Soles
by Robin Givhan, Washington Post
American women and their love affair with unsensible shoes.

Hard-Knock Lit
by Michael Eric Dyson, New York Times
Claude Brown was fated, it seems, to narrate the story of his troubled generation of black men.

Nice? Nahhhh! Naughty!
by Heather Svokos, Lexington Herald Leader
When my editor approached me about doing a story that involved committing the Seven Deadly Sins — you know, get all your sinnin' out before the new year — my initial reaction was: Will this involve killing someone?

Rub A Dub Dub, Books For The Tub
by Cesar Love, Wired News
Waterproof books, used mainly by skin divers and foul-weather hikers, are finding a new audience among people who simply enjoy a nice warm bath.

Saturday, December 28, 2002


President Bartlet, Please Take Me Back
by Frank Luntz, New York Times
There is a small, humorless segment of conservative society that is now convinced more than ever that NBC's "The West Wing" is a plot, a weekly Hollywood conspiracy to overturn the electoral outcome of 2000. I should know.


Golden State In A Golden Age
by Tim Rutten, Los Angeles Times
The artists, artisans and architects who built California.

How TV Is Changing Casinos
by Gary Dretzka, TV Barn
If you haven't strolled through a casino in last six years, you probably aren't aware of the revolution that began when the first Wheel of Fortune and Jeopardy machines were placed alongside such time-tested one-armed bandits as Red, White and Blue and Double Diamond.

UCSB Professor Offers A New View Of WWII
by Teresa Mendez, Santa Barbara News-Press
American surrender demands created reason to drop bombs on Japan.

Gobble Up: Gluttony Is The Gift Of Civilisation
by Felipe Fernadez-Armesto, The Times
Moralists, dietitians, fashion advertisers and lifestyle journalists try to nag us into frugality. I doubt whether even so formidable a combination of forces can reverse evolution and history.

Friday, December 27, 2002


A Fight For Freedom Of Speech
by Eric Foner and Glenda Gilmore, Los Angeles Times
Dissent doesn't mean a lack of patriotism.

Tech & Science

Our Not-So-Distant Cousin
by Lisa Brooks, New York Times
Comparing the genome of humans to that of mice gives us a glimpse into the history of both of our genomes over the 75 million years since we last shared a common ancestor, a species that was a small mammal.


Deep South, Deep Fried
by Rob Walker, New York Times
The plantations along the Cane River Trail bring a steady stream of tourists to Natchitoches, La., but the best reason to visit is the meat pies.

White Christmas In The Dollhouse
by Lonnae O'Neal Parker, Washington Post
We reached a quiet milestone in my house this Christmas. We bought my youngest daughter her first white doll. In truth, my husband bought it. I'm not sure I would have been able to actually lay down the cash, but my husband did so if not with my blessing, at least without my vehement opposition.

Hide And Seek On Saturday Is Out, But Pencil In Sunday For Tag
by Emily Yoffe, Los Angeles Times
In our passion to perfect and protect our children, are we damaging something inside them?

Where The Trail Goes Cold
by Edward Marriott, Prospect Magazine
Travel literature has had three great periods, the last being the 1980s. Now it is finished.

Thursday, December 26, 2002

Tech & Science

Erasing The Blind Spot: A Driver's Aid Averts Traffic Jam
by Peter Dizikes, New York Times
Some traffic theorists and engineers are offering a high-technology solution for traffic woes.


World Without War?
by Ruth Rosen, San Francisco Chronicle
As a child growing up in the shadow of the atomic bomb, I used to pray every night, "Let there be no war," but no one seemed to be listening.

Authors Whose Audience Knows 'Em Like A Book
by Linton Weeks, Washington Post
When it comes to publishing these days, it's all about the platform.

Where Authors Do More Than Autograph
by Kimberly Stevens, New York Times
The Housing Works Used Book Cafe opened in 1996, but in the last year or so it has become one of the hottest literary hubs in New York.

Wednesday, December 25, 2002

Tech & Science

Small Amount Of Fish In Diet Is Said To Yeild Big Benefits
by Donald G. McNeil Jr., New York Times
Men who eat seafood as seldom as once a month may cut their risk of the most common kind of stroke by more than 40 percent, a new study by the Harvard School of Public Health has found.


The Year Of The Restaurant
by GarceAnn Walden, San Francisco Chronicle
Value is the key word as owners and chefs regroup, revamp.

Elfinomics 101
by Michael Judge, Wall Street Journal
He knows if you've been bad or good. That's why he makes the big bucks.

Tin Pan Alley's Gift
by Jody Rosen, Los Angeles Times
Sixty years ago, American soldiers facing their first holiday season overseas adopted an unlikely pop song as their wartime anthem.

Let's Get Real
by Regina Schrambling, Los Angeles Times
The party pros have filled bookshelves with glossy impossibility. Don't buy into it. Here's how to have your party and enjoy it too.

Wine Prices Drop Sharply, A Good Reason For Cheer
by Amanda Hesser, New York Times
While it has not been the best time to travel, invest in the stock market or indulge in truffles, there has never been a better time to buy and drink wine.

A Holiday Made For Believing
by John Horgan, New York Times
I think I finally understand the attraction of Christmas. Actually, my wife deserves the credit.

Eat, Drink, Be Merry
by Brendan O'Neill, Spiked Online
Guess who's plastering posters around the UK this Christmas with the words 'I wish the baby Jesus had never been born' on them? A Satanic group dreading another celebration of the Christ child's birth? Radical atheists who want to open our eyes to the futility of religion?


Christmas Poem
by Lester Sanford, Highway7

Tuesday, December 24, 2002


The Good Guys
by Paul Krugman, New York Times
The bravery of the whistle-blowers was real enough, but Time seems to be celebrating what should have been, not what was.

Tech & Science

The Origin Of Religions, From A Distinctly Darwinian View
by Natalie Angier, New York Times
Whereas evolutionary biologists traditionally view an adaptation as the outcome of a struggle between unevenly matched individuals, Dr. Wilson sees religion as the product of group selection at work.


Nigella Does Bite
by Sara Dickerman, Slate
The hot new chef is sexy, charming, and lazy.

Two Holiday Heavyweights Keep Fans In Their Corners
by Hillary Johnson, Los Angeles Times
Once again, it's time to choose up sides. Pick your poison: Is it eggnog, that sweet, sticky beverage that has left many a regional sales rep floating face-up in the office punchbowl for the cleaning lady to find? Or fruitcake, a literally ancient dessert first eaten in the Roman Empire (which means that, technically, fruitcake predates the Christmas holiday itself)?

Debate Erupts Over Authors Of The Dead Sea Scrolls
by John Noble Wilford, New York Times
Qumran itself went largely unexplored for the longest time. Even the results of the few initial excavations in the 1950's have remained mostly unpublished and unavailable for independent study.

Way Too Much Fantasy With That Dream House
by Deborah Roffman, Washington Post
During the past decade, there have been an unprecedented number of assaults on the whole concept of sexual boundaries (with Lingerie Barbie only of the more egregious examples), typically without so much as a peep from the adult world. Maybe we've just been too busy or too overwhelmed to notice, or perhaps we've become so adjusted to the ever-quickening pace of cultural change that the change itself is simply harder and harder to perceive.

In Search Of Mr. Right
by Sage Stossel, The Atlantic
Odds are that the pulled-together young woman you encounter riding up in the elevator, emerging from the gym, or riding the subway wearing sleek professional attire but no wedding ring is struggling to meet someone to spend her life with.


Crows In Evening Glow
by Henri Cole, Slate

Bright In The Sky
by Daiquiri, CLAW Zine

Monday, December 23, 2002


Betraying Hong Kong's Trust
by Stephen Vines, Time
The Hong Kong government's biggest problem is on eof credibility.

The Trouble With Saving The World
by Michael Elliott, Time
When President Bush says he wants to spread peace and democracy around the globe, he deserves to be taken seriously. One cautionary note: we've been here before.

Time 2002 Persons Of The Year: Cynthia Cooper, Coleen Rowley And Sherron Watkins
by Richard Lacayo and Amanda Ripley, Time
They took huge professional and personal risks to blow the whistle on what went wrong at WorldCom, Enron and the FBIóand in so doing helped remind us what American courage and American values are all about.

Resigned To Quit
by William Safire, New York Times
In the aftermath of this flood of lachrymose leave-taking, this tsunami of tsoris, observers of cultural phenomena are obliged to judge the art of quitting. How do the major quitters in this wave of resignation rate on the Way to Go?

Tech & Science

Farmers Grow A Field Of Dilemma
by Justin Gillis, Washington Post
The biotechnology industry is in turmoil because errors by a small biotech company have called into question the whole idea of growing drugs in food crops.


A Stone Box, Christ And History
by Robert L. Bartley, Wall Street Journal
Science can't ignore Jesus.

The Power Option
by John Horn, Los Angeles Times
An obscure contract clause is becoming a major force in Hollywood.

Miami: A Literary Loop
by Linton Weeks, Washington Post
You've read the books, now see the city.

Propping Up McDonald's Fallen Arches
by David Montgomery, Washington Post
Yes, McDonald's serves Buffalo wings now. Maybe that's the problem — a crisis of identity and purpose. Or maybe it's the sodium and the fat — finally America has had enough? Or it's a sudden and massive loss of business acumen, like the recent decision to tie in Happy Meals with that Disney turkey "Treasure Planet." Or maybe it's the refusal to get hip and roll out a veggie burger nationwide, as Burger King has done.

When The Going Gets Tough, Learn From A Book
by Lawrence Van Gelder, New York Times
Many a book is marketed as a recipe for success or a formula for inspirational change. But, it appears, some recipes for success and wellsprings of life-altering change are found in unlikely literary sources.

A Paryer Before Dying
by Po Bronson, Wired
The astonishing story of a doctor who subjected faith to the rigors of science — and then became a test subject herself.


Christmas Poem With A Topological Twist
by Kathleen Kustin, Topology Atlas

Sunday, December 22, 2002


The Fall (And Potential Rise) Of Liberalism
by Joshua Zeitz, Los Angeles Times
Democrats are now faced with two options: They can seek to redraw the political landscape and invent a new rhetorical dichotomy.

The Media Bias Myth
by Neal Gabler, Los Angeles Times
Liberal? Conservative? It's not about ideology. The real battle is over the proper role of journalism.

The Consequences Of Ambition
by Robert J. Samuelson, Washington Post
Washington is nothing if not an arena of ambition. This has always been so, but never more than now.

Paging Dr. Perfect
by Maureen Dowd, New York Times
How could the president not finish him off, when the hapless Mississippi senator not only supported Strom Thurmond over Thomas Dewey in '48, but Jack Kemp over George Bush pËre in '88?

Tech & Science

More Encounters Between Bears And Humans At Yosemite
by Dean E. Murphy, New York Times
The black bears here are acting up again, popping out car windows and ransacking campsites, and park officials are struggling to understand why.

Translating Sony Into English
by Douglas McGray, Fast Company
Mark Hanson and his marketing group sit on Sony's border between Japan and the United States. The big question: What to do when that border becomes a gap.

Full Moon Effect On Behavior Minimal, Studies Say
by John Roach, National Geographic News
"The case for full moon effects has not been made."


Face Time: Danny Murtagh
by Sam Whiting, San Francisco Chronicle
Seventeen thousand white lights outline the Embarcadero Center, and Danny Murtagh has to make sure they all burn bright.

Buying Gifts, We Traverse Afar
by Jerry Haines, Washington Post
Anticipatory holiday shopping fever abroad actually has several advantages.

Nut Cracking
by Jonathan Reynolds, New York Times
I have always thought of chestnuts as being indigenous to France, because that's where I discovered them, in my impressionable 20's. Here, we generally associated them with Christmas and roasting, thanks in no small part to Mel Torme's song about Jack Frost nipping at your nose. But in French hands they become a marvel of subtlety.

Free Speech — Virtually
by Jennifer Balderama, Washington Post
Since many bloggers have no background in publishing, they often come to the medium unaware of the rules that apply, and complaints are becoming more common.

Friday, December 20, 2002


Thong Or Bikini, Sir?
by Charles Taylor, Salon
How to go lingerie shopping for your woman without feeling as though you're 16 and sneaking a peek at Playboy with your Sunday-school teacher standing next to you.

Rediscovering And Celebrating The Vertical Life
by Herbert Muschamp, New York Times
In our hype-drenched era, a critic will have to risk raising cynical eyebrows with superlatives adequate to the occasion. Let them rise. Let them arch into furious knots. The architects have risen to the occasion. So should we.

Thursday, December 19, 2002


Foie Gras In The Freezer? Just Don't Tell Anyone!
by Elaine Sciolino, New York Times
The French, like household chefs nearly everywhere, have steadily cut in half the time they spend in the kitchen. In recent years, with varying degrees of passion and stealth, they hae embraced frozen foods, too.

Too-Tall Christmas Tree Makes OVer The Top Sight Gag
by Garret Jaros, The Register-Guard
Forget about keeping up with the Joneses, the Chisholm family has set the bar one notch higher after mom finally approved dad's wacky holiday wish — a Christmas tree poking from the roof rafters.

Can't Judge A Book By Its Owner
by Doug Moe, Capital Times
Now I know why he has been nice to me. He is consumed by guilt, as he should be. Let me explain.


Field Guide
by Margaret Rozga, The DMQ Review

Wednesday, December 18, 2002


Punching Our Ticket
by Charles Taylor, Salon
In just three pictures, a Louis Vuitton ad captures the luxurious eroticism of train travel.

Pop Gets Crackle, Snap Back
by Randy Lewis, Los Angeles Times
In the high-tech world of pure digital sound, some recording artists evoke the scratchy past by adding in noises from the vinyl era.

After 30 Years, Cozy Bookstore Gets To The End
by Dinitia Smith, New York Times
The Madison Avenue Bookshop, the cramped little bookstore that for nearly 30 years has been a literary destination for the carriage trade and for the writers of the Upper East Side, will close on Jan. 10.

Hudson Shipwrecks Found, But No Loose Lips
by Kirk Johnson, New York Times
Centuries of maritime history would be up for grabs by salvagers and collectors before the state — which claims ownership over everything on the river's bottom — could even know what was at risk.

How To Get What You Really Want
by Ian White, The Times
The plan is simple yet effective.

Doing The Continental
by Jan Morris, The Spectator
I am grandly excited by the idea of a confederal Europe, gradually and tentatively defining itself, and at last giving even an offshore visitor a genuine sense of membership.


The Small-Town Voice Of God
by Michael Chitwood, Slate

Tuesday, December 17, 2002

Tech & Science

New Premise In Science: Get The Word Out Quickly, Online
by Amy Harmon, New York Times
A group of prominent scientists is mounting an electronic challenge to the leading scientific journals, accusing them of holding back the progress of science by restricting online access to their articles so they can reap higher profits.

Testing The First AIDS Vaccine
by Richard Martin, Wired
Medical establishment, government, and Genentech be damned - Don Francis has never stopped believing. Now he's about to finish testing the first human AIDS vaccine.


Making It
by David Brooks, Weekly Standard
Love and success at America's finest universities.

The Gift Of Virus
by Nick Altebrando, Salon
In the spirit of the holiday season, a tale of one man who clicked too soon but discovered that missent e-mail can still lead to a wonderful life.

What I've Learned
by Garry Shandling, Esquire
I had a car accident when I was twenty-seven in which I was nearly killed. I had a vivid near-death experience that involved a voice asking, "Do you want to continue leading Garry Shandling's life?" Without thinking, I said, "Yes." Since then, I've been stuck living in the physical world while knowing, without a doubt, that there's something much more meaningful within it all. That realization is what drives my life and work.

Cat People
by Louis Menand, New Yorker
What Dr. Seuss really taught us.


The Trickle-Down Effect
by Annie Proulx, New Yorker

The Trials Of Finch
by Zadie Smith, New Yorker
Finch had three friends: Claire, Karen, and Jemima. These were tall, lucky, professional Englishwomen in their early forties who had been ever so kind to Finch, and who felt, with some reason, that they had saved her.

Monday, December 16, 2002


The "Axis Of Evil" In Action
by Michael Elliott, Time
Was Bush right when he made Iraq, Iran and North Korea a loathsome trio?

How To Ruin American Enterprise
by Benjamin J. Stein, Forbes
We're well on our way to squelching what gives this country an edge. What would it take to kill innovation altogether?

Tech & Science

Scientists Exposed As Sloppy Reporters
by Hazel Muir, New Scientist
A cunning statistical study has exposed scientists as sloppy reporters. When they write up their work and cite other people's papers, most do not bother to read the original.


I'm Dreaming Of A Green Christmas
by Brendan Miniter, Wall Street Journal
What's wrong with commercialization? Nothing.

Some People Can Get Very Possessive About Apostrophe's
by Arianna Huffington, Los Angeles Times
That's it. I'm at the end of my rope. Or, more appropriately, my rope's end — because that's the thing that's got me so worked up: the growing misuse of that puny piece of punctuation called the apostrophe.

A Hundred-Candle Story And How To Blow It
by Howard Kurtz, Washington Post
When Trent Lott priased the 1948 segregationist candidacy of Strom Thrumond, most of the mainstream press was, rather embarrassingly, caught napping.

A Surprise Second Helping For Drooling Barbecue Fans
by Jim O'Grady, New York Times
If barbecue is a religion, and many populist gourmands will tell you it is, then the barbecue shack is its temple.

Carried From The Couch On The Wings Of Enchantment
by Rebecca Goldstein, New York Times
What I try to do in writing is to pay homage to philosophy and fiction, the forms of enchantment that took hold of me at such an early age.

Saturday, December 14, 2002


The Big Fat Case Against Big Macs
by Ellen Goodman, Washington Post
If people have their share of personal responsibility for what they eat, is it really frivolous to expect some responsibility on the part of corporations for what and how they market?


NPR Serves Up Breakfast Serial
by Paul Farhi, Washington Post
The most unusual aspect of the NPR production may be when it will air.


What You Do When A Substitute Teacher Tells Her Class That St. Nick Isn't Real?
by Peter Bernard, Sun-Sentinel

Friday, December 13, 2002

Tech & Science

Why You Can't Get That Tune Out Of Your Head
by James Meek, The Guardian
The many thousands of tunes most of us know, from arias to singles and jingles, are locked in a shifting pattern of neural circuits in a region just behind our foreheads, scientists say.


A Quest For The Best Cookies
by Bella English, Boston Globe
When I married, my husband came with a sleep sofa, a tacky dining room set, some great record albums, and — by far the most valuable — a family molasses cookie recipe.

Gaudy Or Nice?
by Robin Givhan, Washington Post
What is this silly pressure to dress like a Christmas tree, mrs. Kringle or Bing Crosby?

Thursday, December 12, 2002


America's Weapons Of Mass Destruction
by Robert Scheer, Salon
If weapons inspectors were to look at the United States, what would they find?

Tech & Science

Butterflies' Flights Disclose Free Spirits
by James Gorman, New York Times
Nothing is quite so delicate as the dance of butterflies on the breeze, and, as new research suggests, nothing is quite so humbling to flight engineers.


United's ESOP Fable
by Farhad Manjoo, Salon
Did employee stock ownership drive the airline into bankruptcy?

The Wall Street Journal Takes A Jab At Free Online Rivals
by Nat Ives, New York Times
A cheeky new campaign from The Wall Street Journal Online, one of the few news Web sites to charge users for access, mocks its free counterparts as uninformed, simplistic and unreliable.

Why Does Everyone Think Good Writing Is So Easy?
by Philip Hensher, Independent
The skill and ability involved in writing sentences is generally underrated, and asusmed to be a much more universal capacity than it really is.

Bermuda Triangle: Behind The Intrigue
by Hillary Mayell, National Geographic News
"The region is highly traveled and has been a busy crossroads since the early days of European exploration. To say quite a few ships and airplanes have gone down there is like saying there are an awful lot of car accidents on the New Jersey Turnpike—surprise, surprise."


by Cate Marvin, Slate


Treetop Blogging Protests Logging
by Amit Asaravala, Wired News
Unlike most people her age, 27-year-old "Remedy" hasn't checked her e-mail in over eight months. That's because she's been living in a 200-foot-tall redwood since March 21, when she climbed the tree to protest timber harvesting by Pacific Lumber Company.

Wednesday, December 11, 2002


Trying To Buy Our Way Out Of Trouble
by Lizabeth Cohen, New York Times
As we embrace brisk sales as an answer to economic ills, the ties between mass consumption and inequality should be noted.

'Kill Kurds, Not Mumia'
by Napoleon Cole, Wall Street Journal
Having fun at Seattle peaceniks' expense.


Fluent In French, With A West Coast Accent
by Amanda Hesser, New York Times
After decades on the culinary frontier, defining a new American cuisine on a foundation of local foods and seasonal cooking, San Francisco has shifted into reverse, with more than a dozen new bistros settling in neighborhoods from Potrero Hill to the Financial District to the East Bay.

Tuesday, December 10, 2002


Unequal Justice
by Edward T. Pound, U.S. News
Military courts are stacked to convict—but not the brass. The Pentagon insists everything's just fine.

The Quiet Power Of Condi Rice
by Evan Thomas, Newsweek
Born in 'Bombingham,' the enigmatic adviser has become the 'Warrior Princess'—Bush's secret White House weapon.

Tech & Science

At Genetic Frontier, The House Mouse Serves Humanity
by Nicholas Wade, New York Times
Now that the mouse's genome has been decoded, revealing just as many genes as its host, the 25 million mice that work in laboratories throughtout the world may be demanding a lot more respect.


Limping Off The Shelves
by Linton Weeks, Washington Post
Publishers and booksellers are scratching their heads and wondering why readers aren't reaching — with the same eagerness they once did — for the latest offerings by popular writers.

With Video Games, Researchers Link Guns To Stereotypes
by Erica Goode, New York Times
Unconscious biases, possibly instilled by the news media, advertising or other cultural influences, can shape behavior, even when people do not consciously endorse such biases.


The Bare Manuscript
by Arthur Miller, New Yorker
Carol Mundt lay on the desk, propped up on her elbows, reading a cooking article in You. She was six feet tall and a hundred and sixty pounds of muscle, bone, and sinew, with only a slightly bulging belly. In Saskatchewan she had not stood out for her size, but here in New York it was a different story.

Monday, December 9, 2002


Dirty Dealing
by Donald L. Barlett and James B. Steele, Time
Indian casinos have fallen far short of benefiting the wider Native American population.


I'm A Better Mother Since I Left My Child
by Daylle Deanna Schwartz, Newsweek
My decision cost me my friends, but staying would have cost me the chance to grow up.

Wanted: A New Personality For MSNBC
by Jim Rutenberg, New York Times
MSNBC, the cable news network, has repeatedly failed to reinvigorate itself. The job now falls to Neal Shapiro, the NBC News president.

Sunday, December 8, 2002


The Liberal Quandary Over Iraq
by George Packer, New York Times
Why there is no organized liberal opposition to the war? The answer involves an interesting history, and it sheds light on the difficulties now confronting American liberals.

Tech & Science

Survival Of The Slickest
by Chris Mooney, The American Prospect
How anti-evolutionists are mutating their message.


Defending Foie, Or How Not To Ruin A Duck Liver In Record Time
by Kim Severson, San Francisco Chronicle
For many of us, there is nothing more frightening than having a duck liver as big as a football sitting on the kitchen counter.

The Decline Of Reuters
by Rainer Meckes and Felix Krohn, Wall Street Journal
The precipitous fall of this famous information provider has no simple explanation. The challenge, though, is to find the right way out of the crisis.

Urban Allergy
by E.D. Mayturn, Los Angeles Times
Our hunger for 'authentic' Los Angeles is nothing more than a sneeze at what we truly are.

Stop The Music!
by Dave Barry, Washington Post
Because in these hectic times, when everybody must remember an ATM code and 143 computer passwords, nobody has the brain capacity to remember what my true love gave to me.

Bring Back Recess
by Christine Woodside, Washington Post
School districts do not deliberately enact blanket policies forbidding fun — it just quietly vanishes.

The Game Is Afoot On A London Stroll
by Sarah Ferrell, New York Times
A guided walking tour with Original London Walks follows the steps of the Beatles, Dickens, Wilde and others.

Saturday, December 7, 2002


Not Fit To Print?
by John Feinstein, Washington Post
The editorial board at the Times is certainly entitled to its opinion — as wrong as it may be. But so is Anderson.

A New Agenda For A New Economic Team
by Stephen S. Roach, New York Times
This reconsideration comes at a pivotal time — for the United States and for the world.

Is China's Economic Boom A Myth?
by Joshua Kurlantzick, The New Republic
Look closely at the Chinese economy, and you'll find a far less rosy situation than that portrayed in most of the business press.

Tech & Science

How To Slice The Pi Very, Very Thin
by Associated Press
Researchers have calculated the value of pi to 1.24 trillion places, six times the number of places recognized now, one researcher said today.


China's Newspaper Scene Starts To Loosen Up
by Jason Leow and Mary Kwang, Straits Times
For a taste of communism, read the People's Daily. But to know what citizens in communist China really think, flip open the Global Times.

What Does It Take To Make A Great Editor?
by Harold Evans, The Times
The trusth about editorship, of course, is that it is hard to agree on a single standard of excellence.

U.S. Writers Do Cultural Battle Around The Globe
by Michael Z. Wise, New York Times
The Bush administration has recruited prominent American writers to contribute to a State Department anthology and give readings around the globe in a campaign started after 9/11 to use culture to further American diplomatic interests.

Friday, December 6, 2002


Violence And Islam
by Charles Krauthammer, Washington Post
Is Islam an inherently violent religion?

The Intellectual Origins Of America-Bashing
by Lee Harris, Policy Review
Above all it is the America that is responsible for the evils of the rest of the world.

Tech & Science

Mathematics Unrvels Optimum Way Of Shoe Lacing
by Rachel Nowak, New Scientist
The knotty problem of choosing the optimum way of lacing up shoes has been solved by a new mathematical proof.


A Day To Melt Cares Away
by Libby Copeland, Washington Post
We are all children for the first snow of the year.

It Takes More Than Crayfish To Make A Cajun Wiggle
by R.W. Apple Jr., New York Times
In Acadiana, as a rule, the more rudimentary the surroundings, the more genuine the grub.

In Book Publishing World, Some Reasons For Optimism
by Dinitia Smith, New York Times
More book titles than ever ar ebeing published these days. So why do publishers complain?

Thursday, December 5, 2002


Can The Supreme Court Change Its Mind?
by Kenji Yoshino, New York Times
How does the United States Supreme Court correct its mistakes?

Tech & Science

Screenage Wasteland?
by Andrew Leonard, Salon
When video games look as good as action films, commercials are more fun than cartoons, and everything screams "Buy!" it's easy to lose your bearings.


A Celebrity In The Kitchen
by Valli Herman-Cohen, Los Angeles Times
Top-tier chefs are moving in to catering, and you might be surprised to see who's doing your cooking.

The Unbiased Truth About Media Objectivity
by Norah Vincent, Los Angeles Times
The reporting of the news is supposed to be objective, a dispassionate recitation of the facts. But of course it never is and never has been. What's more, it never will or could be.

Paradise Frost
by Libby Copeland, Washington Post
The 3-year-old dream of the Electric Maid is to be a community living room — with heat.

Poetry Of Praise For New York City
by Mel Gussow, New York Times
The Poetry Society of America on Tuesday presented "The Words of My City," and anthology of New Yorkers reading New York poems.


Orange SMS Shorthand Poetry Competition: The Shortlist
by The Guardian

Wednesday, December 4, 2002


Islam's Outdated Domination Theology
by Yossi Hlein Halevi, Los Angeles Times
Only when Muslims accept religious pluralism will peace have a chance.


Teacher Dilemma: Sued If You Do, Sued If You Don't
by David D. Perlmutter, Los Angeles Times
Perhaps all of us, parents and teachers, need to reclaim our rights to oversee the behavior of children, even those who can vote or join the Army.

A Perfectionist Does It His Way
by Alex Witchel, New York Times
Perfecting recipes and cooking techniques in the most obsessive ways possible is pretty much Mr. Steingarten's job description. He goes somewhere in the world, watches someone do something, then comes home and tries it 50 different ways himself.

Another Berkeley Daily Bites The Dust
by Z Byron Wolf, San Francisco Chronicle
Blame advertising or editing or bad design or the lack of home delivery for the demise of daily city journalism in Berkeley. But don't forget to throw in the readers.

Singapore Offers An Architectural Symbol For The Arts
by Wayne Arnold, New York Times
Singapore has cast the Esplanade complex, which includes shops and restaurants, as part of a plan to regain its luster.


Nail Broth
by David Barber, Slate
Rusty, twisted: scrounge one from a scrap-heap plank.
How long did you say you've been down on your luck?

Tuesday, December 3, 2002


Can Global Warming Be Studied Too Much?
by Andrew C. Revkin, New York Times
Many climate experts say talking about more research will simply delay decisions that need to be made now to avert serious harm from global warming.

Tech & Science

The Inner Einstein
by Thomas Hayden, U.S. News
The more we see that image, the less we seem to know about the real Einstein and the work that made him famous.


Why Do Book Cost So Much?
by Christopher Dreher, Salon
Thirty bucks for a new hardcover! How book prices got so out of hand, who's responsible and what it will take to make reading more affordable in the future.

From Fat To Phat: An Author's Happy Ending
by Lonnae O'Neal Parker, Washington Post
In a world that rewards the aility to make folks stare, transfixed,w hen their every inclination ahd been to turn away, LaValle is the lick.

Monday, December 2, 2002


Air Fright: Why Nov. 28 Will Prove Scarier In The Long Run For Airline Passengers Than Sept. 11
by James Fallows, Slate
Whatever it means can't be good. For the moment the point is: Something important has just occurred.

Risk Aversion In The Corner Office
by Robert L. Bartley, Wall Street Journal
The economy won't grow again until CEOs start taking chances.

Making Philosophy Matter To Politics
by Martha Nussbaum, New York Times
It is thanks to John Rawls that philosophy has continued to animate politics.


No Man's Land
by Ari Shavit, New Yorker
The idea of a city disappears.

Fish Oil And Toenails
by Sanjay Gupta, Time
Eating fish is good for hearts. Mercury may be bad. Which matters more?

Finding A Heart: The L.A. River
by William H. Fain Jr, Los Angeles Times
Rome, one of the West's oldest cities, and Los Angeles, one of its youngest major cities, share a lost opportunity. Neither has capitalized on the enormous potential of the rivers that run through them, but both now realize that reconnecting their rivers and cities can bring enormous benefits.

Bring Out The Latkes, Savor The Tradition
by Suzanne Slesin, New York Times
Hanukkah, or the Festival of Lights, has always been one of my favorite holidays and the one that I most associate with my late mother, Niuta. And with her latkes — the Yiddish word and the only one she used for the potato pancakes that are one of the fried-in-oil foods that are traditional to and an intricate part of the celebration that begins this evening.


Sin: Early Impressions
by John Updike, New Yorker

Sunday, December 1, 2002


My Life's Not FDA-Approved
by Edie Bacon, Wall Street Journal
Why do I have to die for the sake of government rules?

AIDS Is Not A Death Sentence
by William Jefferson Clinton, New York Times
Too many countries are still in denial about the scope of the problem and what has to be done about it.

AIDS A Century From Now
by Joseph Riverson, Seattle Post-Intelligencer
Without intervention, a billion could die amid many wrecked economies.


The Curse Of Tom Wolfe
by Michael Shapiro, Columbia Journalism Review
What went wrong for the magazine story? And how, for the sake of readers, editors, and bookkeepers, might magazine swin back their storyteller's swagger?

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