Posts tagged "United States"
Demystifying Post-Racial America

Demystifying Post-Racial America

The results of the grand jury proceeding in the shooting of Michael Brown are hardly a surprise. Indeed, the jurors’ failure to return a bill of indictment was a foregone conclusion. The number of times that law enforcement personnel have been brought to book in this country for an act of violence committed against a person of color can probably be counted on one hand. More»

Don't Forget the Handguns

Don’t Forget the Handguns

Tragedy has once again struck the United States with a mass shooting at Florida State University. As a result, there will likely be another push to implement comprehensive gun control, and unfortunately, much of the discussion involves the wrong guns.  More»

No Insurance

No Insurance

It took us a few seconds to figure out what was happening. One minute my host brothers had been hurling snowballs towards the roof of an apartment building, and the next we were being assaulted by a blur of a man, shirtless but a little sweaty despite the fierce cold. He landed one punch, missed another, then turned to charge at me. “I don’t have insurance,” I shouted in German, More»

All-Consuming Predators

All-Consuming Predators

In the early 1900s, there were more than 100,000 tigers worldwide, with the greatest number on the Indian sub-continent. In the twenty-first century, one country has overtaken India by having a larger tiger population than any other. The Humane Society of the United States reports that there are between 5000 and 7000 of the iconic big cats in the USA, but fewer than 400 of them are held in officially recognised zoos. More»

Fear Trumps Morality

Fear Trumps Morality

Fear truly is the mind-killer. It has a way, when intentionally stoked and directed at some enemy, of killing a lot of people as well. In Israel, the bombardment and invasion of Gaza over the summer demonstrates what can happen when a populace is fed a consistent diet of fear, no matter how safe the society is and how meager the threat to them is. More»

Meet the New Israel

Meet the New Israel

Benjamin Netanyahu raised some eyebrows when he expressed a desire for an independent Kurdistan in June. Not only was his speech to a Tel Aviv think tank surprising. It also contradicted current American policy of trying to prevent Iraq from splitting apart. Of course, Israeli-Kurdish solidarity isn’t actually new. Israel has maintained military and financial ties with Kurdish separatists since the 1960s.  More»

The British Lieutenant

The British Lieutenant

It’s old news by now. The Cameron government has joined the Obama administration in its air campaign against the self-declared Islamic State, in Syria and Iraq. In Syria, US-led forces are effectively acting on the side of the Assad regime. The attacks, in turn, have united the affiliates of al-Qaeda with the ISIS forces that they had broken with. More»

Germany's Black Energiewende

Germany’s Black Energiewende

If the goal is to decisively tackle climate change, then Germany’s Energiewende is a disaster. This wouldn’t be the case if Europe’s environmentalists weren’t so deeply opposed to using nuclear power. More»

McDonald's Takes Europe

McDonald’s Takes Europe

There are reasons for Europeans to feel antipathy towards the United States, just as there were in previous decades. But expressing these sentiments is not as easy as it used to be. The bait-and-switch move that reliably substituted cultural targets for political ones is becoming harder to pull off. More»

Designing Postwar Japan

Designing Postwar Japan

The debate was about who knew Japan better: the “Japan Crowd” or the “Lobby,” on the right, or the “New Dealers” in the SCAP. The story of the US Occupation from, 1945 to 1952, is the story of these camps’ shared assumptions about the limitations of the Japanese psyche. In the end,  the conservatives won, disproportionately influencing Japanese politics, and America’s imperial administration. More»

The Paranoid Style

The Paranoid Style

There’s something of a cottage industry in the US, devoted to tying contemporary politics to their intellectual forebears. In some cases, it’s a matter of pure character assassination, as in the assertions from the far right that Barack Obama is some sort of  socialist. From the leftward side of the spectrum come claims that this or that politician is a devotee of the thought of that great seducer of the adolescent male mind, Ayn Rand. More»

King Hortons in Canada

King Hortons in Canada

You’ve probably heard of Burger King’s plan to buy Canadian restaurant chain Tim Hortons. News of the $11 billion “King Hortons” merger has caused stocks to soar, with analysts excitedly reporting that it will form the world’s third largest fast-food company. It isn’t exactly innovative for an American company to buy Tim Hortons: Wendy’s did it previously. What is new is the brazenness of its intent. More»