Isaac Chotiner

Getting 'funny People' Wrong
August 03, 2009

This post contains spoilers: Do not read if you plan on seeing Funny People. People are allowed to disagree about movies or books or plays or television shows. In fact, spirited debate about artistic efforts is one of life's pleasures. Therefore, even though I disagree with Manohla Dargis' lukewarm review of Funny People, I do not begrudge her for liking the movie less than I did (Chris' more positive (and insightful) take is close to my own). However, after reading Dargas, one wonders whether she actually paid any attention to the movie she was reviewing.

A Positive Sign From Pakistan
August 02, 2009

It is always nice to read a relatively sanguine piece about the political situation in Pakistan. Sabrina Tavernise's excellent New York Times dispatch makes one important and usually obscured point: Its politics and economics are far more local than national; regional, ethnic and cultural differences are very deep. The mullahs of Swat may be calling for the downtrodden masses to unite, but here in Punjab, religious leaders are still firmly tied to the upper crust. In my travels in this province, none of the mullahs were talking about revolution.

The Puffington Host
June 17, 2009

Right is Wrong: How the Lunatic Fringe Hijacked America, Shredded the Constitution, and Made Us All Less Safe (And What You Need To Know To End The Madness) By Arianna Huffington (Alfred A.

The Puffington Host
June 17, 2009

Right is Wrong: How the Lunatic Fringe Hijacked America, Shredded the Constitution, and Made Us All Less Safe (And What You Need To Know To End The Madness) By Arianna Huffington (Alfred A.

The Worst Case Yet Against Gay Marriage
May 23, 2009

There is something nice--refreshing even--about a single article that incorporates everything you despise in a certain worldview. What's more, rather than looking for polite or euphemistic words, it is lovely to be able to say that the article is, simply, dreadful.  The story in question was written by someone named Sam Schulman. It is entitled, 'The Worst Thing About Gay Marriage.' Schulman's argument is as follows: When a gay man becomes a professor or a gay woman becomes a police officer, he or she performs the same job as a heterosexual.

Mister Lucky
February 04, 2009

Malcolm Gladwell's fairy tales.

Caroline Kennedy, Victim Of Sexism?
January 22, 2009

This Caroline Kennedy farce will drag on a little longer, but in the meantime Anne Kornblut has a front page story in Friday's Washington Post on whether sexism had something to do with Kennedy's rough few weeks. Kornblut's piece starts off with this shaky claim: With her abrupt exit this week from consideration for the Senate, Caroline Kennedy added her name to a growing list: women who have sought the nation's highest offices only to face insurmountable hurdles. In what sense were the hurdles faced by Kennedy "insurmountable"?

24 Hours Of Fox News
November 03, 2008

With precious little time remaining until the election, last week I sat down to watch as much Fox News as I reasonably could over a 24-hour period. As one might expect with Barack Obama so close to the presidency, the channel is in full nuclear meltdown mode; I was afraid the stench of desperation would waft out of the television set and into my studio apartment. Fox is going ballistic for good reason: These days, absolutely nothing is going right--in both declensions of the word.

Palin 1, Jefferson 0
September 05, 2008

Rush Limbaugh enthused about the GOP convention yesterday, saying: “I did not want that to end last night…I didn’t want the night to end. I didn’t want Rudy to stop. What a night! Folks we have a future beyond November here. Regardless what happens…The convention has been unified on the basis of conservatism.

Rhythm
September 04, 2008

McCain did well enough handling the protesters, but the speech seems to really lack any sense of rhythm and cohesion. Crowley is right, too. --Isaac Chotiner 

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