November 13, 2009
Last week’s U.S.-EU annual summit differed from its predecessors in ways that fuel the perception on the other side of the Atlantic that Barack Obama is just not that interested in Europe. First, there was the venue of the opening lunch: Blair House, the government’s official guest house, not the usual White House. Then, there was the luncheon’s host: Vice-President Joe Biden, not the president himself.
The November Pogrom
November 12, 2009
In our collective memory of the Holocaust, Kristallnacht occupies a central but ambiguous place. If you look simply at the statistics, there is little reason why the events of November 9-10, 1938, should loom so large.
Today at TNR (November 10, 2009)
November 10, 2009
Don’t Underestimate Europe’s Ability to Integrate Its Muslim Minorities, by Anne Applebaum The Abortion Amendment Debate: What Kind of Power Do Catholics Have in the Democratic Party? by William Galston and Alan Wolfe Why Scientists Are, By Definition, Activists, by Marilyn Berlin Snell Should We Let Health Care Reform Fail So We Can Do It Right Next Time? by Jonathan Cohn Is It Too Early to Call the Fort Hood Shootings an Act of Terrorism? by John B.
November 10, 2009
Reflections on the Revolution in Europe: Immigration, Islam, and the West By Christopher Caldwell (Doubleday, 422 pp., $30) As its subtitle makes clear, this is a book about immigration, Islam, and the West. But at the same time this is also a book about a particular moral culture, a set of attitudes, habits, and beliefs that has developed in Western Europe over the past sixty years. There isn’t a good shorthand way to describe this moral culture. Sometimes it is called “political correctness,” though politics as such does not define it.
The Freedom Of Europe Commemorated
November 09, 2009
Over the years, my good friend Jacques Rupnik has written commentaries in TNR about the decline of communism in Eastern Europe. Given the 20th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall and the 53rd anniversary of bloody Budapest, Rupnik, a professor at Science-Pol, has written a longish essay for Le Monde, some about the past, some also about the future. Alas, in French. Point de vue L'Europe de l'Est, vingt ans après, par Jacques Rupnik LE MONDE | 09.11.09 | 14h05 Le 20e anniversaire de 1989 semble marqué par la "confusion des sentiments".
November 09, 2009
Monday marks the twentieth anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall. It is worth pausing to recall just how momentous, and unanticipated, this event and those that followed were. My students today have no memory of the cold war; to them, Prague and Budapest, just like Paris and Madrid, are simply places to visit or study in Europe.
November 06, 2009
John Reed apologizes for creating Citigroup. What Europe is getting right in tackling unemployment. Public works projects successful in rural India? Study: Pork-barrel spending a symptom, not cause, of budget woes. Did Malcolm Gladwell cause Lehman's collapse?
Place of Grace
November 03, 2009
Over a decade ago, I trundled my good-natured family across miles of southern Switzerland to see every building I could by Peter Zumthor, who is this year's winner of the Pritzker Prize. Then as now, most of Zumthor's work was off the beaten track, not only literally but metaphorically, little known to the general public although admired by professionals.
November 02, 2009
As the world tries to cut its carbon emissions in the next few decades, natural gas will become increasingly crucial as a stopgap fuel, since it produces less CO2 pollution than coal or oil. At least, that's what the EIA thinks will happen. And the geopolitical implications of this trend are interesting.
Why Read Heidegger
November 01, 2009
German philosopher Martin Heidegger gets a lot of bad press. And for good reason. He was an enthusiastic supporter of the Nazis, he did and said and wrote some nasty things before and after serving as the rector of Freiburg University from 1933-1934, and though he eventually distanced himself from his earlier enthusiasm for Hitler, he seems never to have ceased believing that there was an "inner truth and greatness" (those are Heidegger's own words, spoken in a lecture from 1935) to the National Socialist movement. That sounds bad, and it is.