Henry Luce

The story Newsweek's demise is not just a story about Tina Brown. A 20th century historian explains why the magazine itself was so significant.

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New York’s last romantic gets his own magazine.

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IN MITT ROMNEY’S 2010 campaign book, No Apology: The Case for National Greatness, the former Massachusetts governor cites twelve countries that the United States has invaded for the “cause of freedom.” Readers expecting to learn about World War II or the downfall of Slobodan Milošević might be surprised by Romney’s list.

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The Browbeater

Masscult and Midcult: Essays Against the American Grain By Dwight Macdonald Edited by John Summers (New York Review Books, 289pp., $16.95) Dwight Macdonald, the greatest American hatchet man, applied his merciless craft also to himself. When he collected his essays, he added footnotes, appendices, and other forms of addenda taking issue with his own writings.

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&c

-- Jackson Lear reviews Alan Brinkley's new book about Henry Luce. -- Jonathan Bernstein on cap-and-trade: "It's worth noting that on a legislative time scale, cap-and-trade was really very, very, new, and most important laws tend to take a long time, often spanning several Congresses, to pass." -- Tim Geithner fires back at the Business Roundtable.

The Publisher: Henry Luce and His American Century By Alan Brinkley (Knopf, 531 pp., $35) I. Sometimes human beings bring sociological theory to life. Consider the career of Henry Luce. A child of Presbyterian missionaries in China, he pursued wealth and power with unremitting zeal, creating the media empire that dominated American journalism for much of the twentieth century: Time, Inc. Yet Luce never lost touch with his didactic origins, never abandoned the conviction that his magazines should teach Americans the right way of thinking about the world.

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The Great Satan Myth

The Iranian regime has never found itself more vulnerable. And, with this vulnerability, it has never leaned more heavily on its own narrative of history.

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When 367 Republican House candidates signed the Contract with America on September 27, 1994, they pledged to create "a Congress that is doing what the American people want and doing it in a way that instills trust." As they stood on the steps of the Capitol, Texas Representative Dick Armey declared, "[W]e enter a new era in American government. Today one political party is listening to the concerns of the American people, and we are responding with specific legislation.

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Hutchinsland

In 1867 Charles Dickens reported on "the first meeting of the Mudfog Association for the Advancement of Everything." A dozen years ago, on the centennial of that occasion, I became Senior Fellow of the Center for the Study of Democratic Institutions at Santa Barbara, California. I was reminded of these moments in history by the news that the Center, after years of seedy gentility, has found a new benefactor. It has been taken in as a ward of the University of California at Santa Barbara.

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The Powers That Be by David Halberstam (Knopf; $15) David Halberstam. Halberstam, that was what everybody called him (after all, it was his name). They always said what Halberstam needed was a good editor, his sentences ran on and on, he piled phrase upon phrase and clause upon clause, he used commas the way other men used periods.

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