John F. Kennedy

God’s Own Party: The Making of the Christian Right By Daniel K. Williams (Oxford University Press, 372 pp., $29.95) From Bible Belt to Sunbelt: Plain-Folk Religion, Grassroots Politics, and the Rise of Evangelical Conservatism By Darren Dochuk (W.W. Norton, 520 pp., $35)  In the presidential election of 1976, the Democrat Jimmy Carter split the votes of American white evangelical Protestants almost evenly with the Republican Gerald Ford. With a clear plurality of at least ten percentage points, Carter did even better among the nation’s white Baptists.

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Jonathan Kay on conspiracy theories surrounding high profile “deaths.”

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Camelot Tales

“Kate Middleton: A Kennedy?”Vanity Fair tweeted on April 1, linking to a story that purported to uncover a genealogical link between the princess-to-be and the Kennedy family. The story was based on a “never-before-seen” photograph of a little girl (who looks nothing like Middleton) sailing with Teddy Kennedy. The April Fool’s story was a nicely executed satire of the magazine’s preoccupation with America’s own royalty, but Vanity Fair has published equally ridiculous stories with a straight face—most recently, a book excerpt from an opportunistic old girlfriend of John F.

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Wag What Dog?

A week into American and allied action in Libya, one political result is already clear: Barack Obama has not benefited in the polls. If anything, Obama’s Gallup approval numbers are actually down a few points since American involvement in Libya began. We can look to political science to understand this trend—specifically, to the idea of the “rally around the flag” effect. A rally effect, by definition, is when a president’s approval numbers increase during a national security event. Unfortunately for Obama, there’s been no rally effect this week.

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Anti-labor forces have waited decades for the opportunity that they are now trying to seize in Wisconsin. Republican Governor Scott Walker’s plan, echoed in proposals put forward by several other conservative governors, to take away the collective bargaining rights of most Wisconsin public employees under the guise of deficit reduction represents a bold effort to undo a half-century of labor history. It would turn back the clock to the early 1950s, a time when public workers still labored under a form a second-class citizenship. The goal?

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This is the story that has it all: John F. Kennedy High football player and Ohio State University recruit Chris Carter was arrested Tuesday on suspicion of fondling as many eight girls while pretending to measure them for JROTC uniforms. Carter, 18, was held overnight in City Jail and is not expected to be released before Thursday morning. Cleveland police said a 15-year-old girl told officers that Carter took her out of her classroom and into a room behind the JFK auditorium and told her he needed to measure her for the uniform.

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New documents released today about Nixon and the Jews: Documents released today by the Richard Nixon presidential library contain fresh details on the former president’s antipathy toward Jews, his interest in exposing more details of John F. Kennedy’s policy on Cuba and Vietnam, and his approach to the office that he was eventually forced to resign. Mr. Nixon ordered his aides to exclude all Jewish-Americans from policy-making on Israel, according to formerly classified notes taken by then-chief of staff H. R. “Bob” Haldeman on a meeting with the president in July 1971.

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Ted Sorensen at TNR

On Sunday Theodore C. Sorensen, a speechwriter for President John F. Kennedy and one of his closest confidantes, passed away at the age of 82. He penned two pieces for The New Republic:  "School Doors Swing Open." In 1952, just a year before he was hired by then-Senator Kennedy, the young lawyer reported on the beginning of the end of segregation in public schools. "Heir Time." More than a half century later, Sorensen returned to TNR to demonstrate his enthusiasm for Barack Obama. "President Kennedy succeeded by demonstrating the same  ...

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The Old New Thing

The Last Utopia: Human Rights in History By Samuel Moyn (Belknap Press, 337 pp., $27.95) In 1807, in Yorkshire, activists hit the campaign trail for William Wilberforce, whose eloquent parliamentary fight against Britain’s slave trade had won surprising success. “O we’ve heard of his Cants in Humanity’s Cause/While the Senate was hush’d, and the land wept applause,” they sang.

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We’ve long liked the Department of Energy’s new Energy Innovation Hubs program, with its resemblances to our energy discovery-innovation institutes idea.

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