National Park

Could California's Green Experiment Come To An End?
September 25, 2009

Do Republicans have to go green to have any prayer of winning a statewide race in California? For awhile, it sure looked that way. Back in 2006, Arnold Schwarzenegger managed to revive his gasping campaign by reinventing himself as an environmentalist. He scampered around the state in a lime-colored bus with a Yosemite National Park vista spray-painted on the side, scissored his way through all manners of ribbons on solar-paneled schools and the like, and signed A.B. 32, a bill that aimed to cut California's carbon-dioxide emissions 25 percent by 2020. He coasted to re-election that fall.

Sweet And Low
March 22, 1999

I. The Poisonwood Bible by Barbara Kingsolver (HarperFlamingo, 546 pp., $26) Barbara Kingsolver is the most successful practitioner of a style in contemporary fiction that might be called Nice Writing. Nice Writing is a violent affability, a deadly sweetness, a fatal gentle touch. But before I start in on Kingsolver's work, I feel I must explain why I feel that I must start in on it. I do so for a younger version of myself, for the image that I carry inside me of a boy who was the son of a sadistic, alcoholic father, and of a mother who was hurt but also hurtful, and abusive.