The group blog of The New Republic

September 15, 2013

Everyone in the magazine business understands that sometimes you sell articles or blog posts by making them sound sexier than they actually are. However, there are some things that one should probably shy away from. One of those things is accusing people of sexism without a shred of evidence. The charge shouldn't be made lightly.

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Do you have an eight-year-old child? Is your son or daughter currently being educated by a teacher, in a school? If so, you are a failure as a parent, and as an American. You need to quit your job (or if you are a man, tell your wife to quit her job) and teach your child at home. By “teach,” I mean have your child read a lot of books and watch YouTube videos on his or her own. 

So says Ron Paul in his new book, The School Revolution.

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September 13, 2013

Jonathan Franzen wouldn’t know irony if he tripped over it. Last year, he declared that “serious readers and writers, these are my people. And we do not like to yak about ourselves,” at a public reading. At a large university. In front of many people.

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Meghan McCain has described her new talk show—which premieres tomorrow on Pivot TV, a new network targeting millennials—as a middle ground between the Kardashians and C-SPAN. This is apt: “Raising McCain” takes reality TV’s confessional spirit and partygirl vibe and gives it all the drama and edge of a congressional livestream. McCain is committed to making political issues, from privacy to feminism, as platitudinous as possible.

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Twitter has announced its plans to join the stock market. We answer five questions on the social networking site’s plans for stock market flotation.

How did the company announce its plans to join the stock market?

On Twitter of course. The company sent out a tweet saying "We've confidentially submitted an S-1 to the SEC for a planned [initial public offering]."

Twitter said little else about its flotation plans, refraining from giving a timing or price for the offering.

How much is Twitter worth?

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Liberals are dumping Obama. Again. A story on Politico today declares that the left has “revoked Obama’s liberal card” for presiding over a (meager) push to use force against Bashar al Assad’s forces in Syria. And that, combined with a slew of previous disappointments—he never pushed for single-payer health care, he let the Glass-Steagall Act wither and die in favor of Dodd-Frank—this is the last straw.

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It’s Day Two of U.S.-Russian Syria Talks in Geneva. By some accounts, they started on shaky ground. Russia and Syria insisted the U.S. give up its “policy of threats” – the threat of military action that the U.S.

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In 2007, then-Congressman Edward Markey couldn't make it to Bali, Indonesia to speak at a conference on climate change, so he created an avatar on Second Life to deliver his remarks instead. While he spoke into a microphone in Washington, D.C., his animated likeness orated from a computer screen at the Bali conference.

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September 12, 2013

Director Haifaa al-Mansour insists Wadjda, her movie about a Saudi girl who marches to the beat of her own drum, which opens in the U.S. Friday, isn’t a “feminist film.” That may be why it’s such a good one.

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Lots of people think John Boehner has lost control of the House Republican caucus. Apparently John Boehner does, too.

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