The group blog of The New Republic
December 2, 2013
‘Tis the season to take umbrage. The notion that politically correct liberals want to stifle less ecumenical versions of seasonal greetings, such as, “Merry Christmas,” is a longstanding conservative trope.
We calculated what menu items would cost if fast-food workers made at least $15 per hour.
Does the rise in IQ scores over the past century mean people are getting smarter? Since the beginning of the twentieth century, IQ scores around the world have been increasing at a rate of around three points per decade, leaving intelligence researchers puzzling over whether historical gains in IQ—known as the “Flynn effect”—reflect an increase in general intelligence or something else, be it better education, better nutrition or even bigger brains.
Having your homeland engulfed by the ocean because of climate change doesn’t make you a refugee, a court ruled last week. That's no excuse to leave people helpless.
Over the Thanksgiving holiday, my mother told a story about my grandmother's college days. She went to school in Washington, D.C., but she sent her laundry back to her parents in Cleveland. She'd put it on a train, and it'd be back to her in no more than a couple of days—the train service was that frequent and efficient. This was the late 1920s or early 1930s.
Because of Thanksgiving, readers may have missed The New York Times's Joe Biden story, which ran in the newspaper on Wednesday. It is the saddest short political profile I have ever read. Whether Jackie Calmes, the reporter of the story, was intentionally being condescending, or whether she simply didn't realize how pathetic a picture she was drawing, is a debate for another day.
December 1, 2013
READ: The White House's progress report on Healthcare.gov (they say there is some)
November 28, 2013
The psychology of big groups.
It’s Thanksgiving so, naturally, there is news about healthcare.gov. The news is about Small Business Health Options Program (SHOP) exchange. It’s supposed to be like the exchange that people use to buy insurance on their own, only it’s supposed to be for small businesses. Eventually, employees of small businesses will be use the site to buy their own coverage, once their employer has picked from a menu options—in effect, giving them the same kind of choices that employees of many large firms already have.
With the long Holiday weekend ahead of us, here is a collection of links. If you have some free time, or just need to get away from family, these articles are all worth reading.
--Mark Lynch, in Foreign Policy, has an important piece explaining why the Obama administration is not getting tough with Egypt's generals.