Helen Benedict has a chilling story in Salon about the prevalence of rape, sexual assault, and harassment within the military. In Iraq, things have gotten so bad that officers routinely tell female soldiers "not to go to the latrines or showers without another woman for protection." This stuff is neither universal nor inevitable--several soldiers told Benedict that commanders can stop the mistreatment of women in their units if they so choose--but it is rampant.
I sometimes wonder whether the anonymity of the Internet has not only ushered in a less civil age but a more misogynistic one. Just check out this article in Wednesday's Washington Post about AutoAdmit, a law school discussion board. The purported purpose of the site is to give law students an open forum to anonymously discuss their community ("We are very strong believers in the freedom of expression and the marketplace of idea," says one of the site's high-minded founders).
Since I linked to yesterday's Politico story about Bill Richardson's "personal life," I feel I should also link to Garance's smart retort to it: I've never come across a candidate who has been the subject of more unsubstantiated whispering among the press corps. Some paper with real resources needs to send someone to New Mexico to track down the start of the whispering campaign against Richardson, and then either knock it down decisively, to give the man the fair shake he deserves, or publish the story of whatever its basis might be.
by Jacob T. Levy This is a commentary on the "Wolfe v. Berkowitz" stuff that's been going on on the main page and at The Weekly Standard, not in OU; and it's all 'who said what to whom in rejoinder to which rebuttal' kind of material. Read the whole thing at your own peril. Note: I drafted this after "Wolfe vs. Berkowitz Round 2" was posted on the main page, then decided not to stir those waters any further. Now that two more rounds have been exchanged, it seems that I'm at no risk of bearing sole responsibility for keeping this argument going.
by Eric Rauchway Tyler Cowen has devoted a number of recent posts to complaining about labor unions. In his latest, he says, "I've unearthed Barry T.
From the State Department's latest human rights report, Kazakhstan chapter: There were no formal government restrictions on access to the Internet, but independent web media reported that the government monitored e-mail and Internet activity, blocked or slowed access to opposition Web sites and materials critical of Nazarbayev or members of his family, and planted pro-government propaganda in Internet chat rooms.
A few days ago, TNR Online published a powerhouse essay by Alvin Rosenfeld, a distinguished literary scholar at Indiana Univeristy, on anti-Semitism and left and liberal criticism of Israel. Maybe you didn't read it. If so, here's another chance. The very provocative website Augean Stables has entered the debate, expanding on Rosenfeld's article. Forgive me for telling you what to read.
The Washington Post has a horrifying story today about a 12-year-old kid who died of a toothache. The family had lost its Medicaid coverage and couldn't afford a routine tooth extraction, and so bacteria from the abscess spread to the kid's brain and he died--that is, after six weeks of hospital care and two operations that cost the state over $250,000. It's an extreme case, but it underscores the fact that the lack of dental coverage for low-income families is a much more serious problem than often thought.
The right must have absolutely no good opposition research on Barack Obama. Here was Sean Hannity last night, really scraping the bottom of the barrel: You know, according to The Chicago Tribune, I'm trying to do a lot of research on this today. I haven't gotten a 100 percent definitive answer.But they report he's been an active member of Chicago's Trinity Unity Church of Christ for the last 20 years.
by Linda Hirshman The minute I pressed the send button on my plea for a little more discipline in the writing trades, I knew someone would come up with a list of indispensable doorstop books. But now that the topic is on the table, I am delighted that others are willing to warn us away from authorial excess, even in otherwise excellent choices.