Posts Tagged ‘New York Times’

Not Treason

There can be no such thing as “constructive treason.” It must be the real thing. And the facts of the Edward Snowden case highlight why the Framers’ narrowing of the definition is important.

A Half Day

And there in the sunroom I stood, one afternoon shortly after my father had died and we had moved into a new house and my life was all jumbled up beyond recall, with the light of the dying day filtering in through the tree outside, tears welling up as I honked through a requiem for my father with the instrument I knew best how to play.

Mondo Preview

Things that help in the strange ecology of the contemporary serious drama: rolling premieres, black box theaters, foundations, and residuals. But in consequence the reviewer may have to go guerilla. As seen with Detroit, The Train Driver, and Bullet for Adolf.

The Drones and the Virus: Time to Talk, Not Prosecute

We can all agree that historical understandings of the dividing line between war and law enforcement do not fit well the kind of conflicts our nation faces today. But the solution to that quandary should not be to cede all discretion to an Executive that works in the shadows. There are other unaddressed needs at work, among them the imperative to cut the public in on the discussion and the decision-making.


Even if you think it’s a good thing to be trying to unseat Kadafi, you ought to be discouraged by the thinly-veiled mutiny Obama is waging against the law. Me, I had this naive notion that the president was supposed to take care that the laws be faithfully executed. Silly moi! Nothing faithful about this bit of execution.

Time to Talk, Mr. Pistole

It is easy to imagine now, if TSA had leveled with us about what it proposed to do, what members of the public would have said what they felt about government official using radiation to take revealing pictures of them, and, as an alternative, literally groping their “privates.” TSA would be expected to respond with arguments about the recent attempted “underwear bomber,” and how these searches would make us all safer. And then a policy calculation in which the public was involved and invested could have been made, by an agency better advised about how the public felt.

The Messy But Necessary Leakocracy

The role of the leakers and the press and bloggers who disseminate what the leakers share is not institutionalized, and there is little or no quality control. But as a result of their actions, things that need to be made public, like torture and illegal wiretaps, often are publicized. The Leakocracy serves as a valuable if not vital safety valve in our society.

In Praise of Foreign Moods

We should attend to what other countries do and think – just as they should be looking at us. Nobody’s too dumb to teach or too smart to learn, whatever Justices Thomas and Scalia may say. As antidotes to “exceptionalism,” consider the burqa — and consider Roman Polanski.

Slipping Through the Cracks

Print journalism is not disappearing; it’s just being put on retainer (and a short leash) by private interests.

Picking Up the Flag

It is tempting to view the stories told in [Eric] Boehlert’s two books, one chronicling the failure of the mainstream media to report the news and the other revealing the success of the blogs in doing so, as being parts of the same story. Maybe the mainstream media would not be failing from a business perspective were they not, most of the time, failing from a news-reporting perspective as well. Maybe the blogs would not be succeeding, albeit under their mostly profit-agnostic criteria, were they not beginning to seize the standard of bona fide reporting falling from the grasp of the mainstream media as they tumble lifeless upon the field of economic battle.