Who Are You Calling a Coward?

It seems Obama is calling Netanyahu a coward. Jay and I shake our heads over that one, along with the president’s dripping contempt for anyone with an R after his name, his exploitation of kids for photo ops, and more on this week’s Need to Know. We ask whether it’s true that if a policy “saves just one life” it’s worth doing. We dwell for some minutes on the delightful work of the Soviet (yes, really) composer who wrote our theme music — and on a great movie that put that music to use.

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Romney Is a Misfit for America

Mitt’s back. The former governor of Massachusetts and occasional native son of Michigan has a new persona: Mr. Utah. He’s going to bring Utah conservatism to the whole Republican party and to the country at large. Wholesome, efficient, industrious, faithful. “Utah has a lot to teach the politicians in ... Read More

Fire the FBI Chief

American government is supposed to look and sound like George Washington. What it actually looks and sounds like is Henry Hill from Goodfellas: bad suit, hand out, intoning the eternal mantra: “F*** you, pay me.” American government mostly works by interposition, standing between us, the free people at ... Read More
Film & TV

Black Panther’s Circle of Hype

The Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) first infantilizes its audience, then banalizes it, and, finally, controls it through marketing. This commercial strategy, geared toward adolescents of all ages, resembles the Democratic party’s political manipulation of black Americans, targeting that audience through its ... Read More