Magazine December 31, 2010, Issue

Welcome to the Machine

(Larry Downing/Reuters)
Remember, my dear new regulator, that you are useless

Welcome to Washington, Mr. Smith, and welcome to the Agency. I salute your determination to apply common sense in Washington, to fix what’s broken in order to serve the public interest and the common good. Weirdly enough, everybody in Washington wants to do that: Republicans, Democrats, Tea Party patriots, Barney Frank. These guys don’t agree on much, but they all sincerely want to do what’s best for the country, pretty much to a man. I know, I know: Counterintuitive, right? But you’ll see.

In fact, one of the shocking things about Washington is how little cynical self-service there turns out to

In This Issue



Books, Arts & Manners

Politics & Policy

Salt of the Earth

On November 2, the American electorate delivered a stinging rebuke to Pres. Barack Obama and the Democrats. According to a post-election survey conducted for the Faith and Freedom Coalition by ...
Politics & Policy

Teapot Tempest

If you wanted a vivid sense of the scene in 1980s Pakistan and Afghanistan when the United States was sponsoring the mujahideen insurgency against the USSR, you could not have ...


Politics & Policy

The Week

‐ “I had a good time governing,” said Bill Clinton at the presidential press conference he took over. You don’t say . . . ‐ President Obama has not taken the ...


Anthony Burgess, the brilliant British novelist remembered for the misunderstood A Clockwork Orange, also wrote a spy novel. It was the height of the Bond era, and he couldn’t resist ...


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