Overdrive! Competition in American Life
More than ever, American life is a competitive sport. We jockey intensely for jobs, dates, admission to the college of our dreams, and even little resumé builders for our five-year-olds. Our authors examine the rewards and the costs of always playing to win.
The New Invisible Competitors
In our globalized economy, competitors can suddenly appear out of nowhere — if we can see them at all. The new environment spells trouble for some people, opportunity for others.
More Stories From This Issue
In Praise of the Values Voter
Political scientists and liberal reformers want to remove highly charged moral issues to the sidelines, but what is the purpose of politics if not to address fundamental moral questions?
A new era of globalization dawned in December 2001, with the West passing the torch to China and India.
Twelve Ways to Know the Past
How do our own pasts connect with our larger cultural heritage? Here are 12 ways to respond to that question.
The Brief History of a Historical Novel
Thomas Jefferson was an enigma to everyone he met. A century and a half after his death, one writer strives to understand, if not the man himself, then at least the world as it knew him.
Strive We Must
Competition seems to be hard-wired into humans, but is that such a bad thing? A look at where competing has gotten us.
The Lost Art of Cooperation
Americans are obsessed with competition, but they forget that cooperation and collective effort are the foundation of freedom.
Promises countries make to gain entry into NATO or the EU are similar to Mary Poppin's description of pie crust: Easily made, easily broken.
George Bush and the Rain God
Voting records suggest that Republicans should hope for a rainy, snowy day on November 4, 2008.
The End of Music?
The top 25 pop artists worldwide now earn most of their money from concerts, not recordings.
Terror in the Fields
Contaminating food supplies are a tempting terrorist tactic. Just look at several anthrax outbreaks for a glimpse at the potential devastation.
Janus of Jurisprudence
An observer notes the Supreme Court's steady move to the right, accomplished almost without notice or comment, by remocing the court's left-leaning justices.
Meet and Spend
Off-site meetings for sales staff and other groups are a vast and largely untracked area of business expense. Are they worth it? You probably already know the answer.
Philanthropists would get much more bang for their buck if they looked at factors beyond their old school ties.
The Myth of the Master’s Degrees
Many school districts boost a teacher's salary if he or she gets a master's degree, but there's no sign that their students' scores improve.
Forget the Error
A new study shows that newspapers make a lot of mistakes, even in the limited instances when they publish a correction.
Penny Wise, Culturally Foolish
Book review sections almost universally are loss leaders, but without them, says one former editors, "the good society vanishes and barbarism triumphs."
For years Russians deported criminals to Siberia, then were forced to import women to deal with a surfeit of lawlessness among the new residents. It remains a less than desirable locale.
China’s Sex Deficit
Even before the edvent of compulsory birth control and sterilization measures, Chinese women bore far fewer children than their European counterparts. The leading cause: less sex.
A Royalist Revolution
American colonists were "married to royal political spectacles" and "championed their British king with emotional intensity" right up to the eve of the Revolution, says one historian.
Where Islamism Fizzled
A brief Islamic rebirth occurred in the republic of Daghestan in 1991, but it may have been doomed from the start by seven decades of Soviet rule.
He Said, She Said
Anecdotal evidence says women talk more than men. Scientific evidence says that's just idle chatter.
A Solid B+ for Perfection
Novelist H. G. Wells offered visions of the future in a number of books. His predictions weren't flawless, but they often hit close to the mark.
Nations have been squabbling for years over land claims in the Antarctic, but the area might better be served by declaring it a global commons.
Manna from Manhattan
The Andy Warhol Museum of Modern Art has always been viewed as an odd fit in Medzilaborce, Slovakia, not unlike Warhol himself.
Waiting for Cecil: A Widow's Tale
A biographer of the late poet Cecil Day-Lewis turned to an unlikely source for insight into his indiscretions: the poet's widow.
A controversial new law in India, aimed at giving educational and employment preferences to "other backward classes," may only benefit the "creamy layer" of each caste.
Egghead on Downing Street
Britain's newest prime minister, Gordon Brown, is a dedicated reader of serious books, but intellectuals have not always fared well at 10 Downing Street.
Thirty Years of Waiting
Refugees have been waiting three decades for civil strife in the Western Sahara to end.
American Black Sheep
Historian Nancy Isenberg argues that "everything we know about Aaron Burr is untrue."
The current plight of the American bison, which once numbered between 30 and 40 million in North America.