Or driven to its knees

Guess what, all those phone calls and town halls and protests against the awful, awful “Trumpcare” bill? They worked. Well done, folks. Also: Trump’s budget wants to cut LIHEAP; the CFPB ain’t dead yet; what flat-earthers are on about; and YNATKC. [Read more…]

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And certainly misused

It’s beyond creepy to learn that one of the biggest names in evangelical philanthropy is one tiny step removed from the biggest name in paramilitary profiteering and mercenary massacres. And why is this family of right-wing billionaires so obsessed with shooting bears? Also: The very, very bad inaugural poem that gives Scots one more reason to hate Donald Trump; mercy seasons justice; and a closer look at American Nazis’ conflicted views on Israel. [Read more…]

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I don’t think bombing is the answer. I don’t know what the answer is.

After the death of Elie Wiesel, thousands of people shared an inspiring quote from him on social media. But I do not know quite how to be inspired by it — I do not know what it is that it should inspire me to do or to advocate that others do on my behalf. [Read more…]

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Smart people saying smart things (7.29)

Laurie Penny on Milo and nihilists and … a lot (just read it). Patrick Blanchfield on America’s Gun. Michelle Obama gives a speech for the ages. Prof. Patricia Leary seizes a teaching opportunity. And Binyavanga Wainaina teaches us “How to Write About Africa.” [Read more…]

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RIP Daniel Berrigan

“One may reject the claims of sainthood made on his behalf (he never made any such claim himself, by the way), one may also reject sainthood as an ideal and therefore feel that his basic aims were anti-human: but regarded simply as a politician, and compared with the other leading political figures of our time, how clean a smell he has managed to leave behind!” [Read more…]

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Libya and Rwanda

The Obama administration’s 2011 intervention in Libya wasn’t about promoting democracy, or nation-building, peance and freeance, being greeted as liberators, purple fingers or painting schools. It was about Rwanda. Right or wrong, that was the thinking that shaped the decision and its execution. [Read more…]

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We talk like people who live in infamy

The “rules” of war may not carry legal consequences, but they do carry inescapable consequences of identity. It is always possible to “get away with” attacking non-combatants just so long as you go on to win, ensuring your war “crimes” are never punished. But you can’t break that rule without becoming a breaker of the rule. Which is to say, more bluntly, that you cannot break that rule without becoming infamous — a coward, a murderer, and an asshole. [Read more…]

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Just before it all blows to pieces

To tea-party Republicans in Maine, Episcopalians are dangerous “anti-Christian bigots.” Plus: An inspiring conversion narrative from Libby Anne; Scarlett Johansson reads the Bible; Mansonite white terrorists; and the red-cup guy battles imaginary Satanists while real Satanists take “GetReligion” to school. [Read more…]

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