What We’re Reading
Preeti Aroon “The Patron Saint of Plastic Bags,” by Belinda Luscombe in Time. Governments around the world have imposed restrictions or outright bans on plastic bags, which seem to accumulate everywhere. But the plastic bag might not be that bad. One man is sticking up for them. Alex Ely Who calls the shots in Iran? ...
“The Patron Saint of Plastic Bags,” by Belinda Luscombe in Time. Governments around the world have imposed restrictions or outright bans on plastic bags, which seem to accumulate everywhere. But the plastic bag might not be that bad. One man is sticking up for them.
Who calls the shots in Iran? President Ahmadinejad? Supreme Leader Khamenei? The Economist provides a ready answer: As long as Khamenei is around, one shouldn’t expect any drastic changes in foreign or domestic policy, no matter how maniacal the country’s president is.
“The Democrats & National Security” in the New York Review of Books. Reviewing J. Peter Scoblic’s Us Versus Them and Matthew Yglesias’s Heads in the Sand, Power takes on the conventional wisdom that Democrats are soft on national security. The 2008 elections, she argues, gives the Democrats their prime opportunity to debunk the notion that “strong and wrong is preferable to smart and right.”
Cuisines of the Axis of Evil and Other Irritating States: A Dinner Party Approach to International Relations. South Asian policy analyst Chris Fair serves up a hefty helping of historical background on some of the world’s most notorious states, complete with a side of sarcastic wit and criticism about the foreign policies of Bush, Kim, Castro, and the gang. The book features real recipes, ranging from culinary delights like Salat Gezer (Israeli carrot salad) to Burmese Phazun Hin Asa (spicy shrimp curry) — a must-read for foreign affairs junkies and foodies alike.
“Chew on This: Hit Song Is a Gum Jingle” in the Wall Street Journal. I like Chris Brown. I like his song “Forever.” I liked it, that is, until I found out it was sponsored by Wrigley’s Gum.
The Googlization of Everything. On this “open book” blog, writer Siva Vaidhyanathan is sharing his research for what will eventually be a reverent but critical book on “how one company is disrupting culture, commerce, and community.” One recent post asked readers to share the first time they experienced the now ubiquitous search behemoth.
Blake Hounshell is a former managing editor of Foreign Policy.
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