Trump's Russia scandals could be about to get much, much worse

by Luca Trenta Added 20.02.2017
Whatever one thinks of the Trump administration’s policies, it is difficult to ignore that the new president’s tenure has so far been characterised by incompetence and carelessness. And while it’s easy to laugh at daft missteps such as an aide...

Trump Should Tackle America’s Infrastructure Crisis Head On

by Daniel Wagner Added 19.02.2017
This weekend’s mandatory evacuation order for residents downstream from California’s Oroville Dam is a reminder of what a perilous state so much of America’s infrastructure is in. In 2005,  three environmental groups filed a motion with the...

The European Union First

by Javier Solana Added 19.02.2017
MUNICH – The world needs the European Union now more than ever. Despite recent crises and the hard blow dealt by the Brexit vote, the EU may well be the world’s best line of defense against today’s most serious threats: isolationism,...

Ensuring Euro-Atlantic Security

by Des Browne, Wolfgang Ischinger, Igor S. Ivanov, and Sam Nunn Added 16.02.2017
MUNICH – The chasm between Russia and the West appears to be wider now than at any point since the Cold War. But, despite stark differences, there are areas of existential common interest. As we did during the darkest days of the Cold War,...

Questions about Judgement:  Trump appointed Flynn in the First Place

by Juan Cole Added 14.02.2017
"Every time Trump dances away from criticizing Putin, you have to wonder if he was in the same basket with Flynn. Kompromat." The sudden resignation of Trump National Security Adviser Mike Flynn on Monday evening clearly was actually a firing....

The European Unraveling?

by Ana Palacio Added 13.02.2017
".....Trump’s first weeks in office convey a singular ideological perspective – the one long espoused by White House Chief Strategist Steve Bannon, an ultra-nationalist, acolyte of the Italian fascist philosopher Julius Evola, and long-time...

Navigating the Trumpscape

by Michael Mandelbaum Added 12.02.2017
WASHINGTON, DC – To say that US President Donald Trump’s administration made waves in its initial weeks would be an understatement. Large protests across the United States and around the world attended his inauguration, and have continued since....

Why Trump Can’t Bully China

by Kenneth Rogoff Added 09.02.2017
CAMBRIDGE – As US President Donald Trump proceeds to destabilize the post-war global economic order, much of the world is collectively holding its breath. Commentators search for words to describe his assault on conventional norms of leadership...

The New Anti-Semitism

by Ian Buruma Added 08.02.2017
NEW YORK – Those who have been telling us that Islam, not just revolutionary Islamism, is a lethal threat to Western civilization should now feel satisfied: the President of the United States, and his main advisers, agree with them. In the...

Illiberal Israel

by Shlomo Ben-Ami Added 07.02.2017
NEW YORK – After a half-century of occupying Palestinian territory, Israel is succumbing to its deepest ethno-centrist impulses, and increasingly rejecting recognized boundaries. Israel is now on its way to join the growing club of illiberal...

It’s Not Just a Muslim Ban, It’s Much Worse

by James J. Zogby Added 06.02.2017
  With a stroke of the pen on a misdirected and, I believe, malicious Executive Order (EO), President Donald Trump unleashed a dynamic that will, I fear, have consequences as far-reaching and damaging to my country and my community as the Bush...

Rising Political Risk in Asia

by Daniel Wagner Added 06.02.2017
As the world continues to gyrate from the political paradigm shift under way with the rise of ‘alternative’ political movements, many countries will struggle to adjust to the ‘new normal’. For developing nations and emerging markets, the stakes...

Why the EU Must Be Generous to Britain

by Hans-Werner Sinn Added 06.02.2017
MUNICH – British Prime Minister Theresa May has confirmed it. The United Kingdom will, without a doubt, leave the European Union and negotiate new trade agreements. The question is what kind of agreement the EU will accept. Britain, May has made...

It's dangerous to flatter Trump's narcissism with too much attention

by Michail Theodosiadis Added 31.01.2017
Almost three decades ago, in his book The Culture of Narcissism, the iconoclastic American thinker Christopher Lasch wrote that in postwar America emerged a certain type of being, which in clinical terms falls under the category of “narcissistic...

The Sadism of Racist Exclusion:  Courts Temporarily Block Trump

by Juan Cole Added 30.01.2017
Picking on immigrants and refugees is the act of a sadistic bully, since they are the one fairly large group of residents of the United States whose constitutional rights are disputed. The executive order Trump signed late on Friday suspending...

Germany in the Age of Trump

by Joschka Fischer Added 27.01.2017
BERLIN – Donald Trump is now the 45th President of the United States, and in his inaugural address he made it clear to the assembled US establishment that his administration does not intend to pursue business as usual. His motto, “America...

How Dangerous Is Putin?

by Robert Harvey Added 26.01.2017
LONDON – Is US President Donald Trump right to be sympathetic toward Russia? At first blush, it certainly does not seem so. In Russia, elections are rigged, and organized opposition is suppressed. And under President Vladimir Putin, the country...

The Pending U.S.-Russia Reset: Birth of a New Business Model?

by Daniel Wagner Added 26.01.2017
Certain guiding principles have proven instrumental in shaping our views of the world. Among them, for many Americans and Russians, is the belief that Russia and the U.S. are natural enemies, and will remain so. For many, that perspective did...

China’s Big Sticks

by Stephen S. Roach Added 25.01.2017
NEW HAVEN – US President Donald Trump’s administration is making a major miscalculation by going after China. It appears to be contemplating a wide range of economic and political sanctions – from imposing punitive tariffs and designating China...

#spicerfacts: how the White House's relationship with the press will play out

by Jon Herbert Added 25.01.2017
Journalists would have anticipated the first press conference of the Trump presidency with some trepidation. Not only had his briefing at Trump Tower as president-elect been something of a shambles as Trump excoriated some journalists and...

How America’s Asian Allies Can Survive Trump

by Anne-Marie Slaughter and Mira Rapp-Hooper Added 24.01.2017
WASHINGTON, DC – Judging by US President Donald Trump’s behavior since his election, and by the explicitly isolationist message of his inaugural address, it seems safe to assume that his administration’s foreign policy will upend many long-held...

Donald Trump’s “Big Con”

by Robert Creamer Added 24.01.2017
      In 1973, Robert Redford and the late Paul Newman starred in the Academy Award winning movie, “The Sting.”  It was a story about how two professional grifters conned a mob boss – an exploit they referred to as their “big – or long - con.”...

Translating Trump’s inaugural Speech from the original German

by Juan Cole Added 21.01.2017
Donald Trump’s inaugural speech, like the candidate himself, was a chain of falsehoods, saber-rattling and scary Neofascist uber-nationalism. But it could be difficult to follow because so much of it seemed stolen from the mass politics of the...

Brexit Into Trumpland

by Philippe Legrain Added 20.01.2017
LONDON – British Prime Minister Theresa May is leading the United Kingdom toward a very “hard” Brexit in 2019 – and potentially off a cliff, if the UK leaves the European Union without an exit or trade deal. In her January 17 speech, May...

The Illusions Driving Up US Asset Prices

by Robert J. Shiller Added 19.01.2017
NEW HAVEN – Speculative markets have always been vulnerable to illusion. But seeing the folly in markets provides no clear advantage in forecasting outcomes, because changes in the force of the illusion are difficult to predict. In the United...

Looking Back on Barack

by Jeffrey Frankel Added 14.01.2017
BASEL – Any assessment of Barack Obama’s eight-year US presidency should start at the beginning: his first inauguration, on January 20, 2009. The US economy was in free-fall: financial markets had seized up, GDP was shrinking, and employment was...

New index of economic marginalisation helps explain Trump, Brexit and alt.right

by Andrew Cumbers Added 13.01.2017
If 2016 brought Brexit, Donald Trump and a backlash against cosmopolitan visions of globalisation and society, the great fear for 2017 is further shocks from right-wing populists like Geert Wilders in Holland and Marine Le Pen in France. A new...

Trump’s Crazed Transition

by Elizabeth Drew Added 12.01.2017
WASHINGTON, DC – With Donald Trump’s inauguration as president of the United States fast approaching, the strangest – even craziest – post-election transition in US history is about to come to an end. This period has provided a clear...

Hoping for the Best Against Trump

by Ian Buruma Added 12.01.2017
NEW YORK – Is there any reason for liberals to feel optimistic after a year of political disasters? Is there even a shred of silver lining to be found in the tatters of Brexit, Donald Trump’s election, and European disunity? Christians believe...

Trump’s Defective Industrial Policy

by Dani Rodrik Added 12.01.2017
CAMBRIDGE – US President-elect Donald Trump has yet to take office, but his brand of flawed industrial policy has been on full display since his surprise win in November. Within weeks of the election, Trump had already claimed a victory. Through...

Free Speech and Fake News

by Peter Singer Added 09.01.2017
PRINCETON – About a week before the United States presidential election last November, someone posted on Twitter that Hillary Clinton was at the center of a pedophilia ring. The rumor spread through social media, and a right-wing talk show host...

The year coal collapsed: 2016 was a turning point for Britain’s electricity

by Grant Wilson and Iain Staffell Added 07.01.2017
Socially and politically, 2016 was a momentous year for Britain. It was also a record breaking year for energy and the environment, but thankfully for all the right reasons. Britain’s electricity was the cleanest it had been in 60 years, as coal...

America’s Failures of Representation and Prospects for Democracy

by Rob Johnson Added 07.01.2017
NEW YORK – As the inauguration of US President-elect Donald Trump approaches, the best way to assess the incoming administration may be to focus on the ultimate factors that led to his victory. Trump was not elected in a vacuum, and, as his...

Donald Trump’s North Korean Family Values

by Kent Harrington Added 06.01.2017
ATLANTA – With every new US president arriving in Washington, DC, come a handful of counselors and aides whose personal ties, built over years and forged in election campaigns, give them pride of place in the administration. From the “Irish...

Trump’s Unrealpolitik

by Shlomo Ben-Ami Added 04.01.2017
NEW YORK – Some in the United States have praised President-elect Donald Trump for his supposed realism. He will do what is right for America, they argue, without getting caught up in thorny moral dilemmas, or letting himself be carried away by...

Comrade Trump and the Truth

by Chris Patten Added 04.01.2017
OXFORD – When US President-elect Donald Trump takes office later this month, Americans will be more divided than they have been in years. Never before has an American presidential inauguration been met with so many hosannas from the United...

“America First” and Global Conflict Next

by Nouriel Roubini Added 03.01.2017
NEW YORK – Donald Trump’s election as President of the United States does not just represent a mounting populist backlash against globalization. It may also portend the end of Pax Americana – the international order of free exchange and shared...

Will Europe Let Germany Lead?

by Marcel Fratzscher Added 31.12.2016
BERLIN – The United Kingdom’s Brexit vote, Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi’s referendum defeat and subsequent resignation, and Donald Trump’s election as President of the United States have created a power vacuum in the West, and in Europe....

The American Public Against Trump

by Alan S. Blinder Added 29.12.2016
PRINCETON – The United States, supposedly the world’s beacon of democracy, is practicing a strange form of it nowadays. One presidential candidate won nearly three million more votes than her opponent, who, with a big assist from a hostile...

The Age of Incompetence

by J. Bradford DeLong Added 27.12.2016
BERKELEY – On January 20, 2017, US President-elect Donald Trump will take office having received almost three million fewer votes than his opponent; and he will work with a Republican Senate majority whose members won 13 million fewer votes than...

Big Day at the United Nations

by James J. Zogby Added 27.12.2016
There was considerable drama leading up to the passage of United Nations Security Council Resolution 2334 (UNSCR 2334) reaffirming the illegality of Israeli settlements. It began with all hell breaking loose Thursday morning when it became clear...

Trump’s Gathering Trade War

by Stephen S. Roach Added 26.12.2016
NEW HAVEN – During his campaign, US President-elect Donald Trump used foreign trade as a lightning rod in his supposed defense of the beleaguered American middle class. This is not an uncommon tactic for candidates at either end of the political...

The Year That Ended an Epoch?

by Javier Solana Added 22.12.2016
MADRID – As 2016 comes to an end, the outlook for 2017 is shrouded in uncertainty. Tensions in the Middle East are rising, and populist movements have appeared in Europe and the United States. In the Middle East, the tragic conflict in Syria...

Theresa May’s Brexit Problem

by Jacek Rostowski Added 20.12.2016
LONDON – British Prime Minister Theresa May reportedly “needed some time to compose herself” in a recent meeting with her presumed ally Angela Merkel. The German Chancellor categorically rejected May’s proposal to do a “side deal” on European...

2017 Promises to be a Year of Unprecedented Risk

by Daniel Wagner Added 17.12.2016
There is no denying that 2016 was a year filled with significant and tangible unanticipated events in the political, economic and security realms. Whether considering Trump’s election, the first OPEC output cut in 8 years, or the resurgence of...

The Persecution Of Christians In The Middle East

by Alon Ben-Meir Added 16.12.2016
Although Christians have lived in the Middle East – the birthplace of Christianity – for nearly two thousand years, as a result of years of persecution and discrimination, especially in the past 15 years, they now constitute no more than 3-4% of...

Preventing NATO-Russian Escalation

by John McColl Added 16.12.2016
BRUSSELS – After expressing skepticism of the NATO alliance during his campaign, US President-elect Donald Trump is now beginning to craft a foreign policy that could have far-reaching implications for Europe’s fraught security situation. The...

Never mind Article 50, here's why Article 127 could be crucial to keeping Britain in the single market

by Gavin Barrett Added 16.12.2016
Britain’s membership of the European single market has become the most contentious issue in the post-Brexit debate. And the legal issues involved are proving rather tricky. Britain’s single market membership is the product of not one, but two...

The Age of Hyper-Uncertainty

by Barry Eichengreen Added 14.12.2016
BERLIN – The year 2017 will mark the 40th anniversary of the publication of John Kenneth Galbraith’s The Age of Uncertainty . Forty years is a long time, but it is worth looking back and reminding ourselves of how much Galbraith and his readers...

Trump’s Foreign Policy Under Tillerson And Bolton

by Daniel Wagner Added 14.12.2016
With the presumed designation of Exxon Mobil CEO Rex Tillerson as Secretary of State, and former U.S. Ambassador to the UN John Bolton as Deputy Secretary of State, Donald Trump will be sending a clear message to the world: the U.S. is open for...
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David Bowie - Changes

by David Galenson Added 19.02.2017
Britain’s Royal Mail has announced it will honor the late David Bowie with a set of 10 stamps – the first time it has dedicated a set of stamps to a single musician. A spokesman explained that the issue will honor Bowie’s “many celebrated...

Trump's America and the rise of the authoritarian personality

by Magnus Linden Added 18.02.2017
Since the horror of Hitler’s Holocaust, psychologists have investigated why certain individuals appear more prone to follow orders from authority figures, even if it means that they have to sacrifice humanitarian values while doing so. Apart...

The Politics of Business, and the Business of Politics, in the World of Donald J. Trump

by David Coates Added 18.02.2017
The Chinese curse, “may you live in interesting times,” has a renewed resonance this side of January 20th. As we now all presumably realize, there is never a dull day in American politics with Donald J. Trump in the White House, and there is...

Dear White, Christian Trump Supporters: We Need To Talk

by Susan M. Shaw Added 13.02.2017
Plenty of pundits keep telling us progressives that we didn’t listen to them in the heartland ― to you of the white working class, to you of conservative Christianity. Actually, I grew up as one of you. I’ve listened to you my whole life, but I...

Why cancer rates are increasing disproportionately in women – and what we can do about it

by Sarah Allinson Added 12.02.2017
Recent reports that cancer rates in UK women are set to rise six times faster than in men over the next two decades will have alarmed many. It is likely to be a similar story across the western world. In the US, cancer rates have been steadily...

Murdoch's access to British prime minister shows media power still in hands of the few

by Des Freedman and Justin Schlosberg Added 10.02.2017
In 1996, when the web was in its infancy, the American technology writer Nicholas Negroponte predicted that the coming digital revolution would facilitate a “cottage industry of information and entertainment providers”. Twenty years on and the...

Why Trump’s travel ban is so harmful to the tech economy

by Vivek Wadhwa Added 01.02.2017
Silicon Valley exports technology and imports the world’s best talent. That is how it has helped grow America’s economy and boosted its competitive advantage. President Trump’s executive order banning immigrants from some Muslim countries sent...

Vitamin B1 and Alzheimer's

by Richard Hoffman Added 31.01.2017
A feeling of apathy or being a little forgetful from time to time is nothing unusual. But for some, this could be an early sign of not getting enough thiamine (also known as vitamin B1). Long term, this can have serious consequences, including...

How globalisation brought the brutality of markets to Western shores

by Benjamin Selwyn Added 27.01.2017
The story of contemporary globalisation is, at its heart, the story of how we created a vast and impoverished working class. It is abundantly clear that the dynamics behind this have now hit home. First Brexit, then Donald Trump. We have been...

Five reasons why you might be driving electric sooner than you think

by Stephen Hall Added 26.01.2017
There is huge potential for using electric vehicles to tackle climate change, give us cleaner air and grow the green economy. The question is, when it will make sense for most of us to ditch diesel and petrol, and go electric? Given the pace of...
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ESCAPE VELOCITY: An author’s battle to conquer an Emersonian orbit

by Jack Kohl Added 06.02.2017
During all of my adult life as an author and pianist, Ralph Waldo Emerson has been for me the supreme and unremitting guide to the Western canon. Emerson’s writings have dominated so much of my thought that the routines I have given to the study...

Author Jack Kohl just ‘stole it from life’

by Michael Johnson Added 01.02.2017
Rarely does a musician with a Juilliard background and a Ph.D. in piano performance find the energy, much less the time, to conceive, plot, write and publish a series of well-constructed novels. Jack Kohl, by Michael Johnson. After I read Jack...

Fact-Checking the WSJ [Editor's note: re Mark Twain]

by David Galenson Added 24.01.2017
The Wall Street Journal has made an egregious error. I'm not talking about their coverage of Donald Trump, Russian hacking, or any other such ephemera. This concerns something much more serious: classic literature. Mark Twain, ca. 1907. Image...

Elie Wiesel’s Early Work: Four Novels

by Mary L. Tabor Added 07.01.2017
A Talmudic question has much intrigued me: Two men are stranded in the desert. Only one has water. If he shares it, they both die; if he keeps it, he lives and his companion dies. What should he do? Rabbi Akiva taught that the man has the right...

Why Bob Dylan deserves his Nobel prize in literature

by Richard Brown Added 14.10.2016
To the surprise of many, Bob Dylan has become the first singer-songwriter to win the Nobel prize in literature. As the news broke, I was in the middle of teaching James Joyce to some undergraduates – an author who did not win the Nobel, but is...

The man behind Matilda – what Roald Dahl was really like

by Pojana Maneeyingsakul Added 13.09.2016
It is 100 years since the birth of Roald Dahl – considered by many to be the world’s number one storyteller. His books have received enthusiastic responses from millions of children all around the world. And his tales of the unexpected continue...

Three alternative romantic fiction authors that will heat up any beach trip

by Zoe Strimpel Added 04.07.2016
There’s no better way to escape the stresses and strains of work and – for many at the current juncture – the acute anxiety of geopolitics, than to put your reading into “romance” gear. Britain versus the world is a gloomy real-world problem;...
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Voltaire comes home with an American accent

by Michael Johnson Added 28.01.2017
The Leonard Bernstein incidental music for Voltaire’s Candide seems even fresher today than it did 60 years ago when it flopped on Broadway. Over time the production has been reworked, massaged and matured, and now is finding remarkable...

Impresario Leiser fears young piano talent will get left behind

by Michael Johnson Added 17.12.2016
  Veteran impresario Jacques Leiser, summing up his 60 years of toil with some of the world’s greatest performers, is worried about today’s drift in the music business. He believes that too many young artists fail in their first few years...

Young Russian brings personal élan to Mussorgsky’s Pictures

by Michael Johnson Added 13.12.2016
  Ilya Rashkovsky is a rising young Siberian pianist, now based in Paris, whose new CD injects fresh élan into Modeste Mussorgsky’s delightful Pictures at an Exhibition. The performance shows no sign of battle fatigue despite being a mainstay of...

Angelich revives a Beethoven warhorse

by Michael Johnson Added 18.11.2016
The Franco-American pianist Nicholas Angelich delivered a freshly crafted version of a Beethoven warhorse, Piano Concerto No. 5 in E flat, Op. 73, together with the Orchestre National Bordeaux Aquitaine conducted by Paul Daniel, in the...

Big Songs – the Power Behind the Old Broadway Musicals

by Michael Johnson Added 03.11.2016

Three Delightful Sides of Thomas Adès

by Michael Johnson Added 01.11.2016
Visiting star composer-pianist-conductor Thomas Adès put on a bold show of musical versatility Sunday afternoon at Jordan Hall, joining the Boston Symphony Chamber Players in selections ranging from Purcell to Stravinsky. Thomas Adès A true...

Soprano Nadja Michael stars in stellar production of “The Makropulos Case” at San Francisco Opera

by James Bash Added 21.10.2016
Humans have always had the desire to live forever. Even today there are those wealthy enough to have their bodies frozen in a cryogenic state and others who fervently believe that the wizards of Silicon Valley will preserve them digitally. Leoš...

Why Pianist Roberto Plano turned his back on Italy

by Michael Johnson Added 13.10.2016
  Italian piano virtuoso Roberto Plano has made the big career move so many artists dream of – leaving home to find a better musical life elsewhere. Plano’s move leaves Italy behind and takes him to the United States, to an environment that he...

The intimate John Cage

by Michael Johnson Added 05.10.2016
Virtually all writing, talking and thinking about American experimental music in the 20th century turns eventually to the defining genius of the era, John Cage. His life, his anarchic music and his writings upended traditions beginning in the...

“Just Call Her ‘Tailleferre’ ”

by Michael Johnson Added 01.09.2016
We have come a long way since the day when female composers suffered denigration for their supposed inability to compose anything of substance. That battle is over, and the women have won. There is no longer any such thing as “women’s music,” if...
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Scorsese’s Silence is admirably faithful to the original Japanese novel

by Mark Williams Added 07.01.2017
The blogosphere has been awash this month with reviews of Martin Scorsese’s latest movie, Silence. The work represents a powerful reworking of the novel of the same name by the Japanese novelist, Endō Shūsaku and I, for one, shall never forget...

The Crown may be inaccurate but it's a cracking period drama

by Gabriele Neher Added 16.11.2016
The Crown, Netflix’s most ambitious and expensive original drama, had a reported budget of over US$100 million. The ten-part series charts the ascension of Elizabeth Windsor to the throne as Queen Elizabeth II, and follows the young monarch as...

How the rise in TV 'crime porn' normalises violence against women

by Ruth Penfold-Mounce Added 25.10.2016
Violence against women in television drama has always been high. But in recent years the graphic portrayal of this violence – particularly sexual attacks and murder of women – is on the increase, and the corpse count is rising. This type of...
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