Europe’s Attackers From Within

by Joschka Fischer Added 18.10.2017
BERLIN – Europe finally appears to have moved past its multi-year economic crisis, but it remains unsettled. For every reason for optimism, there always seems to be a new cause for concern. In June 2016, a slim majority of British voters chose...

The Challenge to Restore Sanity

by James J. Zogby Added 17.10.2017
  Despite the fact that the stock market is at record highs and the unemployment rate, which began its substantial decline during the Obama Administration, is now at record lows, we spend our days haunted by the gnawing sense that life has spun...

The Case Against Free-Market Capitalism

by Ngaire Woods Added 12.10.2017
OXFORD – Free-market capitalism is on trial. In the United Kingdom, Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn accuses neoliberalism of increasing homelessness, throwing children into poverty, and causing wages to fall below subsistence level. For the...

Another Nobel Surprise for Economics

by Robert J. Shiller Added 11.10.2017
NEW HAVEN – The winner of this year’s Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences, Richard Thaler of the University of Chicago, is a controversial choice. Thaler is known for his lifelong pursuit of behavioral economics (and its subfield,...

Why Richard Thaler won the 2017 economics Nobel Prize

by Sergey V. Popov Added 10.10.2017
The 49th Sveriges Riksbank prize in economic sciences – commonly referred to as the Nobel Prize for economics – has been awarded to Richard H Thaler for his contributions to behavioural economics. He was a key proponent of the idea that humans...

The North Korean Cult

by Ian Buruma Added 09.10.2017
NEW YORK – The absurdity of the North Korean dictatorship is easy to caricature. Kim Jong-un, with his 1930s-style pudding-bowl haircut (cultivated, it is claimed, to make him resemble his grandfather, Kim Il-sung, the regime’s founder), his...

Six things to know about mass shootings in America

by Frederic Lemieux Added 04.10.2017
America has experienced yet another mass shooting, this time at the Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino on the strip in Las Vegas, Nevada. It is reportedly the deadliest mass shooting in U.S. history. As a criminologist, I have reviewed recent...

The Dangers of Demographic Denial

by Adair Turner Added 03.10.2017
LONDON – Across emerging economies, the benefits of a “demographic dividend” have become a familiar refrain. Politicians and business leaders alike – be it in India, Nigeria, Pakistan, or Tanzania – talk glowingly of how a fast-growing and...

The Shape of Charges to Come?

by Elizabeth Drew Added 27.09.2017
WASHINGTON, DC – When the news broke last week about the specific documents sought by Robert Mueller, the special counsel heading the federal investigation into Russia’s role in the 2016 election and whether Donald Trump’s campaign colluded with...

Myanmar’s Jihadi Curse

by Brahma Chellaney Added 27.09.2017
NEW DELHI – Myanmar’s military has lately been engaged in a brutal campaign against the Rohingya, a long-marginalized Muslim ethnic minority group, driving hundreds of thousands to flee to Bangladesh, India, and elsewhere. The international...

The Importance of Civil Discourse

by James J. Zogby Added 27.09.2017
  Last week I became the Chair of The Sanders Institute (TSI), an initiative that grew out of the Bernie Sanders presidential campaign of 2016. While as a sitting senator, Sanders cannot be involved in the work of TSI, we are committed to...

Germany’s Grave New World

by Joschka Fischer Added 26.09.2017
BERLIN – The outcome of Germany’s federal election on Sunday was unexpected and disturbing, at least by German standards. The two main parties, the Social Democrats (SPD) and the Christian Democratic Union (CDU), along with its Bavarian sister...

The Return of the Madman Theory

by Nina L. Khrushcheva Added 25.09.2017
MOSCOW – In the 1970s, US President Richard Nixon instructed Secretary of State Henry Kissinger to convince the leaders of hostile communist countries that he could be erratic and volatile, particularly when under pressure. Kissinger, a shrewd...

The Coming Bear Market?

by Robert J. Shiller Added 22.09.2017
NEW HAVEN – The US stock market today is characterized by a seemingly unusual combination of very high valuations, following a period of strong earnings growth, and very low volatility. What do these ostensibly conflicting messages imply about...

Saving the Iran Nuclear Deal

by Ana Palacio Added 21.09.2017
MADRID – There is an old rule of thumb in diplomacy: if you cannot reach agreement on an issue, expand the scope of the discussion. Today, the United States may be set to turn this approach on its head, broadening the discussion to destroy an...

A Double Betrayal for Refugee Children

by Gordon Brown Added 19.09.2017
LONDON – From Syria to Myanmar, children caught in the crossfire of conflict are victims of a double betrayal. Forced out of their homes in the biggest refugee crisis since World War II, they have now become the innocent victims of a broken...

Time to give Kim what he wants

by Daniel Wagner Added 19.09.2017
What Kim wants most is to strike a deal with US, which it perceives as the gravest threat to North Korea’s survival under him. US should put its wounded pride aside and treat Kim not as if he were a mad man. It is the pinnacle of hubris for the...

A New Trump?

by Elizabeth Drew Added 16.09.2017
WASHINGTON, DC – It’s generally agreed in Washington, DC, that President Donald Trump’s presidency is entering a new phase. Defining just what that phase is, is proving to be problematic. The widespread expectation was that the removal of...

Is America Still A Beacon Of Light To Other Nations?

by Alon Ben-Meir Added 15.09.2017
We do not need President Trump to tell us that he can make America great again. America is already great. The problem is that we are squandering our greatness by pursuing foreign and domestic policies that debase our moral authority and the...

The Mystery of the Missing Inflation

by Nouriel Roubini Added 14.09.2017
NEW YORK – Since the summer of 2016, the global economy has been in a period of moderate expansion, with the growth rate accelerating gradually. What has not picked up, at least in the advanced economies, is inflation. The question is why. In...

Hurricanes may be getting more severe – do we need a whole new category to describe them?

by Sally Brown Added 12.09.2017
Satellite view of Hurricane Irma. NASA There’s been a devastating trail of destruction and flooding along the east Atlantic coast in the last few weeks following Hurricane Harvey and now Hurricane Irma. The latter, currently moving across...

The Harsh Truth About India’s Godmen

by Shashi Tharoor Added 09.09.2017
  NEW DELHI – Late last month, when two Indian states and the national capital were held to ransom by rioting mobs protesting their spiritual leader’s conviction on two counts of raping minor girls, many Indians found themselves confronting...

A Betrayal of America’s Soul

by David Harris Added 08.09.2017
NEW YORK – For the United States – a country of immigrants and their descendants – September 5, 2017, marked a betrayal of the nation’s soul. The announcement by President Donald Trump’s administration that it is ending the Deferred Action for...

If Trump revokes DACA, it will create a humanitarian crisis

by Vivek Wadhwa Added 05.09.2017
As Americans are still reeling from the shock of hearing their President dignify the actions of hatemongers, there is another social crisis brewing. Starting on Sept. 5, more than a million immigrant children could be kicked out of their jobs,...

How Much Does Trump Matter?

by Joseph S. Nye Added 05.09.2017
CAMBRIDGE – The United States has never had a president like Donald Trump. With a narcissistic personality and a short attention span, and lacking experience in world affairs, he tends to project slogans rather than strategy in foreign policy....

The Power of Monuments

by Ian Buruma Added 05.09.2017
NEW YORK – The ghastly spectacle last month of neo-Nazis marching through Charlottesville, Virginia, carrying torches and barking slogans about the supremacy of the white race, was sparked by the city’s plans to remove a statue of Robert E. Lee,...

The Normalization Delusion

by Adair Turner Added 04.09.2017
LONDON – There is a psychological bias to believe that exceptional events eventually give way to a return to “normal times.” Many economic commentators now focus on prospects for “exit” from nearly a decade of ultra-loose monetary policy, with...

Optimizing Decision-Making in a Dangerous World

by Graham Allison and Arianna Huffington Added 04.09.2017
CAMBRIDGE AND NEW YORK – The United States and China have reached a precarious moment in their relationship. Ensuring a peaceful outcome will be the greatest geopolitical challenge of the twenty-first century. Are our leaders up to it? As things...

Trump and Afghanistan: Old Problems and New Dangers

by David Coates Added 02.09.2017
Keeping track of important policy developments with Donald J. Trump as President is difficult and yet vital. There is so much noise and distraction surrounding everything that the current President does, and such a perplexing mixture of bombast...

An Open Letter To President Trump

by Alon Ben-Meir Added 31.08.2017
I find it extremely hard to call you “President Trump” because sadly for America, you neither act like a president nor speak like one. You neither have the moral authority that a president needs to project, nor the courage of one. You have...

Two Weakened Leaders

by James J. Zogby Added 29.08.2017
  US President Donald Trump and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu have a lot in common. Both are in trouble, confronting problems that are more legal than political. And as commentators, here and in Israel have noted, both have responded...

Trump’s “New” Strategy In Afghanistan Is Doomed To Fail

by Alon Ben-Meir Added 27.08.2017
President Trump’s new strategy that would presumably win the war against the Taliban in Afghanistan is doomed to fail, just like Bush’s and Obama’s before him. At best, the reported dispatch of an additional 4,000 American troops as recommended...

Can Trump Deal with North Korea and China?

by Jeffrey Frankel Added 25.08.2017
CAMBRIDGE – For years, Americans have misunderstood the nuclear threat from North Korea, misjudging how to address it. They have also misunderstood the bilateral trade deficits with China, overestimating their importance. Today, as President...

Robots and Virtual Terrorism

by Daniel Wagner Added 23.08.2017
Robots can store sensitive information, including encryption keys, user social media, e-mail accounts and vendor service credentials, and send that information to and from mobile applications, Internet services, and computer software. As a...

The Achilles Heel of Putin’s Regime

by Anders Åslund Added 22.08.2017
WASHINGTON, DC – Russian President Vladimir Putin’s authority is weaker than it seems. In fact, the bedrock of Putin’s power – the clientelist economic arrangements that he has assiduously consolidated over the past generation – has become the...

Guilty Man

by Nina L. Khrushcheva Added 22.08.2017
NEW YORK – In 1940, with Britain standing alone against Nazi Germany, a short book called Guilty Men was published under the pseudonym of “Cato.” Its authors were the future Labour Party leader Michael Foot, the Liberal journalist Frank Owen,...

Why Bannon Had to Go

by Elizabeth Drew Added 21.08.2017
WASHINGTON, DC – In many, if not most, US administrations, some figure emerges who convinces the press that the president couldn’t function without him (it’s yet to be a her). The indispensable aide is, indeed, one of the most well-worn tropes...

Syria: A Testament To International Moral Bankruptcy

by Alon Ben-Meir Added 18.08.2017
Much has been written about Syria’s civil war which has engulfed the country for the past six years, but sadly the mounting death and destruction in Syria has long since become mere statistics. The international community grew comfortably numb...

Are Nazis as American as Apple Pie?

by James Q Whitman Added 18.08.2017
NEW HAVEN – Is the United States threatened by Nazism? The short answer is no, notwithstanding the frightening events in Charlottesville, Virginia, this past weekend. In Charlottesville, the home of the University of Virginia, founded by Thomas...

Are There Really Two Sides When It Comes to Political Violence in the U.S.?

by Robert Creamer Added 16.08.2017
Three days after the violence in Charlottesville, Donald Trump doubled down on his shocking accusation that when it came to political violence in the United States, there were “two sides.”  In fact, he argued that the media simply ignored the...

A major uprising in Jerusalem and beyond is just a few missteps away

by Carlo Aldrovandi Added 16.08.2017
The last thing the Middle East needs is a major conflagration in Israel-Palestine – but a summer crisis in Jerusalem made it clear that in the right circumstances, it really could happen. The crisis began in the early hours of July 14. Three...

‘Locked & Loaded’ Trump’s 1960s Cowboyism re: N. Korea & Venezuela

by Juan Cole Added 13.08.2017
If you were away from news on Friday, you might like to know that in addition to hot wars in Afghanistan, Syria, Iraq and Yemen (and maybe Somalia and Libya), the Trump administration talks as though it is on the brink of opening new fronts in...

Surviving America’s Political Meltdown

by Jeffrey D. Sachs Added 11.08.2017
  NEW YORK – The US is in the midst of a political meltdown, unable to manage a domestic economic agenda or a coherent foreign policy. The White House is in turmoil; Congress is paralyzed; and the world is looking on in astonishment and dread....

Congress Should Curb Trump’s Ability to Launch First Nuclear Strike

by Robert Creamer Added 10.08.2017
Donald Trump actually threatened North Korea with a nuclear attack if their egomaniacal leader continued to “threaten” the United States. The idea that the United States of America would seriously consider launching a nuclear war over a verbal...

Will Trump Unite Europe?

by Zaki Laïdi Added 10.08.2017
PARIS – Beyond his bizarre, intemperate tweeting, the challenge that US President Donald Trump poses for Europe is real, but not always easily defined. There are differences between what Trump says, what his administration does, and what...

Trump's threat of 'fire and fury' is a gift to North Korea's propaganda machine

by Virginie Grzelczyk Added 10.08.2017
Anyone who thought August might offer a lull in geopolitical crises got a rude awakening when, from the confines of his New Jersey golf resort, Donald Trump essentially foretold a thermonuclear war with North Korea. Asked about the north’s...

Trump and the Cosmopolitans

by Ian Buruma Added 09.08.2017
NEW YORK – President Donald Trump’s administration has announced that it wants to cut legal immigration to the United States by half, and favor well educated immigrants who speak good English. When a CNN correspondent named Jim Acosta, the son...

America’s Dangerous Anti-Iran Posturing

by Jeffrey D. Sachs Added 06.08.2017
NEW YORK – In recent weeks, US President Donald Trump and his advisers have joined Saudi Arabia in accusing Iran of being the epicenter of Middle East terrorism. The US Congress, meanwhile, is readying yet another round of sanctions against...

Protectionism Will Not Protect Jobs Anywhere

by Kenneth Rogoff Added 06.08.2017
CAMBRIDGE – As US and European political leaders fret about the future of quality jobs, they would do well to look at the far bigger problems faced by developing Asia – problems that threaten to place massive downward pressure on global wages....

The Noose Tightens

by Elizabeth Drew Added 05.08.2017
WASHINGTON, DC – Even with a new minder trying to bring some order to the White House, President Donald Trump remains in a heap of trouble. The recent installation of retired general John Kelly, formerly Trump’s Secretary for Homeland Security,...
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Letter from the Editor

President Donald Trump Confronted On His False Claims About Taxes | All In | MSNBC

I think President Trump is making things up as he speaks because he cannot handle the job. Being under overwhelming stress he is confused, unfocused, overly aggressive and dangerously impulsive. Olli Raade Editor to Facts & Arts President Donald...

Is There an Alternative to Capitalism?

by Sam Ben-Meir Added 18.10.2017
It never ceases to surprise me how merely the suggestion that our current global capitalistic system is not the best humanity can do for itself, is so often met with virulent hostility. One would think that when we are still recovering from the...

Why we need new regulations to protect us from Facebook and Equifax

by Vivek Wadhwa Added 15.10.2017
The theft of an estimated 143 million Americans’ personal details in a data breach of consumer-credit reporting agency Equifax and the Russian hack of the U.S. elections through Facebook had one thing in common: they were facilitated by the...

The new atheists are not atheist enough

by Bence Nanay Added 04.10.2017
The new atheists are a diverse bunch. Philosophers, scientists, “public intellectuals” such as Daniel Dennett, Richard Dawkins or Sam Harris cornered much of the non-fiction trade publishing market in the early 2000s writing about the...

Roy Lichtenstein had only one great idea in his Pop Art – but made the most of it

by Catherine Spencer Added 29.09.2017
Ohhh… Alright… (1964). In one of Roy Lichtenstein’s first paintings to use graphics taken directly from comic books, Mickey Mouse and Donald Duck are on a wooden jetty. Donald Duck raises his fishing rod and, feeling a tug, shouts out: “Look...

Argentine Art’s Greatest Generation

by David Galenson Added 27.09.2017
“El mejor del mundo.” So declares a waiter at one of my favorite parilladas in Buenos Aires every time he serves a perfectly grilled steak. The excellence of Argentine beef, and of the Malbecs that accompany it, is very widely recognized. What...

Austerity's enduring appeal has ancient roots in asceticism

by Sarah Macmillan Added 22.09.2017
British Library The recent easing of the public sector pay cap suggests that the government is beginning to respond to widespread concerns about the social and economic costs of austerity. Yet despite this turn, the proposed rises remain below...

For better gut bacteria, eat more oily fish

by Ana Valdes Added 19.09.2017
Having lots of different types of bacteria in your gut has many health benefits, including a lower risk of diabetes, obesity and inflammatory bowel disease. So finding ways to increase the number and diversity of good bacteria in your gut is...

Taking Supper with Trump – The Need for a Very Long Spoon

by David Coates Added 16.09.2017
The Democratic Party leadership in both the House and the Senate spent last week congratulating themselves on the deal they supposedly struck with the President on legislation to protect dreamers, [i] and presumably took some pleasure too from...

GPs need to tell people they can get rid of type 2 diabetes through weight loss – nutrition expert

by Mike Lean Added 15.09.2017
Every working day, GPs in the UK diagnose almost 1,000 people with type 2 diabetes. It is one of the commonest and most expensive diseases. What most people don’t know is that with a bit of hard work, it is possible to become non-diabetic again....

Why I donated my entire genome sequence to the public

by Colin Smith Added 14.09.2017
I had my complete genome sequenced a few years ago – all six billion base pairs of it. And rather than keeping it to myself, I became the first person to make it publicly available by donating it to the Personal Genome Project UK, an...
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The Literary Magic of Harry Potter

by William A. Gleason Added 23.09.2017
PRINCETON – This summer, at literary festivals and bookstores around the world, readers celebrated the 20-year anniversary of the debut of the first book in J.K. Rowling’s Harry Potter series – Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone (re-titled...

I Love Dick: The novel and the Amazon series in brief

by Mary L. Tabor Added 22.08.2017
Have to begin by saying that I was turned on to the book from Jill Soloway's fantastic first episodes of the show on Amazon with the marvelous actors Kevin Bacon as Dick, Kathryn Hahn as Chris and Griffin Dunne as her real-life-then husband and...

‘Wrong Notes’ – the skeleton key to free thinking

by Jack Kohl Added 09.06.2017
  As a pianist, I have spent a lifetime reading interviews with other pianists. But I would know, above all, what it is precisely that others think about when they play. People often ask me that question. I do not know if I have ever answered...

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...
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Why Bach makes you shiver

by Michael Johnson Added 09.09.2017
  If music makes you happy or sad, you are probably an average listener. If it leaves you indifferent, you might be considered insensitive. But if it gives you goosebumps you are in a very special group with connections in your brain anatomy...

Como Academy: Why the Chinese call it ‘piano heaven’

by Michael Johnson Added 31.08.2017
  Lake Como, known as the “magic lake” of Italy, has inspired writers and composers for centuries with natural surroundings so conducive to creative expression. Stendhal wrote The Charterhouse of Parma there, Verdi composed La Traviata, Liszt...

Elvis's voice: like Mario Lanza singing the blues

by Adrian York Added 16.08.2017
Much of the mythology that surrounds Elvis Presley, who died 40 years ago, tends to surround his rags to riches story, his film-star looks, his outrageous stage outfits, his marriage to child bride Priscilla and his descent into overindulgence...

Piano history: The legacy of the Labèque sisters

by Michael Johnson Added 02.08.2017
Katia and Marielle Labèque -- the glamorous French keyboard siblings -- have achieved a solid legacy of exuberant performances in the two-piano repertoire, ranging from experimental contemporary works to traditional classical-romantic composers....

Piano clusters: How to frighten the old ladies of both sexes

by Michael Johnson Added 24.06.2017
I was flipping through my copy of Prokofiev’s Piano Sonata No. 6 recently and spotted his two “col pugno” markings. My memory took me back many years to the day I first encountered these violent directions. At the time, I didn’t know what to...

Vengerov and Saïtkoulov wow a formal-dress Bordeaux audience

by Michael Johnson Added 21.06.2017
  One of the world’s greatest living violinists, Maxim Vengerov, accompanied by an equally accomplished pianist Roustem Saïtkoulov, dazzled a full house at the 18th century Grand Théâtre of Bordeaux Sunday night (18 June) with a faultless...

Bergmann interview: Unlocking music from the unconscious mind

by Michael Johnson Added 17.06.2017
  A classical-trained German pianist working in a range of musical disciplines has just launched his most audacious experiment yet – an original piano sonata consisting almost entirely of creations from his unconscious mind. Boris Bergmann’s...

Sounds of Soviet Russia  are revived  in Bordeaux

by Michael Johnson Added 05.06.2017
  The Orchestre National de Bordeaux Aquitaine added another feather to its cap last week (June 1-2) with the engagement of a leading international guest conductor, Michail Jurowski, who led the ONBA in two demanding orchestral pieces, the...

François Dumont interviewed: The music never stops

by Michael Johnson Added 24.05.2017
Taking a break in gaps between a Mozart piano concerto in Izmir, Turkey, (No. 9, “Jeunehomme”), a recording session of three Mozart concertos in Rennes, France (Nos. 1, 24 and 27), and a performance tour in China, François Dumont graciously...

Uchida in fine form with a Mozart classic

by Michael Johnson Added 15.04.2017
Pianist Mitsuko Uchida delivered a sparkling Mozart piano concerto No. 20 in D minor (K.466) with the Boston Symphony Orchestra under Andris Nelsons on Thursday, the eve of Easter weekend, to an enthusiastic full house at Symphony Hall. Ms....
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Sofia Coppola emerges from her father's shadow with Cannes triumph for The Beguiled

by Fiona Handyside Added 08.06.2017
Sofia Coppola’s triumphant win at Cannes as best director for The Beguiled is the latest in a series of notable successes for a director quietly but forcefully blazing her own trail as a female director in a film world in which most of the...

La La Land deserves its 14 Oscar nominations for asking us, quite simply, to feel

by Rebecca Harrison Added 24.02.2017
Having won five BAFTAs, including coveted awards for Best Film, Best Director (Damien Chazelle) and Best Actress (Emma Stone), La La Land is likely to win more statuettes at the Oscars – it has a record-equalling 14 nominations. Both lauded as...

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...
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