Seymour Hersh and the Disappearing Iconoclast

Seymour Hersh, Reporter: A Memoir, Sy Hersh. Knopf, June 2018, 368 pages When people are comforted by government lies, trafficking the truth becomes hellishly difficult. Disclosing damning facts is especially tricky when editors en masse lose their spines. These are some of the takeaways from legendary Seymour Hersh’s riveting new memoir, Reporter.    Shortly before Hersh […]

Can America Ever Come Together Again?

If ex-CIA director John Brennan did to Andrew Jackson what he did to Donald Trump, he would have lost a lot more than his security clearance. He would have been challenged to a duel. “Trump’s…performance in Helsinki,” Brennan had said, “exceeds the threshold of ‘high crimes & misdemeanors.’ It was…treasonous.” Why should the president not […]

The Confused Cynicism of Slenderman

Without quite being aware of it, humans dream meaning into the world together. The stranger parts of our own minds are engaged in occult dialogue with the minds of others, mostly through narrative stories. Call them folk tales, fairy tales, or urban legends. Our collective fears and hopes are in conversation with one another. Bruno […]

After Two Decades of Growth, Philadelphia Still Feels Left Behind

South Philadelphia’s rooftops offer a stunning panorama of a city balancing its past and future. A sea of row homes, occasionally broken by old school buildings and church steeples, flow northward toward Center City, where towers of glistening glass spread symmetrically within the confines of the Schuylkill and Delaware rivers. The 60-story Comcast Technology Center, […]

Trump’s ‘Iran Action Group’

Earlier today, Mike Pompeo announced the creation of the Iran Action Group in the State Department dedicated to advancing the administration’s destructive and cruel Iran policy. In keeping with the administration’s previous statements about its policy and the nuclear deal, the Secretary’s statement was riddled with lies and misleading comments: In May of this year, […]

What if Russiagate is the New WMDs?

“The evidence against Trump and Russia is huge and mounting every day,” declared liberal celebrity activist Rosie O’Donnell at a protest in front of the White House last week. “We see it, he can’t lie about it,” she added. “He is going down and so will all of his administration.” “The charge is treason,” O’Donnell […]

The U.S. Is Aiding and Abetting Saudi Atrocities in Yemen

There have been dozens of Saudi coalition airstrikes on civilian vehicles in Yemen this year, and coalition investigations almost never fault coalition forces: The bombing of a bus full of schoolchildren last week was just one of more than 50 airstrikes against civilian vehicles by the Saudi-led coalition in Yemen so far this year, according […]

The Banality Of The Bishops’ Evil

I know y’all are worn out by all my takes on the Catholic abuse scandal, but if you can stand it, Megan McArdle’s column on it is worth reading. This graf jumped out at me: There are plenty of tales to tell about how church reality came to resemble a dime novel, yet most are […]

The Electric Briar In My Neck

On December 5, 2016, a college student running late for an exam rear-ended me as I was stopped in a turn lane waiting for the light to change. The accident left me with an inflamed nerve between my C5 and C6 vertebrae. I’ve tried various treatments, but nothing works. My doctors tell me that I’ll […]

In Defense of the All-American Road Trip

In 1998, I took my first self-driven road trip into the vastness of rural America. No GPS. No destination. No reservations. Just myself, my camera, and a Rand McNally atlas. And it changed the way I think. Twenty years later I’ve seen so much of our great land, but what I haven’t seen is still […]