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[8 Feb 2017 | One Comment | ]

I live in Evanston, Ill., a city of roughly 80,000 just outside Chicago at whose center is Northwestern University. Evanston went 88% for Hillary Clinton to 7% for Donald Trump. The morning after the election, the general glum in town was palpable. At Peet’s Coffee, at Whole Foods, among students, one could everywhere see the depression upon faces. An amiable young woman at the public library told me she went to bed the night before with tears in her eyes. A good friend wrote that he no longer recognized the …

Featured, Headline »

[5 Feb 2009 | One Comment | ]

Last week the excellent David Brooks, in one of his columns in the New York Times, exulted over the high quality of people President-elect Barack Obama was enlisting in his new cabinet and onto his staff. The chief evidence for these people being so impressive, it turns out, is they all went to what the world–“that ignorant ninny,” as Henry James called it–thinks superior schools. Harvard, Yale, Princeton, Stanford, the London School of Economics; like dead flies on flypaper, the names of the schools Obama’s new appointees attended dotted Brooks’s …

Chicago, Crime, Headline, Local Media »

[15 Jan 2009 | No Comment | ]
‘Uncle Bernie’ And the Jews

Bernie Madoff gave off fumes of quiet but deep confidence that can be immensely seductive. I have never met Madoff, but I have met men of his physical and psychological type: smallish, unathletic in build, wearing expensive yet unflashy clothes, nothing dazzling about them. They manage to seem substantial in an unthreatening, even avuncular way. They appear to be in possession of a deep secret: they have gotten in on the ground floor, they know how the game is played; should they choose, they could put you on to a …

Local Media »

[20 Oct 2008 | No Comment | ]

The liberal women I know–and most of the women I seem to know are liberal–loathe Sarah Palin. They don’t merely dislike her, the way one tends to dislike politicians whose views are not one’s own, they actively detest her. When her name comes up–and it is they who tend to bring it up–their complexions take on a slightly purplish tinge, their eyes cross in rage. “Moron” is their most frequently used noun, though “idiot” comes up a fair number of times; “that woman” is yet another choice. A wide variety …