• Bring Covid Vaccines Door-to-Door

    A few weeks ago, I learned I’d qualified for a Covid-19 vaccine. I began devoting my days to shot chasing. I joined local vaccine-hunting groups on Facebook, where members reported driving all over the state to get their jab, and I preregistered for state-run mass vaccination sites. A week later, I received a text message from the preregistration service: Was I available that Saturday? Hell, yes. I happily drove for an hour to a drive-in site.

  • The Problem With Trusting “the Science”

    “The good thing about Science,” TV science evangelist and astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson tweeted in 2013, “is that it’s true whether or not you believe in it.” Protesters at the “March for Science” used versions of the phrase to rebuke a presidency that denied climate change and, later, suggested that injecting bleach might cure coronavirus. Some of their signs proclaimed WE <3 EXPERTS! Now, in the first months of the Biden presidency, liberals are once again cheering an administration...

  • Raoul Peck’s "Exterminate All the Brutes" Insists on Telling What Really Happened

    Raoul Peck’s 2014 drama, Murder in Pacot, is a sweaty, outdoor masterpiece. It is set amid the ruins of a stylish, modern home in the chaotic days after an earthquake in Port-au-Prince, Haiti; the couple who own it endure a Beckettian reversal of fortune. Played by the graceful Ayọ and the Claire Denis favorite Alex Descas, they are forced to rent out the remains of their house to a creepy white aid worker, while they live in an unglazed shed and their clothing turns to rags. When the tenant...

  • Andrew Yang, Celebrity Politician

    Andrew Yang was, briefly, a corporate attorney, then an executive at a test preparation company, then the founder of a nonprofit that encourages entrepreneurship. (It has a mixed record.) He ran for president in 2020, more or less as the Reddit Candidate, embracing memes and borrowing some of his policy agenda from the tech world. His signature proposal was a universal basic income, and he gained an enthusiastic following in part by appearing on podcasts popular among highly online young...

  • The Supreme Court Could Get Dragged Into the Cancel Culture Wars

    The United States has one national Constitution and one national Bill of Rights. But sometimes it feels like this country has two First Amendments. There is the one that was written down in the late eighteenth century and has almost two-and-a-half centuries of jurisprudence built around it. And then there is the folk understanding of the First Amendment in certain circles, where getting banned from Twitter is a free-speech violation beyond anything that George Orwell could have imagined.

  • Let Other Countries Copy the Covid Vaccines

    There’s one big thing the Biden administration could do to beat back the global pandemic: urge the World Trade Organization (WTO) to waive patent protections on Covid-19 vaccines. To date, it hasn’t done that, despite calls from India, South Africa and 100 other mainly low- and middle-income countries represented in the WTO. Instead, protections for patent-holders in the Trade Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS) Agreement prevent such countries from manufacturing the vaccines...

  • Whither the Religious Left?

    No one who watched the inauguration of Joe Biden could have missed that he was a Roman Catholic. Before the day’s public ceremonies, he attended a private Mass at the Cathedral of St. Matthew the Apostle, named for the patron saint of civil servants. Then, at the Capitol, a Jesuit priest and former president of Georgetown University, Father Leo O’Donovan, used an otherwise ecumenical prayer to remind the audience that a Catholic had asked for God’s blessing for George Washington’s inauguration....

  • Joe Biden Isn’t Close to Being a Historic President Yet

    Although we’re still less than three months into the Biden administration, there’s already an eagerness all around to characterize and define his presidency. This is understandable on a psychological level⁠—we live in harrowing and uncertain times; the American people and opinion leaders are trying to understand where the country is going and how quickly we might get there. And that’s led to a grasping for historical analogues to which Biden and his agenda might be compared.

  • The Democrats’ Court-Packing Plan Doesn’t Make Any Sense

    You can tell that House and Senate Democrats are serious about court-packing by the new bill’s name: the Judiciary Act of 2021. They didn’t burden it with an insufferable acronym, like the Judicial Upkeep, Democracy, Growth, and Expansion, or JUDGE, Act, or something pedantic like the Save Our Courts Act. By connecting it to previous Judiciary Acts that built and expanded the federal courts since 1789, Democrats are trying to suggest that there’s precedent and continuity to their proposal.

  • Bernie Madoff Lives!

    What also must be known about Bernie Madoff, who died on Wednesday at the age of 82, is that prior to the revelation in December 2008 that he had been running the world’s largest Ponzi scheme, he was, for most of his career, one of the most well-respected figures in finance. He was anything but marginal. He served as the chairman of Nasdaq three different years in the 1990s, and served on the boards of many Wall Street organizations. The funds he ran attracted some of the richest people in the...

  • Washington’s Inflation Hysteria Is Fueled by Corporate Greed

    I first heard about the idea of a “reserve army of the unemployed” when I was in college. Advanced by Karl Marx in chapter 25 of Capital: Volume I, the theory is that it is in the interest of capitalists to maintain a relatively high rate of unemployment. This keeps workers under control and makes them fearful to ask for higher wages or unionize, lest they be replaced by machines or the unemployed or underemployed eager to take their jobs. “Relative surplus population,” Marx said, is the “pivot...