Review of Richard Robb’s “Willful”

by Michael Liss Economics. The dismal science. All those numbers and graphs, formulas and derivations, tombstone-sized copies of Paul Samuelson and William Nordhaus’s Macroeconomics (now apparently in its 19th edition), and memories of the detritus that came with them: half-filled coffee cups and overfilled ashtrays, mechanical pencils and HP-45s. As you might imagine, with that…

A Sentimental Bond with the Product: Joe Biden, the Past and the Future.

by Michael Liss I’ve been thinking a lot about Joe Biden recently. Joe Biden and nostalgia, Joe Biden and memory. Joe Biden and Mad Men. There is a wonderful scene to close the first season as Don Draper pitches an ad campaign to two exceptionally nerdy guys from Kodak. The boys from the lab want…

SCOTUS Says No To Politics

by Michael Liss The Supreme Court doesn’t play politics. In what was destined to be an inevitable ruling, by an inevitable 5-4 vote, inevitably written by Chief Justice John Roberts, the Supreme Court decided, in Rucho v. Common Cause, that it couldn’t decide how much “partisan” gerrymandering was too much partisan gerrymandering. So it wouldn’t.…

An American Tries To Understand Armistice Day

by Michael Liss This past Sunday, November 11, marked the Centennial of Armistice Day, the European commemoration of the agreement to end World War I. Representatives from more than 60 countries attended carefully choreographed ceremonies to honor the sacrifice of those who fought. The Europeans take the Great War seriously. Americans really don’t. It just…