Can Government Play Moneyball?

How a new era of fiscal scarcity could make Washington work better

American Support for Drones—by the Numbers

Should we use unmanned arial vehicles to kill suspected terrorists? How about to issue traffic tickets?

How to Save the GOP

What Republicans can learn from the Democrats’ revival

Do Presidents Really Steer Foreign Policy?

They can—but mainly by doing things other than what we want and expect from them.

Josh Barro, the Loneliest Republican

What to make of the 28-year-old columnist's contempt for the GOP—and its would-be reformers

Jerry Brown's Political Reboot

In his reprise as governor, he's been as ruthlessly practical as he's been reflective, embracing his inner politician to restore the California dream.

Why Both the Dems and the GOP Now Think Voters Prefer Female Candidates

A woman's edge?

Has Obama Turned a Generation of Voters Into Lifelong Democrats?

The prospects for a new liberal age

Casino Jack’s New Game

After more than three years in prison, and an implausible makeover as a truth-telling good-government reformer, Abramoff is still Abramoff.

Campaign Finance: Raise Spending Limits, Increase Transparency

It will mean concessions from both Democrats and Republicans, but it will be good for America.

A More Perfect Poll

As opinion researchers hung up the phone and headed online last year, election forecasts grew more accurate. Has the Web-based survey finally come of age?

The Big House

The Emancipation of Barack Obama

Why the reelection of the first black president matters even more than his election

Animal House

Ted Yoho and his fellow freshmen promise to make John Boehner’s life even more hellish.

Second Chances

Presidential encores have a reputation for being rocky. But there have been exceptions—and Obama’s new term could be one of them.

The Bloomberg Way

The mayor of New York on his soda ban, why he doesn't worry about approval ratings, governing in the age of Twitter, and the dumbed-down media

Hacking the President’s DNA

The U.S. government is surreptitiously collecting the DNA of world leaders, and is reportedly protecting that of Barack Obama. Decoded, these genetic blueprints could provide compromising information. In the not-too-distant future, they may provide something more as well—the basis for the creation of personalized bioweapons that could take down a president and leave no trace.

Pipe Dreamer

Could Gary Johnson’s turn as a pro-legalization Libertarian swing the presidential election?

The League of Dangerous Mapmakers

Who’s most to blame for our divisive politics? How about the gerrymanderers quietly deciding where your vote goes. Inside the dark art and modern science of making democracy a lot less democratic.

The Ballot Cops

Thirty years ago, the Republican National Committee was accused of violating the Voting Rights Act and ordered to cease its “ballot security” efforts. Now an organization called True the Vote wants to pick up where the RNC left off, by building a nationwide army to root out voter fraud—or, some would say, to suppress voter turnout.

The New Price of American Politics

Not since the Gilded Age has our politics been opened so wide to corporate contributions and donations from secret sources. And the new era of big money has just begun. Jim Bopp, its intellectual architect, believes this is a good thing—the more money, the better, he says. Reformers (and most voters) disagree. Their battle is over the most-basic ideas of our democracy; at stake—according to both sides—is either the revitalization of politics, or its final capture by the powerful.

The Race

The Myth of the Latino Vote

Why do Democrats expect Mexican Americans in Arizona to line up behind a Puerto Rican guy from Harlem?


This year’s presidential debates could have as decisive an effect on the election outcome as any since 1980, if not 1960. Mitt Romney brings formidable advantages to the contests—but he has one big weakness that President Obama can exploit.

Fear of a Black President

As a candidate, Barack Obama said we needed to reckon with race and with America’s original sin, slavery. But as our first black president, he has avoided mention of race almost entirely. In having to be “twice as good” and “half as black,” Obama reveals the false promise and double standard of integration.


Where Time Comes From

The clocks that coordinate your cellphone, GPS, and more


Computer Vision Syndrome and You

Save your eyes. Take breaks.


What Happens in 60 Seconds

Quantifying human activity around the world



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