From the mid-to-late 20th century, the United States and the Soviet Union largely took their battle for world dominance to space, leading to landing the first man on the moon to Star Wars. And now the next great race between two superpowers is on, says Senator Amy Klobuchar, who shared her insights at The Atlantic's fourth annual Green Intelligence Forum, yesterday.
Klobuchar continued to explain that the U.S. is competing against China to be the first to develop innovative energy solutions. She also added that the U.S. needs to make, invent and export in order to lead in the race.
I have been following live on-the-ground Twitter updates from our freelance correspondent, Amy Southerland, and by using the hashtag #gif2011. We also have been using Storify to help aggregate #gif2011 tweets, allowing us easily to share GIF highlights with our readers.
Our readers and I will be able to continue to follow the event today as day two wraps. The second day examines green intelligence through the framework of sustainable cities. The programming also includes a keynote address from urbanist Richard Florida, a panel discussion on healthy cities and communities, and a film screening and discussion of the Revenge of the Electric Car.
Green Intelligence Forum could not be possible without the support of our underwriters, AT&T, Boeing, The Legacy Foundation, Shell, and Xylem Inc, and we thank them for their support.
Jay Lauf is a 23-year veteran of the publishing industry with stints on both the editorial and business sides at newspapers, trade and consumer magazines, and websites. Prior to joining The Atlantic in 2008 as VP/Publisher, he was the publisher of Wired magazine.
Petty political fights distract from the Vermont senator’s goal of a long-lasting movement.
Bernie Sanders’s beliefs have been obvious from the start. He thinks wealthy elites exert too much influence over American politics. He wants the U.S. government to lessen income inequality. He believes climate change is a pressing threat to the world. The clarity and overarching ambition of his agenda has been central to his appeal and expectations-defying political success so far.
If Sanders wants his political revolution to last, he will need to win widespread support for his ideas well into the future. Yet as the primary election draws to a close, the campaign has increasingly made arguments that may undercut the long-term viability of the movement that has coalesced around the Vermont senator.
Why aren’t the critics comparing Donald Trump to a fascist acknowledging that the office he seeks is too powerful?
Wake up, establishment centrists: Donald Trump is coming!
After the Vietnam War and Watergate and the spying scandals uncovered by the Church Committee and the Nixon Administration cronies who nearly firebombed the Brookings Institution, Americans were briefly inclined to rein in executive power—a rebuke to Richard Nixon’s claim that “if the president does it, that means it’s not illegal.” Powerful committees were created to oversee misconduct-prone spy agencies. The War Powers Resolution revived a legislative check on warmaking. “In 34 years,” Vice President Dick Cheney would lament to ABC News in a January 2002 interview, “I have repeatedly seen an erosion of the powers and the ability of the president of the United States to do his job. I feel an obligation... to pass on our offices in better shape than we found them to our successors."
For some, meditation has become more curse than cure. Willoughby Britton wants to know why.
Set back on quiet College Hill in Providence, Rhode Island, sits a dignified, four story, 19th-century house that belongs to Dr. Willoughby Britton. Inside, it is warm, spacious, and organized. The shelves are stocked with organic foods. A solid wood dining room table seats up to 12. Plants are ubiquitous. Comfortable pillows are never far from reach. The basement—with its own bed, living space, and private bathroom—often hosts a rotating cast of yogis and meditation teachers. Britton’s own living space and office are on the second floor. The real sanctuary, however, is on the third floor, where people come from all over to rent rooms, work with Britton, and rest. But they're not there to restore themselves with meditation—they're recovering from it.
How a strange face in a random 19th-century newspaper ad became a portal to a forgotten moment in ASCII art history
One of the joys of modern technology is how easy it is to immerse yourself in the past. Every day, more libraries and archives are pushing pieces of their collections online in easily browsable interfaces.
For centuries, philosophers and theologians have almost unanimously held that civilization as we know it depends on a widespread belief in free will—and that losing this belief could be calamitous. Our codes of ethics, for example, assume that we can freely choose between right and wrong. In the Christian tradition, this is known as “moral liberty”—the capacity to discern and pursue the good, instead of merely being compelled by appetites and desires. The great Enlightenment philosopher Immanuel Kant reaffirmed this link between freedom and goodness. If we are not free to choose, he argued, then it would make no sense to say we ought to choose the path of righteousness.
Today, the assumption of free will runs through every aspect of American politics, from welfare provision to criminal law. It permeates the popular culture and underpins the American dream—the belief that anyone can make something of themselves no matter what their start in life. As Barack Obama wrote in The Audacity of Hope, American “values are rooted in a basic optimism about life and a faith in free will.”
Narcissism, disagreeableness, grandiosity—a psychologist investigates how Trump’s extraordinary personality might shape his possible presidency.
In 2006, Donald Trump made plans to purchase the Menie Estate, near Aberdeen, Scotland, aiming to convert the dunes and grassland into a luxury golf resort. He and the estate’s owner, Tom Griffin, sat down to discuss the transaction at the Cock & Bull restaurant. Griffin recalls that Trump was a hard-nosed negotiator, reluctant to give in on even the tiniest details. But, as Michael D’Antonio writes in his recent biography of Trump, Never Enough, Griffin’s most vivid recollection of the evening pertains to the theatrics. It was as if the golden-haired guest sitting across the table were an actor playing a part on the London stage.
“It was Donald Trump playing Donald Trump,” Griffin observed. There was something unreal about it.
A small but intriguing study done in West Philadelphia points to the importance of what researchers call microenvironments.
Social scientists and economists have been fascinated by the idea that a city—even a neighborhood—can shape someone’s economic success in life. Until last year, research linking neighborhood conditions to economic mobility was hardly conclusive. Then, a group of Harvard economists made a compelling case that poor children who grow up in more affluent neighborhoods (with better schools, less crime, and larger public budgets) end up earning more money later on than if they had stayed in a poor neighborhood.
A group of researchers from The University of Pennsylvania is now taking that idea a step further, showing that a similar pattern might even apply on the level of the city block. They studied West Philadelphia, which is largely made up of poor, African American families and where poverty is passed on from one generation to the next. Yet even within West Philadelphia, poverty, crime and education levels vary from block to block. These areas are what researchers are calling “micro-environments.”
Three Atlantic staffers discuss “The Door,” the fifth episode of the sixth season.
Every week for the sixth season of Game of Thrones, Christopher Orr, Spencer Kornhaber, and Lenika Cruz will be discussing new episodes of the HBO drama. Because no screeners are being made available to critics in advance this year, we'll be posting our thoughts in installments.
Widely seen as the best public-school system in the U.S., the Massachusetts school system’s success can offer lessons to other states.
When it comes to the story of Massachusetts’s public schools, the takeaway, according to the state’s former education secretary, Paul Reville, is that “doing well isn’t good enough.”
Massachusetts is widely seen as having the best school system in the country: Just 2 percent of its high-schoolers drop out, for example, and its students’ math and reading scores rank No. 1 nationally. It even performs toward the top on international education indices.
But as Reville and others intimately familiar with the Bay State’s school-improvement efforts emphasized in a panel at the Education Writers Association National Seminar earlier this month, the “Massachusetts story” is complicated. The Bay State’s famous successes are juxtaposed with stubborn achievement gaps and concentrations of poverty that have made across-the-board strides all but impossible. Income-based disparities in academic performance have actually grown over the last decade or so, and last year the state’s achievement gap was the third highest in the nation.
The show had some bright spots—such as Larry David’s work as Bernie Sanders—but it largely failed to capture the zeitgeist in the year of Trump.
As Saturday Night Live wrapped its season last weekend, it made sense that it led off with Hillary Clinton (Kate McKinnon) and Bernie Sanders (Larry David) bidding each other farewell, and Donald Trump nowhere to be seen. The 41st year of SNL has struggled to find its voice during this demented election season, a time when the show usually taps into the zeitgeist, but if there’s anything it’ll be remembered for, it’s the inspired casting choice of David as an avatar of grumpy disgust with the nation’s political process.
And yet David isn’t in the main cast of Saturday Night Live—technically, he’s an alumnus of the show, having written for its 10th season. Darrell Hammond, who impersonated Donald Trump for most of the year after Taran Killam’s early attempt, is another veteran brought in for a specific role. And the 41st season finale, easily one of the best episodes of the year, worked mostly because its host Fred Armisen brought back many luminaries from his time on the show to help recall his own glory days. In the three years since Armisen departed, Saturday Night Live has struggled to define its new era, and the joy of seeing its old cast return has only helped to underline that troubling fact.