Thomas Powers

  • Was It Right?

    Most of the debate over the atomic bombing of Japan focuses on the unanswerable question of whether it was necessary. But that skirts the question of its morality.  

  • Inside the Department of Dirty Tricks

    "We're not in the Boy Scouts," Richard Helms was fond of saying when he ran the Central Intelligence Agency. He was correct, of course. Boy Scouts do not ordinarily bribe foreign politicians, invade other countries with secret armies, spread lies, conduct medical experiments, build stocks of poison, pass machine guns to people who plan to turn them on their leaders, or plot to kill men such as Lumumba or Castro or others who displeased Washington. The CIA did these things, and more, over a long span of years. On whose orders? This is a question a Pulitzer prizewinning writer addresses in an adaptation from his forthcoming book about Helms and the Agency, The Man Who Kept the Secrets.

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In Online Dating, Everyone's a Little Bit Racist

The co-founder of OKCupid shares findings from his analysis of millions of users' data.

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What Is a Sandwich?

We're overthinking sandwiches, so you don't have to.

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How Will Climate Change Affect Cities?

Urban planners and environmentalists predict the future of city life.

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The Inner Life of a Drag Queen

A short documentary about cross-dressing, masculinity, identity, and performance

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Let's Talk About Not Smoking

Why does smoking maintain its allure? James Hamblin seeks the wisdom of a cool person.

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