Today on the Dish, we heard from customer service reps; one pretty angry lawyer; a master herbalist; an academic librarian; a resident physician; and the conversation continued on elites. Leon Wieseltier found clarity and common ground on the mosque; we played war games with the Taliban and the Discovery gunman was mostly just crazy. 

Weigel took on the Tea Party; Reason went robo-tripping; and and labels were for soup cans.  The Palin article got factchecked and Bristol Palin's dancing might encourage 14 year olds to have babies. Sanctions weren't helping Iran, while two Matts dueled and new hip church inductees included The Innocence Mission and Derek Webb. We learned how to beat procrastination and how to win in winning.

We enjoyed some macho salad; got the downlow on how to "do hip-hop" and the economics of death. School (photos) started; loving boobies might be bad for breast cancer; and Netflix does vacation very well. Aaron Fotheringham landed the world's first double backflip on a wheelchair; Franzen predicted the future and Yiddish wasn't dead. VFYW here; cool ad watch here; MHB here; dissent of the day here; and FOTD here.

Face_day

A Dish reader's portrait of Dina Martina

Thursday on the Dish, we eyed Iowa for Palin; even the Vanity Fair writer who liked her couldn't believe how much she lied; and on top of all that, she ruined Alaska's quirkiness for the rest of the state. Chris drew on the Glenn Beck-Howard Beale connection; and the Tea Party defense and dissent of the day is here.

Yossi Klein Halevi asked Imam Rauf to modify the mosque, not move it. Israeli-Palestinian talks, amazingly, continued; and nation-building in Iraq, unsuprisingly, didn't work that well. We compared what worked in Haiti versus what hasn't in Pakistan; heard China's opinion on Iraq; and tracked deaths by drones. Sweatshops might not be as bad as we think but American Taliban still seemed to rub most the wrong way.

Savage savaged Democrats for not doing anything on gay rights; and Mazzone got impatient for a DADT repeal. Hitchens shut down his detractors; Sabato placed bets for November; and there's an ode to E.D. Kain and reformers on the right here. Conor called for less federal government under an overburdened presidency; we graded teachers' grades; and outed the flaws of an imperfect meritocracy.

We got the Dish from an indologist, a businessman, a scientist, and a Y2K programmer; is it me or does this sound like an awesome remake of the Breakfast Club? Cannibis went commercial; McWhorter advocated for the end of the war on drugs; and panhandlers sometimes buy booze and other times just deoderant. VFYW here; Yglesias award here; FOTD here; and MHB here. Twitter pwned old media on the Discovery gunman; we learned about "real" Americans; and we got the spectrum of romances both big and small from Dish readers on engagements. Jan Brewer was as bad as a BBC satire of a politician and this internet star sold out for a pot of gold at the end of his double rainbows.

Wednesday on the Dish, Afghan men took boy lovers; we learned lessons from Iraq and picked at Obama's speech. More romantic Dish readers pitched in on progressively alternative engagement gifts; immigration could solve the housing crisis; and healthcare could determine November's election. Weigel wrote the post-mortem on Murkowski; political parties are not dead yet; and Andrew got dragged into the argument over Kos's new book, American Taliban.

In the lead up to Labor Day, we heard from pharmacists; mathmeticians; a paid pro-bon lawyer; teachers; a mortician; more sacrificing public sector workers and about how the economic downturn has affected the hiring of elites.

The Vanity Fair piece had some ripe Sullivan bait; we got more of Ms. Dina Martina; and Americans were exceptional.  We counted vacation days and inducted more musicians into the hip church (and synagogue) hall of fame. VFYW here; Malkin award here; MHB here; FOTD here. We enjoyed some snacks and shit (so did tigers); Swedish fathers pushed strollers; and we kept the law out of craft cocktails. Glenn Beck wore a bulletproof vest; bonobos are like humans; and men wooed virtual girlfriends on romantic getaways.

Tuesday on the Dish, we followed the Beck backlash; parsed polls for November; and reflected on the Big Question of the best way to engage people who disagree. Politicians weren't as important as parties; Christianity in America made a splash; and the Heritage Foundation's newest hire doesn't quite gel with its ideals.

We played with the Rubik's cube of Pakistani politics; and wondered sarcastically about what will happen to all the Mexican police officers fired for their ties to drug cartels. Ambinder previewed Obama's address tonight; we asked after Atlas; and according to Churchill, sometimes appeasement was necessary.

Preppies needed help to survive; the codex won one over the screen; and the official Oxford English Dictionary may be the internet's most recent casualty. Apatow and Serwer defended Apatow's mockery of American masculinity and we tackled domestic violence in pop culture. We mined maternity leave and the defense of diamonds; and McArdle seconded Bering on monogamy and jealousy while Dan Savage disagreed. FOTD here; cool ad watch here; Yglesias award nominee here; MHB here; VFYW here; VFYW contest #13 winner here; and your many suggestions for mapping future contests here. On the elite professions front, we touched on Scalia's choices and heard from dating coaches; civil servants in the shadows; attorneys; pastors and prostitutes.

VFYW_Tuesday
Copan Ruinas, Honduras, 8.31 am

Monday on the Dish, we had reactions to the Glenn Beck rally here, here, and here. We examined the profit bias behind Beck, analyzed his reach, and awarded him our Hewitt award. We had more Mosque fear-mongering here while Conor condemned recent incitements to violence.

We measured Obama's record on torture and the lack of progress on trying detainees in the US. We compared liberalism in Europe and the US and a very generous maternity leave in Germany; and the expat travelogue got an infusion of Americana. There was an insider's call to arms over Afghanistan; Conor weighed the pros and cons of Jane Mayer's profile of the Koch brothers and Jay Rosen doled out advice to journalists.

We remembered Katrina; took a tour of the housing market; and Joyce scored a point on Jest. Plastic bags puzzled us; the Paris Review revealed its methods; and the Atlantic's archives offered a different vision of WWII, long-form style. The web embraced print; we asked for your stories about professionals and the atmosphere around elites; and small towns produced good athletes. We tallied up the record of a girlie man on gay rights; Jesse Bering dissected a gay man's jealousy an evolutionary perspective; and Jay Bakker, son of Tammy and Jim, apologized way before Marin did and meant it.

Cannabis continued getting censored; some men hired assistants to date for them; and we all wanted to have a beer on the beach without getting arrested. We admired notes from bathroom stalls; studied the list of 12 things to get high on that you've never heard of and probably never want to try; and jammed out to a MHB from someone who was probably on at least one. VFYW here; FOTD here; and cool ad watch here. McDonald's hamburgers stayed "fresh" for 137 days; circumcision took the form of self-loathing; lap dances helped some women make the grade and Bill O'Reilly used to review porn for a living.

--Z.P.

We want to hear what you think about this article. Submit a letter to the editor or write to letters@theatlantic.com.