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The Great Tax Heist and “The General Welfare”

by Anna Wrobel   THE TAX THEFT being perpetrated by Republicans will create little that is living, but will instead produce a growing austerity. The big winners will continue to siphon our public treasury for private gain at ever greater speed and volume, with no legal compulsion that the wealthiest receivers do anything constructive for the economy nor for […]

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EARTH to Trump

WHEN IT COMES TO THE ENVIRONMENT, CITIES, STATES, AND PEOPLE ARE IN MOTION An Editorial from our Summer 2017 issue THE UNITED STATES  is the oldest constitutional republic in the world  (except for the tiny Italian microstate of San Marino). Given that durability, it’s not wishful to believe that the country’s basic political system is strong […]

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Calling on the Electoral College . . .

by Lauren Shapiro “The process of election affords a moral certainty, that the office of President will never fall to the lot of any man who is not in an eminent degree endowed with the requisite qualifications. Talents for low intrigue, and the little arts of popularity, may alone suffice to elevate a man to […]

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December 11: Law and Moral Integrity

The influential legal scholar and philosopher Ronald Dworkin was born in Providence, Rhode Island on this date in 1931. An erudite contributor for several decades to the New York Review of Books, and a professor at Yale, Oxford, and NYU, among other institutions, Dworkin believed in the rightness of an interpretive approach to law, including […]

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The Uncivil Servant: History and Civics Lessons

by Mitchell Abidor THIS HAS BEEN a week for exposing the public’s general ignorance about American history and our entire political system. My 7th-grade social studies teacher, Miss Kelly, told us that if we remembered everything we learned through the 6th grade, we’d seem like geniuses all our lives. Back then that was true: Who […]

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January 16: Jews and Prohibition

The 18th Amendment to the Constitution, prohibiting the consumption, manufacture, and distribution of alcohol, was ratified on this date in 1919, to take effect a year later. Prohibition would advance the criminal careers of numerous Jewish gangsters, including Arnold Rothstein, Meyer Lansky, Waxey Gordon, Dutch Schultz, Harry Rosen, and Detroit’s Purple Gang. Apart from underworld […]

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June 17: A Critic of the Constitution

Sanford Levinson, a progressive critic of the U.S. Constitution and a supporter of the idea of a Second Constitutional Convention, was born on this date in 1941. A professor at the University of Texas Law School, Levinson is widely quoted for opposing the expanding powers of the U.S. Presidency (which he has described as “constitutional […]

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OpEdge: Christian Prayers and Public Meetings

by Marc Jampole I’m still flabbergasted at the naiveté — or perhaps lack of experience in the world — displayed by Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy in his majority opinion upholding the right of upstate New York government officials to say Christian prayers before town meetings. Kennedy writes that the case comes down to whether people are […]

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