Presidential Podcast

The 2016 Presidential Election is…well who knows what it is, but it’s something. For some, looking forward to our next president is a good time to look back and to reflect upon the presidents of the past. That is exactly …Read More

The Thunder and the Hurricane

Many literate people can deploy a clever metaphor from time to time. It takes a true writer to uncover true-to-life metaphors – where life has been stranger than fiction. Our fellow VDPer, Pia Z. Ehrhardt offers up a very personal …Read More

“When Beauty Strikes”

David Brooks has been bothering me for a while. “The Road to Character” was insipid, and now on top of all the self-righteous moralizing and curmudgeonly grumping about younger generations, he is now a specialist in art theory and complaining …Read More

Some Catching-Up Reviews

Homeland: How consistently thrilling it has been — up to what next Sunday will be the last of the 5th season.     Spotlight: Probably the best journalism movie ever, even more than “All the President’s Men.” It’s honest, showing …Read More

The “Reimagined” New York Times Magazine

The “Reimagined” New York Times Magazine (below, in the image above). It finally came –- 218 pages, stuffed with ads. The crossword puzzle is still there, plus some easier puzzles as a “gateway” for readers.  The magazine opens with a …Read More

Roger Angell: This Old Man

Roger Angell, longtime writer and editor for The New Yorker, just wrote an essay in the Feb. 17 & 24 issue entitled, “This Old Man.” Read it there, and you also can online, unless you are extremely young.The author, age …Read More

Street Cop: Mary Jo White

When Mary Jo White was appointed Chair of the S.E.C. in January of this year, there was a great deal of concern as to whether she was a proper choice, given her most recent position as a senior partner and …Read More


Paul Rudnick, whose brilliant writing I have enjoyed in the past, has come up with a little masterpiece in this week’s New Yorker’s Shouts and Murmurs. He pushes all the right buttons in a scathing satire that is dead-on about a number …Read More

Letter from Newtown

I want to commend the wonderful young writer Rachel Aviv, whom I now avidly read whenever she has a story in The New Yorker.  Her latest, last week, was about the hometown reporters in Newtown, Conn., who covered the Newtown …Read More

Bitter Pill

Steve Brill, one of our great investigative reporters, has written a sobering cover story for the current issue of Time magazine. Entitled “Bitter Pill. Why Medical Bills Are Killing Us,” this 30-page report (the longest article Time has ever published) …Read More

Two Magazine Pieces

The Daniel Mendelsohn article a few weeks ago in The New Yorker about his response to the writing of Mary Renault as a gay pre-teen and teen.  It’s a beautifully evoked memoir, and in its shape and beauty and coherence, it stood …Read More