Larry Lessig

Lawrence Lessig: How to Repair Our Democracy

Law professor and one-time presidential hopeful Lawrence Lessig on campaign finance, gerrymandering, and the electoral college.
Source: https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Cole_Thomas_The_Course_of_Empire_Destruction_1836.jpg

A Nation in Decline, as Always

What does it really mean for a nation to be “in decline?” And why does it make for such appealing political rhetoric?
A moose skeleton

America, Where the Dogs Don’t Bark and the Birds Don’t Sing

The Comte de Buffon's thirty-six volume Natural History claimed that America was a land of degeneracy. That enraged Thomas Jefferson.
A family around a thanksgiving dinner table, colored red and blue

Talk about This, Not That

Looking to avoid politics at the holiday dinner table? Food trivia, ground-up mummy pigment, and snake jaws ought to do the trick.
why US states have straight borders

Why Are U.S. Borders Straight Lines?

The ever-shifting curve of shoreline and river is no match for the infinite, idealized straight line.
Elizabeth Warren

Elizabeth Warren

An early paper by Elizabeth Warren argues for a Financial Product Safety Commission that would regulate financial products.
JFK with Caroline on the Honey Fitz (presidential yacht), 1963

The Ideological Slipperiness of the Kennedy Legacy

Politicians from both sides of the aisle have sought to stake a claim to the evocative power of the Kennedy legend. What is it about Camelot?
Trump mouth

The Language Wars

As a society becomes increasingly unstable, linguistic innovation happens more rapidly.
Thomas Jefferson

Is the “Alt-Right” The Grandchild of the Old Right?

The political term "alt-right" is all the rage now, but it's not so clear what it means. Looking at one of its antecedents may help.

Walt Whitman the… Politician?

Before Walt Whitman was a famous poet, he was a scandalous poet, but before even all that he was in the thick of local and national politics.