You’ll never be Chinese

Mark Kitto Death and taxes. You know how the saying goes. I’d like to add a third certainty: you’ll never become Chinese, no matter how hard you try, or want to, or think you ought to. I wanted to be Chinese, once. I don’t mean I wanted to wear a silk jacket and cotton slippers, … Continue reading

Gogol* Explains the Post-Soviet World

(*And Chekhov and Dostoyevsky.) The case for (re)reading Russia’s greatest literary classics. THOMAS DE WAAL Twenty years ago, 15 new states emerged from the wreck of the Soviet Union, uneven shards from a broken monolith. One story turned into 15. Most Soviet watchers have been struggling to keep up ever since. How to tell these … Continue reading

Parents’ Porn Fears Exaggerated

Access to online pornography is changing the way young people learn about sex, a trend that has many parents worried. But German experts believe many of their fears are unfounded. Instead of trying to prevent porn consumption, parents should focus on teaching healthy sexual values, they say. Nicola Abé Jan von Holleben/ SPIEGEL Wissen Carl … Continue reading

Knocked Up and Knocked Down

Why America’s widening fertility class divide is a problem. Sharon Lerner Are we experiencing a national fertility crisis? Since the average American woman has 2.1 children, you might think we aren’t experiencing a national fertility crisis. Unlike some European countries whose futures are threatened by low birth rates, Americans, on average, produce just the right … Continue reading

The detectives

Julie Bindel International fraud, insurance scams, digital forensics … it’s all in a day’s work for Britain’s private investigators Eyes on the prize: Jorge Salgado-Reyes awaits his target They eavesdrop on your conversations, rifle through dustbins and pretend to deliver pizzas while taking covert photographs with a disguised camera. They hide, watch and wait, and … Continue reading

Britons Have Been Violent and Cruel for Generations

Still, England has not yet collapsed into a nightmare of destruction and despair. Christopher Hitchens Sweeping the streets in London after riotsI realized that the collapse of British society into a Hobbesian nightmare of mutual predation and despair was still some distance off when I caught two little straws in the wind. The first was … Continue reading

Janet’s Precautions

By Gerardo Unzueta Translated By Yanina Weingast Edited by Nathan Ladd Mexico – El Universal – Original Article (Spanish) First, U.S. Secretary of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano gave a warning to drug cartels in Mexico, as she did half a week ago in El Paso, Texas: “Don’t even think about bringing your violence and tactics … Continue reading

Web exclusive In defence of equality

In response to recent criticism, the authors of The Spirit Level defends its claim that there is always a link between social problems and inequality By Richard Wilkinson and Kate Pickett In our book The Spirit Level, Kate Pickett and I demonstrated that, first, many problems which are more prevalent lower down the social ladder … Continue reading

Why a Conversation on Race Is Not Enough

Even if we could convince 95 percent of white people that black Americans are still mistreated in the U.S., there’s no chance for a second civil rights revolution. By John McWhorter It’s good music, this idea once again in the air in the wake of L’affaire Sherrod — that America needs to have a "conversation" … Continue reading

Does Surveillance Make Us Morally Better?

Emrys Westacott asks a probing question. Imagine that right after briefing Adam about which fruit was allowed and which forbidden, God had installed a closed-circuit television camera in the garden of Eden, trained on the tree of knowledge. Think how this might have changed things for the better. The serpent sidles up to Eve and … Continue reading