Did my wife’s cosmetics give her breast cancer?
If it can be said that there is a father of data-based government, it is a famous and controversial one: Robert McNamara. As a young captain during World War II,...
The governor of Maryland is a long shot for the White House—and the best manager in government today.
Why are U.S. Border Patrol agents shooting into Mexico and killing innocent civilians?
Meet the handful of conservative writers who are suggesting, respectfully, that the GOP change its policies.
How gays won the right to raise children without conservatives even noticing.
The much-ballyhooed “in-sourcing” trend is real enough. But it won’t amount to much unless Washington acts.
Never mind Asia, time to pivot to Europe.
Even the best mainstream news stories on the regulatory process tend to mention the number of deadlines an agency has missed as if that’s an indication of its performance. But...
Barack Obama’s biggest second-term challenge isn’t guns or immigration. It’s saving his biggest first-term achievements, like the Dodd-Frank law, from being dismembered by lobbyists and conservative jurists in the shadowy, Byzantine “rule-making” process.
Conservatives love to apply “cost-benefit analysis” to government programs—except in health care. In fact, working with drug companies and warning of “death panels,” they slipped language into Obamacare banning cost-effectiveness research. Here’s how that happened, and why it can’t stand.
Preventing mass killings like the one in Newtown may be impossible. But there’s plenty we can do to reduce violence by the mentally ill in general. And the tools are right there in Obamacare.
“Certainly this is a country that was founded on slavery, genocide, land stealing, and policy marked by racism. But at the same time there are struggles to find our better...
Prevailing stereotypes about America’s youth, and particularly about young African Americans, are often wildly off base, either because they were never true, or because they have failed to keep up...
In 2002, the Institute of Medicine published an oft-cited and controversial report entitled Unequal Treatment: Confronting Racial and Ethnic Disparities in Health Care. The report concluded that members of minority...
Michelle Obama’s “Let’s Move” campaign emphasizes the importance of physical activity for combating obesity, a point she has driven home by dancing alongside school kids to Beyoncé's workout video....
How to make homeownership a safe bet for minority borrowers.
Three generations of African American politicians.
How the ideology of white supremacy undermined the South’s own war effort.
If you think Obama hasn’t delivered for African Americans, take a closer look at his record.
Why do middle-class blacks have far less wealth than whites at the same income level? The answer is in real estate and history.
What it means that family breakdown is now biracial.
Deserving of neither blanket condemnation nor blind exaltation, Lincoln’s Emancipation Proclamation was a brave compromise.
Even if every convict were rightly sentenced, America’s vast, racially skewed incarceration system would still be morally indefensible.
White, black, or brown, we’d all live longer in a more equal, less status-driven society.
The tumultuous decade that followed the Civil War failed to enshrine black voting and civil rights, and instead paved the way for more than a century of entrenched racial injustice.
African Americans suffer from high rates of incarceration and crime. Here’s how to drastically reduce both.
In the summer of 2011, under siege from both the left and the right for his efforts to broker a budget deal to avoid a debt default, Barack Obama...
The unfulfilled dream of "forty acres and a mule."
Shirley Sherrod’s ongoing battle for racial cooperation in Georgia.
The opening scene of Steven Spielberg’s cinemythic portrait of the sixteenth president features President Abraham Lincoln seated on a stage, half cloaked in darkness, and observing the Union forces...
Want to help minority college students? Make the entire higher education system more accountable.
One hundred years after Lincoln signed the Proclamation, Martin Luther King Jr. tried unsuccessfully to get President John F. Kennedy to issue a second one. That failure changed the course of history.
The horrifying, little-known story of how hundreds of thousands of blacks worked in brutal bondage right up until World War II.
The Emancipation Proclamation was in many ways a tremendous step forward for human rights, but it didn’t bring any new rights to Native Americans. In fact, Abraham Lincoln is not...
How racial prejudice in America has changed in the last sixty years.
Industry giants are threatening to swallow up America's carefully regulated alcohol industry, and remake America in the image of booze-soaked Britain.
The untold story of how the administration tried to stand up to big agricultural companies on behalf of independent farmers, and lost.
Right-wing operatives have decided that prisons are a lot like schools: hugely expensive, inefficient, and in need of root-and-branch reform. Is this how progress will happen in a hyper-polarized world?
America’s vast new surplus of natural gas could lead to great prosperity and a cleaner environment. But if we don’t fix our decrepit, blackout -prone electric grid, we could wind up sitting in the dark.
In this year's rankings, we show which schools get their students over the finish line at a reasonable price.
For years, Silicon Valley has failed to breach the walls of higher education with disruptive technology. But the tide of battle is changing. A report from the front lines.
A Different Kind of College Ranking
There are two primary goals to our methodology. First, we considered no single category to be more important than any other. Second, the final rankings needed to reflect excellence across...
Tying the repayment of student loans to a borrower’s income is hardly a new idea. Conservative economist Milton Friedman proposed the basic concept in 1955, and so-called income-contingent loans (ICLs),...
Over the years, government policy has created an array of repayment options for people struggling to keep up with their federal student loans. But these options are difficult to learn...
Our current system for collecting student loans makes no distinction between deadbeats who cheat and the much greater numbers of people who just don’t have the money to repay. As predatory debt collection agencies ruin the lives of more and more Americans, we are ignoring an easy and fair solution.
Video from Washington Monthly and New America event,"Jobs Are Not Enough" Introduction: Jobs Are Not EnoughBy Paul Glastris and Phillip Longman The Hole in the Bucket Americans obsessed over...
San Francisco’s ex-mayor Willie Brown has pioneered a new way to control a city without breaking a sweat—or running for office, or getting elected, or disclosing his clients, or making anyone particularly mad.
An innovative foster care program for disabled vets points the way to solving two of the nation’s greatest challenges at the same time.
The Internet is enabling more and more Americans to leverage their biggest asset, their home, by renting rooms to travelers. So why are local governments trying to shut them down?
Government helps big corporations make billions off green energy. How about cutting the average family in on the deal?
The new movement to give college credit for the things you already know.
New research shows that having even a small nest egg of their own helps kids from modest backgrounds work harder to get to ahead.
The case for American Stakeholder Accounts.
More than any election in living memory, the 2012 race is shaping up to be about one thing: jobs. Pundits are convinced that the rate of job growth between...
Americans obsessed over personal finance during the last forty years as never before. So how come so many of us wound up broke? Here's the little-known story.
The experts tell us new business start-ups will save the American economy. So how come there are fewer and fewer of them?
Predatory lending still poses a systemic risk to the economy. Will Obama's new Consumer Financial Protection Bureau succeed in taming it, or will the agency be strangled in its crib?
Signature policy ideas for building the wealth of ordinary Americans.
Two decades ago an obscure academic revolutionized thinking about poverty. Now his insights might just save the middle class.
Forget Rachel, Bill, Anderson, and Sean. The broadcaster who will most determine the 2012 elections is Jorge Ramos.
How an angler and two government bureaucrats may have saved the Atlantic Ocean.
Fears of a bomb in Tehran’s hands are overhyped, and a war to prevent it would be a disaster.
Was I wrong about the afterlife? No.
How the Peace Corps believes its own PR, looks past its mistakes, and shafts volunteers in the process.
How a thirty-year-old policy of deregulation is slowly killing America’s airline system—and taking down Cincinnati, Memphis, and St. Louis with it.
(Also check out the main article, The Incomplete Greatness of Barack Obama, and the issue's Editor's Note.) 1. Passed Health Care Reform: After five presidents over a century failed to...
He’s gotten more done in three years than any president in decades. Too bad the American public still thinks he hasn’t accomplished anything.
How the United States looked the other way while Bahrain crushed the Arab Spring’s most ill-fated uprising.
Politicians say we have the most productive workers in the world. They don't know what they're talking about.
As president of Colombia, Álvaro Uribe triumphed over a fierce narco-insurgency. Then the U.S. helped to export his strategy to Mexico and throughout Latin America. Here’s why it’s not working.
Imagining the consequences of a GOP victory.
Back to the good ol’ days of 2008.
The end of the EPA as we know it.
The “more enemies, fewer friends” doctrine.
The conservative takeover will be complete.
The good news is, no more gridlock...
Picking the candidates and writing the agenda.
What they say is how they'll govern.
Why Washington feeding frenzies aren't what they used to be.
Even as the movement’s grip tightens on the GOP, its influence is melting away across vast swaths of America, thanks to centuries-old regional traditions that few of us understand.
A job creation idea so obviously good even Washington couldn't possibly say no... could it?
Foster parents like us willingly pay a heavy price. The GOP wants us to pay more.
The politics of debt have gotten so insane that both parties are on the verge of gutting Medicare. The moment might be right to actually fix it.
Want to get college costs in line? Start by cutting the overgrown management ranks.
By offering adults an education that is faster, cheaper, and better than the likes of Kaplan, Phoenix, or Capella, the nonprofit Western Governors University just might eat their lunch.
Millions of Americans are denied the chance to take college-level courses by a downscale version of the SAT.
Everything you’ve heard about getting in is about to go out the window.
A few months ago, the Obama administration completed a remarkably successful run of sticking it to large corporations that make a profit in higher education. First, as part of the...
Beneath the surface of American government lurks a system of social programs for the wealthy that is consuming the federal budget. It’s time for progressives to do battle with tax expenditures.
A tech-savvy Marine who made too much noise, helped save the lives of countless troops in Iraq, and paid with his career.
How the civic groups that once defined America are thriving abroad, and what it means for us.
The bad news: Republicans have torpedoed plans for American bullet trains. The good news: The Obama administration is quietly building a slower, but potentially much better, rail system.
Many of America’s most powerful women went to a college you’ve never heard of.
Buried in Obamacare is a secret weapon to contain Medicare costs. Meet the group of House Democrats who want to destroy it.
Why natural gas could be the fuel of the future, and how the industry could blow it all up.
Taking power away from labor won't rescue states from their fiscal woes--but giving power to voters might.
Why organized labor should join with entrepreneurs to bust the corporate monopolies threatening them both.
Meet Edward Tufte, the graphics guru to the power elite who is revolutionizing how we see data.
Why flogging is more humane than prison.
If Americans really hate government, why do they love watching TV shows about it?
Washington's budget hawks want to decimate the federal workforce to shrink the deficit. It will have the opposite effect.
Dan Savage, the brilliant and foul-mouthed sex columnist, has become one of the most important ethicists in America. Are we screwed?
There aren't nearly enough counterterrorism experts to instruct all of America's police. So we got these guys instead.
Last year there wasn’t a single fatal airline accident in the developed world. So why is the U.S. health care system still accidently killing hundreds of thousands? The answer is a lack of transparency.
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