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Find out what Bernard Keane’s been reading this week.
THOUGHTS AND PRAYERS
In the shadow of another massacre of children, is there anything left to say about America and guns? Here’s a look at the structural political problem — and how churches have failed children in the United States. On that theme, Southern Baptists are engulfed in one of the biggest church sexual abuse scandals of recent decades, which was diligently covered up by churches (for more information). Also, here’s why the United States has an infant formula crisis (you’ll never guess, but it has something to do with the concentration of capital).
ARTS AND LETTERS AND REVIEWS
The person behind the NYT Pitch Bot (kinda) unmasked, and how they so effectively nail a media stereotype. James M. Cain plays detective on Watergate (parenthetical note: did Spiro T. Agnew ever feel aggrieved that he was overshadowed by Nixon’s resignation? In any other administration until Trump’s, he’d have been one of America’s greatest White House scandals (Rachel Maddow had a red-hot go though). The debate over the Orthodox theology of killing tyrants. Disaster films and filming disaster — exploring the appeal.
AROUND THE GLOBE
How Viktor Orbán is using the invasion of Ukraine to cement his autocratic powers (as well as blocking European Union sanctions on Russia). A Catalonian perspective on how Spain took its independence quest seriously but Catalans didn’t. In Russia, even memorialising the murdered is outlawed. Germany, in its slow separation from the world’s worst regimes, is putting distance between itself and China. And why Boris Johnson, despite repeated major failings, including lying to Parliament and breaking the law, is still in power.
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