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"Subject to Debate"

22 March 2007

We have been subscribers to The Nation for as long as we have been married. Over the years, we’ve tried giving it as a gift to a select few, but it seems no one in our family is as enlightened as we are (or, perhaps another case of keeping the peace within a household?). I have, in fact, freaked out a family member when I noted that I get my real news from The Nation. “Don’t you think they’re a little biased?” I was asked. Hell no! They are the only journalists who are willing to call a spade a spade, and I am glad to get that little packet of newsprint joy every week.

Well, I am glad to get it every week, but the joy comes not so much from the articles (which are wonderful, when I have a chance to read them), but from the Katha Pollitt columns and the Frank W. Lewis cryptic crossword puzzles.

I truly believe that, as long as I do The Nation’s cryptic puzzles, my brain is doing Olympic training in Alzheimer’s Prevention. (My worry is that, because Frank W. Lewis recently celebrated his 98th birthday,* I’m not 100% positive he’ll be around until I reach 80. That would be very bad, indeed.)

Katha Pollitt is the only columnist, anywhere, I read religiously. I figure that even if I don’t get to anything else in a particular issue of The Nation, the fact that my subscription dollars go to subsidizing the salary of an unabashed feminist and straight-talker is enough to take the sting out of the weekly columns written by that whacked-out neocon, Charles Krauthammer [*Hack! Ptui!*], that my local newspaper forces on me. (Yes, I know, I don’t have to read them, but … that face … that spooky holier-than-thou dried up old prune of a face! It’s enough to haunt one on the nicest day of spring.)

This is all a very long intro to saying:

If you haven’t read Pollitt’s piece in the most recent issue (by the way, the content is all free at, and no sign-in is needed), please take a moment and read it now. You won’t regret it. (Let me rephrase: You may not all like it — or you may not like all of it — but you can’t deny that at least it’ll make you think.)

Europeans Do It Better

*Maybe I’m deluding myself and it was his 100th, I don’t know. Let’s not talk about it, OK?

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