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Arts & Science

Today
Will Donald Trump's trade war tip the economy into a recession?It seems a reasonable question to ask. The White House has initiated a rapidly escalating global tit-for-tat, with thousands of products from the United States, China, Canada, Mexico, and Europe now affected or threatened by tariffs. The price of imported [...]
2018-Jul-16
Source: The Atlantic Monthly
Donald Trump's scolding of NATO allies, his digs at Britain's prime minister and dismissal of investigations into Russian interference in the 2016 U.S. election as a “rigged witch hunt” even though he knew Russian intelligence officers were about to be indicted back home for messing with American democracy—all right before [...]
2018-Jul-16
Source: The Atlantic Monthly
UKRAINE—To land in Kiev is to reach ground zero of today's confrontation between Russia and the West. The start of the Ukraine conflict is, depending on one's chronology, the defining moment of their crisis. It's here that, in the spring of 2014, Moscow organized a referendum of dubious legitimacy to [...]
2018-Jul-16
Source: The Atlantic Monthly
Earlier
The first hot-air balloons drew huge crowds, inspiring onlookers to cry, laugh, even faint. One witness wrote, “Since these exhibitions, there seems to prevail a kind of aerial phrenzy among us. The term ‘balloon' is not only in the mouth of everyone, but all our world seems to be in [...]
2018-Jul-15
Source: The Atlantic Monthly
HELSINKI—There's a strong sense of déjà vu as U.S. President Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin, the president of Russia, prepare to sit down together in Helsinki on Monday. The Finnish capital hosted numerous Cold War-era negotiations between the United States and the Soviet Union, and both presidents are eager to [...]
2018-Jul-15
Source: The Atlantic Monthly
What's happened to Gus Van Sant? For decades, he was one of America's most inventive and heartfelt independent directors. He emerged with grimily poetic works like Drugstore Cowboy and My Own Private Idaho before jumping to the mainstream with films like To Die For and Good Will Hunting. In the [...]
2018-Jul-15
Source: The Atlantic Monthly
Brett Kavanaugh's Supreme Court nomination is the consummation of one of the big bets behind the 2016 election. Many white Christians voted for Donald Trump because they believed he would appoint conservative justices who would protect religious liberty and advance the pro-life cause. Now, ostensibly, they've been vindicated. With less [...]
2018-Jul-15
Source: The Atlantic Monthly
Despite advances in predicting where hurricanes are heading, forecasters are still struggling to determine a crucial factor in deciding emergency measures and evacuations: their intensity. [...]
2018-Jul-15
Source: Reuters: Science
What happens when The Art of the Deal meets the Kremlin playbook? Given that, as one depressed NSC staffer put it to me, “our job is to build a bridge between the real world and the president's,” the real risk is not that Donald Trump actually gives away the farm [...]
2018-Jul-15
Source: The Atlantic Monthly
Belgium will be acclaimed at celebrations in Brussels on Sunday with thousands expected to hail the team but they will carry mixed feelings about their achievement at the World Cup. [...]
2018-Jul-15
Source: Reuters: Science
Manny Pacquiao put on a dominant display to stun defending champion Lucas Matthysse with a seventh-round knockout and claim the WBA welterweight title in Kuala Lumpur on Sunday. [...]
2018-Jul-15
Source: Reuters: Science
Manny Pacquiao put on a dominant display to stun defending champion Lucas Matthysse with a seventh round knockout to claim the WBA welterweight title in Kuala Lumpur on Sunday. [...]
2018-Jul-15
Source: Reuters: Science
Neutrality may be a tenable position in geopolitics, but it's tantamount to indifference when tuning into the World Cup. A soccer match can rarely be watched in earnest without one side winning you over. Croatia faces France in the World Cup final on Sunday, a game that (based on figures [...]
2018-Jul-14
Source: The Atlantic Monthly
As we flooded out Paris into the streets to celebrate France's World Cup semifinal victory Tuesday night, I saw, here and there, people wearing jerseys from 1998. They are looser than the ones they sell now, a brighter blue, with a red stripe and a white collar. On the backs [...]
2018-Jul-14
Source: The Atlantic Monthly
A scientific mega-project to unlock cosmic conundrums from dark energy to detecting extraterrestrial life was given a boost on Friday, when the 64-dish MeerKAT radio telescope was inaugurated in the remote South African town of Carnarvon. [...]
2018-Jul-13
Source: Reuters: Science
Jeff Bezos' rocket company plans to charge passengers about $200,000 to $300,000 for its first trips into space next year, two people familiar with its plans told Reuters. [...]
2018-Jul-12
Source: Reuters: Science
A breakthrough in the study of ghostly particles called high-energy neutrinos that traverse space, zipping unimpeded through people, planets and whole galaxies, is giving scientists an audacious new way to expand our understanding of the cosmos. [...]
2018-Jul-12
Source: Reuters: Science
Plans to launch the first NASA astronauts since 2011 to the International Space Station from the United States look set to be delayed due to incomplete safety measures and accountability holes in the agency's commercial crew program, according to a federal report released on Wednesday. [...]
2018-Jul-11
Source: Reuters: Science
Rocket Lab, a Silicon Valley-funded space launch company, planned to open a second launch site in the United States to complement its remote New Zealand pad, the firm said on Wednesday. [...]
2018-Jul-10
Source: Reuters: Science
Scientists have unearthed in northwestern Argentina fossils of the earliest-known giant dinosaur, a four-legged plant-eater with a medium-length neck and long tail that was a forerunner of the largest land animals of all time. [...]
2018-Jul-10
Source: Reuters: Science
Over on the Commentary website, Nick Eberstadt has a brilliant and disturbing piece called “Our Miserable 21st Century.” Among its many haunting points is the following concerning the unemployed and opioid-addicted men of “fly-over” America:We already knew from other sources ... that the overwhelming majority of the prime-age men in [...]
2017-Feb-20
Source: New Atlantis: Human Enhancement
(Warning: spoilers ahead.)HBO's series Westworld ended its first season earlier this month with the beginnings of what seems to be a revolt by the robotic “hosts” against the human beings who made them and boss them around. The show might appear, then, to conform to a great cliché in human-created-monster [...]
2016-Dec-30
Source: New Atlantis: Human Enhancement
I am not ungrateful to Issues in Science and Technology for presenting, in its spring 2016 issue, a review (available here) of my book Eclipse of Man: Human Extinction and the Meaning of Progress. I wish it were not such a negative review. But as negative reviews go, this one [...]
2016-Jun-02
Source: New Atlantis: Human Enhancement
The Joint Economic Committee — a congressional committee with members from both the Senate and the House of Representatives — invited me to testify in a hearing yesterday on “the transformative impact of robots and automation.” The other witnesses were Andrew McAfee, an M.I.T. professor and coauthor of The Second [...]
2016-May-26
Source: New Atlantis: Human Enhancement
As part of a Washington Post series this week about transhumanism, our own Charles T. Rubin offers some thoughts on why transhumanists are so optimistic when the pop-culture depictions of transhumanism nearly always seem to be dark and gloomy:What accounts for this gap between how transhumanists see themselves — as [...]
2016-May-17
Source: New Atlantis: Human Enhancement
Over at Tech Crunch, Jamie Metzl writes that we need to have a “species-wide conversation” about the use of gene-editing technologies like CRISPR, because these technologies could be used to alter the course of human evolution:Nearly everybody wants to have cancers cured and terrible diseases eliminated. Most of us want [...]
2016-May-05
Source: New Atlantis: Human Enhancement
Marija Piliponyte(Shutterstock)When, in 1937, George Orwell wanted to convey the dark side of “mechanical progress” to his readers, he wrote, “the logical end of mechanical progress is to reduce the human being to something resembling a brain in a bottle.” Of course, he said, it is not as if that [...]
2016-Mar-30
Source: New Atlantis: Human Enhancement
Years ago, James Hughes sought to typify the emerging political debate over transhumanism with a three-axis political scale, adding a biopolitical dimension to the familiar axes of social and fiscal libertarianism. But transhumanism is a very academic issue, both in the sense that many transhumanists, including Hughes, are academics, and [...]
2016-Feb-01
Source: New Atlantis: Human Enhancement
In the latest issue of the Claremont Review of Books, political philosopher Mark Blitz — a professor at Claremont McKenna College — has an insightful review of Eclipse of Man, the new book from our own Charles T. Rubin. Blitz writes:What concerns Charles Rubin in Eclipse of Man is well [...]
2015-Nov-24
Source: New Atlantis: Human Enhancement
A piece by our very own Ari N. Schulman, on WashingtonPost.com today:... Even as the significance of the Turing Test has been challenged, its attitude continues to characterize the project of strong artificial intelligence. AI guru Marvin Minsky refers to humans as “meat machines.” To roboticist Rodney Brooks, we're no [...]
2015-Nov-03
Source: New Atlantis: Human Enhancement