FDL Book Salon Welcomes Stephen M. Saideman, NATO in Afghanistan: Fighting Together, Fighting Alone

By: Sunday February 9, 2014 1:59 pm

Working together can be rough. Imagine every team project that you’ve ever taken part in, especially those that cut across normal workflows. The complexities of keeping your own boss informed of what’s going on, interacting with the rest of your team and making sure they’re pulling their weight, and insuring that your own personal goals are met in completing the project, all of it. Now multiply those issues by roughly a thousand, and include the fact that the decisions made are literally matters of life and death. If you can manage that, you begin to see the challenges that Stephen Saideman lays out in NATO in Afghanistan: Fighting Together, Fighting Alone.

 

Conflicting Reports On Who Knew About NSA Spying Program

By: Tuesday October 29, 2013 11:00 am

How can President Obama give all these public assurances about what the NSA is and is not doing if he is “out of loop”?

The Pentagon’s Italian Spending Spree

By: Thursday October 3, 2013 7:00 pm

The Pentagon has spent the last two decades plowing hundreds of millions of tax dollars into military bases in Italy, turning the country into an increasingly important center for U.S. military power. Especially since the start of the Global War on Terror in 2001, the military has been shifting its European center of gravity south from Germany, where the overwhelming majority of U.S. forces in the region have been stationed since the end of World War II. In the process, the Pentagon has turned the Italian peninsula into a launching pad for future wars in Africa, the Middle East, and beyond.

Spaghetti Fight: Pasta CEO’s Anti-Gay Comments Draw Backlash, Boycotts

By: Sunday September 29, 2013 11:59 am

The moral of this story is pretty clear. Whether you’re Chick-fil-A or Urban Outfitters or any of these other companies that have publicly said something problematic about an entire demographic — people are paying attention, and they will absolutely buy their pasta elsewhere.

The European Central Bank Is a Much Bigger Problem for Italy’s Young Than the Elderly

By: Thursday July 18, 2013 6:20 pm

A New York Times article reported on the aging of Italy’s population and bizarrely implied that this was the cause of high youth unemployment.

Good News for Italy: NYT Says Its National Debt Is Just $2.6 Billion

By: Thursday July 11, 2013 8:30 am

The folks in Italy must be pretty happy. After years of being forced to worry about deficits the NYT told readers:

“Faced with record unemployment and a public debt of more than €2 billion, or $2.6 billion, the grand coalition was already under pressure for the slow pace of its reforms.”

That would be great news but the NYT’s numbers are wrong.

FDL Book Salon Welcomes David Stuckler and Sanjay Basu, The Body Economic: Why Austerity Kills: Recessions, Budget Battles, and the Politics of Life and Death

By: Saturday June 29, 2013 1:59 pm

David Stuckler and Sanjay Basu’s new book The Body Economic: Why Austerity Kills is a thorough examination of the toll that recessions take on people’s health. They show, convincingly, that there are many, many channels through which health outcomes can deteriorate when the economy goes into a deep recession. They also show that the manner in which the government reacts to an economic downturn is a critical factor in determining health outcomes. Deterioration in health in a recession, though common, is far from inevitable.

German Prosecutor Would Have Filed Indictments for CIA Rendition Had US Provided Information

By: Monday February 18, 2013 3:42 pm

The German newspaper Spiegel has an interview with a German prosecutor, who ultimately decided not to file indictments in the case of Egyptian Muslim cleric Abu Omar. Omar was kidnapped in a CIA operation in Italy and rendered to Germany and then Egypt, where he was tortured.

Berlusconi’s Return Roils Italian Markets

By: Monday December 10, 2012 12:40 pm

Markets in Italy are freaking out today, mainly because of the pronouncement of one man, Silvio Berlusconi. The former Prime Minister plans to run for office yet another time, and Mario Monti, the current caretaker leader, has resigned, setting up new elections probably in February.

FDL Book Salon Welcomes Sheldon Krimsky and Tania Simoncelli, Genetic Justice: DNA Data Banks, Criminal Investigations, and Civil Liberties

By: Saturday November 10, 2012 1:59 pm

Genetic Justice provides an accessible, yet exhaustive, review of this vital public policy issue. Many of us fail to appreciate that every time we discard a coffee cup, use a napkin, eat with a fork and spoon or otherwise interact with our environment, we leave a piece of ourselves behind. And that piece of ourselves—that DNA—can be used not just to discern our identity, but to provide clues on whether we’re likely to develop a particular disease, what we look like and where we come from. The physical trail of DNA can also be used to track our movements, and legal theories that permit the authorities to freely collect this “abandoned” DNA could theoretically make the warrant requirement and other checks on law enforcement abuse obsolete.

The issues raised by Genetic Justice may be complicated, but they are crucially important to our modern civil liberties. And, as the technology for analyzing DNA becomes smaller, faster and cheaper, these considerations just become more pressing. Genetic Justice provides a needed glimpse into that brave new world.

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