Chris Lehmann

Grid List
  • What good does tarring Charles Murray's opponents do? / Gage Skidmore

    The PC Debate, Sullied

    Chris Lehmann

    In times of perceived crisis, the American liberal mind instinctively reaches for reassurance in its great dream of impartial reason. The noble pursuit of above-the-fray truth is besieged on all fronts, the stout refrain usually… Read More »

  • Levan Ramishvili

    Experts Baffled Episode 1: The Politics of Smart

    Rick Perlstein, Chris Lehmann

    Rick Perlstein talks to Baffler editor in chief Chris Lehmann about his salvo “Outsmarted” in the new issue of the magazine. They discuss the curious identity of smartness, American Psycho, the dark underbelly of meritocracy, and the long-term political origins of the “libtard” insult.

  • Gage Skidmore

    The Betrayal of Democracy

    Chris Lehmann

    The globalized power elite that may feel more at home in Taiwan or Singapore isn’t objectionable because its members may be in thrall to some sinister, unpatriotic economic loyalties, as Bannon and his retinue of Trump enablers tirelessly insist. No, the members of the placeless, merit-obsessed global ruling class deserve our scorn because they’ve turned their backs on the larger project of sharing democratic civilization on an equitable basis with their fellow citizens. Instead, they’ve arrogated knowledge—an artificially scarce social good—as their own monopoly franchise and, in the process, systematically hollowed out the local institutions and impersonal forums for public debate that helped diffuse a democratic civilization.

  • JBrazito

    Race to the Bottom

    Chris Lehmann

    One might well ask, amid this new chorus of pundit swooning, why is it that so many of the Trump administration’s policies are explicitly designed to foment hate and evil? The painfully obvious M.O. of the Trump White House is to deny basic civil protections to the vast swathes of the population the great leader randomly deems to be a threat to real American values: immigrants, Muslims, inner-city (read: black and less privileged) residents. The evidence that Trump’s faux-presidential plea for tolerance possessed zero truth value was right there in the Capitol sanctum: Melania Trump was seated next to four family members of people killed in violent crimes perpetrated by undocumented immigrants.

  • Gage Skidmore

    Follow the Mendacity

    Chris Lehmann

    The key directive for the media, now that the Post’s reporting has claimed its first White House casualty, is not to let up on its side of its battle with the Trump White House for a moment. After all, the Flynn saga shows in stark relief that the preferred operating procedure in the sanctums of Trumpian power is complete executive impunity. When law enforcement officials alerted the Trump administration that one of its lead national security figures might well be compromised by his Russian ties, it was the attorney general, not Flynn who was sent packing. (The rationale for Yates’ already infamous cashiering grows muddier with each fresh Flynn revelation.)

  • Wikimedia Commons

    Odd Time to be Evenhanded

    Chris Lehmann

    One of the rarely acknowledged liabilities of a corporate-run media is its diehard resistance to plain speech and direct action. In one of my former, more respectable editing gigs, I was soberly instructed never to… Read More »

  • Simulation of the media at Mar-a-Lago. / Ian Bloomfield

    The Ass and the Lap Dogs

    Chris Lehmann

    Like any well-trained lap dog, our national political press is rallying to the unique challenge of covering an incoming American president who is a notoriously truth-averse merchant of social-media make believe by performing the one… Read More »

  • americans4financialreform

    Comedy Gold, Man!

    Chris Lehmann

    How does a decades-old plutocratic convergence of power look to the hometown paper of America’s public-sector ruling class? Why, like a puckish plotline in a high-living thirties comedy of manners, or as fodder for a… Read More »

  • samchills

    Neutering the News

    Chris Lehmann

    It was pretty much obvious at the outset of Liz Spayd’s tenure as New York Times public editor that the paper had elevated a dangerous simpleton into a position of influence. And now, with Spayd’s… Read More »

  • Josh Hallett

    Faux News Channel

    Chris Lehmann

    In line with venerable liberal tradition, the disaster known as Election ’16 has bred a slew of culprits behind the surprise defeat of Hillary Clinton, all reassuringly distant from the leadership sanctums of the national… Read More »

  • Cristian May

    Poll Axed

    Chris Lehmann

    As America’s diehard corps of data journalists and omni-explainers wail over the smoldering ruin of their shiny, digital forecasting models, the time seems ripe for the rest of us to ask why the activity of… Read More »

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    Con Air

    Chris Lehmann

    It seems entirely fitting that in the final stretch of a presidential campaign militantly indifferent to a host of policy crises, from climate change to wealth inequality, from antitrust prosecutions to affordable housing, the American… Read More »

  • Gage Skidmore

    Words Fail

    Chris Lehmann

    While media goliaths continue to merge and recombine, one plucky upstart has lately captured the imagination of the infotainment world. I speak, naturally, of the Facebook-only nightly newscast now airing at the behest of the… Read More »

  • Gage Skidmore

    Trump TV?

    Chris Lehmann

    Until very recently, it seemed self-evident that Donald Trump was the biggest raging moron in American public life. But that was before CNN president Jeff Zucker’s star turn before the guardians of establishment wisdom at… Read More »

  • DonkeyHotey

    Battle of the Brands

    Chris Lehmann

    So it’s come to this: the most potentially explosive revelations about America’s Fifth Avenue Mussolini, Donald Trump, are behind an entertainment-industry paywall, one that no mere journalistic enterprise has the power or (in all likelihood)… Read More »

  • 26718315943_d8446fec48_k

    The Pseudo Bowl of Politics

    Chris Lehmann

    Like most revered American public traditions, presidential debates are jury-rigged miasmas. True, Monday’s feverishly hyped Hofstra University rhetorical slugfest between Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton and Republican Lord of Destruction Donald Trump didn’t feature the absurdist… Read More »

  • id

    Lies of the Times

    Chris Lehmann

    Sit up and take notice, monitors of plain speech in our elite journalistic discourse: the New York Times has at long last elected to call a lie a lie, at least as far as Donald… Read More »

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    Fairly Unbalanced

    Chris Lehmann

    Never do our media savants look more blatantly biased than when they’re trying to wave off complaints about how they shape, and distort, the critical flow of political information. A case in point: New York… Read More »

  • / Kevin Krejci

    The Fabled and Enabled

    Chris Lehmann

    We interrupt the cloddish accumulation of campaign effluvia to bring you Nick Bilton’s epic anatomy of the downfall of Theranos, the smoke-and-mirrors Silicon Valley startup that was allegedly poised to revolutionize the diagnosis and treatment… Read More »

  • Bergstein_Mount2013B32.4_36.5rgb

    Small Worlds

    Chris Lehmann Issue No. 32

    When will America get its shit together? No, I don’t mean by this the sort of rhetorical plea that readers expect as a matter of course in journals of opinion—be it the calls for banking… Read More »

  • YouTube

    Shillable Hours

    Chris Lehmann

    In a development that has surprised no one, it appears that Corey Lewandowski—the former head of the Trump campaign who was cashiered at the insistence of the candidate’s children earlier this summer—remains a paid consultant… Read More »

  • Gage Skidmore

    The Media Con Job

    Chris Lehmann

    A curious outbreak of truth-telling seems to be seizing our right-wing media. In this most deranging campaign season of our postmodern political lives, the specter of Donald Trump—billionaire tribune of the forgotten white working class—has… Read More »

  • Gawker founder Nick Denton. / Dave Winer

    Enemy of the PayPal

    Chris Lehmann

    The financial unwinding of Gawker Media’s tawdry tour through the justice system landed on an oddly anticlimactic note this week: Univision, the Spanish-language TV network that has been aggressively colonizing the digital mediasphere, picked up… Read More »

  • False flag of false patriot / Gage Skidmore

    Treacherous Waters

    Chris Lehmann

    All right, then—America’s own major-party-anointed oligarch has officially urged Russian cyberspies to hack State Department communications. And his underlying political rationale is enough to give M.C. Escher a throbbing migraine: Hillary Clinton is guilty of… Read More »

  • Roger Ailes

    Roger, Over and Out

    Chris Lehmann

    It’s certainly not in character for the corporate chieftains at Fox News to keep mum during the marquee action at a Republican Nation Convention. It’s a bit like having ESPN’s Chris Berman contain himself during… Read More »

  • Mike_Allen

    Power Players

    Chris Lehmann

    Just as Al Gore was once described (by Michael Kinsley) as “an old person’s idea of a young person” so is Mike Allen a corporate account executive’s idea of a politics reporter. Or, to put… Read More »

  • Eating x for breakfast. / Sean MacEntee

    New Conventions in Corruption

    Chris Lehmann

    One persistent truth has held fast amid the ceaseless, unpredictable tumult of Campaign ’16: our corporate media has been utterly flummoxed by it all. Why, the pundit class wails in chorus, are American voters so… Read More »

  • Trump being swallowed by a crowd in Arizona. /

    The Political Class Struggles

    Chris Lehmann

    “Elite opinion” is admittedly a baggy construct—whose opinion? which elite?—but thanks to the weird convulsions of Campaign 2016, we’ve been granted a precious opportunity to behold it in all its lush and fulsome glory. Seemingly… Read More »

  • Bahman

    The Art of the Con

    Chris Lehmann

    Just as in the final chapter of The Picture of Dorian Gray, the wheezing sociopath at the center of the Donald Trump campaign has revealed his true decrepit, disfigured nature at a moment when the… Read More »

  • kl801

    Not Intended for Mature Audiences

    Chris Lehmann

    Yes, Donald Trump is once more laying into the media establishment that somehow attacks and slanders him while also acting as the premier delivery system for the bigoted ego rampages that the weary electorate has… Read More »

  • Katjusa Cisar

    Sexting, Lies, and Videotape

    Chris Lehmann

    Midway through the painfully exhaustive documentary Weiner, the title subject’s wife, Hillary Clinton’s adviser Huma Abedin, is puttering around her Manhattan kitchen, fumbling through an array of flatware in an effort to give a semblance… Read More »

  • Saruman. / Chris & Karen Highland

    Who’s Defamin’ Who?

    Chris Lehmann

    Anyone who’s trudged through the past fortnight’s worth of punditry about the Gawker–Hulk Hogan–Peter Thiel donnybrook can be forgiven a fugitive longing for the codes of honor that settled sexually charged dude-feuds back in the… Read More »

  • To cavil about the optimal placement of news fodder in a Trending Topics roster is to quarrel about which group of toddlers possesses the better toys.  / Donnie Ray Jones

    Facebook’s ‘Injection Tools’

    Chris Lehmann

    So it’s come to this. After half a century of right-wing invective targeting the alleged scourge of liberal media bias, conservative activists are up in arms over the (unverified) claim that social-media page designers are… Read More »

  • Sigmund Freud's couch. / Karen Apricot

    The Trump Psyche

    Chris Lehmann

    You know that the Trump distemper in our body politic has risen to a new threat status because our journalistic thought leaders are enlisting the help of mental-health professionals. The new issue of the Atlantic,… Read More »

  • KylaBorg

    Blame It on Higher Ed

    Chris Lehmann

    In a crisis, it’s only natural for us to recur to the familiar totems of our folk beliefs. So, shortly after the de facto elevation of omni-bigot Donald Trump to the 2016 GOP presidential ticket,… Read More »

  • Daniel Lobo

    Pacts Americana

    Chris Lehmann

    Hearken to your geopolitical catechisms, America, for there are new trade accords in the air! Trade deals punctuate the placid world-conquering assurance of the global economic elite with the same ritual, righteous certainty offered by… Read More »

  • The view from the bubble. /  Neil Williamson

    His Inanity Bubbleth Over

    Chris Lehmann

    We’re nearing the endgame of a tumultuous and anxiety-inducing primary season, and the pundits are feeling feisty. You can’t blame them, really. Campaign ’16 has been an unrelieved study in the terrible folly of confident… Read More »

  • HRH, the artist FKA HRC.

    Hillary’s Courtiers

    Chris Lehmann

      You could almost hear the great sigh of relief heaving across cable TV’s green rooms and the news-curating portals of our media nation: sure, the Republican side of Campaign ’16 continues to resemble a… Read More »

  • Holland_ForgottenMan1604.3_96

    Chronicle of a Creep

    Chris Lehmann

      In his epic fifteen-page New Yorker tour through the career of hotelier and self-proclaimed sex researcher Gerald Foos, Gay Talese briefly entertains a moral quandary. Why should he, Talese—the big-picture chronicler of media empires… Read More »

  • McLimansFunnel1905.3_72

    Dox Populi: A Few Missing Links

    Chris Lehmann

    What if they held a mammoth document leak and nobody came? That seems, with a slight allowance for hyperbole, the impact of the release of 2.6 terabytes of data from the inner sanctums of Mossack… Read More »

  • Reverie. / Matt B

    What Obama Gets Wrong About Our Political Media

    Chris Lehmann

    Journalists and political leaders alike are suckers for high-minded reverie. Of all the many cognitive fancies billowing through both professions, probably the most alluring one is that the best and brightest among us are charged… Read More »

  • propagander

    In a Big Country, Dreams Stay with You

    Chris Lehmann

    You might think that something called “the great unsettling” involved movement of some kind: the abrupt uprooting of communities and traditions, or the migration of the dispossessed across a continent. But in the opening salvo… Read More »

  • Mark Taylor

    The Breitbart Betrayals

    Chris Lehmann

    There aren’t many hard-and-fast rules left in the grand digital Guignol of political journalism but, without question, a central organizing principle should be the old dictum of the schoolyard: when a bully pushes you, you… Read More »

  • What Frank Capra World do centrist pundits think we're living in? / Wikimedia Commons

    Straight Out of Centrist Casting

    Chris Lehmann

    Say what you will about this demented presidential election cycle—it has, at a minimum, forced the myths of Beltway centrism out into gloriously open view. The meme that has lately captured the responsible commentariat is… Read More »

  • Stay tuned for a message from our sponsored content. / Leigh Wolf

    Your Media Future: Cheesy and Skeezy

    Chris Lehmann

    For decades, American parents and authority figures have fretted over how the goddamn kids in their lives might be induced to pull themselves out of TV’s stupefying thrall and start really living. Now, however, media… Read More »

  • TrumpWeb

    Oh, the Civility!

    Chris Lehmann

    It’s hard to know just what stage of the Kübler-Ross cycle of facing up to hard facts our media elite are currently mired in as the prospect of Donald Trump’s ascension to the GOP presidential… Read More »

  • McLimansCapitalistPigs90.3_72

    Power to the Pixels

    Chris Lehmann

    It sure was a short “end of history.” Back in 1992, with the Berlin Wall leveled and Russia abruptly abdicating its self-appointed role as bureaucratic overseer of the historical dialectic, Francis Fukuyama and his neoconservative… Read More »

  • Televisione Streaming

    Hillary’s Handlers: We Need Some Muscle Here

    Chris Lehmann

    What is it that makes so much of our national politics reporting so grindingly, predictably awful? We’re in an election cycle that—for all its many shortcomings—features a genuine clash of ideas and core philosophies of… Read More »

  • Cas

    Field of Dreams

    Chris Lehmann

     Because the Iowa caucuses are a perversely puny and undemocratic spectacle, heroic exertions are required to endow them with long-term narrative meaning. Worry not, though: Our media-political complex exists largely to billow the semblance of… Read More »

  • A mockup of a Donald Trump-Ted Cruz mano-a-mano debate. / Miguel Discart

    The Loudest Voice Not in the Room

    Chris Lehmann

    It speaks volumes about the general disarray of the presidential campaign spectacle that it has now reached its highest pitch over the prospect of Donald Trump remaining silent over the course of a televised debate…. Read More »

  • Crowds in Iowa listening to Bernie Sanders. /

    Pounding Sanders

    Chris Lehmann

    There’s something undeniably stirring in the mobilization of America’s Responsible Pundit Consensus. This week finds the liberal lectors of said consensus singing, not surprisingly, from a single hymnal entry, the one called “Bernie Sanders Is… Read More »

  • The Oval Office is just the place to “think out loud.” / LBJ Foundation

    All the President’s Chums

    Chris Lehmann

    It seems odd, after the media revolutions of the past several decades, to behold one of the worst conventions of the old press order soldiering blithely on: the private, off-the-record presidential briefing. In a curiously… Read More »

  • Guns. / Tyler Merbler

    High Caliber Television

    Chris Lehmann

    The planned launch of Gun TV, a home-shopping channel devoted exclusively to selling firearms to impulsive shut-ins, is an idea so purely American that one can only marvel that it’s taken this long to come… Read More »

  • Trump: undeniably powerful optics. Gage Skidmore

    Media Abets Trump’s Shock-Jock Statesmanship

    Chris Lehmann

    There was something more than a little disingenuous about the late news cycle’s clamor over Donald Trump’s demagogic, crypto-fascist call to ban Muslims from entry into the United States.  It’s not that Trump’s announcement wasn’t… Read More »

  • Lars Plougmann

    Thought Leaders as Loss Leaders

    Chris Lehmann

    The breathless, investor-beguiling fable that the next iteration of the Web has to be the smart one has been around long enough now to qualify as a touching millenarian faith, like the quadrennial fiction of a “deep”… Read More »

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    For Chyron Out Loud

    Chris Lehmann

    Even amid the fast-multiplying agora of digital platforms, tweets, and instagrams that make up our new millennial mediaverse, one almost-touching platitude continues to transfix the sober lords of the establishment press: the impartial, stern-yet-blasé myth… Read More »

  • Lehmann-Steadman

    In Mayhem We Trust

    Chris Lehmann Issue No. 28

    Long before the triumph of Stand Your Ground gun legislation, the overlapping Grand Guignols of the Iraq invasion and ISIS’s rise, or the release of the latest cinematic blood orgy at the multiplex, America’s political… Read More »

  • Duffy-Lehmann-Gates

    Having Their Cake and Eating Ours Too

    Chris Lehmann Issue No. 28

    What are billionaires for? It’s time we sussed out a plausible answer to this question, as their numbers ratchet upward across the globe, impervious to the economic setbacks suffered by mere mortals, and their “good… Read More »

  • Drop your practiced sneers, elitists, and sidle up to the Shot-skis! / Tom Purves

    Hell’s Pundits

    Chris Lehmann

    When the news broke this weekend that a violent biker melee at a theme restaurant in Waco claimed nine lives and otherwise injured 18, there were all sorts of solemn topics available to the interlocuters of… Read More »

  • Duffy-snake-ladders-Lehmann

    Purple Reign

    Chris Lehmann Issue No. 27

    When the great granddaddy of opinion journals, The New Republic, abruptly vanished in a sad, squalid burst of pixel dust and management theory last winter, establishment journalists rent their garments and gnashed their teeth in… Read More »

  • The Federal Reserve Bank of New York / Photo by Rich Mitchell

    Arrogance and Deference at the New York Fed

    Chris Lehmann

    Say it’s Summer 2009—pretty much the miasmic trough of the greatest economic meltdown of our age, as well as the point of greatest public interest in what will come of the federal government’s efforts to… Read More »

  • Stephen Colbert, after winning a Peabody in 2012. / Photo courtesy of the Peabody Awards.

    The Smarmies of the Night (Revisited)

    Chris Lehmann

    The Colbert Report, a nine-year running gag in which the former Daily Show correspondent portrayed a louder, meaner, more megalomaniacal Bill O’Reilly, ended last night in a rush of celebrity self-congratulation. The stentorian maximum leader… Read More »

  • BrodnerBrat

    The Christ Nexus and Professor David Brat

    Chris Lehmann Issue No. 26

    The Tea Party’s marquee 2014 success story—the dramatic unseating of House majority leader Eric Cantor by an obscure downstate Virginia economics professor named David Brat—provided maximum symbolic value during its summer tour through the mediasphere…. Read More »

  • nofuture

    No Future for You: Salvos from The Baffler

    John Summers, Chris Lehmann, Thomas Frank

    There’s never been a better time to be outside the consensus—and if you don’t believe it, then peer into these genre-defining essays from The Baffler, the magazine that’s been blunting the cutting edge of American… Read More »

  • SuterABaflr25.4_60

    Brothers from Another Planet

    Chris Lehmann Issue No. 25

    Whether we like it or not, the big idea behind American democracy is to make us like each other more. It’s a faintly embarrassing dimension of our social experiment, carved out of the crack-up of… Read More »

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    Neoliberalism, the Revolution in Reverse

    Chris Lehmann Issue No. 24

    By any reasonable measure, the neoliberal dream lies in tatters. In 2008 poorly regulated financial markets yielded a world-historic financial collapse. One generation, weaned on reveries of home ownership as the coveted badge of economic… Read More »

  • BFLR21_Page_125_Image_0001

    Oh, the Irony!

    Chris Lehmann Issue No. 21

    In the long-ago time of the nineties, tech markets boomed and day traders roamed the far horizon. Neoliberal trade policies flattened the globe; centrist Third Way statesmen rolled up budget surpluses and doled out tax… Read More »

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    Dilemmas of the Rentier Class

    Chris Lehmann Issue No. 20

    Washington, D.C., teems with many brands of delusion, but for true connoisseurs of the flight from consensual reality, there’s a special joy that comes with reading the Washington Post’s sober commentariat weigh in on the… Read More »

  • newspaper

    Water World

    Chris Lehmann Issue No. 19

    Here’s a little-noted quirk of our literary history, unlikely to turn up on the Trivial Pursuit board: the first recipient of the Pulitzer Prize for Literature, Ernest Poole, devoted much of his writing career to… Read More »

  • PropArt2

    The Beltway Media Shuck-Down

    Chris Lehmann

    The Beltway media’s standard accounts of how governing and politics operate in the American republic are as oversimplified as patty-cake. And, as the great Guignol show known as Shutdown ’13 amply demonstrates, the end results… Read More »

  • Immoral Inequivalencies

    Chris Lehmann

    It’s hard to stretch the limits of historical hyperbole on the same day that Sen. Ted Cruz has declared that anyone skeptical about his cunning plan to filibuster an already ratified, signed, and Supreme Court-upheld… Read More »

  • Forbes Columnist Demands More Perks for the One Percent

    Chris Lehmann

    Enough with the mindless demonization of our overclass! Forbes columnist Harry Binswanger – whose terse mission statement is to “defend laissez-faire capitalism, using Ayn Rand’s Objectivism” – has taken time out from his busy defense… Read More »

  • Iiiiiiiphoones

    One Thing That the NSA Got Right: Steve Jobs Commanded a Vast Legion of Zombies

    Chris Lehmann

    Obsessed with the latest fussy innovations on the iPhone? Well, the NSA has an app for that. As all the technophilic world rejoices over the Versailles-meets-Minority-Report innovations that Apple has proudly announced in its upcoming… Read More »

  • For-Profit Journalism Whiffs the For-Profit Education Story

    Chris Lehmann

    The online keepers of Slate are tireless packagers of phony contrarianism–the painfully baroque and self-involved currency that smarty-pants Washington scribes use to advertise their capacity to see beyond the played-out terms of conventional political and… Read More »

  • The Fraud That Failed

    Chris Lehmann

    It was a stirring demonstration of the Obama White House’s determination to safeguard the battered livelihoods of the real victims of the 2008 mortgage meltdown: an ambitious sweep of the mortgage-fraud racket by federal law… Read More »

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    Let Them Eat Dogma

    Chris Lehmann Issue No. 18

    Not so long ago, the lead theorists of America’s conservative revolution hymned it as a thing of unparalleled vitality and intellectual rigor. The Republicans ruled the policy world as “the party of ideas,” President George… Read More »

  • Ronald Reagan, God of the Sea

    Chris Lehmann

    Who says that the GOP House majority is a nihilist band of ideological hacks, professionally averse to the act of governing? Why just look at the heroic labors of House Oversight Chairman Darrell Issa! The… Read More »

  • ThreatWatch, Surveil Thyself

    Chris Lehmann

    Back in 2012, Baffler contributor Maureen Tkacik kicked up a fuss when she dared to venture into the content-challenged, consensus-packaging, and immensely profitable business model for The Atlantic Monthly and its many curious satellite properties…. Read More »

  • This (De-Politicized) American Life

    Chris Lehmann

    It’s true that Team Baffler has developed something of a forensic interest in the goggle-eyed tales of middle-class uplift that teem Ira Glass’s immensely popular “This American Life” franchise. So when the show was graced… Read More »

  • Cheaper iPhone in the Pipeline–with Fetching Cases the Color of Workers’ Blood!

    Chris Lehmann

    Amid a roiling sea of doubt and uncertainty, we can continue clinging to one steadfast truth: The Internet is making everything more democratic. Not only does information want to be free; social media produces revolutions… Read More »

  • When Playbooks Attack

    Chris Lehmann

    We are quite confident that present-day Washington will go down in the annals of bloated, unselfaware privilege right alongside other, similarly gruesome chapters in the human experiment, such as the reign of Caligula or the… Read More »

  • My City Was Pawned

    Chris Lehmann

    Line up, everybody! It’s time for the Tough Lessons America Must Learn from the bankruptcy of Detroit. Please consult your center-right policy hymnal for the talking points. Or, you know, pick up the August 5… Read More »

  • Harvard Governance 101: Scrutiny Is in the Eye of the Beholder

    Chris Lehmann

    Now that we’re in Year 5 of the Obama iteration of the national surveillance state, it’s clear that it operates along some very clear and simple guidelines. To begin with, any leaker of information deemed… Read More »

  • Fleecing the Sheepskin Set

    Chris Lehmann

    The higher-education bubble remains, for all intents and purposes, the biggest shakedown left standing in the U.S. economy. Collective student debt is well north of $1 trillion, held by 38 million Americans in a job… Read More »

  • Speed Metal

    Chris Lehmann

    When the New York Times published a blockbuster investigation into the manipulations of the global aluminum supply by Goldman Sachs and other investment banks in late July, the usual rigors of impression management in an… Read More »

  • Cash Crop

    Chris Lehmann

    Behold, the machinery of our representative government, spinning gloriously in reverse! It’s true that Speaker of the House John Boehner is now on record with the claim that the accomplishments of his party caucus are… Read More »

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    The Rod of Correction: Cogito Oprah Sum

    Chris Lehmann Issue No. 15

    The critical impulse has long been the most disreputable desire in the great sensorium of our culture, since sating it usually means short-circuiting a host of other, more lucrative reflexes in the consumer body politic…. Read More »

  • tv-heads

    The Eyes of Spiro are Upon You

    Chris Lehmann Issue No. 14

    You fellows got a great ballgame going. As soon as you’re through. . . we’re going to do a story on all of you. —Former Attorney General John Mitchell to Carl Bernstein, 1972   Americans… Read More »

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    Pistols for Two: Michael Bérubé vs. Chris Lehmann

    Michael Bérubé, Chris Lehmann Issue No. 11

    Michael Bérubé Writes: Flipping through a copy of The Baffler Number Nine, expecting to be entertained as usual, what do I come across but a hyperbolic, smug, snotty little essay about how all professors are… Read More »

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    Boom Crash Opera

    Chris Lehmann Issue No. 10

    “From every corner of the earth where the unfettered industrial system was grinding out the raw materials for wealth, crushing men’s bones, parching their blood, following them in a perpetual orgy of chicane and debauchery,… Read More »

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    Popular Front Redux?

    Chris Lehmann Issue No. 9

    The fact remains, the most civilized community is reluctant to trust its serious interests to others than men of pecuniary substance, who have proved their fitness for the direction of academic affairs by acquiring, or… Read More »

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    The Dustbin of Theory

    Chris Lehmann Issue No. 8

    Every age produces its own characteristic interpretation of history, and it seems entirely appropriate that in the America of the late twentieth century, ours should be the brainchild of a rock critic. England had its… Read More »