Chronicles Magazine February 2010

The Great American Outlaw

When Public Enemies was making the rounds in theaters across America last summer, doing nearly $100 million of business domestically, I was reminded that we Americans love our outlaws—not our criminals, mind you, but our outlaws. It is a...

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  • REVIEWS

    A Huge and Healthy Pessimism

    In his splendidly sardonic Devil’s Dictionary, that old gringo Am­brose Bierce defines pessimism as “a philosophy forced upon the convictions of the observer by the disheartening prevalence of the optimist with his scarecrow hope and his...

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  • REVIEWS

    Don't Worry, Be Happy

    Empire is a scattershot look at a variety of topics ranging from the porn industry to elite education. Chris Hedges believes that Americans have forsaken reality for a world of lies and empty entertainment.

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  • REVIEWS

    Populist Reveries

    Consider William Greiden's major theme: “Come home, America. Instead of trying to run the world, let us tend our own wounded society.” The advice is sound, but his expectation that “the people” will demand it be done is not.

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  • VITAL SIGNS

    Remaking Conservatism

    Charles Kesler, in an otherwise unremarkable essay in the Claremont Review of Books (Summer 2009), argues that an effective response to the challenges of modern liberalism requires a revolution within conservatism.

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  • IN THE DARK

    In Flight

    George Clooney, well-groomed and exceedingly fit at 49, seems perfect as Ryan Bingham, the conscienceless protagonist of Up in the Air. He’s a man who disposes of people for both profit and recreation.

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  • UNDER THE BLACK FLAG

    Sachs of Gold

    The story thus far: Not content with plunging the world’s economy into the worst crisis since the 30’s, the avaricious and reckless bankers have been saved from ruin—momentarily—by our taxes, yet they continue to treat us with breathtaking...

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