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September 11, 2006 | The Nation

In the Magazine

September 11, 2006

Cover: Cover by Avenging Angels; cover art by James Montgomery Flagg

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Liza Featherstone looks at Wal-Mart's plan to go organic; Anna Lappé does lunch at school; Matthew DeBord reviews food books by Julia Child, Anthony Bourdain and Bill Buford.

Letters

No sooner had we pressed "send" on an e-mail inviting readers to tell us
about their most beloved food institutions than enthusiastic submissions
began to pour in from all over the country.

Letters from around the country describe your favorite food
institutions.

Editorials

Thanks to an acquiescent Congress, we are now being governed by an Administration that is radically trying to change the nature of our
democracy.

An appreciation of one of the last members of the left's "greatest generation," known for her physical courage, warmth and intelligence, who spent a lifetime arguing eloquently for socialism, feminism and peace.

Since we're a weekly magazine, "slow" is not a quality we often find
ourselves working to achieve.

The UN cease-fire in Lebanon demands the impossible: a Lebanese state
capable of both disarming Hezbollah and protecting the south from
renewed Israeli attacks.

Israel's war with Hezbollah may have strengthened the hand of the
Israeli right, which has forgotten that peace comes only by negotiating
with those you do not trust.

The alleged British terror plot contrasts with the fruits of Bush's
"war on terror": civil war in Iraq, an empowered Iran and Arab hatred. Let us instead seek security through diplomacy.

Columns

Howl

As the generation of power brokers over 40 continues to blow off
global warming, our dependence on a waning supply of oil will create
a miserable future for their children and grandchilden.

TruthDig

You'd think Bill Clinton doesn't know the difference between getting mothers and their children off the welfare rolls and getting them out of poverty.

Music

"Islamo-fascism" looks like an analytic term, but it's really an emotional one, intended to get us to think less and fear more.

The Israeli press has criticized the Lebanon disaster from all
political angles. The American press chooses to cheerlead instead,
while liberal Jewry remains silent.

Everyone knows what his predecessors liked for dinner. But there's one special dish we'd really like to serve George W. Bush.

Articles

Virginia Senator George Allen claimed it was a "mistake" when he called
an employee of his Democratic foe a racist name. But the leader of
America's top racist group explains Allen's long and cozy history with
white supremacists.

As people in Southern Lebanon return to claim the dead and clear the
rubble from villages ravaged in the recent fighting, it is clear that
the battle for hearts and minds is being won by Hezbollah.

Unless something changes soon, New Orleans will prove to be a glimpse
of a dystopic future, a future of disaster apartheid in which the
wealthy are saved and everyone else is left behind.

As chroniclers of the secret, unexpected, below-the-radar places Americans
prepare and consume their meals, NPR's Kitchen Sisters discovered their
microphone has become a kind of stethoscope, listening to the
complicated heart of a nation.

Ann Cooper, gourmet chef turned healthy school food advocate, talks
about becoming a "lunch lady" and what it takes to reform our
children's cafeterias.

Low wages, segregation and dangerous working conditions in a North
Carolina factory reveal a meatpacking industry where labor laws no
longer matter.

The United States now spends more in Iraq in a month that the entire world spends on fighting AIDS in a year. Have we reached the point where the terror of AIDS is no match for the war against terror?

Despite mounting evidence, Americans remain willfully blind to the government's barbaric treatment of terror suspects. Now, human rights groups and religious organizations are using testimonies from victims to awaken moral revulsion at what is being done in our name.

In Mexico City and beyond, tensions are rising between government security forces and thousands of impoverished supporters of Andrés Manuel López Obrador, a restive constituency to which political parties and process are increasingly irrelevant.

A federal appeals court has ruled a wrongful death lawsuit
can proceed against Blackwater USA: Families claim the firm cut corners in pursuit of
profit in Iraq, leading to the brutal deaths of four employees in Fallujah in
2004.

Hunger is a violation of basic rights: a right to food, but more
important, Bolivian and Brazilian experience suggests, a right to
power.

For black farmers, succeeding financially and bringing healthy food to
urban markets remains an uphill battle against a lack of business
contacts.

Urban restaurateurs, activists and consumers are seeking "food
justice," insisting that healthy food shouldn't be a privilege for
the wealthy and white.

A new charter school is embracing "eco-gastronomy"--a holistic
curriculum based around food--hoping "to renew New Orleans one okra
plant and one child at a time."

Wal-Mart is serious about bringing organic food to the masses, but
transportation costs and the retail giant's aggressive competitive ways
could end up hurting small farms and the environment.

The organic label means your food is pesticide-free, but an
investigation into California farms reveals that the label means nothing but
pain for the workers who produced it.

How do we fix our dysfunctional relationship with food? Alice Waters
leads a forum with Eric Schlosser, Marion Nestle, Peter Singer and
others, who suggest, for starters, that we stop buying factory farm
products, get involved in farm policy and outlaw the marketing of junk
food to kids.

Fast food is killing us--our environment, our politics and our culture.
To change who we are as a nation, we must first change how we eat.

Organizers had hoped the second World Pride conference in Jerusalem would challenge religious bias against gays. But the unfolding war in Lebanon got in the way.

The residents of the District of Columbia go to war and pay taxes, but they have never had a member of Congress to call their own. A measure has been introduced in the House that could change all that--maybe.

Books & the Arts

Book

Three new books by Julia Child, Anthony Bourdain and Bill Buford chart
the evolution of American cooking, from haute cuisine to the hot
kitchen of Mario Batali.

Book

"The spell of Africa is upon me," wrote W.E.B. Du Bois in Liberia. Three
new books document the enchantment and disenchantment of the continent
for its descendants.

Film

World Trade Center's hero is a tough ex-Marine who later
re-enlists to fight in Iraq. But his (and Oliver Stone's) redemption
narrative is soured by bad faith.

Onion

He asks citizens "to quiet
down for just one minute" so he could have "a chance to think."

GetUplicans deadlock with GetDownocrats.