September 26, 2005 | The Nation

In the Magazine

September 26, 2005

Cover: Cover photo by Kyle Niemi/US Coast Guard/Getty Images, cover design by Gene Case & Stephen Kling/Avenging Angels

Browse Selections From Recent Years














America's narcissism and willful blindness to its own
moral failings have been placed in sharp relief as the nation fitfully
responds to the needs of storm victims.

Knowing what America owes its dead--be they soldiers lost in
Iraq or civilians lost in the Gulf Coast storm--could prod the nation toward a decisive rejection of the Bush Administration's war policies.

The chronicle of an unfolding catastrophe, as told by
the victims of Hurricane Katrina, the bureaucrats, the rescuers, the
journalists and the politicians.

William Rehnquist showed little regard for the social
consequences that followed his unrelenting application of conservative
legal theory.

At first glance New Orleans looks like a cross between a
giant conceptual art installation or the set of a cold war disaster

New Orleans is the classic tale of two cities: one
showy, middle-class and white; the other poor, downtrodden and
low-income black.

FEMA enjoyed bipartisan praise during the 1990s under
President Clinton. By the time Hurricane Katrina roared into the Gulf,
the Bush Administration had dismantled it.

The incompetence revealed by the response to Hurricane
Katrina can be traced to a twenty-five-year project, begun in the
Reagan era, of discrediting government.


Column Left

Long fooled by the Bush image machine, Americans now
understand that this Administration can only deliver spin, not
substance; photo ops, not action.

Let the evacuees of New Orleans take the lead in determining how the
billions of dollars in reconstruction funds are used to rebuild their
lives and their city.

The most remarkable aspect of the media's treatment of the hurricane coverage
was the return of the poor, in coverage that was neither condescending nor condemnatory.

Some storm victims evacuated from New Orleans were
"sorted" by age, race or gender. Is breaking up families and
prioritizing by race any way to deal with disaster?

Such a tough hombre: When the hurrincane hit, Bush did a 9/11 reprise.


He's a far-right baby doctor. His own chief of staff
says he's clueless about the law. Meet Oklahoma Senator Tom Coburn, who'll help shape the US Supreme Court.

Washington Wizards power forward Etan Thomas is using
his swoosh-adorned status as a sports star to speak out on the gross
negligence of the Bush Administration.

For once, Wal-Mart is acting like a hero, with speedy
delivery of water and supplies to Hurricane Katrina victims. If it
could only act that way every day.

Despite persistent calls from the right to raze the
ruined city, gritty storm survivors from New Orleans to Gulfport and
Houston begin to put their lives together again.

We won the cold war without throwing out the right of
Americans to be secure in their homes, without throwing out the Fourth

The controversy over the World Trade Center cultural
institutions is one more episode in a long, often bitter dispute over
how 9/11 should be remembered and understood.

How do you tell a student the story of September 11?

A look at the suffering endured at Krome Detention
Center in Miami, a cross between Alcatraz and hell.

Even in tiny outposts like Havre, Montana, a profound
cultural and psychological shift has occurred since the events of 9/11.

How could liberals believe the most reactionary
President since William McKinley could and would export democracy to

Books & the Arts


What makes Fox's The OC so addictive is its
California-kissed story lines and appealing characters. But what is it
about women the show doesn't understand?


What to make of The Constant Gardener, a movie
focused on Europeans set in Africa, the return of Terry Gilliam and the
New York City-set Keane?


Abdulrazak Gurnah's seventh book, Desertion,
revisits the theme of exile and expands it to relationships---between
lovers, between families, between countries.


In his new book, Robert Kaplan proposes that the
antidote to anarchy is empire, policed by soldiers holding an assault
rifle in one hand and candy bars in the other.


This might be a good time for the Bush Administration to
step up its reading on Saudi Arabia, starting with these three books.