As I write this article, I’m sipping tea in Dublin, Ireland, thinking about Irish bathroom faucets. Specifically, I’m pondering their striking similarity to the Electoral College, the inch-pound system, space shuttle engines, and car headlights.
More on that jumble of thoughts in a minute.
We’re wrapping up […]
As a young law professor, I frequently hit the road to present papers at academic conferences. Many of these presentations were friendly affairs, but some took a hostile turn, particularly during the question-and-answer period.
As a mentor once told me, academic arguments can be particularly vicious […]
I was waiting in line for the bathroom at Interurban, one of our favorite Saturday hangouts in Portland. Ignoring my inner disciplined voice that tells me to stay off email on the weekends, I took a “quick glance” at my inbox on my iPhone.
I cringed […]
In 1954, Johnny Cash walked into the audition room at Sun Record Labels. At the time, he was a nobody. He was selling appliances door-to-door and playing gospel songs at night with two buddies. He was broke, and his marriage was in ruins. Scoring a […]
As democratically elected hate machines continue to gain power across the globe, the safeguards of constitutional democracy are being put to the test.
Demagogues assume power through democratic elections and then proceed to undermine the very institutions that brought them to power.
Russia’s democratization process crumbled in […]
Earlier this year, my wife and I took our first trip to Cuba.
Cuba is a paradoxical mix between the past and the present, communism and newfound freedoms, and architectural beauty and decay. But if you’re like others I know, you have little interest in hearing […]
Istanbul, Nice, Paris, Brussels, Orlando, Berlin, Munich, London, and most recently, Manchester. The perpetrators of these horrific acts—all claimed by ISIS—are almost invariably misfit Muslims from marginalized communities with little to lose.
To be sure, the vast majority of Muslims reject ISIS’s violent interpretation of their […]
If you had asked me this question–How do you change a mind?–two years ago, I would have given you a different answer.
As a former scientist, I would have cautioned you to rely on objective facts and statistics. Develop a strong case for your side, back […]
When I first started teaching at my law school, it struck me as odd that the students were required to take Criminal Procedure–ordinarily an upper-level class–in their first year.
When I asked a senior colleague to explain, he lowered the newspaper he’d been studying and dismissively […]