The Washington Monthly

An independent monthly magazine devoted to politics, government, culture, and the media in America, from a progressive perspective. Publishes investigative and opinion-based feature articles by notable authors, short news items, humorous sidebars, and boo

Articles from Vol. 25, No. 3, March

Beat the Press: Death Threats and Bullying Tactics Follow AIDS Journalists Who Contradict the Conventional Wisdom
Soon after Newsday published a book review by Michael Fumento, the newspaper's book editor, Jack Schwartz, began receiving anonymous phone calls late at night. Nasty calls. "They made a lot of threats," Schwartz recalls, "not the least of which was...
Debt 101: Our System Now Saddles Students with Loans That Make Low-Paying but Meaningful Work Impossible. Here's How to Fix It
Since its debut the night before the Clinton inauguration, Fox television's new baby-buster series "Class of '96" has been called a lot of things--many flattering, some critical, even a few unprintable in a family magazine. But no one seems to have...
Fax and Spend: One Bureaucrat Explains How His Agency's Technology Bedevils His Life and Wastes Your Money
Every 25 minutes, the lights go out. I sit at my government desk doing what government desk-sitters do: crunch data on the computer, write memos and reports, edit documents, answer mail from citizens, and make and answer phone calls. I may squirm around...
Heavy Medals
Awards! That's all they do is give out awards, I can't believe it. "Greatest Fascist Dictator: Adolph Hitler." He was razzing Hollywood, but Woody Allen's joke works just as well with journalism, a field in which fascist dictators are about the...
Original Spin: How Lurid Sex Fantasies Gave Us "America." (Letters of Amerigo Vespucci)
When I was in Mrs. Poulnot's third grade class, history was taught in tableaux. Christopher Columbus was forever peering from a gunnel, crying "Land ho!" Amerigo Vespucci was eternally gazing at the stars, sextant in hand. In the past year, many...
Sign It, Then Mind It
Ross Perot recently asked me for $15. Against my better judgment, I'm sending him a check. I did not vote for Perot. I hope he never becomes president. Even so, he earned my contribution based on a single remark midway through the second presidential...
Voting Wrongs
North Carolina's new 12th congressional district was conceived, appropriately, during a brief political tryst at an interstate motel. One day in 1991, Thomas Hardaway, a Democratic state representative, met with John Men-itt, an aide to incumbent Democratic...
War Games: Why a Meddling Congress Doesn't Always Make the Best Defense
Congress has 110 new members. Many earned their seats in Washington by promising to attack wasteful government expenses--not the least of which are military outlays. Our defense budget, they said campaigning, should be driven by what's best for the...
What Clinton Could Learn from the Catastrophic Health Care Catastrophe
Of the myriad health care plans being Fed-Exed and faxed to Bill Clinton's policy experts, the one that may serve them best has already failed: the 1988 Medicare Catastrophic Coverage Act. That's not because we need catastrophic care insurance any...