• July 15, 2016

    The front page of Le Monde

    The front page of Le Monde

    Le Monde’s front page on the morning after the terrorist attack in Nice shows a man praying next to a body covered with a sheet, and the publication also ran a grim gallery of images from the scene. The Nice-Martin’s headline “Ils s’appelaient Timothé, Fatima, Brodie… qui sont les premières victimes de l’attentat de Nice?” reveals the names of the first victims of the attack, while Charlie Hebdo posted a chilling cartoon on their Facebook page showing what happens “when religious fanatics are invited to secular holidays.” The network France 2 apologized for broadcasting a video interview showing a survivor of the attack sitting next to the body of his wife.

    Meanwhile, back in the States, Newt Gingrich took the attack as an opportunity to zing Obama on Fox News with glib comments about “truck regulations,” and called for “testing every person here who is of a Muslim back and if they believe in Sharia, they should be deported.” One of the many disturbing details reported in the Times was a witness’s recollection of seeing the truck and thinking it was simply out of control before realizing that the vehicle’s lights were off and its horn wasn’t honking. At Poynter, James Warren looks at how the terrorist attack in Nice has been covered and considers the effects of the frenetic pace of recent tragic news: “Thursday offered the latest window onto a hyperkinetic media age and the impossibility of maintaining public focus on any topic for much longer than 10 minutes. Consider how the press seamlessly segued from race and police conduct to Mike Pence and terrorism. The Dallas cop shootings seemed a million miles away.”


    Bernie Sanders is getting a book deal. The former presidential candidate announced his upcoming book, Our Revolution: A Future to Believe In, days after endorsing presumed Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton. With an announced publication date of November 15, some worry that possible critiques of Clinton in the book could be leaked just in time to impact the election.

    Ruth Bader Ginsburg is sorry she opened her mouth about Donald Trump. After calling the presumed Republican nominee “a faker” who “had been treated too gently by the press,” the Supreme Court justice backpedaled, saying her comments had been “ill-advised.” According to Ginsburg, “Judges should avoid commenting on a candidate for public office. In the future I will be more circumspect.” Trump tweeted, “Justice Ginsburg of the U.S. Supreme Court has embarrassed all by making very dumb political statements about me. Her mind is shot – resign!” Some law scholars and critics also felt the comments were a poor choice.

    A group of “technology sector leaders”—Tim Wu, Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak, and the entire Artificial Intelligence Lab of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology among them—have taken to Medium to voice their fears that a Trump presidency would curtail startup innovation. Peter Thiel, meanwhile, is having the most productive 2016 ever. Having bankrupted a major media company, Thiel will be speaking in support of Trump at the RNC in Cleveland next week.

    Emmy nominations for 2016 are in. The People v. O. J. Simpson looks poised to sweep numerous categories. Game of Thrones makes do with Best Supporting Actor and Actress in a Drama Series.

    In an interview with Electric Literature, essayist John D’Agata advocates—not for the first time—conflating fact and fiction. “Suffice it to say,” D’Agata remembers of a short story by Susan Sontag that appeared as an essay in The Next American Essay, the first of his anthologies, “she wasn’t happy with my decision to include [it] in the book.” His latest installment, The Making of the American Essay, came out in March.

    In T: The New York Times Style Magazine, Jonathan Safran Foer, novelist and “world’s last Hotmail user,” conducts an interview over email with his long-time friend, the actress and debut director Natalie Portman. According to Foer, “People often refer to aloneness and writer’s block as the two great challenges of being a novelist. In fact, the hardest part is having to care for guinea pigs.”

    Tonight: Jacobin publisher Bhaskar Sunkara hosts a discussion on austerity in Europe at Verso Books, while Christian Lorentzen moderates a panel on and of debut writers at McNally Jackson.