"The Atlantic" and "Harper's" are both iconic magazines that are responsible for promoting the careers of many prominent writers. I have been reading them for years. They also both have a profile of John Kerry in their December issue. David Rohde did a individualist profile of Kerry, lauding him as an "activist" diplomat shaking up the stuffy old foreign policy establishment in "The Atlantic." In "Harper's," Andrew Cockburn rejects this sort on analysis completely and challenges the idea that there is such a thing as foreign policy at all. Kerry comes off as a power hungry but powerless hack who owes his position to back room politics much more than shrewd determination. Cockburn was actually communicating original thoughts and I turned each page with a new morsel of knowledge. Rohde's fluff would have fit nicely after a top ten vacation spot list on Delta's in-flight magazine. Reading the whole thing felt like choking down sugarless oatmeal. With a few notable exceptions, this is a good representation of the current trajectory of each magazine.
I voted for Joe Biden and hope he wins. I’m also alarmed at the increasingly transparent alliance between the Democratic Party and influential sectors of corporate America, namely media conglomerates and the technology industry. (Their relationship reminds me of the Republican Party and the energy industry.) It’s true there are conservative media outlets that are not friendly to Democrats, but it’s far less certain how objective the “paper of record” and other “serious” media would be to a post-Trump and post-COVID Biden administration that is politically and ascetically their peer. (I would say we are at a point of competing Pravdas, but that would be a slander against the Soviet newspaper’s pre-Stalinist period when it was a battleground of ideas.) Perhaps even more damning is the Democratic Party’s relationship to the technology industry, particularly when companies like Twitter and Facebook have shown they are prepared to unilaterally decide what’s true and what’s false. Not many