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Archive for November 2008

America's Attic, Open Again

Doing our bit to keep the country in recession, we passed up the sales on Black Friday to check out the renovated Smithsonian Museum of American History. The museum, which just reopened after two years of renovations, is a great resource, though I can’t say that the renovation improved my experience very much. There was…

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History on the (European) Silver Screen

For the last three weeks, some of the really interesting films coming out of Europe have been playing in Silver Spring, at the amazing AFI Silver, which brings the magic of the movies to lower Montgomery County. For a history hound, it has been a dazzling buffet. With various members of my indulgent family, I…

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The Other Hillary Story

Historians are glowing over the reports that the president-elect is considering the appointment of Hillary Clinton as Secretary of State. By reaching out to his toughest adversary for the Democratic nomination at the same time he says he is reading Doris Kearns Goodwin’s excellent Team of Rivals, the history profession has received a real boost.…

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The Senate as a Model of Government

I am about to write a sentence I never expected to write. Former Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist wrote an interesting piece the other day. Former Republican Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist That doesn’t mean I agree with everything he said, but he points out that our president-elect and vice-president-elect both come from the U.S.…

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The Future of Books

The settlement of two lawsuits last week — between publishers and Google, and between authors and Google — marked a landmark success for copyright holders and a look at part of the future of books. The dispute focused on Google Book Search. Google started out by trying to reach agreements with publishers to scan and…

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Remember the First Time

As we set off to elect a new president, I offer a quick reminder of how strange (by today’s standards) was the first presidential election in 1788. — There were no political parties. — There was only one candidate for president, George Washington. — Of the thirteen original states, North Carolina and Rhode Island had…

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