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Big Mayors, Large and Small

From the halcyon days of Fiorello H. LaGuardia on down to the present, the ten men who have served as mayor of New York have come in three sizes.<p>LaGuardia, elected in 1933, was, and probably always will be, the biggest of the Big mayors—the inimitable icon, the gold standard, the city’s immortal …

Will Bill de Blasio Kill the Yankees-Red Sox Rivalry?

Bill de Blasio was elected mayor with more than seventy-three per cent of the vote. He is also an avowed and unabashed fan of the Boston Red Sox, having called his fandom “a deep devotion.” It may seem difficult to square these two statements, and it is more difficult, perhaps even nearly …

Toronto’s Rob Ford Problem

“Toronto is on uncharted waters.”<p>Such has been the refrain here these past few days. You can hear it from the journalists who cover City Hall, the bureaucrats who work there, and even the city councillors themselves. Nobody has a whole lot of experience with mayors getting caught on video smoking …

How Badly Has the U.S. Economy Been Damaged?

Friday’s employment report, which shows that payrolls rose by two hundred and four thousand jobs in October, indicates that the economy was a bit stronger in the past three months than most people thought. But we won’t know the full impact of the government shutdown and the debt-ceiling crisis for …

The Daunting Challenge of Secure E-mail

When users of Lavabit, an encrypted e-mail service, logged on to the site this past August, they found a bewildering letter on the site’s main page. Ladar Levison, the founder and sole employee of Lavabit, had shut down his business rather than “become complicit in crimes against the American …

Gun-toting Yemenis wish they could lay down their arms

Yemenis have long owned a lot of guns. But proliferation in urban areas is worrying many, who say they would happily give up their firearms if the …