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Issue #24, Spring 2012
First Principles: Reclaiming Citizenship
An older liberalism once championed the ideas of civic responsibility and the common good. Then came the battles for rights. Those were and are necessary. But today, to revive progressivism, we need to rediscover the forgotten language of obligation and engagement, foster civic agency, and launch a new and redemptive twenty-first century Americanization movement.
James T. Kloppenberg: Restoring the Language of Obligation
Carmen Sirianni: The Networks of Self-Governance
Eric Liu: Sworn-Again Americans
Introducing iGov
Ethan Porter and David Kendall: Even people who support government dread having actual encounters with it. Things don’t have to be that way.
A Subsidy for Dignity
Michael Lind & Lauren Damme: A successful idea from Europe can make eldercare more affordable—and provide well-paying jobs—as the boomers approach retirement.
A New Progressive Federalism
Heather K. Gerken: Distrust of states’ rights exists for good historical reasons, but today, minorities and dissenters can rule at the local level.
The Politics of Less
Larry M. Bartels: Why the coming battles over scarcity don’t necessarily favor the party of small government.
“Moocher Class” Warfare
Daniel T. Rodgers: How four decades of radical individualism diminished society and gave rise to the Tea Party.
Arabian Fights
Hussein Ibish: Why it’s a little early for dramatic and sweeping statements about the Arab uprisings.
Russian Arc
Michael Dobbs: The Soviet Union ended with a whimper, and Russia struggles on, facing a future nearly as bleak as its past.
Survival of the Richest
Chris Lehmann: Is economic behavior best understood in Darwinian terms? Actually, no.
Editor’s Note
Michael Tomasky: Michael Tomasky introduces issue #24
Democracy No!
David Rieff: Progressive support for democracy promotion and military intervention ignores our dismal history. A response to Rosa Brooks and Tom Perriello.
Letters to the Editor
Democracy Readers: Letters from our readers
The Vexed Generation
Jack Meserve: Why is the progressive establishment so bad at motivating the youth vote?
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The American Scholar: The Truth About Campus Cheating
“Religious Freedom” Concerns Are an Argument for Single-Payer
Jack Meserve: Because Medicaid, through federal and state tax dollars, covers prescription contraception in at least 40 states, most Catholics (and everyone else) already pay for other peoples’ birth control, and will continue to do so regardless of whatever accommodation or legislation ends up passing.
Strained Skepticism
Charles Kupchan: A coalition of moderate Democrats and moderate Republicans provided a critical foundation for U.S. foreign policy throughout the long decades of the Cold War. That coalition is today under threat—and more from the Republicans than from the Democrats.
Lochner and Liberty: A Response to David Bernstein
Jedediah Purdy: If I may put it this way, from an internalist legal perspective, the traditional Lochner story was way too crude. From a perspective with stronger externalist notes, it captures important features of that time, which our time shares. Today as then, laissez-faire ideas in the larger intellectual and political culture contribute to the development of anti-regulatory lines of jurisprudence.
Tomasky Moderates Discussion with Economist Daron Acemoglu
Democracy: A Journal of Ideas: On March 23, Democracy editor Michael Tomasky will moderate a discussion with distinguished economist Daron Acemoglu at the Center for American Progress.
Tomasky Hosts C-SPAN’s “After Words”
C-SPAN: On March 17, Democracy editor Michael Tomasky appeared on C-SPAN’s “After Words” to interview author Linda Killian on her new book, The Swing Vote.
As Seen in Democracy: iGov in Politico
Politico: iGov, Ethan Porter and David Kendall’s latest Democracy brainchild, was featured on the front page of Politico’s website on March 12. Porter and Kendall’s editorial, “Explaining government’s role,” outlines the argument from their feature essay in our Spring 2012 issue, “Introducing iGov.”

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