Other Magazines

Profiles in Murder

The New Yorker on FBI serial-killer profilers.

Today, Other Magazines finds the articles worth reading in The New Yorker, New York, Newsweek, the Weekly Standard, The Nation, and Atlanta.

Must Read
A piece in TheNew Yorker by Malcolm Gladwell examines how the FBI goes about profiling serial killers. It marvels at the individual successes of profile-turned-author John Douglas, who recently wrote a book on serial killer BTK. But the piece notes that there are limits to the predictive abilities of profilers.—D.S.

Must Skip
New York asks, “When is a hate crime not a hate crime?” and leaves us hanging. The article—which examines a 2006 Brooklyn murder—wonders if a gay man is capable of committing a gay hate crime but, losing itself in the intricacies of the individual story, never settles on an answer.—E.G. 

Best Campaign Story
The Weekly Standard considers Hillary Clinton’s recent visit to her alma mater Wellesley College by taking a look at her 1969 graduation speech. “She wants to take credit for being a student radical while at the same time hinting that as president she won’t do for America what she did for Wellesley,” the piece says.—G.H.

Best Interview
Newsweek: So is she being honest?
Barack Obama: I think she was being disingenuous.
Newsweek: What’s the difference between disingenuous and dishonest?
Obama: You’ll have to ask her.”
Barack Obama to Newsweek, on Hillary Clinton’s claim that she has no say in the release of her first-lady papers.—B.F. 

Best Profile
Newsweek takes a hard look at New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, businessman, politician, wiseguy. It suggests that he just might mount the most competitive third-party presidential campaign in history if he thinks voters aren’t happy with their options.—B.F.

Best Business Piece
An article in The Nation is dismayed at the “booming business of privatized disaster services.” In the wake of Hurricane Katrina and the Southern California wildfires, companies are offering evacuation, medical, and fire protection services to those who can “pay to be saved.”—J.M.

Best International Story
Bemoaning the corruption of Putin’s Russia, the Weekly Standard argues that there still remains a hope of change. “Showboating ploys like calls to expel Russia from the G8 make infinitely less sense than quietly holding Russia to its G8 commitments, including anticorruption initiatives.”—G.H.

Best Foreign-Policy Analysis
The Nation argues that economic growth and climate change, not terrorism, will be the primary concerns to American security and calls on presidential contenders to recognize that “the world does not need strong US leadership so much as it needs constructive US participation as a great power.”—J.M.

Best Education Story
The Weekly Standard tracks the history of Antioch College, a prominent beatnik campus of the ‘60s. Antioch’s recent collapse, the magazine argues, can be attributed to an “obsession with gender identity and violating cultural norms.”—G.H.

Best Sports Story
“Man, were we wrong,” admitsAtlanta magazine, with a reprint of a glowing September 2003 profile of Michael Vick. But this time around, they’ve made a few revisions.—M.S.

Most Surprising Send-Off
The Weekly Standard announces the end of the Karen Hughes era and sends off the longtime Bush loyalist with a thumping. The article argues that Hughes “bungled explanations of basic U.S. history and unwittingly insulted her audiences by talking down to them.”—G.H. 

Worst Approval Matrix Item
New York says “a shoe-donation program” that “inflicts Crocs on already-suffering Dominican children” is as despicable as it gets. Just because they are aesthetically displeasing doesn’t mean they aren’t shoes.—E.G.