New York Magazine January 18-31, 2021

In the Apr. 15–28 issue: Olivia Nuzzi on “wonder boy” Pete Buttigieg. Plus: Art & Design, by Wendy Goodman; the half-billion dollar “Leonardo”; Natasha Lyonne, Annette Bening, and more.

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26 Ausgaben

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3 Min

1 In “Gain of Function” (January 4–17), Nicholson Baker explored the possibility that the coronavirus escaped from a lab in Wuhan. The Washington Post’s Adam Taylor wrote, “This is a well-told summary of the whole ‘lab leak’ theory but I still end up with the same conclusions of nine months ago 1) the science is too complicated for a layman to have a firm opinion 2) we will probably never know for sure.” Alina Chan, a molecular biologist whose research was highlighted in the essay, called it a “fearless analysis … of whether COVID may have originated from a lab, how the U.S. research system could be implicated, and the nearly decade-long debate over gain-of-function research.” Many vocal scientists and science journalists challenged not only Baker’s conclusions but also his…

11 Min
i. the view from 25

MADISON CAWTHORN HAS A VISION of a January 6 that did not happen. One in which he does the noble thing for career and country. He uses his MAGA celebrity for good. He transforms from shitposter to statesman. And he emerges from the U.S. Capitol as America’s savior. Ten days into his first term as the youngest member of the House of Representatives, and three hours after voting against the second impeachment of Donald Trump, the North Carolina Republican was in his quarters at the Cannon House Office Building talking about what-ifs and reliving an already historic sequence of events—in which he gave a speech to some people and then those people stormed the Capitol to overturn the results of the election, kill a police officer, and call for the execution…

1 Min
ii. the terror

“We saw this violence before the election, often done by radicalized white supremacists. And that is a problem that doesn’t go away. You can’t vote that problem away. The people who are dangerous today will continue to be dangerous the day after the election.” “I did not know if I was going to make it to the end of that day alive.” “They can’t even win with the deck stacked in their favor. And so what they are willing to do is set a match and light our entire democracy on fire.” “I want to be clear to Senator Ted Cruz: You do not belong in the United States Senate. I want to be clear to Senator Josh Hawley: You do not belong in the United States Senate.” “I don’t want to hear or…

6 Min
iii. the broken president

PRESIDENT TRUMP’S SECOND impeachment, like the other repudiations he has suffered, feels provisional. He is never quite banished. He is impeached, but Senate Republicans refuse to convict or even allow evidence into his trial. He loses the election, but won’t concede, and may just run again. He is impeached again, but his trial is delayed until after his departure date. It feels as if we have spent four years watching the wheels come off, yet the vehicle somehow still keeps rolling forward. But now, finally, the end is at hand. Trump is suffering a series of wounds that, in combination, are likely to be fatal after Joe Biden is sworn in on January 20. Trump is obviously going to surrender his office. Beyond that looming defeat, he is undergoing a cascading…

3 Min
iv. the tech fallout

➸ Mark Zuckerberg and Jack Dorsey didn’t kick Trump off Facebook and Twitter, respectively; Stacey Abrams did. Within 72 hours of Democrats taking control of the Senate, Dorsey and Zuckerberg found their better angels and suspended Trump’s account. You think it’s because they finally came to the realization that this was bad for America? Or that Trump had crossed a new red line? No, it was because they recognized that Democrats were going to be the heads of the Senate committees regulating them. Zuckerberg and Dorsey got tough on Trump 1,447 days into his 1,461-day tenure. ➸ Twitter and Facebook built businesses in which shareholder value was directly correlated with the president’s rage and disinformation. Twitter stock, which I bought for the first time in 2019, was in the teens…

4 Min
v. violent fashion

CALLS FOR VIOLENT public execution began mere hours into the New Year, as they often do these days, via Twitter. Conservative lawyer Lin Wood proclaimed that Mike Pence would be killed by firing squad for treason. Five days later, Donald Trump’s tornado of zealots blew through the Capitol, erecting gallows and holding posters that read MAKE GUILLOTINES GREAT AGAIN. I wasn’t surprised by the violent effigies, but I was, frankly, perplexed to see the Trumpists invoke the guillotine. Their sham-billionaire leader seems like exactly the kind of despot the machine was intended for, but most recently, guillotines, as an anti-capitalist symbol, have belonged to the radical left. If you follow anybody interested in income inequality, you may have encountered one or two of them on social media—mostly as a shorthand for…