Newark’s rebound

WHEN Ras Baraka was elected Newark’s mayor in 2014, the business world was worried. He had brokered peace between the Crips and the Bloods, two fierce rival gangs, and is Newark royalty—his father, Amir Baraka, was a famous activist poet. But he was no fan of corporate America. Mr Baraka …

In Detroit, the end of blight is in sight

“SPERAMUS meliora resurget cineribus”: the Latin incantation, offered by a French Catholic priest after a fire nearly destroyed the city in 1805, is Detroit’s motto—“We hope that better things may rise from the ashes”. The once-great city, the “arsenal of democracy” during the second world war and home of the …

Charting the travel ban

ONE of Donald Trump’s first acts as president was to try to introduce a version of the ban on Muslims entering America that he promised on the campaign trail. Judges stayed his executive order, which went through several iterations, until June 26th, when the Supreme Court allowed a modified version …

Alaska’s remote villages have a trashy problem

MANAGING rubbish in Alaska’s bush villages—small communities accessible only by boat or aircraft and often hundreds of miles from the nearest highway—is hard. Waste—including freezers, computers and vehicles—piles up with no easy way to remove it. Rural landfills, which are mostly open, unlined and unmanaged, spill across tundra and into …

Donald Trump ditches DACA

WHEN Karla Robles was 16 years old, she tried to register for college-entrance exams, like hundreds of thousands of high-school juniors in Chicago. She found that she could not—she lacked a social-security number. That was how Ms Robles learned she was in the United States illegally. Her parents brought her …

The judicial philosophy of Richard Posner

IN a profession marked by pomp and pretence, Richard Posner, who is retiring from the judiciary, is a renegade. For Dick, as he is known to his staff, the tradition of clerks addressing their bosses as “judge” exemplifies the judiciary’s stodginess and resistance to innovation. In his decades as a …

America’s census is in trouble

NO MATTER how divided, America comes together every ten years for the census. It is the single event in which everyone, regardless of creed, colour or even citizenship, is supposed to take part. Few government agencies could boast that their mandate was enshrined in the constitution, as the Census Bureau …

Blame Congress for high health-care costs

IN AMERICA nearly one in every five dollars spent is on health care, a larger share than in any other country. Many of the culprits are well-known. Americans have more procedures, pay more for them, and face exorbitant administrative costs. One driver of rising costs has often been overlooked, however: …

The future of Bannonism

TWO days after he ceased to be President Donald Trump’s chief strategist, Steve Bannon explained why he had welcomed The Economist to his house on Capitol Hill for a chat. “You’re the enemy,” he said, adding disdainfully: “You support a radical idea, free trade. I mean it, that’s a radical …

Louisiana fights the sea, and loses

WHEN Roosevelt Falgout was a boy, the brackish water that now laps within a few feet of his three-room cabin at Isle de Jean Charles was miles off. “There were only trees all around, far as you could see,” recalls the 81-year-old former oyster fisherman, at home on the Isle, …