A forest can teach us, if we’re willing to listen to it. A sentence like that normally makes certain Very Serious People roll their eyes, for — of course — teaching is an active process that requires an active teacher, and — of course — trees hold no knowledge. But in this area, like many areas, the Very Serious People are quite wrong.

Take note of just how alive your arboreal neighbors are. It’s the earliest days of spring now, and most of us are indoors until further notice, so peer at the leafless trees outside your window. Some of…


Photo by jonathan Ford on Unsplash

The connection between human-caused climate destruction and human tragedy is only accepted when the connection is direct and unambiguous. For example, despite consensus in scientific circles, it is still not widely acknowledged that elevated atmospheric carbon contributes to overpowered cyclone events like Sandy in 2012 and Harvey in 2017. Government agencies demand a clear and recognizable human-created villain and a clear and recognizable human victim if they are to recognize culpability: it took the Cuyahoga River literally catching on fire — for the thirteenth time — before activists could get the government to start taking water pollution seriously. Even slightly…


Photo by History in HD on Unsplash

Two-thirds of Democrats want the President to be impeached, and why shouldn’t he be? Even if the House only investigated crimes that he has admitted on camera, the evidence against him is likely to be overwhelming. Fortunately for the president, there is an obstacle between him and removal that is the true Eldritch political horror of our time. It’s vastly more destructive than the president’s increasingly hood-off campaign strategy and even more frightening than the House Democrats’ refusal to provide oversight in the first place. The true foe is the gorgon wreaking havoc in the Senate. His name is Mitch.


Illustration by Natalie Reed (instagram.com/nalie_don.t)

I recently saw an author complain that no one seems able to ‘capture the moment’ in ways that we have seen from bright lights like Hunter S. Thompson or Tony Kushner. The ascension of Donald Trump, the floundering of the Democratic Party, the rising seas, and the fall of the American dream: there has yet to be an essay or a movie or a novel that locks people in their chairs, enrapturing its readers who mutter, “Yes, yes, yes!” over and over at the encapsulation of these fraught times. …


Everyone’s least favorite mutant turtle.

Every Democrat in the Trump era has a specific fantasy that goes something like this: Mitch McConnell is speaking on the Senate floor about some new, horrible, law. Suddenly, a vision of justice blinds him: it’s our bleeding heart liberal, shrouded in light. They hold up their cell phone: it’s a Vox article, with video footage of a younger, spryer version of the Majority Leader railing against this exact situation just two years ago. Mitch hangs his head; he’s been caught. With a nod, he steps down, resigns as Senator, and slinks home in shame. America is saved.

This is…

Hunter McLaren

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