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1985 / December | View All Issues |

December 1985

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Harper’s Index

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Twisted Sister and the senators·

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Detroit·

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Heavy traffic ahead

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Ethics on the nuclear battlefield·

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The vanishing nuclear firebreak·

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The writer and unfreedom·

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Mobil’s amusement and concern·

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“Between 2007 and 2010, Albany’s poverty rate jumped 12 points, to a record high of 39.9 percent. More than two thirds of Albany’s 76,000 residents are black, and since 2010, their poverty rate has climbed even higher, to nearly 42 percent.”
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From a May 23 commencement address delivered at Hofstra University. Doctorow died on Tuesday. He was 84.
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“We think we are the only people in the world who live with threat, but we have to work with regional leaders who will work with us. Bibi is taking the country into unprecedented international isolation.”
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These are tough times for parents. Not because child rearing has gotten any harder — it’s the same as it ever was — but because we are newly overrich in hand-wringing books and articles on the subject. The decision to have children, according to these panicked dispatches, is only the first in a cascade of choices that will either make or break your kid, save or ruin your life. This forum, however, is not prescriptive but descriptive: not “how you should” but “how we have,” which is probably the best kind of advice a mother or father could give. The poem and …
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“The poem and the essays that follow tell you things about being a parent that you can’t get from a jeremiad about having it all or a numbered list of sleep-training tips.”
© Erich Lessing/Art Resource, New York City

Number of pages in the bills that created Social Security and the Federal Trade Commission, respectively:

29, 8

A case study was published about a man who has consumed 40,000 pills of ecstasy, a new world record. The man suffers from memory problems, paranoia, hallucinations, and depression, as well as painful muscle rigidity that keeps him from opening his mouth.

A plane carrying skydiving students landed on a busy highway in New Jersey.

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