Benjamin Wallace-Wells

Battered Women

For 50 bucks, you can buy yourself an armchair seat on a balcony ringing the room, from which you can peer down over the room. These, however, are always filled with older Italian men, the Unindicted Co-conspirator set, fat and inert in their little chairs, each one looking like a marshmallow stuffed into a shot… Read more »

Stop Me Before I Quit Again!

STOP ME BEFORE I QUIT AGAIN!….My nominee for the best line in this morning’s New York Times comes midway through a profile of Bernard Kerik: When Mr. Kerik was appointed to a top job in the New York City Department of Correction in the mid-1990’s, one official told the department’s commissioner: ‘Congratulations. You’ve just hired… Read more »

The Great Black Hope

Cory Booker was feeling good. The one time Newark, N.J., mayoral candidate had just given a widely lauded speech at a youth vote event at the Democratic convention in Boston. The party’s kingmakers and talent scouts, who had taken an interest in the career of this young, handsome African-American Rhodes scholar during his campaign two… Read more »

Party Down

I hadn’t expected this line from him. My friend is the kind of tough-minded partisan who screens dates for political affiliation and who says that whenever he gets weeping calls from retired constituents about too-expensive prescription drugs, he thinks to himself, “You should have saved more then, shouldn’t you?” A year ago, he was gearing… Read more »

Rebels in Izods

It is this cultural difference that explains one of the mysteries of the current presidential race: John Kerry, the Massachusetts Yankee, is doing rather well here. He launched his campaign at Norfolk Naval base with an aircraft carrier in the background, and went on to crush Sen. John Edwards, a native from North Carolina, in… Read more »