Lovable and Inimitable

Original research for this story was conducted by the author for a book he co-authored with David Proctor entitled “Pie Traynor: A Baseball Biography.” Hunched over a lathe on a steamy factory floor, Pie Traynor — World Series champion, future Hall of Famer, and the man widely considered the greatest third baseman who had ever …

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Confessions of an Introvert in Pandemic Times

Most people who know me would be surprised to hear that I’m an introvert. Sure, I can be social when I have to. But honestly, social situations drain me. I recharge by coming home and crawling into a dark corner all by myself, much to my wife’s chagrin. You see, I’m an INFJ. In the …

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On Inflation

So many people have asked about my views on inflation that I’m pausing my antitrust series to address the topic. Back to antitrust next week. “If [Biden] succeeds, the President will cast 40 years of economic doctrine on history’s ash heap. But that’s a big if.” — Michael Hirsh, in Foreign Policy In my day …

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The Summer 2021 issue:

The Triumph of “The Current War”

Since the emergence of drama two-and-a-half-millennia ago, the theater’s greatest enemy has always been the plague. It is no coincidence that during the fifth century BCE, as Aeschylus, Sophocles, and Euripides were writing the first great tragedies, Hippocrates was writing the first great medical treatise, called the Epidemics. Theater, unlike virtually any other art form, …

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What a Year. What Now? Part III

Pittsburgh Quarterly asked the region’s top experts to respond to these questions: As the U.S. economy gradually recovers from the pandemic, which sectors of the market do you like now? How are you positioning client portfolios? We thank them for giving readers their responses, which follow. Read part one and part two. Linda Duessel, Federated …

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Our Sleeping Porch

“There was nothing of the giant in the aspect of the man who was beginning to awaken on the sleeping porch of a Dutch Colonial house in that residential district of Zenith known as Floral Heights. His name was George F. Babbitt.” — “Babbitt” by Sinclair Lewis The joys of a sleeping porch are many, …

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A Different View of the Neighborhood

In 1968, when Fred Rogers pushed through his famous front door for the first time, he brought with him more than kindness, compassion and a cardigan sweater. He brought more than Daniel Tiger, more than X the Owl, more than all the puppets who lived in the Neighborhood of Make-Believe. What Rogers brought was less …

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The Weird Inconsistencies of Trust Busting

Last week, I suggested that the enforcement of America’s antitrust laws has made little sense since the Sherman Act was adopted in 1890. In fact, the word that comes to mind is “fiasco.” Previously in this series: “Making Monopoly Illegal: Antitrust Is More Interesting Than You Think, Part VI” I mentioned earlier in this series …

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Buckle Up!

Pie, crisp, cobbler, crumble, betty or buckle, the most beloved summer desserts are the ones that highlight ripe summer fruit, with a little bit of butter, sugar and flour to bring everything together. (And most, if not at all, are made even better with a big scoop of vanilla ice cream on top.) Versions of …

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What a Year. What Now? Part II

Pittsburgh Quarterly asked the region’s top experts to respond to these questions: As the U.S. economy gradually recovers from the pandemic, which sectors of the market do you like now? How are you positioning client portfolios? We thank them for giving readers their responses, which follow. Read part one here. Jim Wilding, Confluence Financial Partners …

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‘I Am What You Make Me’

The American flag has flown on the moon proclaiming the nation that dared to walk on its surface. It was cheered in European cities and towns liberated from Nazi occupation by American soldiers during World War II. And it has been burned in protests against U.S. policy at home and abroad. It’s draped on the …

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Looking at the Block Family’s Record on Race

Book reviews traditionally talk about what’s in a book, but almost never about how a particular book came to be. This one has an interesting and unusual beginning. Nearly three years ago, following a controversy over an editorial called “Reason as Racism,” Allan Block, the chair of Block Communications, Inc., the parent company today of …

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June 15, 2017

I imagine you feeling the heat on your shoulder as you leave your apartment. Maybe you touch the spot where the sun warms you: two inches above and to the left of your clavicle. My neighbors planted their tulips in March—I don’t know why I didn’t tell you—and this week the buds opened wide, became …

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Making Monopoly Illegal

When people who don’t like free markets (i.e., almost everybody in academia) talk about antitrust law, they almost always begin by saying something like this: “One of the core defects of market economies is the inevitability of monopolistic practices.” Previously in this series: “The Tricks of the Trade: Antitrust Is More Interesting Than You Think, …

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