Tag Archives: Tim Roth

What You Missed

18 Nov

It had to happen—for years I have been railing against the lazy journalism that relies on lists to provide serviceable information and now I am about to offer a list of my own. In the spirit of the devil quoting scripture for his own purpose, I recall that poet Paul Zimmer’s reading of his “Zimmer Imagines Heaven” legitimizes lists. And, of course, garrulous Italian author and semiotician Umberto Eco’s The Infinity of Lists exhibits the possibility of something original attaching to list making. But I digress…

Netflix is, of course, a boon to cinema lovers, procrastinators and agoraphobics. Not to mention the ostensive evidence of how many wonderful films apparently are not (so it is alleged) sufficiently commercially viable to make it to the limited number of screens in the USA. And thus go unheeded by film audiences. Needless to say (but it must be repeated)the juncture of art and commerce is a tough enterprise and in the show business commerce regularly trumps everything.

Blackthorn

A great vehicle for the non-pareil Sam Shepard as Butch Cassidy who survived the ambush portrayed in the Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid. Fine performances by Eduardo Noriega and Stephen Rea and additionally vivid Bolivian locations make a eye catching background

Perfect Sense

A chef (Ewan McGregor) and an epidemiologist (Eva Green) meet against the backdrop of a worldwide epidemic of the loss of the sense of taste. And more.

Night Catches Us

1976, Philadelphia. A former Black Panther (Anthony Mackie) returns to his boyhood home and takes up with his martyred dead brother’s widow (Kerry Washington). He’s been labeled a snitch and additionally his hood is still a volatile battleground policed by racist honkie pigs.Great newsreel footage of real Panther activities. Images of murdered Chicago Panther Fred Hampton may bring tears to those who remember him.

United States of Amnesia

The inimitable Gore Vidal shines in an informative survey of his accomplished life—his famous tiffs with crypto fascist William Buckley and pugnacious Norman Mailer, his political campaigns and clear eyed commentary from both friends and foes.

The Conspirator

Robert Redford film depicts the woman Mary Surratt (Robin Wright) tried by a military kangaroo court in the aftermath of Abraham Lincoln’s assassination.The film is a plausible depiction of the state of the union in the tense post assassination period that feels much like the post 9/11 period.

Killing Emmett Young

A young Philadelphia homicide detective(Scott Wolf)is in pursuit of a serial murderer—when he learns that he is terminally ill. He arranges to have himself killed at a time unknown to him. He then finds out that there has been a medical test mixup and he is not dying. He plods on working the murder cases His problem: how does he call off his imminent assassination? And can he solve his big case? Gabriel Byrne and Tim Roth are the bad guys and smooth-as-silk Khandi Alexander is Wolf’s partner.

Night Train To Lisbon

A professorial type finds an odd clue in an old Portuguese memoir and leaves his responsibilities and takes a train to Lisbon to track down the mysterious circumstances of people depicted in their lives under the dictator Salazar. Jeremy Irons’s restrained portrayal makes solving the mystery both a historical and personal triumph.

Unfinished Sky

A widowed Australian farmer finds a distressed vagabond woman who speaks no English on his land. He discovers she is a Afghan refugee employed as a sex slave by the local thugs. She has come to Australia to find her child. Does she avoid recapture by the thugs from whom she has escaped? Does she find her child? I won’t tell.

Berlin Job

Also entitled St George’s Day. Who doesn’t love a good criminal enterprise? Two highly successful London gangsters lose a $50 million shipment of a ruthless Russian Mafioso’s cocaine— he once shot a man to see if his gun worked.Needless to say, mayhem and foxfire ensue. Smart, funny and honest thieves— they scheme a job in Berlin to earn the money to honor their debt to the Rusky.

Just a Sigh

A British man (Gabriel Byrne) takes a train to Paris for a funeral; Emmanuelle Devos plays an actress also on the train to Paris. An improbable love story (maybe they all are) follows.Well nuanced with hearty rending performances by fine actors.You’ll cry and you may laugh.

Layer Cake

Perhaps every smart crook understands their criminality has a shelf life and thus they ruminate on an exit plan. Coke dealer Daniel Craig (who sees himself as a businessman) is looking for that last deal to take him out of the game. But he has to answer to the volatile and hinky Jimmy Price. And then the even more ruthless Eddie Temple (Micheal Gambon).On the other end he has to deal with some really stupid crooks and an intractable Serbian assassin. Colm Meaney is turning into an Irish Robert Duval and some unknowns (at the time)— Sienna Miller, Tom Hardy Ben Whishaw show their thespian chops.

David Thomson circa 2004 [photo: Robert Birnbaum]

David Thomson circa 2004 [photo: Robert Birnbaum]

Though I rarely read reviews of anything (unless I enjoy a writer’s style and point of view expressed in other genre—essays, poems, novels) but obviously many people do. David Thomson, who happens to be an astute film scholar and historian,
(and shares my appreciation for Nicole Kidman) is the kind of writer I refer to above and amongst his prolific output are 3 editions of the quintessential A Biographical Dictionary of Film ,his illuminating The Whole Equation: A History of Hollywood and his very useful and insight laden “Have You Seen…?”: A Personal Introduction to 1,000 Films . I am pleased to have spoken to David a number of times. Here and here.

Currently reading Us Conductors by Sean Michaels (Tin House Books)

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Talking with Anthony Marra

23 Mar

For what its worth. Anthony Marra‘s debut novel A Constellation of Vital Phenomena (Hogarth) won numerous awards and accolades. A graduate of a Division One writing program (Iowa) and a Stegner Fellow at Stanford and is currently teaching there. His novel is set in war torn Chechnya a doctor observes Russian atrocities and then rescues a neighbor’s daughter teaming up with another doctor to survive the relentless barbarity.

Anthony and I met at my favorite neighborhood cafe, The Keltuc Krust. Basking outside in the late spring warmth and amid the outdoor sounds of passing traffic, we chatted about his childhood, Chechyna, how he writes,his early inspirations, Czech writer Bohumil Hrabal, acknowledgements, “his” cats, Netflix and his next project

Anthony Marra (photo:Robert Birnbaum)

Anthony Marra (photo:Robert Birnbaum)


15 May 2013

RB: What was your feeling when you finished your first novel?

AM: Well, ‘finished’ is a relative term.

RB: What was your feeling when you finished the first draft?

AM: A feeling of relief, a feeling of accomplishment and a feeling of trepidation knowing how much more work there was to do. I knew from the beginning that my writing process has always been to write as much as I can and just keep moving forward and then go back and revise and revise. While I was writing the first draft I kept a record on my wall of my daily word count. My goal was a thousand words a day. The days I would get to over a thousand words I would mark in black ink. And on the days I got less, I marked in red ink. I grew up in a Catholic family and went to church and Sunday school and I had all this shame running through me.

RB: The days that were in red were days of shame?

AM: Exactly. I would just see it staring back at me, the red ink. So that kept me honest for the most part. When I finished the first draft, I printed it out, sat down at my keyboard and started retyping the entire novel from the first sentence. And I repeated that process four times.

RB: There was 4 different drafts?

AM: I wrote the book 4 full times— each time I felt the shifts and changes in the book occurred naturally, organically. By retyping the sentences I am able to tap into whatever creative well they first emerged from.

RB: What is your sense of how much the 2nd draft changed?

AM: It changed more in the language and the tone, the style, more than anything. IF you were to read the first draft and then read the current version, the final version, I think the greatest difference would be the language. And how the story unfolds and how much the point of view was fixated on one character and didn’t move into the points of view of minor characters or jump into the future. It was a bit sharper and had less of a total range. I had a different ending on the first drafts.

RB: What did you think as you did each draft? “This doesn’t have…” Or “I need to …” What was the approach to critiquing the drafts?

AM: Yeah, I would read through the previous draft and see what didn’t feel right.

RB: So when you arrived at draft number 4, you thought—

AM: When I got to 4, at that point this hyper-omniscient narrator came into being. Everything just felt alive and real to me, in a way that it hadn’t before. I felt the story was as complete as could be. After that I continued with my editor and ended up cutting 50 pages and condensing things here and there. But it was that draft where I made the breakthrough to what the book could be rather than what it might potentially be.

RB: How did you feel then?

AM: I felt pretty good. A sense of the vision meeting reality. I remember once hearing someone say that happiness is where your expectations and reality converge. And I took a literary sense of that—what the book could be and what the book was, came together.

RB: What was the working title?

AM: A Constellation of Vital Phenomena.

RB: Taken from a Russian medical encyclopedia?

AM: Well, I found it in an English medical dictionary

RB: In the book you wrote that it came from a Soviet encyclopedia.

AM: Yeah. I can’t recall the name of the text.

RB: That’s a splendid definition of life.

AM: Its one of seven definitions. I was on line, weighing various definitions, as one does on a Saturday afternoon…

RB: yeah, that’s what I would be doing—

AM: Who doesn’t? I went to the ‘L’ section and I found this definition and it struck me as so peculiar.

RB: Peculiar enough to sound fictional.

AM: I can send you the link—

RB: No, no, no. I am not doubting you
—that is, until you get really outrageous. What do you think of the dictum, “Write what you know?”

AM: I prefer the dictum, ”Write what you want to know.”

RB: (laughs) Good one. You present some wonderful images in the story— a toilet bowl over an unexploded bomb. Did you actually see that?

AM: I didn’t see that. I’d hear reports —someone using basins to cover unexploded mortar shells. The setting is a place where absurdities abound.

RB:(pause for fire sirens that are roto-rootering my inner ears —I am wearing headphones). That was deafening. You could say that about most of Eastern Europe. Dark humor seems to reign supreme.

AM: Yeah, it’s a gallows humor. When I visited Chechnya people were constantly cracking jokes, usually at my expense. There was this sense that we laugh because it makes things bearable.

RB: Reportedly you wrote this book because there were no English language novels that had been written about Chechnya.

A view from the mountains in eastern Chechnya. (photo: Anthony Marra)

A view from the mountains in eastern Chechnya. (photo: Anthony Marra)

AM: I came to Chechnya and started reading about it because I was a college student in St Petersburg Russia shortly after the journalist Anna Politkovskaya was assassinated a couple of block from my apartment. There was a Metro station where Russian veterans of the Chechynan War would congregate—it was very much in the air.

RB: ‘Congregate” meaning— smoking cigarettes, drinking. panhandling…

AM: All of the above.

RB: Were they homeless?

AM: Some of them. Some in wheelchairs would go through the train cars asking for change. It[Chevchnya] was in the air and I realized I knew nothing about it. I started reading history books and non-fiction accounts and came completely moved by these stories of ordinary people persisting in extraordinary circumstances.

RB: I am aware of world events—there was a hostage situation in a school that turned out very badly?

AM: Yeah, Beslan.

RB: By and large I was totally ignorant and unaware of the circumstances there. And then I thought I am not attending to what’s happening in Darfur; I am sure indigenous are still being murdered in Central America; I don’t know if the Tamal rebels have prevailed in Sri Lanka. Around the world there are numerous deadly tribal squabbles —did you think writing a novel about Chechnya would make a difference?

Location  of Chechnya in Caucasus

Location of Chechnya in Caucasus

AM: No, I wanted to write a story. I am not out to change the world. I am not an investigative journalist uncovering anything or trying to shine a light on anything as much as I just wanted to tell the story I don’t think has reached an American audience in this form.

RB: Recognizing that this is a novel, have you been criticized for a failure to adhere to the reported facts? Or that you have given a faulty picture?

AM: No, I have not heard any significant criticism.

RB: How about insignificant?

AM: I suppose of you read some of the reviews. The city and the village that the novel is based in are fictitious. I created them so that I could —originally I was going to set it in Grozny but I felt very uncomfortable setting a story there that wouldn’t match up to the historical reality. So I created my one city and village and region so that I would have the freedom to veer away, to create my own history.

RB: What language is spoken there, Chechnyan?

AM: Yes, it one of a series northern Caucasian dialects that split away from the European family and are not connected linguistically to any thing else.

RB: So how does the language deal with modernity?

AM: Its interesting when I visited, a lot of people my age—I am 28 are just learning Chechnyan now. The person I hired to show me around had grown up in Moscow coming to Chechnya as an adult. And was studying/taking the language. Another woman, when I asked about what billboard said shrugged and told me she didn’t speak Chechnyan.

RB: Was the exile of Chechnayans to Kazakhstan mentioned in the book, a real historical event?

A painting of the 1944 Soviet deportation of ethnic Chechens to Kazakhstan and Siberia

A painting of the 1944 Soviet deportation of ethnic Chechens to Kazakhstan and Siberia

AM; Yeah that’s true. It was in 1944 and Stalin decided as the German Army was moving in to the Northern Caucuses with hopes of capturing oil in Grozny and eventually Baku that the Chechnyans would side with the Germans.

RB: Was it a Soviet republic?

AM: It was a semi autonomous state.

RB: What were your aspirations when you were growing up in Washington DC?

AM: When I was a kid I started reading my parents’ John Grisham novels and Michael Crichton and Tom Clancy and all those guys, when I was in elementary school, it was not only my entry into long books but into the adult world. Novels and fiction have always been my way of understanding the world. I was an avid reader and as I grew up I started to try to write —the first story I wrote was the called “The Last Of The Bohemians”—

RB: —how old were you?

AM: Sixteen. It was a page and half long about a man walking up a staircase and I sent it to the New Yorker (both laugh)

RB: Good for you. Its better that you didn’t know what that process was.

AM: I got a rejection so quickly—they have very good taste there. It’s been downhill form there.

RB: Iowa Writer’s Workshop, Stanford—I can see that. I read your book’s acknowledgments (can I be acknowledged in your next book, if I give you money?)

AM: Sure.

RB: Why did you apply to Iowa?

AM: It has this reputation as being this place that—this crucible, where writers I have admired like Dennis Johnson who is one of my favorite writers…. As soon as I realized he went to Iowa wanted to apply.

RB: I started to say reading the acknowledgments that I have spoken with a lot of the writers you were surrounded by—Ethan Canin

ETHAN CANIN circa 2001(photo: Robert Birnbaum)

ETHAN CANIN circa 2001(photo: Robert Birnbaum)

AM: I had a short story with several of these characters [from the novel] that I work-shopped with him—it was the very first thing I work-shopped at Iowa. He told me, “This should be a novel.” It was something I was already doing—other people had expressed that sentiment.

RB: It seems that a lot of Iowa graduates go on to Stanford and get a Stegner Fellowship. How has that been?

AM: It’s been incredible. Getting to work with Tobias Wolff and Adam Johnson and Elizabeth Talent. And the other Fellows are just—extraordinary. Its two years and your only obligation is to your work. It’s where I completed the last draft of the novel.

RB: Are you out on your own now and having to earn a living?

AM: Thankfully I will be at Stanford for 2 more years—I’ll be teaching there.

RB: Are you at all concerned that this kind of a cloistered life?

AM: Um.

RB: You weren’t concerned until I mentioned it.

AM: Now I am terrified (both laugh). No, I more concerned about health insurance. I like to think that my fictional interests are outward looking enough that I could pursue them in any environment.

RB: That’s good to think—how much do you attend to the “real world? Read newspapers, watch whatever news sources?

AM: Yeah. I feel like I am generally interested—

RB: Can I quiz you?

AM: Absolutely not. You mentioned those other civil conflicts I know as little about them as you do.

RB: But you are aware that they are out there?

AM: Yeah—for whatever reason this corner of the world [Chechnya] touched me in a way that made me want to delve deeper.

RB: What are you aspirations now as we sit here? Finish this conversation?

AM: I have to write a new book so I can acknowledge you.

RB: Good answer— I am sorry to burden you (both laugh).

AM: I am working in a second novel, which Hogarth will be publishing probably on 2 years or so.

RB: They committed sight unseen?

AM: It started as a collection of stories and now its something between stories and a novel that deals with this similar time period

RB: “Linked stories”?

AM: I hate that term but yeah. After that, my dad keeps telling me I should set a novel in Hawaii so we can all go there.

RB: Has anything unexpected happened because of the very positive reception for your debut novel?

AM: I wrote this novel when I was in Iowa. I was teaching rhetoric.I was making $11,000 that year. I was writing a book set in a place that most Americans can’t find on a map. Full of characters, full of names that are a little difficult to pronounce. There is no point of view situated in a familiar perspective. There are no Americans walking in stage. So I really didn’t think that anyone would be interested in it. I just knew that it was something that deeply interested me that —I felt I personally had to—to write the novel for myself really. And for my own sense of what I wanted to achieve as a writer. If it connected with other readers, brought a little attention to this area, that’s great. But I began without any expectations of any of that.

RB: I found it curious that Ann Patchett wrote a blurb that connected your book to Jonathan Foer’s first novel.

AM: I am huge fame of Ann Patchett’s work—she is a brilliant writer. She didn’t know me from Adam and that she would take the time —

RB: Sure, sure but its kind of misleading and lacking in imagination. Do you read a lot?

AM: Yeah.

RB: Fiction?

AM: Yeah.

RB: Contemporary?

AM: I try to read both. I am not very good about sticking to it but I try to rotate between reading a book that was written before 1985 and one that’s contemporary and then a non-fiction. I feel like it’s important to learn what your peers are doing and what’s happening in the world today. Its as important as revisiting and learning from the classics.

RB: I came across a recent quote by writer J Robert Lennon (Mailer bio) that asserted that most contemporary fiction is terrible…

AM: (laughs)

RB: And he’s a contemporary novelist. I see remarks like that I am immediately suspicious.

AM: Yeah, I feel like we are in the Golden Age. There are more wonderful books being published—

RB: —I share that view. Sure there are “bad” books being published out of the 150 thousand books a year. So, yeah. How many people read a hundred books a year? What contemporary fiction have you liked?

AM: I recently finished the Edward St Auybn, “The Patrick Melrose “novels.

RB: Its brilliant writing.

AM: Its as if the cast of Downton Abbey have gone on to become substance abusers. It’s so dark but so funny and really quite powerful. Also I read Czech writer Bohumil Hrabal —he is someone who influenced me. He is a very whimsical writer. Always with the backdrop of these horrific historical changes. He wrote Too Loud a Solitude. It’s about this trash compactor in Prague. And he basically trashes banned books. Along the way he saves them. He has this apartment that is built out of books—he has a canopy bed with 2 tons of books on top of it. He is afraid that quite literally, he will be crushed by these books. He’s great.

RB: Do you feel you have to read the books of the writers you are surrounded by at Stanford?

AM: Uh, yeah.

RB: Orphan Masters Son [Adam Johnson]?

AM: I read it when it first came out and I am in the middle of it now—I am rereading it. It’s absolutely brilliant—the sheer imagination and empathy. That book has become a measurement, a meter stick for what’s possible.

RB: Do you do anything besides read and write?

AM: I go running. Margaret and I have 2 cats. Well, she has 2 cats—

RB: You are not accepting any responsibility for the felines?

AM: I used to but yesterday I was talking about my cats and she was like, “Wait a minute.” [Laughs]

RB: So if you broke up, as has been known to happen, the cats go with her?

AM: Unfortunately. I probably would steal one.

RB: This is on the record.

AM: (laughs) One of them is this fat cat and the other one, periodically licks itself bald. He has bad allergies and we have been trying to deal with them. They make quite a pair, the two of these cats.

RB: So, you run and take care of 2 cats—do you watch movies?

AM: Actually, I am kind of a sucker for those superhero comic movies. I have loved comic books since I was a kid.

RB: The charm of those movies eludes me.

AM: What did you think of Ben Affleck’s Boston movies?

RB: I thought The Town was riveting base on a Chuck Hogan novel (Prince of Thieves )and Gone, Baby, Gone had great actors.

AM: I really like The Town. I saw it twice.

RB: Because of Netflix and have just seen a John Cusak movie that I had never even heard of—The Factory. The other one has a Philadelphia homicide cop who is diagnosed with a terminal disease who is persuaded to have himself killed by a hired killer but is not told when. Then he learns that the diagnosis was wrong and now wants to call of his own murder. Great cast, Tim Roth, Gabriel Byrne…

AM: Tim Roth is great—he has never really gotten his due.

RB: I agree (19.17.2). There was a moment in the epic Rob Roy when Roth, playing a fop and philanderer, transforms into a lethal and vicious swordsman. I’ve been an admirer of his ever since. Plus he did an understated movie with Tupac. Do you have Netflix?

AM: Yeah, I like watching documentaries especially Frontline. Its one of the great gifts of television

RB: HBO’s documentaries are impressive. I just watched a series on warzone photographers called Witness produced by Michael Mann. Riveting stuff! When will your next book be published?

AM: About 2 years.

RB: Now that I have a dog in that hunt please report your progress to me. A fairly recent development in authorial acknowledgments is to include publicists. Imagine the ground you would be breaking acknowledging me. There is Sharon Sternberg’s Leaning in book where she has 7 pages of acknowledgments for a 140 page book

AM: There has been some blowback on acknowledgments. In Cutting the Stone there must be over 10 pages [of acknowledgements] He goes through and lists this scene was influenced by this book. Its ends up becoming this

RB: —epilogue.

AM: This wonderful reading list —the books that influenced him and the books he loves—its great.

RB: Indeed. So we’ll meet back here in 2 years. Thank you

AM: All right, I’d love to. Thanks very much for taking the time to do this.

RB: This is my pleasure.

A Constellation of Vital Phenomena by Anthony Marra

A Constellation of Vital Phenomena by Anthony Marra

Currently reading, Midnight in Europe by Alan Furst (Knopf)

WTF

23 Jan

Rushing to embrace the forthcoming publishing lists has been a hysterical frenzied gesture more and more present in the clattering class of young literary journalists who express their infantile intentions to love the forthcoming opuse of their favorite writers turning their so-called reportage into hagiogrphic paeans. Plus who has gotten through last season’s (and the season before that) crop of wonderful books. Something is very wrong in the intersection of the time lines of commerce and literature.

I was recently introduced to the HBO series Girls, a narrative and an auteur that has/ which has provoked some interesting discussion( Elizabeth Wurtzel and some rejoinder in New York magazine.. Having enjoyed the luxury of watching 4 or 5 episodes at my leisure I can echo the sentiment of the gynecologist who ends the second episode (Ist season ) saying, “I’m glad I am not a 24 year old girl.” Certainly, a clever and amusing little universe has been created but some how so uncanny as to be superreal.Which for the purpose of the screen is not bad.

Here’s a good cry if nothing else

The Elmore Leonard spawned series JUSTIFIED now in its third season seems to be sustaining its engaging conversational riffing at an entertaining level. I was aggrieved that Raylon Givens wife Winona (Nathalia Zea) had been written out of the show but pleased to MS Zea is now a romantic lead to the busted out FBI Agent played by Kevin Bacon in the new serial killer series The Following. Of course, in this story Claire (Ms Zea) plays the ex wife of a serial killer who has brutally killed 14 girls and now.from jail, engaged a following to continue his murderous ambitions.

Nathalie Zea as Claire on the Following

Nathalie Zea as Claire on the Following

Apparently Warren Ellis has a following based on his graphic novels. His new novel Gun Machine (Mullholland Books) which I enjoyed has 2 video trailers. One is considered dark and spooky The second, though quite original is more in line with conventional presentations.

Gun Machine by Warren Ellis

Gun Machine by Warren Ellis

As time passes in the shit-stream ofd public conversations there unavoidable names—currently Lance Armstrong,The Kardashians, that Notre Dame footballer, ad nauseum. Reading Gail Collins at least produced the benefit of publicizing another of Notre Dames egregious lapses in her January 18th column.

Whatever else President Obama has done he has kept alive the worthy art of public oratory. Prepatory to his 2nd Inaugural I audited his 1st Inaugural oration

Corny as it may be, I was pleased that the new President commenced that speech with, “My Fellow Citizens”. It was a rousing bit of speechifying, though more in tune with past eras way of expressing the actualities.Apropos of nothing I am wondering if I am the only person who took exception to the infelicitous use of ‘command’ in

“…That is how we will preserve our planet, commanded to our care by God. That’s what will lend meaning to the creed our fathers once declared.”

Shouldn’t the word be ‘commend’?

One of the obvious benefits of the film streaming services is the removal from the dust bin of pop culture an endless assortment of movies that one has overlooked. Long a fan of British actor Tim Roth (especially since his riveting portrayal of a poofy but deadly swordsman in the other wise forgettable Rob Roy,stumbling on Killing Emmett Young was a double treat interesting plot and outstanding performances not the least by Roth as first time contract killer

Of the landslide of books coming in the coming months weeks and days, The KRAUS PROJECT, a collection essays by the inestimable and criminally overlooked essayist/ aphorist Karl Kraus is being published under the guiding hand of novelist jonathan Franzen.

Karl Krause

Karl Krause

At least one reader was exasperated by another of Thomas Freidman’s advice-to-the-power columns—this one suggesting the Secretary of State Kerry designate toss out the so called rulebook. Foreign Policy magazine was the site of an open letter imploring the New York Times to put Freidman on a leave of absence. Good idea?

RIP Adam Swartz