Richard Just

Richard Just is the deputy editor of The New Republic. From September 2002 until December 2003, he was editor of The American Prospect Online. He graduated cum laude from Princeton University in 2001, with a degree from the Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs. At Princeton, he was the editor-in-chief of The Daily Princetonian.

Richard is also the founder and executive director of The Daily Princetonian Class of 2001 Summer Journalism Program, a 10-day program for students from under-resourced high schools who are planning to pursue careers in journalism. The program is held annually on the campus of Princeton University; its inaugural session took place in August 2002.

Recent Articles

The Big Idea:

It's probably a good measure of how much has changed in American politics in recent months that George W. Bush was about 30 minutes into his first State of the Union address before he said something I didn't agree with. With serviceable rhetoric and commendable resolve on the war against terrorism, Bush presented much to admire last night, even for Democrats. Like much of his presidency so far, his first State of the Union address was steeped in the lessons of where his Republican predecessors, particularly his father, succeeded -- and where they did not. In his past major addresses, Bush has drawn heavily upon the vivid imagery associated with Reagan's speechmaking, and, to a lesser degree, his father's. At the 2000 Republican convention, Bush ended his speech by invoking the sunrise imagery that was a Reagan staple. And last year, he concluded his inaugural address by borrowing Thomas Jefferson's description of an angel riding in the "whirlwind" of American history -- subtly...

Suddenly Serviceable:

F or years, Charles Moskos has been churning out impassioned arguments for creating an American system of compulsory civilian and military service. The Northwestern University sociologist is widely recognized as the intellectual guru behind the national-service movement. But until recently, his idea seemed doomed to remain one of those noble proposals with almost no political appeal. It made antigovernment conservatives cringe and civil libertarians shudder. No one knew quite how it could be sold to the young people of America who would be asked to serve. Throughout the 1980s, it remained far outside the political mainstream, championed primarily by Moskos and out-of-power centrists at the Democratic Leadership Council. In 1990 the libertarian Cato Institute reported with evident relief that national service was "but a gleam in the eyes of a handful of philosophers and politicians." Now with the new war on terrorism, national service has suddenly become a hot topic. Some commentators...

Generation Gap:

Time has left an ever-widening gulf -- of years and of outlook -- between Bob Hodge, the affable chair of Beloit College's history department, and his students. Decades now separate him from the 20 year-olds who populate his undergraduate classes. But that was not always the case. To hear Hodge tell the story, it might as well have been yesterday -- though it was actually October 3, 1969 -- that he surprised one of his classes with an unannounced quiz. For about 20 minutes, he let them suffer, even as he smiled inside. Then he called the quiz to a halt, and told them it had all been a joke. To a classroom of confused students, the young professor next revealed that it was his 30th birthday. "You can't trust anyone over 30," he reminded them. More than 30 years later, he's still tickled by the punch line. The reason Hodge's joke was funny then -- the reason his punch line resonated with a classroom, and, indeed, a generation -- was simple: You couldn't trust anyone over 30 because they...

Security on the Cheap

They are poorly paid and often numbed by the repetitiveness of their jobs. They quit frequently and are replaced quickly. They serve the public good, but work for private companies. When they do their jobs thoroughly, they earn the wrath of impatient travelers. And when tragedy strikes, the world holds them responsible. They are airport security screeners -- operators of metal detectors and x-ray machines -- and, as of Tuesday morning, everyone in America wants to know what they are doing wrong and why. Academics, journalists, government officials, union organizers -- everyone seems to agree that something needs to be done to improve the job performance of security screeners, many of whom are paid little more than minimum wage and enjoy few benefits. There are, in general terms, three schools of thought on how this might be accomplished. The first would leave the current system -- under which airlines hire private security firms -- intact, allowing what is bound to be increased...

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