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The Sword of Damocles

The term "sword of Damocles hanging over..." evokes a threat to whoever is underneath. In the original myth, Damocles was a nobleman in the court of Dionysius, tyrant of Syracuse.…

Warren Hinckle, Flamboyant Publisher

I first met him in 1966 or early '67. I'd had a freelance assignment from Ramparts salvaging a story about a murderous Croatian fascist living happily ever after in Southern…

Madness, Murder, ‘Marijuana’

In Sagamihara, Japan last week, a 26-year-old man stabbed 19 disabled people to death —the worst mass killing in the nation's postwar history. The media focused on why Stoshi Uematsu,…

The Neighbor’s Lawn Sign

The Neighbor’s Lawn Sign

Now it's time to make up your mind / the primary's over, so's your lawn sign / You were feeling the Bern / Now you know it's her turn— / put up a sign for Jill Stein…

Chicago ‘68

In the spring of ’68 I’d been hired as an editor at Ramparts magazine. The office was on Broadway off Sansome Street in San Francisco. One day in early summer…

Namedrops Keep Fallin’ On My Head*

Mischievous Hendrik Hertzberg emailed, “Have you seen my friend Clara Bingham’s oral history of 1969-70? Jane Fonda talks about you in it. Curious about your reaction.” It was too bad,…

MJ Saves Medicare Money

Researchers at the University of Georgia have published a study in the July issue of Health Affairs showing that Medicare's prescription drug benefit program saves money in states that have legalized…

Honest—Abe Lincoln Didn’t Smoke Hemp

Abraham Lincoln said, according to many sources, including the Cannabis Card produced by Pebbles Trippet and drawn by Fred Sternkopf,  "Two of my favorite things are sitting on my front…

Items You Might Have Missed

At the age of 96, Dr. Henry J. Heimlich had occasion to save a woman who was choking by using the famous maneuver he had developed for that purpose and…

My Don Duncan — And Ours

My Don Duncan — And Ours

The NY Times ran Don Duncan's obituary May 9 — seven years after he died in a Madison, Indiana nursing home. The belated obit by Robert McFadden shows that somebody…

The Etymology Of 420

The Etymology Of 420

O’Shaughnessy’s got invited to an “Eve-of-420” event at a club in San Rafael called Terrapin Crossroads, launched by Phil Lesh of Grateful Dead fame. There was valet parking, a rare…

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