Food for thought...

On this day in 1999...

Lou Dobbs was a respected, middle-of-the-road journalist.

The prospect of achieving Middle East peace seemed imminent.

Beltway pundits believed Al Gore and George W. Bush were centrists who would govern similarly.

You could meet your loved ones at their arrival gate.

There were more than 2 million Christians living in Iraq.

Osama bin Laden was living with his family in a compound in Kandahar.

China's GDP was $1.4 trillion, half of Germany's.

Israel still had troops in Lebanon.

Nobody had ever heard of Somali pirates.

Something called Inktomi was the world's largest search engine.

Everybody was clamoring for the new file-sharing program Napster.

We worried Y2K would bring the global banking infrastructure to its knees.

Illinois State Senator Barack Obama campaigned for a spot in the House of Representatives.

First Lady Hillary Clinton campaigned for a spot in the Senate.

Wasilla, Alaska, Mayor Sarah Palin considered running for state-wide office.

India had fewer than a billion citizens.

Strongman Slobodan Milosevic still ruled in Yugoslavia.

The human genome had not yet been mapped.

The Concorde flew between Paris and New York.

Alan Greenspan was widely heralded as the world's greatest financial thinker.

Boris Yeltsin was preparing to step down and make way for the young pragmatist Vladimir Putin.

The Dow Jones closed at 11,484. (Today, it's at 10,545.)

The United States had a record federal budget surplus.

Foreign Policy looked like this.


Is FP a neocon rag?

I was amused yesterday afternoon to read DailyKos contributor Meteor Blades describe FP thusly:

For instance, the once-neoconservative, still mostly conservative Foreign Policy magazine picked The FP Top 100 Global Thinkers and put Ben Bernanke in the No. 1 slot. Not my first choice by a country mile. But then, consider the source.

Never mind the fact that no less a neocon than President Obama, No. 2 on our list, chose to reappoint Bernanke in recognition of his economic stewardship -- I'm not sure when FP was supposed to have been a conservative magazine of any stripe. Was it back in 1970, when FP's founders established a journal intended to challenge the assumptions behind the Vietnam War? Or was it in May 2008, when we ran a cover story by American Prospect correspondent Gershom Gorenberg that describes Israel as "neither a perfect democracy, nor a Jewish ghetto imperiled by Iranian Nazis, nor a pupper master indirectly controlling Washington"? Or was it last January, when environmental activist Bill McKibben warned that we have to stop climate change now, before it's too late? Or perhaps in September 2007, when FP's cover appeared to call for the legalization of cocaine? Or maybe it was January of that year, when the magazine turned to Nobel laureate Daniel Kahnemann to explain why hawks so often seem to win foreign-policy debates? Or was it last winter when we signed up Steve Walt, Dan Drezner, Tom Ricks, and Marc Lynch as bloggers? Those don't sound like neoconservative plots to me.

It would, of course, be equally easy for anyone to cherry pick any number of neoconservative or conservative-sounding articles from our archives -- or arguments from further left.

And this is the point. FP simply isn't an ideological magazine; we're a forum for all sorts of voices and ideas, left, right, centrist, whatever. And we're always open to yours, so tell us what you think. Fire away!