The American Prospect is Growing on Me
For many years after its founding in 1990, the American Prospect magazine--established by a trio of unabashedly liberal academics as a counterbalance to growing influence of right-wing think tanks--was utterly lost on the newstands. It couldn't compete with the name recognition that competitors like the The Nation or Harpers had earned over a century and a half. It didn't have the writing talent to compete with The New Republic, nor the investigative grit of Mother Jones. And in journalism, it had developed a reputation for suffering from rapid turnover, the result of periodic palace intrigues caused by a dysfunctional senior editor.
But in recent years, the craziness seems to have dissipated, and the magazine has been doing an increasingly good job in its niche. Like many, I imagine, I first got in the habit of checking it out through its excellent blog, Tapped. But that led me to the print/web magazine companion. I think the current April issue just might be the best ever. It contains this great cover story on Al Gore, plus this thoughtful, well-reported piece by the LA Weekly's Harold Meyerson, on Detroit's auto-manufacturing woes, which manages to paint a much broader picture about the place of manufacturing in America's future.
Just don't confuse it with the British magazine, Prospect, which is also excellent.