"You can't save people from themselves," comments cartoonist and contributing editor Peter Bagge. He often says as much in his jittery comic commentary, a reason staple since June 2001. (His latest, "In Praise of Meaningless Crap," is on page 21.) A New York transplant to Seattle, Bagge is most famous for his wildly popular comic book Hate. His new project, Sweatshops (DC Comics), is a fictional story about cartoonists. "It's about an egomaniac who does a really bad comic strip, a cross between Garfield and Dilbert but not as good as either," says Bagge. "And he has a staff of young artists who do all the work." The first issue, drawn by Bagge and a staff of young artists, hit stores in April.
Longtime reason Contributing Editor Michael McMenamin offers an unexpected model of military restraint in "Teddy Roosevelt's Hidden Legacy" (page 56). As to whether our current president will follow that model, McMenamin remains agnostic: "A lot will depend upon what happens post Iraq." McMenamin, a media defense and employment lawyer in Cleveland, is editing a collection of correspondence between Winston Churchill and his first political mentor, Bourke Cockran, an Irish-American free trade advocate. A contributor to Finest Hour, the quarterly journal of the Churchill Centre in Washington, D.C., McMenamin is also the co-author of Milking the Public: Political Scandals of the Dairy Lobby from LBJ to Jimmy Carter (1980), which started out as a 1975 reason cover story.
God is in peak demand during wartime, notes Jodie T. Allen in "God Only Knows" (page 57). Allen is accustomed to a more terrestrial beat as managing editor at U.S. News & World Report, where she also writes a column called "Funny Money." Previously, Allen was the Washington bureau chief of the Web magazine Slate and the editor of Outlook, the Sunday commentary section of The Washington Post, where she started as an editorialist. She lives in Washington, D.C.