What happened on January 20, 2008
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
The perils of picking presidents Dennis McDougal, Dennis McDougal, a former Times staff writer, is the author of "Privileged Son: Otis Chandler and the Rise and Fall of the L.A. Times Dynasty" and eight other books.
Misreading the mind Jonah Lehrer, Jonah Lehrer, an editor at large for Seed magazine, is the author of "Proust Was a Neuroscientist."
Taking liberties Jonah Goldberg, Jonah Goldberg, a weekly Op-Ed columnist for The Times, is the author of "Liberal Fascism: The Secret History of the American Left, From Mussolini to the Politics of Meaning."
Black and white Joel Pett, Joel Pett is the Pulitzer Prize-winning editorial cartoonist of the Lexington Herald-Leader. His work also appears in USA Today.
The 'something for nothing' state Mark Paul, Mark Paul, senior scholar at the New America Foundation, was formerly deputy treasurer of California and deputy editorial page editor of the Sacramento Bee.
Is the NFL on the right team? Dave Zirin, Dave Zirin is the author of "Welcome to the Terrordome: The Pain, Politics and Promise of Sports."
Dead and deader John Mueller, John Mueller holds the Woody Hayes Chair of National Security Studies at Ohio State University. Among his books are "The Remnants of War" and "Overblown: How Politicians and the Terrorism Industry Inflate National Security Threats, and Why We Believe Them."
The inciter Donna Seaman, Donna Seaman is an editor for Booklist and host of the radio program Open Books in Chicago (www.openbooksradio.org). Her author interviews are collected in "Writers on the Air."
America's core value Jonathan Kirsch, Jonathan Kirsch is an attorney specializing in publishing law. His next book is a history of the Inquisition and its impact on American democracy.
Infectious hope Peter Terzian, Peter Terzian is editing an anthology of essays about beloved record albums.
On the beaten track Marc Weingarten, Marc Weingarten is the author of "The Gang That Wouldn't Write Straight: Wolfe, Thompson, Didion, Capote and the New Journalism Revolution."
Affirmative fractions Erin Aubry Kaplan, Erin Aubry Kaplan is a contributing editor to The Times' Opinion pages.
The neocondition Andrew J. Bacevich, Andrew J. Bacevich is professor of history and international relations at Boston University.
The subversives Richard Rayner, Richard Rayner is the author of, most recently, "The Associates." His column Paperback Writers appears monthly at www.latimes.com/books.
To live and buy in New York Carol Anshaw, Carol Anshaw is the author of the novels "Aquamarine," "Seven Moves" and "Lucky in the Corner."
A new day Jenifer Berman, Jenifer Berman works for the New Yorker and contributes to Bookforum and the New York Times Book Review.