Editor's note

Questions are swirling about the fate of Special Counsel Robert Mueller and the rule of law. If President Trump fires Mueller, is that obstruction of justice?

A scholar of philosophical literature, Klaus Mladek, says what Americans should really be asking is – what is justice, anyway? In these divisive political times, a foundational concept has gotten away from us, he writes. Getting back to a common understanding of justice might be as simple as unplugging and thinking for yourself.

Another controversial topic for the Trump administration is immigration. Its latest plan involves overturning a rule passed by his predecessor that allowed spouses of highly skilled foreign workers to obtain jobs in the U.S. Beyond the negative economic considerations, the proposal would also disproportionately harm women, writes Amy Bhatt, an associate professor of gender and women’s studies at the University of Maryland, Baltimore County.

Worried about navigating relationships with your loved ones during the holidays? Economist and Dean of the MSU College of Social Science, Rachel Croson, shares practical tips for happy holidays gleaned from the academic study of negotiations. “The most important insight,” she says, “is that negotiation does not have to be win-lose. It can be win-win.”

Danielle Douez

Associate Editor, Politics + Society

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Special Counsel Robert Mueller. AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite, File

Why justice is more important than the rule of law

Klaus Mladek, Dartmouth College

America's understanding of justice may be compromised, which is a more fundamental issue than enforcing the law.

U.S. immigration law has a complicated history with keeping families together. Reuters/Brian Snyder

Why Trump's plan to forbid spouses of H-1B visa holders to work is a bad idea

Amy Bhatt, University of Maryland, Baltimore County

A scholar explains why the president's plan to overturn his predecessor's rule would be a big mistake and disproportionately harm women.


Tips from negotiation experts for truly happy holidays

Rachel Croson, Michigan State University

A scholar applies lessons from her research to negotiate with her spouse better and have an 'awesome holiday.' Here's how you can too – and make your family life happier overall.

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Today’s quote

Irrational beliefs, and the often ill-considered responses they engender, can spread like an infection across groups as large as nations or as small as nuclear families.


Market bubbles and sonic attacks: Mass hysterias will never go away

Barry Markovsky

University of South Carolina

Barry Markovsky