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A sampling of what’s new and noteworthy, chosen with a little help from a friend:

“This is an important work about our most disenfranchised children: runaway and ‘throwaway’ youth. Their words and pictures tell a troubling story, but one America should see.”

So says Marian Wright Edelman, president of the Children’s Defense Fund, of a new book detailing the hardships endured by children on the streets. Jim Goldberg’s Raised by Wolves: Photographs and Documents of Runaways (New York: Distributed Art Publishers/Scalo, 1995) has an accompanying exhibit, which runs Sept. 16-Nov. 19 at the Corcoran Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C.

For about 15 percent of its military budget, the United States could wipe out poverty nationwide. That’s just one of many facts in Nancy Folbre and the Center for Popular Economics’ The New Field Guide to the U.S. Economy: A Compact and Irreverent Guide to Economic Life in America (New York: The New Press, 1995). An indispensable tool for hacking through election-year bluster, it reviews the major economic issues of the day, with help from cartoonists Tom Tomorrow, Dan Wasserman, and Nicole Hollander.

If “reduce, reuse, and recycle” is the mantra of the environmental movement, Choose to Reuse: An Encyclopedia of Services, Businesses, Tools & Charitable Programs That Facilitate Reuse (Woodstock, N.Y.: Ceres Press, 1995) ought to be its new bible. Authors Nikki and David Goldbeck believe that most of our postindustrial clutter can be reused or “recycled” by giving it to charity, and they offer hundreds of inventive nondisposal options to help us get started.

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We've never been very good at being conservative.

And usually, that serves us well in doing the ambitious, hard-hitting journalism that you turn to Mother Jones for. But it also means we can't afford to come up short when it comes to scratching together the funds it takes to keep our team firing on all cylinders, and the truth is, we finished our budgeting cycle on June 30 about $100,000 short of our online goal.

This is no time to come up short. It's time to fight like hell, as our namesake would tell us to do, for a democracy where minority rule cannot impose an extreme agenda, where facts matter, and where accountability has a chance at the polls and in the press. If you value our reporting and you can right now, please help us dig out of the $100,000 hole we're starting our new budgeting cycle in with an always-needed and always-appreciated donation today.

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