March 26, 2010
WASHINGTON -- How in the name of God can the Roman Catholic Church put the pedophilia scandal behind it? I do not invoke God's name lightly. The church's problem is, above all, theological and religious. Its core difficulty is that rather than drawing on its Christian resources, the church has acted almost entirely on the basis of this world's imperatives and standards. It has worried about lawsuits. It has worried about its image. It has worried about itself as an institution and about protecting its leaders from public scandal.
Obama's Turkish Ally: Denying The Armenian Massacre, Now Threatening an Armenian Deportation. Not a Single Media Report.
March 22, 2010
I don't want to break President Obama's healthfest. And I also don't won't to distract you from Jon Chait's and John Judis' analyses of how all of us got there. The Republicans still have some games to play in the senate. But the real delays will come from postponements of entitlements and other time-lag provisions included in the legislation itself. Still, since it has been uniformly ignored in the United States and also neglected by the "progressive" media in the United Kingdom (including the BBC), I want to call your attention to a dictator's threat to 100,000 of his people.
Lessons From Spain's Solar Bubble
March 09, 2010
Elisabeth Rosenthal has a smart piece looking into Spain's failed experiment with solar-power subsidies. What happened was that in 2007, the Spanish government announced a new policy of "feed-in tariffs" for solar power. Anyone who built, say, a solar-thermal plant or installed photovoltaic panels on their roof could sell that electricity to the grid for above-market rates.
High Speed Rail: A Social Cohesion Strategy for the U.S.?
March 09, 2010
When President Obama unveiled his budget allocation for high-speed rail, he said, “In France, high-speed rail has pulled regions from isolation, ignited growth [and], remade quiet towns into thriving tourist destinations.” His remarks emphasize how high-speed rail is increasing the accessibility of isolated places as an argument for similarly investments.
Learning from Number Two: Germany and Its Exports
February 23, 2010
Just weeks ago, Germany formally relinquished its title as the world’s top exporter to China. For 2009, China reported that its exports totaled $1.2 trillion as compared to Germany’s $1.1 trillion. The U.S. lost this title in 2003, when Germany surpassed our exports. What a difference a decade makes. Even on the heels of their success, Germany has been cringing at the prospect of China surpassing them in total dollars generated by annual exports.
February 17, 2010
Ajami Kino International The Last New Yorker Brink Films North Face Music Box Films A Palestinian, Scandar Copti, and an Israeli, Yaron Shani, have co-written, co-directed, and co-edited Ajami. This title is the name of a multi-ethnic district in the city of Jaffa, so it fits the film, not merely in facts but in feeling. Copti and Shani knew what they were doing and why they were doing it. Coincidentally, they prove again that the film medium has made a contribution to social revelation.
More Calls To Fix The IPCC
February 11, 2010
The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) has done indispensable work over the years in assessing the vast amount of research out there on the Earth's climate system and putting it all together into an accessible summary for policymakers and laypeople. I'd very much recommend the IPCC's Working Group 1 report from 2007 to anyone who wants to delve deeper into the basics of how scientists know that humans are warming the planet. Still, the panel isn't perfect.
Live-Blogging the Iranian Protests
February 10, 2010
The New Republic is live-blogging news of events in Iran today, on the eve of 22 Bahman (February 11), the anniversary of Iran’s 1979 revolution. The Iranian opposition movement is slated to co-opt the state's annual rallies to stage another mass demonstration--the largest since December's violent protests on the Shiite holy day of Ashura. February 11, 2010, 6:41 pm.
What’s Old Is New Again
February 09, 2010
A few years ago, few places on Earth were as hellish as Iraq’s Anbar Province. Spanning the country’s western desert, Anbar is best known by its major cities, Fallujah and Ramadi, both of which became home bases for Al Qaeda-linked terrorists who flooded across Iraq’s border with Syria and joined with Sunni insurgents to carry out bombings, executions, kidnappings, and torture across the country.
Saint and Sinner
February 08, 2010
Bitter Spring: A Life of Ignazio Silone By Stanislao Pugliese (Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 426 pp., $35) In June 1950, Ignazio Silone and Arthur Koestler, two of the most prominent anti-communist writers of that era, attended a convivial dinner party in West Berlin. They had gathered with several other intellectuals to celebrate the founding conference of the Congress for Cultural Freedom, an American-sponsored riposte to the Soviet Cominform’s “peace conferences” of the preceding year.