Monday, June 09, 2008

NATIONAL & WORLD NEWS - June 09, 2008

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New York Times
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-Politics and Hunger
At last week's United Nations food summit, the world's more-developednations proved, again, that domestic politics trumps humanitarian concerns.

-It's a Different Country by Paul Krugman
The de-racialization of U.S. politics has implications that go far beyondthe possibility that we're about to elect an African-American president.

-Airbrushed by the Kremlin, Again
Growing self-censorship among Russian journalists is as insidious asgovernment censorship.

-The Good American and Monsieur Obama
In French eyes, there's a single good American: the Democratic Partynominee, Barack Obama.

-The Seductive Charms of Term Limits
Term limits automatically purge the system of rascally politicians, butdemocracy already vests that power in every voter.

-Campaign Adds to Complicated Clinton Legacy

-Uncertainty as Tribune Prepares to Retrench
Is Sam Zell right about the newspaper business? Last week, Mr. Zell, chairman and chief executive of the Tribune Company,and Randy Michaels, the chief operating officer, announced a set of deepcuts, saying that shrinking revenue left them no choice. They said theywould trim 500 pages of news each week from the company's dozen papers,including The Chicago Tribune and The Los Angeles Times. Their aim is apaper with pages - excluding classified advertising and special adsections - split 50-50 between news content and ads.

Washington Post
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-No Time for 'Nobody Home'
The early months of 2009 may well be the most precarious period in recentAmerican history. As the next president takes office, some 350,000 U.S.military personnel deployed overseas will await orders from their newcommander in chief, the first wartime transition since Johnson-Nixon 40years ago. The next administration will not only take charge of two wars butwill also inherit daunting national security challenges: a global struggleagainst violent extremism; the continued proliferation of nuclear weapons tohostile states; growing challenges associated with energy security andclimate change; an overstretched military under enormous strain; an economysliding toward recession; and U.S. global standing at an all-time low.

- Servers That Snitch: What can be done to preserve freedom on the Internet?
EVERYONE WANTS to boost American exports. But the last thing any should do is sell tools of repression to authoritarian regimesabroad. It would be especially troubling if businesses were to helpdictators muzzle the Internet, the most powerful facilitator of freeexpression and communication ever invented.

-Stop Raising Cash
Mr. Obama and Mr. McCain should use the federal financing system for thefall campaign -- and reform it afterward.
IT'S BEEN just a few days since he clinched the Democratic nomination, soBarack Obama deserves some time to fulfill his pledge to "aggressivelypursue" an agreement with John McCain to stay within the public financingsystem for the general election. In case you worry that it would be hard tomake do on the paltry $85 million available to each candidate, considerthis: That money could be spent in only the 10 weeks between the nominatingconvention and Election Day. From now until the convention, Mr. Obama -- andMr. McCain for that matter -- can raise and spend "primary" money in whateveryone understands is a general election campaign. So the question for Mr.Obama is whether he should take the public money and use it to run in theclosing weeks, as Mr. McCain plans to do, or whether he should become thefirst candidate since the post-Watergate reforms to run a presidentialcampaign funded entirely by private donations.

-What Obama Could Teach Africa
What lessons, if any, will African leaders learn from Senator Barack Obama'sstunning success? Senator Obama has inspired a diverse cross-section ofAmericans: Whites, Latinos, Asians, African-Americans. Will those in Africa,the source of his heritage, follow suit? Sen. Obama's campaign has all along been about hope, a scarce commodity inAfrica where selfishness and greed are what define virtually every Africanleader. African leaders don't hold town hall meetings to listen to theircitizens' concerns. They're condescending and arrogant when it comes todealing with ordinary people.

-Lawyer: Gitmo interrogators told to trash notes
The Pentagon urged interrogators at Guantanamo Bay to destroy handwrittennotes in case they were called to testify about potentially harsh treatmentof detainees, a military defense lawyer said Sunday.

-Bahrain picks Jewish Woman as U.S. envoy, local media critical
Bahrain has nominated a Jewish woman to be its ambassador to Washington, theGulf Arab kingdom's foreign minister said on Sunday, dismissing doubts abouther suitability to represent the small Muslim country.

Miami Herald
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-Senate vote rejects climate-change risk
The United States is years behind Europe in reducing the emissions thatcontribute to global warming. Congress appeared willing to tackle the issuelast week, but Senate Republican leaders scuttled the chance for a neededclimate-change discussion on the role our country plays in theglobal-warming risk. The vote was 48-36, with Florida Sens. Bill Nelson andMel Martinez supporting the bill.

-Help opposition to restore democracy
Once again Hugo Chávez may be overreaching. On May 28, a spine-chillingintelligence decree went into effect with ominous consequences for civilliberties and the writ of habeas corpus. Ostensibly issued to deflectnational-security threats, the decree threatens Venezuelans who refuse toact as informants with up to four years in prison. Warrantless wiretappingand other forms of surveillance are green-lighted. A community-based networkof spies is in the works.

-John McCain's Ohio disconnect
Republican Party machinery in the state helped get President Bush intooffice, but it's not firing yet on McCain's behalf.
As the architect of Ohio's ballot measure against gay marriage, Phil Burresshelped draw thousands of conservative voters to the polls in 2004, most ofwhom also cast ballots to reelect President Bush. So Burress was notsurprised when two high-level staffers from John McCain's campaign droppedby his office, asking for his help this fall.,0,1838453.story

Fort Report
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-The wife U.S. Republican John McCain callously left behind
McCain likes to illustrate his moral fibre by referring to his five years asa prisoner-of-war in Vietnam. And to demonstrate his commitment to familyvalues, the 71-year-old former US Navy pilot pays warm tribute to hisbeautiful blonde wife, Cindy, with whom he has four children.
But there is another Mrs McCain who casts a ghostly shadow over the Senator's presidential campaign. She is seldom seen and rarely written about, despitebeing mother to McCain's three eldest children.

-GOP Insiders Worry About McCain's Chances
For four months John McCain had a clear field while Barack Obama and HillaryClinton were at each other's throats. Given the opportunity, the ArizonaSenator failed to define the debate in favorable terms, spending much of thevaluable primary months defending himself on charges that his campaign staffwas top heavy with lobbyists.

-McCain Campaign Declines to Meet with Billy Graham
In another disturbing sign that Sen. John McCain has little interest inreaching out to his conservative base, including evangelical Christianvoters, his campaign has declined an offer to meet with the Rev. BillyGraham.

-Sen. Kennedy to be released from hospital, son says
Sen. Edward Kennedy is expected to be released from the hospital a weekafter undergoing surgery in North Carolina for brain cancer. Rep. PatrickKennedy, D-R.I., tells The Providence Journal that his father will bereleased Monday from Duke University Medical Center and will head home toHyannis Port on Cape Cod.

-Campaign Notebook: 'Willie Horton' ad creator takes on Obama
On a website he calls, Floyd G. Brown, the producer of the "Willie Horton" ad that helped defeat Michael Dukakis in 1988, is preparing an encore. Brown is raising money for a series of ads that he says will show Barack Obama to be out of touch on an issue of fundamental concern to voters: violent crime. One spot already on the Internet attacks the presumptive Democratic nominee for opposing a bill while he was an Illinois legislator that would have extended the death penalty to gang-related murders.

-Racial attitudes pose challenge for Obama
Joyce Susick is the type of voter who might carry Barack Obama to the WhiteHouse -- or keep him out. A registered Democrat in a highly competitivestate, she is eager to replace George W. Bush, whom she ranks among theworst presidents ever.


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