Monday, July 14, 2008


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New York Times
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-Arts, Briefly: Ian McKellen Confronts Anglican Church on Gays
Ian McKellen accused the Anglican Church of homophobia during an appearanceon a BBC television program, the British newspaper The Guardian reported.Mr. McKellen, far right, the actor and a founding member of the Stonewallgay-rights group, made the comments while appearing on "The Andrew Marr Show" with Gene Robinson (pictured with Mr. McKellen), the gay Episcopalbishop from New Hampshire whose 2003 consecration has caused division withinthe church. According to The Guardian Mr. McKellen said that religiousauthorities and some leaders of Britain's armed forces and schools sharedsimilar negative attitudes toward gay people: "They root around in the Biblefor the bits that seem to be relevant." Mr. McKellen and Bishop Robinsonwill host the British premiere of an American 2007 documentary abouthomosexuality and religion, "For the Bible Tells Me So." The screening willbe held in London on Monday, two days before the start of the LambethConference, a meeting of Anglican bishops held every 10 years and hosted bythe Archbishop of Canterbury, Rowan Williams.

-Taliban Profits From Pakistan Marble
The takeover of the Ziarat quarry has enabled the Taliban to turn themselvesinto a self-sustaining fighting force.

-Give Amtrak a Fighting Chance
Amtrak's current funding is a woefully inadequate $1.2 billion. New billswould roughly double that, and sustain it for five years.

-Op-Ed Columnist: Scandinavia's Scarred Mr. Dialogue
Scandinavia does reasonableness well, even when faced with unreason. TheOslo Accords of 1993 were as close as Israelis and Palestinians have come tolooking each other in the eye, admitting neither side is going away, andjettisoning a bitter past for a better future.

-Editorial: Witnessing the War Dead, From Afar
There's a propaganda edge to waging every war, and a sad hallmark of theBush administration's approach has been to deny the nation the candid sightof flag-draped coffins of sacrificed soldiers returning from Iraq andAfghanistan. A nation at war should confront the reality of war.

-What's Next in the Law? The Unalienable Rights of Chimps
Spain's parliament recently passed a resolution granting legal rights toapes. Reaction has been mixed. Peter Singer, a Princeton Universitybioethics professor and animal liberation activist, declared the vote to beof "world historical significance." The comedian Stephen Colbert - flashinga photo of a performing chimpanzee - insisted that the new law had betternot give apes "the right to not wear a tuxedo and roller skates."

-Government as the Big Lender
For millions of Americans, the government has morphed from lender of lastresort into effectively the only lender.

-Sudanese President Accused of Genocide
Omar Hassan al-Bashir is the first sitting head of state to be charged bythe International Criminal Court. [...] The prosecutor at the InternationalCriminal Court on Monday formally requested an arrest warrant for Sudan'spresident, Omar Hassan al-Bashir, on charges of genocide and crimes againsthumanity committed during the last five years of bloodshed in his country'sDarfur region.

-Lieberman Finds Middle a Tricky Path
Joseph I. Lieberman, lapsed Democrat of Connecticut, strolled into theweekly lunch of the Senate Democrats last Tuesday, unaccompanied by a foodtaster. He greeted his colleagues, including some who felt he should nothave been there. He ate his lunch (salad, eschewing the mac and cheese) andsat through a discussion about gasoline prices and Medicare.

-Sarkozy Helps to Bring Syria Out of Isolation
Leaders of 43 nations with nearly 800 million inhabitants inaugurated a"Union for the Mediterranean" on Sunday, meant to bring the northern andsouthern countries that ring the sea closer together through practicalprojects dealing with the environment, climate, transportation, immigrationand policing.

-Democrats Look to Lobbyist to Finance Convention
In terms of lobbyists, few are more connected - both west of the Mississippiand in the corridors of power in Washington - than Steve Farber, a Denverlawyer whose political contacts have thrust him into a central fund-raisingrole for the Democratic National Convention.

-Schwarzenegger Weighs Post Under Obama
Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger of California, who has endorsed Senator JohnMcCain and called his fellow Republican a role model, suggested in aninterview broadcast Sunday that he would be willing to serve as an energyand environment czar under Senator Barack Obama should he win thepresidency.

-Op-Ed Contributor: My Plan for Iraq
The call by Prime Minister Nuri Kamal al-Maliki for a timetable for theremoval of American troops from Iraq presents an enormous opportunity. Weshould seize this moment to begin the phased redeployment of combat troopsthat I have long advocated, and that is needed for long-term success in Iraqand the security interests of the United States.

-Will Little Havana Go Blue?
On the surface, political life in Cuban Miami seems unchanged. Little Havanais still partly a Disney version of a displaced Cuba and partly a genuinecommunity hub, where families who have long since left for suburbia stillcome for nostalgic weekend lunches. At the Versailles Restaurant, thecommunity newspapers preaching no compromise with Castro are all that are onoffer.

Washington Post
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-The World: The Week Ahead in International News
Monday: Envoys from Asia and Africa will meet in Jakarta, Indonesia, for aconference on the political and economic development of the Palestinianterritories. Wednesday: A once-a-decade Anglican church conference opensin Canterbury, England, but a quarter of the church's bishops are expectedto boycott it over the issues of female bishops and openly gay clerics.

-Back In the USSR?
Vladimir Putin's appointment this spring as prime minister of the symbolic"union" of Russia and Belarus was yet another example of the troublingsimilarities between today's Russia and the other most stable and prosperousRussian regime of the past 80 years: Leonid Brezhnev's Soviet Union in the1970s. That economy, too, was fueled by then-record oil prices. And whilethere are clear differences between the two Russias, if these tendencies gounchecked, the increasingly authoritarian and economically statist countrymay soon face crises of the kind that became apparent under Brezhnev andcontributed to the Soviet Union's demise.

-In Obama's Circle, Chicago Remains The Tie That Binds
For once, Barack Obama left his iPod and stack of news clips at his seat andworked the front cabin of his campaign's chartered plane, laughing andreminiscing with the people who know him best.

-Magazine's 'satirical' cover stirs controversy
Barack Obama's campaign says a satirical New Yorker magazine cover showingthe Democratic presidential candidate dressed as a Muslim and his wife as aterrorist is "tasteless and offensive." The illustration on the issue thathits newsstands Monday, titled "The Politics of Fear" and drawn by BarryBlitt, depicts Barack Obama wearing traditional Muslim garb _ sandals, robeand turban _ and his wife, Michelle _ dressed in camouflage, combat bootsand an assault rifle strapped over her shoulder _ standing in the OvalOffice.

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-Surrendering to Sharia law
So this is how it ends: not with a bang, but a whimper. The most seniorjudge in England has declared that Islamic legal principles in Sharia lawmay be used within Muslim communities in Britain to settle marital argumentsand regulate finance. Lord Chief Justice Lord Phillips said, "Those enteringinto a contractual agreement can agree that the agreement shall be governedby a law other than English law." In his speech at an East London mosque,Lord Phillips said Muslims in Britain could use Islamic legal principles aslong as punishments - and divorce rulings - comply with English law. Sharialaw does not comply with English law. It is a law unto itself. And so theEnglish who gave us the Magna Carta in 1215, William Blackstone and thefoundation of American law are slowly succumbing to the dictates ofintolerant Islam and sowing seeds of their own destruction.,0,4549852.story

-Obama begins making his move
Until recently, one of the biggest raps against Barack Obama fromconservatives was his delicate dance around any issue that might upset hiscore constituents. How can he claim a break from "politics as usual," theysaid, if he wasn't willing to upset the left? They can't say that anymore.Now they say he's flip-flopped. That's OK. If you want to please everybody,you don't belong in politics. Obama's bigger worry is the old slogan ofliberal commentator Jim Hightower, a former Texas officeholder: "There ain'tnothing in the middle of the road but a yellow line and dead armadillos."In recent weeks, the likely Democratic presidential nominee has softened orabandoned his earlier positions on a parade of issues, including wiretaps,abortion, trade with Mexico and Canada, gun control and public funding ofhis own campaign.,0,814293.story

Miami Herald
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-PRESIDENTIAL RACE: Obama's tactics confound McCain, GOP adversaries
John McCain is the candidate who actually had experience as a wartime flyer,but Barack Obama is the one who has most successfully adapted a favoritetactic of those intrepid aviators. When the pilots were over a targetheavily defended by anti-aircraft guns, they would release a cloud of finemetal scraps, hoping to confuse the aim of the shells or missiles beingfired in their direction.

-ECONOMIC DEBATE: Old script is in rewrite
The biggest political story of 2008 is getting little coverage. It involvesthe collapse of assumptions that have dominated our economic debate forthree decades. Since the Reagan years, free market cliches have passed forsophisticated economic analysis. But in the current crisis, these ideas arefalling, one by one, as even conservatives recognize that capitalism isailing.

-NAACP head: Obama win won't solve racial injustice
Racial disparity will remain an issue in America, regardless of whetherBarack Obama is elected as the nation's first black president, the chairmanof the NAACP told the organization's national convention Sunday night.Julian Bond, a veteran civil rights leader, said Obama's candidacy doesn't"herald a post-civil rights America, any more than his victory in Novemberwill mean that race as an issue has been vanquished in America."

Fort Report
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-Palestinians: Obama to visit West Bank
Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama will visit the West Bank nextweek as part of a swing through the Middle East, a Palestinian official saidMonday, giving an important diplomatic boost to the Palestinians at asensitive time in peace talks.

-A clash of generations in black community
Jackson incident may reveal emerging divide. The Rev. Jesse Jackson'soffhand insult of Barack Obama last week has exposed a heated debate overwhether Obama's groundbreaking presidential campaign - and his repeatedchallenge to the black community to straighten out its own affairs - isdisplacing and alienating some in Jackson's generation of black leadership,which held the government accountable for the plight of African-Americans.

-Obama mines a Republican stronghold
In Newport Beach, unlikely friends help the Democrat rival McCain in OrangeCounty fundraising. On the Balboa Bay Club's wall of its most famousguests, there are photos of Richard Nixon, Ronald Reagan, George H.W. Bush,Gerald Ford and, of course, the Duke. There are no Democratic politicians.Securely tucked behind the Orange Curtain, Newport Beach is Republican-heldterritory.,0,5551006.story?track=rss

-Obama finds kindred soul at helm in Kansas: Sebelius rises in VP derby
When Governor Kathleen Sebelius of Kansas gave the Democrats' response tothe State of the Union address in January, she rejected the usual partisanrhetoric. Instead, she gently called on President Bush to "join us" infixing problems like the economy and healthcare, pointing to areas of commonground.

-Obama clarifies view on Jerusalem
Barack Obama said yesterday that he used "poor phrasing" in a speechsupporting Jerusalem as the undivided capital of Israel. "This was anexample where we had some poor phrasing in the speech. And we immediatelytried to correct the interpretation that was given," he said in an interviewthat aired yesterday on CNN.

-Worth the risk? Debate on offshore drilling heats up
From his perch at the southern tip of Louisiana, port director Ted Falgoutsees green: the color of money that comes from the nation's busiest haven ofoffshore drilling. "It's OK to have an ugly spot in your backyard," Falgoutsays, "if that spot has oil coming out of it."

-David Remnick On That New Yorker Cover: It's Satire, Meant To Target
"Distortions And Misconceptions And Prejudices" About Obama

Inside Higher Education
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-Fantasies and Due Process
When advocates for faculty rights dream about the professors they would liketo defend, they think of the courageous dissenter who challenges heradministration or conventional wisdom in her discipline. They don't think ofone professor sharing his sexual fantasies about students with a colleagueat another campus.


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