Friday, November 28, 2008

NATIONAL & WORLD DIGEST November 27, 2008

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Happy Thanksgiving!!

New York Times
Go to the links for the following articles:

-A Command of the Law
I am thankful that the next commander in chief is a constitutional law expert, since what defines the United States is that it is a nation of laws. Before I get to why, allow me to add two other reasons for thankfulness. The first is that Barack Obama is a man of sufficient self-confidence to entrust the critical job of secretary of state to his former rival, Hillary Rodham Clinton. She has the strength and focus to produce results. The second is that he's a man of sufficient good sense to retain the remarkable Robert Gates as defense secretary. President Bush had one overriding criterion in choosing his inner circle: loyalty. The result was nobody would pull the plug on stupidity. Obama wants the kind of competence and brainpower that challenge him. The God-gut decision-making of The Decider got us in this mess. Getting out of it will require an Oval Office where smart dissent is prized.

-Letter: The Plight of Gay Veterans
To the Editor:
Re "Newest Veterans Hit Hard by Economic Crisis" (front page, Nov. 18): One group of veterans who face added but avoidable economic distress are the thousands of gay men and lesbians who serve their country but cannot avail themselves of military benefits for their families.

-Iraqi Parliament Ratifies U.S. Pact
The Iraqi Parliament ratified a long-delayed security agreement that sets out a three-year timetable for the withdrawal of American forces from Iraq. [...] The new agreement comes into force when the United Nations mandate that currently governs the American troops expires on Dec 31. The new pact says all American combat forces should withdraw from Iraqi cities by June 30 next year and all American troops should be out of Iraq by Dec. 31, 2011.

-Emergency Declared at Thai Airports
The government of Prime Minister Somchai Wongsawat declared a state of emergency at two Bangkok airports and told police to deal with protesters, media reported.

-India: Standoffs Against Militants Continue
Prime Minister Manmohan Singh said the attackers probably had "external linkages," an indication that outsiders would likely be blamed for the attacks that killed at least 101 people in Mumbai.

Washington Post
Go to the links for the following articles:

-After State,
David Ignatius
Condoleezza Rice may be the most disciplined person in this town of workaholics. So what's next? [....] She's leaving Washington for real after Inauguration Day and will return to Stanford University. If "Meet the Press" calls, she won't be in. "I have no desire to be shadow secretary of state," she told me.

-Guantanamo Justice
The Bush administration will finally release Salim Ahmed Hamdan. The Uighurs should be next.

Wall Street Journal

-Government by Contractor Is a Disgrace
Many jobs are best left to federal workers. Back in 1984, the conservative industrialist J. Peter Grace was telling whoever would listen why government was such a wasteful institution. One reason, which he spelled out in a book chapter on privatization, was that "government-run enterprises lack the driving forces of marketplace competition, which promote tight, efficient operations. This bears repetition," he wrote, "because it is such a profound and important truth."

Fort Report
Go to the links for the following articles:

-Detroit native tapped for White House job
Deb Price / The Detroit News
WASHINGTON -- President-elect Barack Obama selected Detroit-native Cecilia Muñoz as the White House director of intergovernmental affairs, the Obama transition office announced Wednesday. Muñoz, who has a bachelor's degree in English and Latin American studies from the University of Michigan, is currently a senior vice president at the National Council of La Raza, where she supervises legislative and advocacy work. Meanwhile, Jonathan Favreau, of North Reading, Mass., will be the director of speechwriting, the Obama team also announced. He held that position during the 2008 presidential campaign.


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