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Thursday, July 28, 2016

Jim Nelson, GQ: Something is dawning on us -- it's almost too soon for us to admit, but it's there, a half-considered thought only now blooming in our brains. Maybe we dismiss it with one of those quick cognitive fly swats. Nah, too early to say or I hate that guy. But the truth is coming, and it sounds like this: Barack Obama will be inducted into the league of Great Presidents. Wait. One of the Greatest? you ask, your thumb emoticon poised to turn up or down on me. The guy haters love to hate with their very best hate game? Like 20-Dollar Bill great? Like Mount Rushmore great? Yep. (We just won't build Mount Rushmores anymore.) In so many ways, Obama was better than we imagined, better than the body politic deserved, and far, far better than his enemies will ever concede, but the great thing about being great is that the verdict of enemies doesn't matter. read more


Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Hillary Clinton, in winning a tough primary cycle, has been scrambling to adopt elements of the Sanders program. Her delegates used the platform negotiations to engage and stroke Sanders delegates in the search for enough unity to prevail in November.

Whether the party becomes more unified after the Philadelphia convention, which began Monday on discordant notes, remains to be seen. But the platform presents a fascinating map of how the Democratic Party is evolving as a stark alternative to the Republicans.

On immigration, the Democrats ignore Donald Trump's wall against Mexico, calling for a pathway to citizenship for the 11 million undocumented immigrants Mr. Trump would deport. read more


Thursday, July 21, 2016

"I don't think this guy has any more core principles than a Kardashian marriage." -- Senator Ben Sasse, Republican of Nebraska

"We saw and looked at true hate in the eyes last year in Charleston. I will not stop until we fight a man that chooses not to disavow the K.K.K. That is not a part of our party." -- Nikki Haley, Republican governor of South Carolina

"A moral degenerate." -- Peter Wehner, evangelical Christian commentator who served in last three Republican administrations

"Donald Trump is a madman who must be stopped," -- Bobby Jindal, former Republican governor of Louisiana

"I won't vote for Donald Trump because of who he isn't. He isn't a Republican. He isn't a conservative. He isn't a truth teller. ... I also won't vote for Donald Trump because of who he is. A bigot. A misogynist. A fraud. A bully." -- Norm Coleman, former Republican senator from Minnesota

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Monday, July 18, 2016

Islamabad (AFP) - The strangling of Pakistani social media starlet Qandeel Baloch by her brother has once again cast a spotlight on the custom of "honour killings", which claims around a thousand lives in Pakistan every year.

What are honour killings?

So-called honour killings are understood to mean the murder of a relative by another for bringing the family dishonour.

The pattern of crime has its roots in tribal social norms that remain prevalent across South Asia, and the victims are overwhelmingly women.

There were 933 honour killing cases in 2015, according to Pakistan's Federal Ministry of Law, but these may only represent a fraction of the true number.

Why do people so often get away with it?

The apparent rise in killings in recent years is largely linked to Pakistan's criminal code, which is a mixture of British-inherited law and Islamic custom based on Sharia introduced by military ruler Zia-ul-Haq.


Friday, July 15, 2016

We always knew he could keep his head when others were losing theirs and blaming him, knew it from the 2008 financial crisis and on to the hard, lasting words he spoke at Tuesday's memorial for the slain police officers in Dallas.

What we didn't know, what could not be predicted of one so young and new to the impossible task of living round-the-clock under the glare of the entire world, was how Barack Obama would hold up as a father, a husband, a man.

No matter what you think of Obama the executive branch, it's hard to argue that Obama the human being has been anything less than a model of class and dignity. If, as was often said about black pioneers in sports, you had to be twice as good to succeed, Obama's personal behavior has set a standard few presidents have ever reached. read more


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