- E.J. Dionne on Mark Souder's Downfall Reflecting on recent revelations
of infidelity about Mark Souder, the Washington Post columnist broadcasts his frustration with the
Christianity-infused politics. "Enough!" declares Dionne again and
again, tearing into the conservative conflation of personal virtue with
political creed before getting to the heart of the problem afflicting
politicized Christians. "It's not the self-righteousness of religious
conservatives that bothers me most. We liberals can be pretty
self-righteous, too. It's the refusal to acknowledge that the pressures
endangering the family do not come from some dark secular leftist
conspiracy but from cultural and economic forces that affect us all."
Ignatius on Debt and National Security The biggest threat to the United
States' influence abroad may not come from our enemies, asserts David Ignatius, but our allies.
Our European compatriots, riddled with debt, make sharing the mutual
responsibilities of international engagement problematic. "Europe these
days is a halfway house for debtors," warns Ignatius. "NATO members in
Europe were mostly failing to meet their defense-spending commitments
even before the financial crisis that hit Greece, Spain, Portugal and
other nations. They will be even less likely to share burdens now that
they have to fund a trillion-dollar bailout for eurozone weaklings."
Broder on the Obama Effect Turning to
current American political culture, David Broder takes a fresh look at the well-worn subject
of the "Obama effect." For Broder, the past year of legislative warfare
and recent electoral successes for Republicans make the President a
dubiously beneficial figure going into the November midterms. "Democrats
remain nervous about lining up behind Obama. More of them are ready to
rest their hopes on the Republicans' allowing themselves to be dragged
too far to the right than are signing up to promise to sustain the
president in future battles to cope with the challenge of fiscal
- Jan Maxwell on Law and Order and Regular
Employment Two-time Tony-nominated actress Maxwell laments tonight's final episode of the NBC
staple "Law and Order," not for the void in her nightly television
routine, but for the fact that for the entirety of its existence, it was
the bread and butter for New York stage actors. Deciding to film the
show in New York, she says, the producers "started casting local actors
for the sort of one-off jobs that we rely on to subsidize our theater
habit.... In the early days we would gather religiously to see our
friends as killers, punks and occasional dead bodies. We claimed the
show as our own; not only did it give us stage actors a temporary job,
but it also employed old theater pros, like Jerry Orbach and Sam
Waterston, in leading roles."
- L. Gordon Crovitz on Web
Privacy Considering the latest push for regulation in social media,
Crovitz makes the point that perhaps it's not the
privacy settings that need regulation, but the extent of importance that
privacy plays in our lives. When it comes to Facebook, Twitter, etc. the Wall Street Journal columnist
says, "the entire reason to use these sites is to trade privacy for
other benefits." He continues, "the enormous popularity of these
sites...suggests a sharp break with how we used to understand privacy,
as users are making different trade-offs now that technology lets us
share information and decide with whom. Constantly updated access to
networks of friends and colleagues provides enough benefits to overcome
some privacy concerns."
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