Winners and Losers of the Decade from Foreign Policy Magazine
'The Losers: [Topping the list] George W. Bush: It almost seems too easy. But upon reflection, it's not even close."
Poll: Americans Most Admire Obama, Clinton, Palin from USA Today
"The Obama part of this poll is especially interesting when you look at the question they asked. The Palin piece is deeply mysterious to me. "While the president's job-approval rating has eroded during his first year in office, his standing as the most-admired man demonstrates "a very strong fan base," says Frank Newport, Gallup's editor in chief."
Obama Gets Heat for Treating Americans Like Adults in Terror Incident (Rick Ungar) from True/Slant
"According to the media and the Republican critics, the president erred in not taking immediately to the airwaves to provide his fellow Americans ‘assurance and comfort’ that everything was, indeed, okay. What are we…five year olds? Obviously, everything was and is not okay and hearing the President of the United States pretend otherwise would only have provided me with assurance that the government was treating me like an imbecile."
China's Not a Superpower and It Won't Be Anytime Soon (Minxin Pei) from The Diplomat
"In world history, only one country--the United States--has truly acquired all the capabilities of a superpower: a technologically advanced economy, a hi-tech military, a fully integrated nation, insuperable military and economic advantages vis-a-vis potential competitors, capacity to provide global public goods and an appealing ideology. ... The challenges China faces in becoming the next superpower are truly daunting."
Don't Give Up on the US (Joel Kotkin) from Forbes Magazine
"Two in three adults now fear their children will be worse off than they are. Nearly 40% think China will become the world's dominant power in the next 20 years, as indicated by a recent survey. Yet, in spite of everything, I would still place my long-term bets on the U.S. Here's why:"
Our Euro-President (Joel Kotkin) from Forbes Magazine
I missed this item from October -- a fascinating look at Obama from the European perspective.
"Barack Obama's seemingly inexplicable winning of the Nobel Peace Prize says less about him than about the current mentality of Europe's leadership class. Lacking any strong, compelling voices of their own, the Europeans are now trying to hijack our president as their spokesman. ... Indeed it's likely that if Obama wanted to run for presidency of the E.U., he could mail it in. Unfortunately for him, he presides over a country that faces a very different future from that of Europe."
In a similar vein is this absurd and provocative editorial from a Danish newspaper called, Obama Greater Than Jesus from Politiken [of Denmark in English]
"His tangible results in the short time that he has been active – are few and far between. His greatest results have been created with words and speeches – words that remain in the consciousness of their audience and have long-term effects. ... And no we are not thinking of Jesus Christ, whose birthday has just been celebrated - - but rather the President of the United States Barack Hussein Obama."
Why the Mullahs are Vulnerable from the Wall Street Journal
"Six months after President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's hotly disputed election victory, the Green protest movement led by Mir Hossein Mousavi,..., shows no sign of abating. As a result, the Iranian regime finds itself once more resorting to the tactics of repression it has relied on for more than 30 years. ... Rather than being quelled by the regime's brutal response—as happened during the antigovernment protests of 1999 and 2003—the protestors' resolve has been strengthened"
The Tipping Point in Iran (Abbas Milani) from the Wall Street Journal
"This weekend's bloody protests during the holiday of Ashura culminate a pattern of persistence and perseverance on the part of the opposition. There can now be little doubt about the movement's staying power"
Growing Desperation [in Iran] from the Economist [of London]
"Increasingly fierce repression in Iran suggests that the regime has begun to fear for its future."
Obama's Historic Health Care Victory (Robert Dallek) from the Wall Street Journal
"If the reform works as intended by expanding health insurance to an additional 30 million Americans and reducing the national debt, the Democrats will pillory the Republicans for the indefinite future."
The Home Stretch: Democrats are one step from turning dreams of health reform into reality from the Economist [of London]
"Whatever the manoeuvres, the hard part will be the substantive compromises to come. The current betting is that the Senate version will prevail on most points"
Everything is Always Good for Republicans (Steve Benen) from Washington Monthly
"By all appearances, it doesn't matter if the Republican attacks are baseless and ridiculous. It doesn't matter if Republican national security policies failed. It doesn't matter that Republicans are more anxious to denounce the president than they are to denounce terrorism. What matters now is what mattered before -- whether GOP voices can create and exploit just enough misguided panic and fear to benefit politically. "
"MSNBC's Rachel Maddow believes she has found the smoking gun proving Republicans' hypocrisy on health care and the budget deficit: an admission by Utah Republican Sen. Orrin Hatch that, during the Bush administration, "it was standard practice not to pay for things.""
The Left's Idiocy on Health Reform (Joe Klein) from Time Magazine
"The issue that has brought them together is opposition to the Senate's health care–reform bill, which makes some sense on the right, but none at all on the left."
"The publication of Richard Bessel’s harrowing and intelligent account of the end of World War II in Europe, Germany 1945, is an important corrective to the self-indulgent panic of the present day. "