February 27th, 2013
09:30 AM ET

What we're reading

By Fareed Zakaria

Congress has been playing an ever decreasing role in U.S. foreign policy, with significant implications for U.S. defense posture, suggests Jim Webb in the National Interest.

“When it comes to foreign policy, today’s Americans are often a romantic and rather eager lot. Our country’s continually changing, multicultural demographics and relatively short national history tend to free many strategic thinkers from the entangled sense of the distant past that haunts regions such as Europe and East Asia. The ‘splendid isolation’ of the North American continent obviates the need to account for future challenges that otherwise would be inherent due to geographic boundaries as with Germany, France and Russia in Europe, or China, Korea, Japan and Russia in East Asia.

“And so when our security is threatened we tend to take a snapshot view of how to respond, based on the analytical data of the moment rather than the historical forces that might be unleashed by our actions down the road.”

A fixation on growth rates has had a demoralizing effect on the United States – and is disguising the size of economic gains in recent decades, argues Brookings fellow Scott Winship.

“The distinction between absolute gains and relative gains has been roundly ignored in the way that policy makers, analysts, and the media conceptualize economic growth,” Winship says. “Comparing ourselves to what might have been if we had experienced higher growth rates, rather than to what our actual income and wealth were in the past, makes us feel that we are doing worse than our predecessors when we are actually better off. This comparison unnecessarily increases worker anxiety and is as likely to inspire selfishness as generosity among voters. Perhaps most troubling, the focus on growth rates misdirects our attention from the minority who are struggling to the broad majority who are doing well, leading progressives to suggest costly universal policies, or mistargeted ones, when more- focused policies aimed at the poor would be more appropriate.”

A 41-year-old man tried to get arrested in an effort to receive medical treatment, according to Joshua Mezrich, writing in The Atlantic.

“A recent study showed that out of over 2,300 bankruptcy filers in the United States in 2007, greater than 60 percent of them were caused at least in part by medical illness. It is hard as a physician to watch patients and families who are scared, facing these difficult times in their lives, also knowing that they are going down a pathway to bankruptcy from which they may never recover.”

soundoff (One Response)
  1. 100 % ETHIO

    Few Months ago, I bought a book, that has been written by former U.S.A Ambassador to Ethiopia Herman Cohen (Jewish), during the former President George H W Bush time.

    Herman Cohen wrote his book, with some truth.

    Herman Cohen, contributed so much for the destructions, separations and destabilizations of Ethiopia and Ethiopians in the year 1991 and after, by collaborating with former United Nations Secretary General, Boutros Boutros-Ghali (Egyptian), 1 January 1992 – 31 December 1996. He was also served Minister of State for Foreign Affairs, in Egypt from 1997 until 1991. His Father Boutros Ghali was PM of Egypt from 1908 until he was assassinated in 1910.

    What did they have in common, Herman Cohen, Boutros Boutros-Ghali and Mossad (Jewish Secret Agents)???

    Yes, their common secret interest and agenda was to DIVERTED the Blue Nile Lake or Abay Water(Originated from Ethiopia), into Jewish State by way of High-Tech Engines including to sucked Soils, that is already have death and life argument between Ethiopia and Egypt.

    Currently, the Jewish State is not only stealing Water from Ethiopia through Egypt, but also divided Ethiopia and Ethiopians by using American passport acting as Diplomats, by supplying Weapons for conflicts, by stealing many of very-well kept for more than 3000 years Ethiopian Antiques, Scientific formulas, etc.

    Jewish together with Arabs and Muslims, are responsible for causing Wars and Millions of deaths in Ethiopia.

    That is why Jewish are against Christian-Ethiopians in America, Canada,.., secretly.

    February 27, 2013 at 11:18 am | Reply

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