Best Of The Web
“As it turned out, the contrast at this year’s G20 conference of the world’s most significant nations was as stark as possible. Following the news of President George H.W. Bush’s death, the difference between the late president’s leadership as a unifier, whose legacy was to preside over America’s graceful exit from the Cold War, and a deeply divisive President Donald Trump, who has the potential of plunging the United States into a new cold war with the China of Xi Jinping, was on full display.
A severely wounded Trump managed to avert the most dire of consequences — at least for the moment — but, wings clipped, found his two days of summitry most noted for meetings that were avoided or canceled.
In fact, every one of Trump’s potential landmines was there — his autocratic friends, Russia’s Vladimir Putin, Saudi Arabia’s Mohammed bin Salman, China’s Xi; and democratic frenemies, Canada’s Justin Trudeau, Germany’s Angela Merkel, France’s Emmanuel Macron and Britain’s Theresa May.
In the end, however, there was only one encounter that truly mattered — the dinner meeting between Trump and Xi. Fortunately, Trump found it prudent to step back from the very edge of an abyss. Each leader is clearly enamored by what they see as the other’s supreme power over his nation and world events. The one substantive difference is that Xi has no term limits, while Trump has two, or at most six years remaining in his tenure.”
JJ Best Of The Web
"With the weakest of hands, an economy not much larger than that of Spain, and a GDP per capita several thousand dollars smaller than Malaysia, he has asserted massive negative influence over the globalized world."
"Scarcely hours after the titanic drubbing Democrats delivered to President Trump's GOP in the 2018 midterm elections, the 2020 presidential campaign began in deeply unwelcome earnest."
"US President Donald Trump recognized Jerusalem as Israel's capital exactly one year ago, breaking with decades of international consensus in the process. What was the historic move and what impact has it had?"
"With a decade’s worth of hits under her belt, Gaga is definitively one of the biggest stars in the world. Rolling Stone dubbed her the “Queen of Pop” in 2011."
"Have the scars of the housing bust turned us away from the American dream of homeownership? Survey data suggest otherwise.... We simply can’t afford to pursue that dream right now.'
"Even as phones and tablets extend their reach into daily life, a bigger screen remains supreme... the average American household watches nearly eight hours of television a day."
"Parties, private jets, and multimillion-dollar paintings: Art Basel Miami is part of a global network of art fairs that have transformed the worldwide art market."
"Dutton Books for Young Readers, a division of Penguin Random House, is releasing a series of tiny books that give the act of reading a studied whimsy."
"The presence was so disruptive, she added, that some children had a hard time when their parents left. Others were disappointed that their parents did not come for lunch."
"The kitchen — named after the Hebrew phrase “L’Chaim,” which means, “To Life!” — features a menu of Americanized Jewish food items such as pastrami on rye, potato knish with herb sour cream..."
"Life on the sprawling grasslands precipitated a shift from individualistic ways of living to more cooperative ways. This was the birth of what you might call “social intelligence,” and it changed the way our minds work."
"When you have headlines about “white privilege” and “evil white men,” Jews become the epitome of whiteness—except, of course, for neo-Nazis, who see Jews as hyper-integrationists."