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“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 Editor's Daily Picks
"The biggest topic in British political circles on Monday wasn’t the country’s impending departure from the European Union. It was milkshakes..."
"I often disagree with Rep. Justin Amash, R-Mich., but I've been disturbed by the idea that he should be run out of the Republican Party just because he believes President Trump committed impeachable offenses."
"The Icelandic band Hatari, whose members are quite vocal in their animosity towards Israel, held up Palestinian flags... Madonna, likewise, had two of her performers wear Israeli and Palestinian flags on their costumes."
"To celebrate the 10-year anniversary of Quentin Tarantino's "Inglourious Basterds" premiering at the Cannes Film Festival, I turn to movie critic Roger Ebert's old review of "Raiders of the Lost Ark." (Trust me on this one.)"
"The money is already here—and has been for years. In the midst of a housing crisis, an injection of cash into the superheated real-estate market seems likely to cause an uptick in evictions and displacement."
"Parents concerned about YouTube debate whether to let their children have their own channels; some forbid it, others send them to summer camp..."
"‘I Had Completely Lost the Knack for Staying Alive..." Warmer weather brings daffodils, rhubarb at the farmer’s market — and, for some, despair."
"With his new book, Howard Stern proves that his rightful place is among the prophets and moral visionaries, not the ‘shock jocks’"
"I’m terrified of parenting in the anti-vaxxer age: Anti-vaccine propaganda isn’t just harmful to children. It threatens to erode our entire sense of community."
"...doctors are starting to think more about specific nutrients that feed tumor cells. That is, how what we eat affects how cancers grow..."
"...it represents an impressive achievement: a victory of humankind against the chaos that pervades the universe."
"If trends continue, in 20 years the majority of the world’s Jews will be living in Israel. The United States will see a continuing decline in overall numbers, with a growing observant Jewish population..."