the important and the not-so-important, horribly conflated.

20 Oct 2010

In as seen by a liberal vegetarian english major in medschool with a subscription to the NYT on October 20, 2010 at 7:57 pm

Above the Fold: Elite of Taliban Are Said to Join Talks for Peace”

The Story: Under pressure from a weary American administration and an apparently-not-compromised-enough Afghan leadership team, NATO has insured safe passage for Taliban leaders to meet in Kabul to discuss a peace agreement.

The Quote: “[talks] about talks have foundered over preconditions that each side has set: for the Taliban, that the Americans must first withdraw; for the Afghan government, that the Taliban must fist disarm.”

The Implications: Preconditions have become an excuse on both sides to avoid the necessary sacrifices that make peace possible, and maintain the overinflated egos of their hawkish constituents. Think Iran and their nuclear ambitions; think Israel and Palestine—preconditions, rather than bringing the region closer to peace, have made continued antagonism a politically sound position.

Buried in the National Section: ” 1 in 5 Americans Have Close Ties Elsewhere”

The Story: The Census said that around 40 million Americans are first-gen immigrants, and another 33 million are children of immigrants.

The Quote: “Among the foreign born, 29 percent had a bachelor’s degree”

The Implications: That college graduation figure is higher than the national average (25%). This is incredible, considering the escalating tuition costs of the last 10 years. The question becomes, can we “out-innovate” the rest of the world (the solution the Right puts forward for pulling us out of the recession) by closing our borders and hope our failing high schools somehow churn out more college-ready kids?

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