Wouldn't it have been great to live in a country that celebrates the achievements of its members? One where we could all tear up at realizing that the world likes us, right now, it likes us again?
Alas, 'tis not to be. We're too busy tearing people down--Obama doesn't deserve the NPP, there are still people dying in Afghanistan (never mind that there are still people dying in Israel and Palestine, some 15 years after Arafat, Peres and Rabin jointly won; or that people were still dying in Vietnam when Kissinger won 1973; or that South Africa still had 10 more years of apartheid after Tutu won in 1984.) I'm not sure why our collective memories are so short that we have forgotten (or maybe the media just doesn't want us to remember) that the Nobel Peace Prize is rarely awarded for results, but to congratulate a person who has suggested a new path towards world peace and strengthen international diplomacy.
Obama's Nobel is sure to be a major topic on all the shows. As is foreign policy, which makes sense, given the reasoning behind Obama's award. We also have a brand new Sunday show debuting on CNN: Amanpour, with Christiane Amanpour (2:00 pm Eastern/11:00 am Pacific). She's landed some seriously big names for her first program: Hillary Clinton and Robert Gates. McCain Mini-Me Lindsey Graham is on Meet the Press, along with Gen. Barry McCaffrey. Gosh, I wonder what they're going to advocate. DiFi and Saxby Chambliss are on This Week, to discuss Afghanistan and how extremely disconcerting it is to have a POTUS who actually thinks first and decides later. Don't miss the round table, which will feature Arianna Huffington and Nicole Wallace. I guess TW's Exec. Producer listened to me about getting on a liberal blogger. And finally, I don't want anyone to worry that they're going to miss John McCain on a Sunday show. Mr. Also-Ran is on State of the Union, alongside Debbie Stabenow and Bob Casey.
ABC's "This Week" - Sens. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., and Saxby Chambliss, R-Ga.; Rep. James McGovern, D-Mass.; retired Army Gen. Jack Keane.
CBS' "Face the Nation" - Sens. Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., and Jack Reed, D-R.I.
NBC's "Meet the Press" - Sens. Carl Levin, D-Mich., and Lindsay Graham, R-S.C.; retired Gen. Barry McCaffrey; retired Gen. Richard Myers, former chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.
NBC's "The Chris Matthews Show" - Panel: Clarence Page, Gloria Borger, Andrea Mitchell and David Ignatius. Topics: Has Obama stalled in his ability to achieve major accomplishments this year? What does the David Letterman case say about what is scandalous nowadays? Meter Question: Is concern that President Obama has stalled more perception than reality? YES: 8 NO: 4.
CNN's "State of the Union" - Sens. John McCain, R-Ariz., Debbie Stabenow, D-Mich., and Bob Casey, D-Pa.; Anita Dunn, White House communications director; Dr. Anne Schuchat, director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Diseases.
CNN's "Fareed Zakaria GPS" - 8 years of war in Afghanistan - what are President Obama's options? Fareed speaks with an expert panel and the Pakistani ambassador to the U-S. Plus, does the diamond business deserve its dirty reputation?
CNN's "Amanpour" - "Power & Persuasion" U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton and U.S. Secretary of Defense Robert Gates join Christiane Amanpour for an exclusive roundtable discussion, looking at global challenges.
"Fox News Sunday" - Wynn Resorts Ltd. CEO Steve Wynn; Govs. Jennifer Granholm, D-Mich., and Mitch Daniels, R-Ind.
"Four eyes - one destiny.
Of the children that die under age of five:
* In Kenya 35% die of aids
* In Namibia 48% die of aids
* In South Africa 50% die of aids
* In Zimbabwe 50% die of aids
* In Botswana 64% die of aids
It is time to get angry, time to do something. We can no longer sit back and say "that is awful, somebody should do something". It is our world. It's our responsibility."
Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe on Friday signed into law the controversial Interception of Communications Bill, which gives his government the authority to eavesdrop on phone and Internet communications and read physical mail.
The legislation has drawn outspoken opposition from the political opposition and civil society organizations as trampling on the civil rights of Zimbabweans.
Spokesman Nelson Chamisa of the opposition Movement for Democratic Change faction of Morgan Tsvangirai called it an addition to "the dictator's tool kit."[..]
Human rights lawyer Otto Saki told VOA that the law interferes and undermines the enjoyment of rights enshrined in the constitution and is a sign Mr. Mugabe wants to consolidate his power by "any means necessary or unnecessary."
But Communications Minister Christopher Mushowe said Zimbabwe is not unique in the world in passing such legislation, citing electronic eavesdropping programs in the United States, the United Kingdom and South Africa, among other countries.
Lovely. We're now the inspiration and justification for destroying civil liberties through out the world. That shining beacon is looking a little tarnished, thanks to Bush & Co.
I was just off the target audience when Sesame Street premiered 36 years ago, but because of younger siblings, baby-sitting through my teens and now my own kids, I've watched Sesame Street evolve over its entire lifetime, as it changed with our society and dealt with new issues that children faced, like the death of elders in their lives and the devastation by natural disasters.
PBS's brilliant series Independent Lens is offering a program entitled "The World According to Sesame Street." While post-Boomers can wax nostalgic on the show of their childhood, I am more taken by the translations of Sesame Street to other countries:
In Bangladesh, the main Muppet character is a female, to let little girls in this very traditional country know that that they can have the same opportunities as boys.
In Kosovo, despite the need for the name in both Albanian and Serbian, learning to appreciate each other's cultures and find commonality is the main focus of this war-torn area.
In South Africa, the main Muppet character is a five year old HIV-positive female, reflecting the more than five million infected South Africans and hundreds of thousands of orphaned children due to the disease.
Sen. George Allen has a funny way of communicating with the only non-white at an all Republican event.
S.R. Sidarth, a senior at the University of Virginia, had been trailing Allen with a video camera to document his travels and speeches for the Webb campaign. During a campaign speech Friday in Breaks, Virginia, near the Kentucky border, Allen singled out Sidarth and called him a word that sounded like "Macaca."
"Lets give a welcome to Macaca, here. Welcome to America and the real world of Virginia," said Allen, who then began talking about the "war on terror." In an interview, Sidarth said he suspects Allen singled him out because he was the only non-white face in the audience, which he estimated included about 100 Republican supporters.
He could have at least asked him his name since he's been around his campaign. And yes, what does he mean by Macaca?
If spelled M-a-c-a-c-a, the term refers to a species of monkeys in the Eastern Hemisphere. "Is he saying Sidarth is a monkey?" [Webb spokesperson Kristian Denny] Todd asked. The word M-a-k-a-k-a refers to a town in South Africa. Todd accused Wadhams of "reaching" for an explanation for Allen's comments. "The kid has a name. This is trying to demean him, to minimize him as a person," Todd said.
Authorities hunting traffickers in nuclear weapons technology recently uncovered an audacious plan to deliver a complete uranium enrichment plant to Libya.
The discovery provides fresh evidence of the reach and sophistication of the Pakistani scientist Abdul Qadeer Khan's global black market in nuclear know-how and equipment. It also exposes a previously undetected South African branch of the Khan network.
Details of the plot began to emerge in September, when police found the elements of a two-storey steel processing system for the enrichment plant in a factory outside Johannesburg. They were packed in 11 freight containers for shipment to Libya.
South African officials will say only that they discovered nuclear components. It appears, however, that the massive system was designed to operate 1000 centrifuges for enriching uranium.
Once assembled in Libya, the plant could have produced enough weapons-grade uranium to manufacture several nuclear bombs a year. Delivery of the plant would have greatly accelerated Libya's efforts to develop nuclear weapons.
"Abramoff spent ten years in Hollywood, producing such movies as Red Scorpion, an anti-communist film made just after his term with the College Republicans ended. This movie was filmed in territory controlled by South Africa's white supremacist government, and it's been alleged to have been funded by the South African army; which lead to protests from anti-apartheid groups."