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Obama’s open hostility toward Netanyahu and his disproportionate reaction to the unintentional slight delivered to Biden are important, and deadly serious, because there is no doubt they were authentic expressions of real emotion. We’ve seen Obama be a little churlish and somewhat peevish, but rarely more openly negative than that. Nothing in the course of his presidency has made him angry, so far as we know, in the way that Israel and Netanyahu have made him angry. Not Iran’s defiance and game-playing. Not the supposed chicanery of Wall Street and the monstrous insurance companies that have served as his populist targets. Not even Rush Limbaugh. –“Mr President: Your Animus is Showing,” John Podhoretz, Commentary
A Belarusian started out sane, just sitting there. Every 30 seconds a pitiless stream of water came out from a ceiling shower in the center of the sauna and splashed on the molten-hot rocks, creating a 100% humidity level in the room that would melt gold. About two minutes in our man started rocking a little. At three his eyes started blinking oddly. At four he began twitching. At five his eyes got huge. At six he started swallowing each breath like a gulp of scorching soup. Then he started glancing around wildly, as if to say to the others, Are you mad? Don’t you see what’s happening? They’ve locked us in a Crock-Pot! He started wiping his eyes and mouth. He moved his hands out toward his thighs to rub them, then realized that’s not allowed and did so anyway, crazily, as though he were covered in lice. The judges flagged him once, then twice. Then he lurched for the door, and he was out. Sanity and cool air whooshed back into his brain, and suddenly he was normal and smiling again. –“Sports From Hell,” Rick Reilly, ESPN
Not long after Jones’ conviction, a new mitochondrial-DNA test came into use that could have identified the hair with far more certainty than that microscope analysis — a technique that remains largely unchanged since it was first used in 1861. But Jones’ appeals to have the hair tested were denied, as was a last-minute petition to then Governor George W. Bush for a stay of execution. Bush had postponed other executions to wait for new DNA tests, but Jones had spectacularly bad timing. His petition came in the middle of the Florida recount fight after the 2000 presidential election. Bush’s legal team sent him a brief on the case, but it neglected to even mention the possibility of a new DNA test, and Jones became the 152nd — and final — inmate executed during Bush’s tenure. –“In Texas, Seeking the Truth About an Executed Man,” Nathan Thornburgh, Time
This pop is everything, everywhere, all the time;
Lebanon owns Israel…in global falafel and hummus contests that no one really takes seriously except in the Middle East where it’s like life and death (hold the white sauce, please);
Bourdain and Santayana–like peas and carrots;
for Tolstoy, like Michael Jackson, the children were the future
More from TedRoss:
In Havana, the past year has been marked by a parade of bold-faced names from the north — John Kerry reopening the United States Embassy; Andrew Cuomo bringing a delegation of American business leaders; celebrities ranging from Joe Torre, traveling on behalf of Major League Baseball to oversee an exhibition game between the Tampa Bay Rays and the Cuban national team, to Jimmy Buffett, said to be considering opening one of his Margaritaville restaurants there. All this culminated with a three-day trip in March by Barack Obama, the first American president to visit Cuba since Calvin Coolidge in 1928. But to those who know the city well, perhaps nothing said as much about the transformation of political relations between the United States and Cuba that began in December 2014 as a concert in the Tribuna Antiimperialista.
Chances that a Republican man believes that “poor people have hard lives”:
A school in South Korea was planning to deploy a robot to protect students from unwanted seductions.
Nuremberg’s Neues Museum filed a criminal complaint against a 91-year-old woman who completed a crossword puzzle that was in fact a $116,000 piece of avant-garde Danish art.
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“Matt was happy enough to sustain himself on the detritus of a world he saw as careening toward self-destruction, and equally happy to scam a government he despised. 'I’m glad everyone’s so wasteful,' he told me. 'It supports my lifestyle.'”