For a Kinder, Gentler Society
The Wall Street Journal Tuesday,
Biden Says Weakened Russia Will Bend to U.S.
"Russia has to make some very difficult, calculated decisions," Mr. Biden said. "They have a shrinking population base, they have a withering economy, they have a banking sector and structure that is not likely to be able to withstand the next 15 years, they're in a situation where the world is changing before them and they're clinging to something in the past that is not sustainable." Tuesday,
Agitprop Being Directed Against Medvedev
... an interesting tendency has taken shape in the Russian blogosphere -- and not only in it. Work aimed at worsening the image of Dmitriy Medvedev is in progress... Tuesday,
Geopolitical Diary: A Lackluster U.S.-Russian Summit
That evening, Obama, Medvedev and Putin ­ along with their wives ­ were expected to attend a lavish reception in the Kremlin, which was to be closed to the media. Putin, evidently dissatisfied with his meeting with Obama, backed out of the reception. Though Medvedev was still scheduled to attend, Obama then decided he would spend the evening at the hotel with Michelle and the kids. By then, the party was pretty much over, and the entire event was canceled in a hush.

Financial Times Tuesday,
Protect industry from predatory speculators
Senator Charles Schumer’s plan to enact a “Shareholder Bill of Rights” and the Securities and Exchange Commission’s shareholder access proposal[...] is an issue that has almost nothing to do with the financial collapse, and threatens, in the long run, to hobble the corporate governance system that built American industry. ... putting pressure on corporate managers to increase short-term stock prices at the expense of long-term business health. Doing business that way puts jobs and sustainable industry at risk, now and in the future.

Moskovskiy Komsomolets Tuesday,
Our Most Beloved Enemy
In 50 years who is going to believe that at one time the Russians were teaching the Chinese how industry needs to be created?-- Everyone in the Russian elite admits that we have no foreign policy strategy. But we cannot live that way for long. Sooner or later Moscow will have to make a strategic choice. And what that choice will be we all know very well deep in our hearts. You can call a Russian man an Asian as much as you like. But he feels more comfortable all the same in New York rather than in Beijing or Peshawar.

Financial Times Tuesday,
Time will tell if deficit can be without tears
The first official departure came in 1922, when at the International Monetary Conference at Genoa a resolution was adopted to allow central banks to keep their reserves in dollars or sterling, which remained payable in gold. -- The elasticity provided by the “gold exchange standard”, as it was called, contributed to the glorious prosperity of the 1920s. The US was able to export capital to Europe in the 1920s without contracting its domestic credit base. Balance of payments deficits no longer had to be corrected in a prompt fashion. -- This house of cards collapsed in 1931, after the failure of Austria’s Credit-Anstalt bank stopped the flow of credit to Europe and European central banks demanded their dollar reserve balances be paid in gold.

Financial Times Tuesday,
Women in the boardroom
Looking back at the e-mails that some of the male directors sent me, I see one talked about “birds on boards” – which a few years ago I might have drearily forced myself to disapprove of. Now I simply laugh.

Global Research Tuesday,
Iran’s Presidential Elections, Islamic Populism and Liberation Theology
The Islamic Republic is a quasi-theocracy run by the clerics, while the Latin American countries are secular republics that are only supported by the Church. In the past, some Muslim political leaders have advocated Islamic Socialism. Examples are: Mohamed Ali Jinnah and Zulfakar Ali Bhutto in Pakistan, and Jamal Abdul Nasser in Egypt. Ahmadinejad too has strived for a socially just Islamic State in Iran. It remains to be seen whether he can succeed.

Asia Times Tuesday,
Beijing understands Iran's revolutionary politics very well. China was one of the few countries that warmly hosted Ruhollah Khomeini as president (in 1981 and 1989). In contrast, India, which professes "civilizational" ties with Iran, was much too confused about Iran's revolutionary legacy to be able to correctly estimate Khamenei's political instincts favoring republicanism. Most of the Indian elites aren't even aware that Khamenei studied as a youth in Moscow's Patrice Lumumba University.

Asia Times Tuesday,
In the event, Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei won a resounding victory. The grey cardinal of Iranian politics Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani has been dealt a crushing defeat. Is the curtain finally ringing down on the tumultuous career of the "Shark", a nickname Rafsanjani acquired in the vicious well of the Iranian Majlis (parliament) where he used to swim dangerously as a political predator in the early years of the Iranian Revolution as the speaker?