India’s government turns down disaster relief

India’s government turns down disaster relief

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print-edition icon Print edition | Asia Aug 30th 2018 THIS week was supposed to be a time for celebration in the Indian state of Kerala, with feasts, dancing and boat races to mark the harvest festival of Onam. But as the waters recede from what may be the state’s worst floods in a century, few…
Older men are more prone to cognitive impairment from dirty air

Older men are more prone to cognitive impairment from dirty air

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LIVING under thick layers of smog is known to cause illness and reduce life expectancy. The degree to which pollution harms the mind is less clear. In theory some of the toxins that get inhaled could damage the nervous system and hamper intellect, but few studies have looked into this. One just has, however, and…
Lebanon’s economy has long been sluggish. Now a crisis looms

Lebanon’s economy has long been sluggish. Now a crisis looms

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THE main feature of Beirut’s skyline is not minarets or church steeples, but construction cranes. From the roof of a posh downtown hotel you can see 17 of them, throwing up luxury apartments that cost up to $1m each. Wealthy Lebanese sip wine on their terraces and discuss investment opportunities. They rub shoulders with Gulf…
Falun Gong still worries China, despite efforts to crush the sect

Falun Gong still worries China, despite efforts to crush the sect

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TUCKED away in a corner on Gerrard Street, in the heart of London’s Chinatown, three middle-aged Chinese women sit on the ground, their legs tightly crossed, in silent meditation. A deafening loudspeaker behind them blasts out a stream of invective against the Chinese Communist Party. Before long, one of them gets up and starts handing out…
A Final Round of Queries for Judge Kavanaugh

A Final Round of Queries for Judge Kavanaugh

(Pixabay) Focusing on the judiciary’s role in the supervision of democracy. Four decades ago, New York senator Daniel Patrick Moynihan, an intellectual Democrat, observed with amazement and regret that Republicans had become the party of ideas. Today, many of America’s most interesting arguments divide conservatives. One concerns the judiciary’s role in the supervision of democracy:…
The Psalmist and the Sex Doll

The Psalmist and the Sex Doll

Sex dolls at the Dreamdoll company in Duppigheim, France (Vincent Kessler/Reuters) As our civilization lost its understanding of sacramental marriage, we have dreamt up new ways to be alone. You can love something before you understand it. You can love something and never understand it: I get Shakespeare and David Foster Wallace and Walt Whitman…
How Trump Survives

How Trump Survives

President Trump speaks at an event in Charlotte, NC, August 31, 2018. (Yuri Gripas/Reuters) The president benefits from the economy — and from his enemies. The litany has been repeated so often that it’s easy to recite: The walls are closing in on Donald Trump, person x or y or z is going to bring…
Trump warns Assad, Syrian allies on reported plan for Idlib province offensive

Trump warns Assad, Syrian allies on reported plan for Idlib province offensive

FILE 2013: smoke rises after a TNT bomb was thrown from a helicopter, hitting a rebel position during heavy fighting between troops loyal to president Bashar Assad and opposition fighters, in a neighbouring village to Kafr Nabuda, in the Idlib province.  (AP) President Trump late Monday warned Syria’s Bashar al-Assad and his allies in the…
Steve Bannon slams ‘gutless’ New Yorker editor after being disinvited to festival after liberal backlash

Steve Bannon slams ‘gutless’ New Yorker editor after being disinvited to festival after liberal backlash

FILE: Steve Bannon, President Donald Trump's former chief strategist, talks during an interview in Washington.  (AP) David Remnick, the editor of the New Yorker, said on Monday that the magazine would take back its invitation to Steve Bannon after threats from liberal speakers who refused to share the stage with the ex-Trump aide.  In an…
Aretha Franklin’s family says pastor’s eulogy was offensive, distasteful

Aretha Franklin's family says pastor's eulogy was offensive, distasteful

The family of the late Aretha Franklin came out Monday against the eulogy given by a pastor at the music icon’s funeral last week. The remarks delivered in Detroit by Rev. Jasper Williams Jr. on Friday were met with wide criticism on social media and now by the family of the “Queen of Soul,” with…