Election Festival Shows Democracy is Still Popular -- In the last few days, there has been a veritable festival of voting around the world. Brazil has re-elected a president; Ukraine has chosen a new Parliament; Tunisia has held its first elections since the Arab Spring uprising; Toronto, Canada, has chosen a new mayor. Each of these events, in its own way, underscores the basic premise of 21st century politics. Regardless of the shenanigans of the oligarchs and would-be dictators, democracy remains the only way of bestowing legitimacy on leaders. [28 October]
US Politicians Grandstand on Ebola Quarantines -- The US is in a tizzy over the importation of the Ebola virus in the form of medical professionals returning from the Hot Zone in west Africa. Governors Chris Christie of New Jersey and Andrew Cuomo of New York have both insisted on a 21-day quarantine of anyone who treated Ebola patients upon their return to the US. The CDC says this will actually make things in Africa worse by discouraging care-givers from going to Africa. Both governors are more interested in grandstanding than good science, however. [27 October]
Lone Wolf Terrorists Hit Canada and Lose -- This week, Canada has suffered to lone wolf attacks by Islamic terrorists. The first incident involved two soldiers who were run down by a driver in Saint-Jean-sur-Richelieu, Quebec. The second, in Ottawa, began with the murder of a soldier on guard duty at the National War Memorial and ended with the Canadian Parliament's Sergeant-at-Arms shooting the killer dead as MPs scrambled for cover. Thus far, Canada's response has been everything one expects from one of the world's most civilized and tolerant societies. [23 October]
Ben Bradlee, 1921-2014 -- While there are famous writers, there are almost no famous editors. Yet any scribe worth his or her salt understands that the editor provides the reality check that is necessary on the creative process. The term comes from the gladiatorial games of ancient Rome, where the editor would decide whether a fallen combatant would live or die. Yesterday, Ben Bradlee died at 93, the greatest editor of his generation and perhaps in American history. [22 October]
Polish MEP Saves EFDD Status, UKIP's Election Funds -- Friday, the Europe of Freedom and Direct Democracy (EFDD) group within the European Parliament lost a member from Latvia that threatened its official recognition within the union's legislature. Under the rules, a group must have 25 members from 7 different countries to be recognized. The departure of Latvia's Iveta Grigule left it with plenty of members but from only 6 nations. Poland's Robert Iwaszkiewicz has just signed up with EFDD, and that means it's still a recognized grouping. Oddly, the person happiest about this is UKIP leader Nigel Farage, whose party would like to leave the EU altogether. [21 October]
Copyright 2014 by The Kensington Review, Jeff Myhre, PhD, Editor. No part of this publication may be reproduced without written consent. Produced using Ubuntu Linux.