Now that New Hampshire has set its primary for Jan. 10, the 2012 political calendar is largely set. Both political parties select their presidential nominees through state primaries and caucuses, with candidates amassing delegates as they go. Under Republican Party rules, a candidate needs 1,212 delegates to win the nomination. That’s half, plus one, of the total 2,422 delegates.
The offices of a French satirical magazine were bombed early today, after the periodical published an issue about the Arab Spring with a caricature of the prophet Muhammad. The magazine featured the Muslim prophet as a “guest editor” for the magazine, Charlie Hebdo, threatening “100 lashes if you don't die of laughter!” Images of the prophet Muhammad are forbidden in Islam and have proved a source of controversy in recent years. Most disputes have stemmed from Western publications operating in countries with free speech and large Muslim immigrant populations. While Muslims contend that such images are deeply offensive and must not be published, free speech advocates have countered that the rules of an open society should not place prohibitions on religious drawings. And though not all incidents have resulted in violence, a number of have drawn widespread protest and unrest around the globe. Here are three that caught attention worldwide:
"Steve Jobs" reigns as No. 1, although the life of a powerful Russian empress, a history of the world told through 100 objects, and a memoir by Diane Keaton also made the cut when Amazon's editors picked their top 10 favorite November books.
US authorities announced this week the dismantlement of a massive drug-smuggling operation in Arizona, believed to have generated $2 billion in proceeds over five years. The 76 suspects arrested in the 17-month probe, dubbed Operation Pipeline Express, are allegedly connected to Mexico’s Sinaloa cartel, the most powerful drug-trafficking organization operating in Mexico – and, some say, in the Western Hemisphere. “Today we have dealt a significant blow to a Mexican criminal enterprise that has been responsible for poisoning our communities,” Arizona Attorney General Tom Horne said in the statement. But who are the Sinaloa cartel?
Given the somewhat amorphous slogans of the Occupy Wall Street movement, members of the tea party may be wondering if they should join the fray. Depending on how the Occupy Wall Street agenda is actually applied, many of the protesters’ calls for change resonate pretty strongly with tea partiers. University of Denver law professor Robert Hardaway suggests how the tea party might “agree” with five of the Occupy movement's top demands – in its own way:
The longlist for this year's Man Asian Literary Prize ($30,000 awarded to the author of the best novel by an Asian author written in or translated into English) was announced this week. This year's nominees include a number of authors and works already popular with US readers – and some less familiar names as well. The 2011 prize winner will be announced on March 15.
Halloween has its own collection of seasonal iconography, much like a Christmas tree or an Easter basket. Since the October holiday straddles the line between celebration and superstition, it's no surprise some of the day's symbols are of a darker origin. Here are five things that are intertwined with the history of Halloween.
UNESCO members (the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization) overwhelmingly approved Palestinian membership in a 107-14 vote on Monday, although there were 52 abstentions. UNESCO, which is responsible for protecting historic heritage sites and promoting cultural understanding, holds little power on the international stage. But its decision to grant Palestinians membership in the organization is a symbolic victory for the Palestinian Authority and its leader, Mahmoud Abbas, who is campaigning for international support for statehood after years of stalled negotiations with Israel. What are the ramifications for the parties involved?
Kate Middleton could be the first British royal in centuries to see an eldest daughter become Queen instead of a younger brother. Under the century-old tradition of male primogeniture, if the eldest child was a girl she would only become queen if none of her younger siblings were boys. Now, with the assent of 16 countries in the Commonwealth, girls will be just as eligible as their brothers, meaning the eldest child will always ascend to the throne. The change in law, which is expected to soon be formalized in the British parliament, also lifts a ban on Catholic heirs – a move British Prime Minister David Cameron and Catholic leaders have praised. Here are five would-be queens who were leap-frogged by their brothers for the throne:
The 2012 car models will soon roll out to dealerships. If you’re looking to buy a car, you've undoubtedly done your research in advance about the right model and trim. The key to affording your dream ride works the same way: Get your financial situation under control before you step foot on the car lot. Here are five crucial steps to take that will help you save thousands of dollars when you buy a car:
“You’re not a real candidate, Pinocchio, if you haven’t written your own book,” Mark Halperin, political director of ABC News, once said. Indeed, these days the one – perhaps only – condition all serious presidential candidates seem to satisfy is publishing their own book, whether it’s a rags-to-riches memoir, a political manifesto, or a motivational manual. While plenty of political lit is ghost-written pabulum, some titles pop with personality, authenticity, or just plain good writing. Here’s our pick of the five best books by 2012 presidential hopefuls.
The Quartet is hoping to once again bring Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas to the negotiating table, but peace talk preconditions are proving to be a problem. What are the two parties’ requirements for getting talks started?
College seniors struggling with life and love, a newly freed sex offender, and four women living through the Roman conquests are only a few of the colorful characters scattered through the 10 October books that Amazon's editors picked as their favorites. Here are the books the Amazon editors read and loved.
From 1970 to 2010, more than 10 million Mexicans migrated to the US. Now, after decades of rising numbers immigrating to the US, a new demographic trend is playing out: illegal immigration is waning. The Department of Homeland Security said in a 2010 report that the number of immigrants residing unauthorized in the US, 62 percent of whom come from Mexico, has declined from a peak of 11.8 million in January of 2007 to 10.8 million in January of 2010. US Customs and Border Protection also released data showing that the number of those arrested trying to cross the border illegally is is down sharply – by 58 percent since fiscal year 2006. The Pew Hispanic Center, using Mexican government data, estimates that the number of Mexicans annually leaving Mexico for the US declined by 60 percent from 2006 to 2010. Many dispute the reason why. Here are four factors that play a role.
Student loan forgiveness is on the minds of many. The class of 2011 has received the unwelcome distinction of becoming the most indebted graduating class ever and student loan debt overall is expected to hit $1 trillion. Here are five ways the White House and the Department of Education plan to ease the burden:
The international community has more questions than answers about the Somali militant group Al Shabab, the target of Kenya's military incursion into Somalia. But they know how it affords food for its troops – and it's not from piracy.
What's selling best in independent bookstores across America.
If only you'd known.... in the new book "Dear Me," edited by Joseph Galliano, celebrities give advice to themselves at age 16. Some of the letters are funny ("Calculus. Trust me. You'll never use it," writes Jodi Picoult) and others are poignant ("Keep listening to that inner voice. It will carry you," Rose McGowan tells her 16-year-old self). Here are some of the best.
For those who browse young adult shelves, the choices may be starting to blur: girl meets supernatural boy, then must choose between two boys. Or – for a little variety – supernatural girl meets human boy, then must choose between two boys. Vampires, fairies, angels – they're all over the young adult section. So, in the spirit of Teen Read Week, here are five gripping young adult titles that manage to keep otherworldly creatures and dramatic love triangles well out of sight.
Steve Jobs, the man who put the "i" in technology, was a fascinating character who continues to inspire and confound. Why the black turtlenecks? How did he foresee (create?) the iPhone revolution? What was the secret to his presentation style? Walter Isaacson's new book "Steve Jobs," which just hit stores, attempts to answer these questions. The 571-page biography released on Oct. 24 to glowing reviews. The author conducted more than 100 interviews for the book – including more than 40 with the Apple CEO himself. Here are five of key excerpts.
Inspired by a provocation in a July blog by Canadian activist group Adbusters, who in turn took their cues from the Arab Spring demonstrations, Occupy Wall Street has taken on epic proportions – and even more epic targets. In the crosshairs of this band of tent-dwelling rabblerousers are nothing less than the pillars of society.
Smartphones are great. Who would have ever thought that you could carry a telephone, address book, computer, camera, and all of your e-mail in just your pocket? However, as with any technology, it's liable to be misused. This isn’t just limited to talking on the phone at the wrong time; typing on the keyboard or sneaking a glance at the latest text messages can get us into a lot of trouble, too. Here are my Top 7 dumbest moments to use a smartphone:
When the Apple iPhone 4S and Amazon Kindle Fire tablet debuted this fall, the tech press blogged breathlessly about how these new devices harness 'the cloud.' Menacing as this hazy tech term may sound, the cloud is actually a regular part of daily digital life. In fact, gadget analysts expect this metaphorical cloud to envelop more of the world in coming years.
“Class warfare:” Lately this old term has been taking on new life as political theater, a way to rebuke Wall Street protestors, and, predictably, fodder for Fox News. According to Google, in just the last month alone, 3,870 articles have been published containing these words. Another way to express the concept of rich vs. not-so-rich is the expression, “The rich get richer and the poor get poorer.” It’s been around for a long time: According to Wikipedia, William Henry Harrison went there in 1840: “I believe and I say it is true Democratic feeling, that all the measures of the government are directed to the purpose of making the rich richer and the poor poorer.” I’m not going to take a stand on either side of the “class warfare” debate by saying that the rich do or don’t take unfair advantage of the rest of society. This is America, where we all have the potential to become rich. But I will say this unequivocally: The rich do get richer, or at least have the potential to. Let’s count the ways:
According to The College of William & Mary's Teaching, Research, and International Policy (TRIP) project's most recent survey of international relations (IR) faculty: