My first opportunity to visit Europe came during my junior year at university. I'd always wanted to study abroad, but my full-tuition scholarship didn't contribute much toward such far-flung adventures.
Pakistan's bully politics breeds political operators who use verbal insults and threats of physical violence to intimidate opponents. For a legion of cultural reasons, Pakistan encourages, protects, and even romanticizes bully politics.
In most people's minds, "democracy" means elections. The citizen's role is to be an informed voter. Most discussions of Scotland's referendum assume that the moment of vibrant democracy is over. But there are some like Whitman who see much greater promise in democracy.
The crisis in northern Iraq must prove a salutary lesson. That Iran can wield soft power in Iraq does not need stating, but that Iran is willing to work in military cooperation with America where they have mutual interests and benefits has been swept under the carpet by ideologues refusing to "give in" to the Iranians.
Why on earth did the Scots, largely quiescent as part of Great Britain for three centuries, suddenly become the mouse that roared? It wasn't because they became besotted watching re-runs of Braveheart or Rob Roy, or even because they coveted more of a share of North Sea oil revenues. No, the Scots got sick and tired of Thatcherite policies imposed from London. Thanks to the partial form of federalism known as "devolution" provided by the Labour government of Tony Blair in 1997, Scotland got to keep such progressive policies as free higher education and an intact national health service, while the rest of the U.K. partly privatized the health service and began compelling young people to go into debt to finance college like their American cousins.
Looking above at recent temperature anomalies, much of the U.S. is experiencing well above normal warmer temperatures; the eastern Pacific warm spot continues to prevent much rain from reaching California, sending it into further drought.
Scotland's independence vote has been cast, and its citizens chose overwhelmingly to remain part of Great Britain. But this historic vote should be studied by all those who want to affect political and economic change around the world, because there are important lessons to be learned.
By the time you read this, Scotland will have decided already whether to secede from the United Kingdom and form its own independent country. I can hazard an informed guess, though, and for that I have KFC to thank.
Facebook is great for what it is. So is "Yo," for that matter. But neither focus on what matters. It's high time that Americans have a way to prioritize policy over gossip. So go ahead. Save America. You can. Unless you'd rather be President?
By having an exact time standard humans added a very real and meaningful layer of stress to our lives that still impacts all of us today. The lack of an exact time standard allowed for far more flexibility in just about ever aspect of everyone's life.
Weathering the future under the shelter of the UK or setting hope on their own strengths as a small country under the European umbrella, for the first time in centuries there is a real choice which road to take.
For those of us who consider British-ness and Scottish-ness to be important elements of who we are as individuals, there is a horrible sense of foreboding about the current debate and the likely consequences of separation.
During 10 days of walking the 96-mile West Highland Way in Scotland, we were inundated by a cacophony of signs from both sides of Scotland's September 18 independence/devolution referendum.