The crafting of Putin's new Euro-Asian vision -- in effect a new "Greater Russia" assembled from the remnants of the old Soviet Union in Central Asia and Europe -- has been greased by a pipeline delivery system under the Kremlin's control.
Before we get this ball rolling, we have two minor points which relate to the calendar which we feel merit mentioning. First, for the superstitious among us, it's not only Friday the 13th, but it's actually a double-dose, being 9/13/13. Wooo! Scary!
There is only one thing important to know about Mitt Romney, and we already know it. He has no deep convictions. Without convictions, he is not going to step in front of the machine that brought him the White House, his cherished dream, and say "no."
You might know that the Clean Water Act was passed by Congress in 1972, with much credit given to Richard Nixon. You might not know that it almost didn't happen because, after it was passed by Congress, Nixon vetoed it.
The reasons behind the Chinese and Russia veto are clear. Alas, what's also clear is that it will worsen the violence in Syria, which, in turn, will increase the opposition's vengefulness when the regime falls.
During his two terms as governor of New Mexico, Gary Johnson got the nickname "Governor Veto" as he vetoed 750 bills sent to him by the legislature. Now California's Jerry Brown is bucking for that title.
Back in 1995 and 1996, a government shutdown actually happened -- twice. The debt ceiling was not raised, but the country did not default. President Clinton actively used his veto pen, as the Republicans sent him bills that they knew he would not sign.
The strong disagreement over settlement doesn't excuse the brutal killings of the family of five in Itamar. If anything this senseless murder should cause genuine commitment from all sides to find an end to the 44 year old occupation in a peaceful way.