You can read the poem Amanda Gorman recited at President Joe Biden’s inauguration ceremony — celebrated by even snooty publications like The New Yorker — simply as a speech. It cannot be faulted there. It is full of the right sentiments and hopes, coming at the end of the long night of Donald Trump’s misrule. It does not come close to the great speeches of history — by Frederick Douglass, Sojourner Truth or Martin Luther King — but we do not live in an age that sets exacting standards in oratory. If we had, Trump would never have existed. But Gorman’s text was also presented and read, and acclaimed, as a poem. That is where the trouble starts. Is there a major difference between people who acclaim a political leader despite his bad policies because they agree with his (good or bad) views, and people who acclaim a weak poem because they agree with the poet’s (good) views? This controversy erupted on Twitter, and it ended with the unasked question: If we lower the standards of ... » Learn More about Does Amanda Gorman’s poem match up to the standards of the best Anglophone poetry by Black poets?
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The @POTUS account, with its 13.2 million followers, moves from the Obama administration to the Trump administration. IMAGE: Donald Trump addresses the Republican leadership at the Trump International Hotel in Washington, DC on the eve of his swearing-in. Photograph: Chris Kleponis-Pool/Getty Images Trump's first Tweet on inauguration day W hile many mourned the end of Barack Obama's years as President of the United States -- and protests against the Donald Trump presidency were reignited -- another transition occurred January 20. Along with the Oval Office, and the power that comes with it, Trump inherited a second Twitter account! The @POTUS account, which was created for the incumbent President and has 13.2 million followers, moved to the Trump administration. 'That means that if you currently follow @POTUS under the Obama administration,' Recode reported, 'you'll continue to follow the account as it moves under Trump's control. The ... » Learn More about Were you following @POTUS?
September 22, 2020 13:54 North Korea is the blackest of black boxes, meaning we have very little verifiable information about what is happening inside the country. Recent questions about leadership dynamics are a case in point. Kim Jong-un's mysterious absences from public view and the apparent elevation of his younger sister Kim Yo-jong led to wild speculation about Jong-un's health and Yo-jong's decision-making power. In the end, we just do not know. However, there is a consensus in Washington's policy community about one item -- that North Korea is entering one of the most challenging periods in the brother and sister's rule due to a concatenation of three events -- flooding, sanctions, and the COVID-19 pandemic. This triple whammy is bound to have an impact on the regime as we approach the U.S. election in November. Fitch Solutions predicts an 8.5 percent contraction in the North Korean economy this year, which would be the worst performance since the famine of the ... » Learn More about A Triple Whammy for the N.Korean Regime
Facebook banned President Donald Trump from the platform "indefinitely" due to his efforts to incite violence at the U.S. Capitol , chief executive Mark Zuckerberg said on January 7. Mr. Zuckerberg said the 24-hour ban announced on January 6 on Mr. Trump's accounts including on Instagram was extended because of Mr. Trump's "use of our platform to incite violent insurrection against a democratically elected government". The Facebook CEO added: "The shocking events of the last 24 hours clearly demonstrate that President Donald Trump intends to use his remaining time in office to undermine the peaceful and lawful transition of power to his elected successor, Joe Biden." The announcement came the day after the outgoing U.S. leader was locked out of all major social media platforms due to his false claims about the legitimacy of his loss to Mr. Biden, and for inciting the angry mob that stormed the U.S. Capitol. "We believe the risks of allowing the President to continue to use ... » Learn More about Facebook bans Donald Trump ‘indefinitely’