Wiretap: The world is aflame, again

The world is once again aflame, but, too often, the world seems to be that way. As New Yorker editor David Remnick eloquently puts it: “Because memory, particularly historical memory, fails unfailingly, this summer feels like a uniquely horrific season of dissolution and blood…(but) the supposed tranquillity of earlier seasons is almost always an artifact of distance.” Which is not to diminish the unending horror of this summer season. The various crises all have deep roots and no clear solutions. As Remnick says of the fighting in Gaza, the “most malign and extremist elements within this conflict––Israeli and Palestinian—grow in strength and deepen their conviction that there is no chance of accommodation.” And the fires show little sign of burning out.

OK, it’s official. Even the New York Times will occasionally blow your mind. The Times editorial board has announced it is time to end the federal ban on marijuana. The headline says, “Repeal Prohibition, Again.”

In the first part of a week-long discussion, the Times’ editorial says to let the states decide.

If you go our state’s borders, you’ll find more than a line drawn years ago on a map. There is also a new dividing line — legal pot on one side and illegal pot on the other. Via the Washington Post.

Late snowmelt has Colorado rivers running higher and faster — epic conditions for whitewater thrill-seekers, sure, but also the makings of what could be the deadliest season Colorado’s rivers have seen to date. Via Outtherecolorado.com

The Associated Press got it wrong when they estimated how many background checks the state would end up performing since passing gun control legislation last year. Flawed estimates created the appearance of high costs too. Via the AP.

Sarah Kliff, who has covered Obamacare from the beginning of the battle, writes authoritatively in Vox that there was never any debate in Congress to limit the subsidies only to states that would form their own exchanges. If only the courts had asked.

David Carr writes of the changes that social media have meant for covering the news in wartime. It is not only more immediate. It is more visceral. And, yes, it’s more bloody. Reporters are not just reporting the news. They are bearing witness. Via New York Times.

E.J. Dionne looks closely at Paul Ryan’s new poverty plan and sees that it looks far too much like all the old Republican plans. Via the Washington Post.

Philip Seymour Hoffman’s final movie was also his final disappearing act. Via Esquire.

[ Gaza image by andlun1 ]