Around the Web (Part 1)

Check out these recent articles from around the web:

As 2016 presidential race looms, which party is more divided? by Michael Sean Winters: “‘In the spring of 2014, those who control the party’s money spigots — and thereby those who direct campaigning nationwide — made the decision to forego the issues of income inequality and the middle-class squeeze,’ Schneck told NCR. ‘They decided 2014 was to be a ‘base election’ and so would not devote energies to go for swing voters or pitch to the general electorate.’”

What Ruth Bader Ginsburg Taught Me About Being a Stay-at-Home Dad by Ryan Park: “The encouraging reactions of the younger partners make me hopeful that a commitment to family won’t necessarily mean a future of depreciated income and stunted professional advancement. But if it does, I can live with that tradeoff. I’d far prefer it to a future of maximized career potential and personal regret.”

Maoists in China, Given New Life, Attack Dissent by Chris Buckley and Andrew Jacobs: “China’s old guard leftists are a loose network of officials and former officials, sons and daughters of party veterans, and ardently anti-Western academics and journalists. They look back to the precepts of Marx, Lenin and especially Mao to try to reverse the effects of China’s free-market policies and the spread of values anathema to party tradition. And while their direct influence on the party leadership has been circumscribed, they have served as the party’s eager ideological inquisitors.”

Winter storm brings misery to Middle East refugees by BBC News: “The winter storm, forecast to last several days, has brought snowfall and freezing temperatures to Lebanon, Syria, Jordan and Turkey. Israel, the West Bank and the Gaza Strip have also been affected. In Lebanon’s Bekaa Valley – where tens of thousands of refugees are living in tents, and many others in unfinished or unheated buildings – the snow blocked roads and forced many businesses to close.”

The North Korea Regime Change Debate by Joseph Bosco: “War is not the only means to bring about decent governance and there are positive examples of successful peaceful change. Regimes can find enlightenment and reform themselves, as happened in South Korea, Taiwan and South Africa. U.S. President Barack Obama is hoping for a variation of that scenario in Cuba. Or, a combination of internal and external pressures can bring about largely peaceful regime collapse, as in the Soviet Union, Eastern Europe, and more recently, Ukraine.”

Marriage, and When Liberals Are Wrong by David Leonhardt: “To be blunter, I’d say that family structure is an area where many liberals are putting more weight on their preconceptions (inequality is bad for society) than on the evidence (changes in family structure are both an effect and a cause of inequality).”

Why U.S. needs to stay in Afghanistan by Peter Bergen: “One only has to look at the debacle that has unfolded in Iraq after the withdrawal of US troops at the end of 2011 to have a sneak preview of what could take place in an Afghanistan without some kind of residual American presence. Without U.S. forces in the country, there is a strong possibility Afghanistan could host a reinvigorated Taliban allied to a reinvigorated al Qaeda.”

In Defense of Altar Girls by Kerry Weber: “Young women should have the chance to serve as acolytes today, not just because they might feel “pretty important,” as my 12-year-old self predicted, but because they are important to the church. Young people are not simply the future of the church. They are the church right now. We adults are not always good at reminding them of that fact. Involving young people—boys and girls—in the Mass can help them to more deeply understand the honor of serving at the Lord’s table, and the importance of serving one another, from wherever we stand.”