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Here are some news stories and articles which might be of interest to you. I've posted the opening section, and if you want to read more, you can click on "Read the whole article" to go to the original item. You'll find a variety of things here -- current news, political analysis, opinion pieces, articles about religion -- things I've happened to read and want to share with you. It's your Reading Room, so take your time. Browse. You're certain to find something you'll want to read.

Thursday, October 1, 2009

The Limits of Reinvention

If you think the U.S. was hated for being strong, wait until you see how it’s despised for being weak.

by Denis Boyles

It’s like the heady days of Paris, 2005. This week, the French ruling clique is having a go at America, pouring vintage disdain on American puissance — and finding that power woefully misapplied.

This was all supposed to change under Pres. Barack Obama, the first U.S. president in history to take a global lap just to say he’s sorry for his country’s behavior. His plan was to reinvent America’s image in the world. He became an overnight sensation in Paris, delighting les médiacrates with his easy dismissal of French president Nicolas Sarkozy and his wife, Carla Bruni. Months later, in France, the only person more popular with the press than Roman Polanski is Barack Obama.

But that may soon change — as it has already at the Elysée, and, for that matter, in government offices in Berlin and in Brussels and in the eastern capitals. In those places, Barack Obama, the man who practically invented reinvention, is himself being reinvented as an ugly American. Not because he’s seen as loud and aggressive, but because he’s seen as weak...

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Fr. Phillips is the founding pastor of Our Lady of the Atonement Catholic Church, the first Anglican Use parish, established on August 15, 1983. Not that there is any confusion, but he is on the left, shown in his younger, less gray-headed days.