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In conclusion, Joffe moves from an analytical repudiation of the declinists to a reasoned, unemotional argument detailing why a world without American political, economic and cultural leadership would be an objectively bad thing. For all the cries over so-called American imperialism, America is a “liberal empire” in the mold of its British predecessor; it “fought three very large wars (one cold) a la Britain—not to overturn but to restore the balance.” America is a status quo power, the “default power,” Joffe writes, because it performs the heavy lifting of maintaining a liberal, rules-based world order that no other one nation or even concert of nations is willing, never mind capable, of doing.
Numbers, however, only tell us so much. While acknowledging that anything is possible and America’s best days may yet be behind us, Joffe is adept at explaining the intangible factors that will likely ensure America’s preeminence for ages to come. In the wake of the financial crisis and domestic political deadlock, many Americans have pointed towards China’s authoritarian capitalism, in which pesky things like democracy and free speech don’t get in the way of grand infrastructural projects, as a better alternative. Yet it is precisely the ingredients of America’s open society—however messy and ineffective it can at times seem—which have guaranteed the country’s success. China’s highly managed economy and authoritarian educational system discourages entrepreneurship and independent thinking, what Joffe believes to be America’s most enduring and important qualities. As a “universal nation” founded and continually replenished by immigrants, America is unique in not connecting nationality to blood and soil, making it the most welcoming place in the world for immigrants, who continually invigorate the American economy.
The Minneapolis based Twins team is objecting to an application filed June 14 to register “Bella Twins” as a mark. According to the database of the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, the mark would be used for wrestling entertainment and performances by professional wrestlers and entertainers.
Additionally, the Judge ordered that his order be sent to the U.S. Attorney for the District of Minnesota, the Minnesota Attorney General’s Office and lawyer discipline agencies in Minnesota and Illinois for possible action.
In Guatemala, memories of the dirtiest chapter of Central America’s dirty war came rushing back this year when former president Efrain Rios Montt was brought to trial on charges of genocide for the key role he played during the 36-year-old conflict that took 220,000 lives. But generalissimos don’t go down quietly and the ex-strongman, backed by loyal soldiers and expensive lawyers, maneuvered to annul a guilty verdict in the Constitutional Court earlier this year and forestall a retrial until 2015. Now human rights group despair that the 78-year-old Rios Montt will ever be made to pay for his alleged crimes.
This worry is alive not just in El Salvador. In Nicaragua, former Sandinista guerrilla Daniel Ortega laid aside his Kalashnikov and embraced the ballot box, parlaying his image of freedom fighter into votes. Now in his third presidential term, he has turned the Nicaraguan bureaucracy into a bully pulpit, issuing edicts, stifling the independent press and strong-arming political opponents—not unlike the very military men he confronted as a freedom fighter. And in a plot twist worthy of Gabriel Garcia Marquez, Ortega’s own stepdaughter has accused the former Sandinista of abusing her sexually when she was a child.