George Packer (Togo 1982-83) dissects the Republican and Democratic Conventions in “The Talk of the Town” column of The New Yorker, September 17, 2012, issue. Packer writes: “In Charlotte, the Democrats embraced the production values that the Republicans once monopolized: message disciple, clock management, and ego subordination (former Presidents excepted). They staged repetitious, unembarrassed salutes to the military. The Republicans’ allowing Clint Eastwood to improvise like an also-ran at a talent show, on their Convention’s most important night, only heightened the contrast.”  Later, he sums up what struck all of us who endured the events by noting, “In Tampa, the faces were overwhelming white, not young, and surprising impassive. In Charlotte, there was color, youth, and tears.”

And this Friday, on The New Yorker Website, Peter Hessler (China 1996-98) now living and writing from Cairo, posted a report on the recent demonstrations against the U.S. government over the anti-Muslim film made in America. You can read it at:

http://www.newyorker.com/online/blogs/newsdesk/2012/09/cairo-between-the-protesters-and-the-embassy.html#slide_ss_0=1