Ralph Sierra: “Someone in your vast readership won’t be able to stand that you gave me credit for the clever comment that accompanied that tour of the universe, so let me give credit where it is due: the brilliant biology professor and evolutionist P.Z. Meyers.”


If you’ve seen “Invictus,” you’ve seen how tough rugby is. Football without padding or helmets. (Are these blokes crazy?) Here now the story of world-class rugby star Gareth Thomas, who wants kids to know it’s okay to be gay. (“It’s been really tough for me, hiding who I really am, and I don’t want it to be like that for the next young person who wants to play rugby, or some frightened young kid,” he says.)


GREEN GIANT – Beijing’s Crash Program for Clean Energy is one of those terrific New Yorker pieces – like Atul Gawande’s piece explaining why health care is so much more expensive in McAllen, Texas than in El Paso* – that really give you the big picture. (“China is already buying and installing the world’s most efficient transmission lines – “an area where China has actually moved ahead of the U.S.,” according to Deborah Seligsohn, a senior fellow at the World Resources Institute. In the next decade, China plans to install wind-power equipment capable of generating nearly five times the power of the Three Gorges Dam, the world’s largest producer.”)

While some of our fellow citizens are hoping for failure (look how pleased they were when Chicago didn’t get the 2016 Olympics), and others are praying for it (look at Senators DeMint and Brownback), China just barrels ahead. It almost makes you yearn for a dictatorship.**

*Biggest reason: the docs in McAllen tend to have an entrepreneurial culture – they’re businessmen out to maximize profits. In El Paso – as at the Mayo Clinic or in France – they’re medical professionals on salary.

**Singapore has one – and spends only 3.5% of its GDP on health care, yet shows good results.


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