Five Best Friday Columns

David Brooks on environmentalism, Ruth Marcus on Romney the '50s dad, William Pesek on global hunger, Timothy Egan on Romney the manager, and Touré on blacks voting Obama.

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David Brooks in The New York Times on the sad story of environmentalism Before Al Gore's Inconvenient Truth, curbing global warming was a bipartisan issue. Gore politicized it, killing its bipartisan chances. Then Obama's green jobs grants seemed wasteful. "All in all, the once bright green future is looking grimmer. Green tech is decidedly less glamorous, tarnished by political and technological disappointments."

Ruth Marcus in The Washington Post on Romney as a good manager, '50s dad It's good that Romney said he hired women and accommodated for a female employee who needed a more flexible schedule. "But at heart, he seems convinced that children are better off when mothers stay home." So while Marcus might be chosen out of a binder, she'd be worried he's secretly thinking a "Truly Good Mother" wouldn't be there in the first place.

William Pesek in Bloomberg View on global hunger If the fight for food fails, capitalism as we know it cannot last. The era of cheap food is over, and millions in Asia are living off meager funds, leaving a weak base for economic growth and a strong one for political instability. Worst: Leadership is distracted. "It is too focused on Europe’s bond spreads and China’s currency to see that the unsexy issue of food is the real issue imperiling the future."

Timothy Egan in The New York Times on Romney, the corporate persona Romney's corporate persona reappeared Tuesday night. He "was the very picture of a C.E.O. used to getting his way. Meeting over. All opposed, take a hike." From tax breaks to complaints about the debate's order, "he exposed, once again, his biggest fault: that he has no idea what it’s like to be middle-class and struggling in 2012 America."

Touré in Time on blacks voting for Obama People who say blacks are only voting for Obama because he's black are being racist. "This is mostly conservatives complaining about why they can’t get a serious look from black Americans." Blacks do not support Herman Cain or Clarence Thomas. And besides, voting for black president is not a vapid choice, it's a soul-affirming one. "There’s a love of self in that vote, and his election in turn impacted black national self-esteem."

This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.