The New York Times on why the answer to the current crisis in Iraq is to let moderate Sunnis defeat the Islamic State. Although moderate Sunnis reject the extremist worldview of ISIS, they have joined them because they have no voice in mainstream society. "The group’s ideology is a perversion of Islam and an affront to our culture. Yet the group gets local support. The Sunni tribes defeated Al Qaeda in Iraq, its predecessor, less than a decade ago. Today, they cooperate with ISIS (which now calls itself the Islamic State) — not as fanatics, but because they see it as the lesser of two evils, compared with Mr. Maliki." The solution in Iraq is to embolden Sunnis by restructuring the government. "First, we need a new prime minister.... Iraqi politicians also must agree on a new balance between central authority and regional autonomy... Any agreement must include amnesty for the tens of thousands of Sunnis detained without trial, the release from detention of the Sunni politician Ahmed al-Alwani, the end of the counterproductive de-Baathification program, and the repealing of the counterterrorism law, which has been used as a pretext to arrest Mr. Maliki’s Sunni rivals."
Robert J. Samuelson in The Washington Post on how Dodd-Frank undermined the importance of the Federal Reserve's independence. Samuelson explains that Section 13(3) of the Federal Reserve Act allowed the central bank to prevent another Great Depression by lending money to failing institutions during a time of crisis. "Section 13(3) enabled the Fed to serve as a true “lender of last resort.” Many economists believe that this may have prevented a second Great Depression. And how did Congress, via Dodd-Frank, reward the Fed’s good deeds? It handcuffed (maybe gutted) 13(3)." Samuelson writes that Dodd-Frank eliminated the Federal Reserve's ability to act swiftly and independently in times of crisis. "In a crisis, the Fed’s ability to respond quickly is what gives it the potential to stop a panic. (Note: Most of the Fed’s loans have been repaid with interest.) The insistence on detailed oversight would, if applied to the military, require generals during wars to clear every tactical change with Congress. This sounds impractical because it is."