5 Best Sunday Columns

Lieberman's war on the public option, the rise of cheese-makers, and the enlightened rejection of Swiss minarets

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  • Joe Lieberman, The Wall Street Journal: No and Again, No to the Public Option  Lieberman vowed to scuttle any health care bill that includes the public option, but many commentators thought he was bluffing in order to win concessions. This Sunday, he digs in further at the Wall Street Journal: "I'm being more stubborn and certain about this . . . I think it's such a significant step for the country to create another entitlement program and to have the government going into a business, I feel like I've got to say no...It doesn't help one poor person get insurance who doesn't have it now. It doesn't compel one insurance company to provide insurance to somebody who has an illness. And . . . it doesn't do anything to reduce the cost of insurance."
  • Ayaan Hirsi Ali, Christian Science Monitor: 'Swiss Ban on Minarets Wasa Vote for Tolerance and Inclusion'  A women's-rights activist who once served in the Dutch parliament, Ali joins defenders of the minaret ban, covered by the Wire here. She argues that the ban was a vote not against Muslims, but against political Islam, which rejects "tolerance and inclusion." "Political ideas have symbols: A swastika, a hammer and sickle, a minaret, a crescent with a star in the middle (usually on top of a minaret) all represent a collectivist political theory of supremacy by one group over all others."
  • Eliot Cohen, Washington Post: Washington Has a Plan in Afghanistan--Not a Strategy  Cohen argues that Obama knows the tenets of counterinsurgency--"clear, hold, build"--but not the excruciating difficulty of carrying this out, one valley at a time, in Afghanistan. "What is a strategy anyway, in a war without fronts, one that might drag on for decades and that shades off into banditry at one end and terrorism at another?"
  • Jared Diamond, The New York Times: Corporations Could Be the Key to Climate Change  Jared Diamond, best-selling author of Guns, Germs and Steel, once believed that big business was the enemy of environmentalism. Now he's had a change of heart. "I’ve discovered that while some businesses are indeed as destructive as many suspect, others are among the world’s strongest positive forces for environmental sustainability."
  • James Norton, Christian Science Monitor: Forget Spreadsheets--Start Making Cheese  Norton highlights a small bright side of the recession--allowing people to seek out meaningful work as producers of artisanal food. "Countless Americans today are looking for jobs that are meaningful, sustainable, and – in the true sense of the word – productive. For some of them, perhaps many of them, that work may lie in the countryside or in the kitchen or in the salty depths of a feta brine tank."
This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.