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They really love us

the economistMar, 15/07/2014 - 01:06

VOTERS, journalists and just about everyone paying some attention to politics all tend to over-estimate the power of the president. When Barack Obama swept into office in 2008, Americans were dazzled by his promises of change at home and a more judicious mix of strength and humility abroad. Indeed, it was hoped the president would rescue America’s image after eight years of George Bush's brand of ham-fisted, cowboy-booted diplomacy. But many worry President Obama has also managed to tarnish the country’s brand, either through too little intervention, which has made America look weak (see Syria, Iraq and Ukraine), or through too much, which has made the country seem callous (the use of drones, phone-tapping and the like).

But for all of this anxiety about what the rest of the world thinks, it seems America's star has not quite fallen, at  least according to the Continue reading

Prayers and pistols

the economistVie, 11/07/2014 - 19:43

“O RIGHTEOUS God, who searches minds and hearts, bring to an end the violence of the wicked and make the righteous secure,” requests Psalm 7:9. Alas, God alone cannot be expected to ensure righteous folk are safe from violence. In the office of Keith McBrayer, the sheriff of Henry Country in Georgia, assembled church leaders yesterday were also asked to do their bit.

The Georgia Safe Carry Protection Act came into effect on July 1st. This means Georgians with certain licenses can now carry their guns to a whole host of new places: bars, parts of airports, some government buildings, schools (with special permission) and even churches. But the law is “vague”, according to Sheriff McBrayer. Many are confused over who is, and who is not, allowed to bring their weapons to church. And some, such as your correspondent, are moved to ask why a magnum might be welcome in church at all.

Faith-based organisations across the country are Continue reading

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