The Best Of The Dish Today

Andrew Sullivan —  Jan 21 2015 @ 9:15pm

In case you need a little perspective today:

On the other hand, Speaker Boehner has invited Benjamin Netanyahu to challenge the president of the United States in a joint address to Congress! It’s not exactly a secret that almost the entire GOP wants any negotiations with Iran to be sabotaged and war initiated … but to get a foreign prime minister to come to the US to demand a war against a third country – and while talks are at a very delicate stage? That’s some major disrespect there. Nothing we haven’t gotten used to, but disrespect nonetheless. And then there’s the tacit blessing this gives to the incumbent prime minister – who has ruled out a two-state solution for the foreseeable future (i.e. ever) – in a difficult re-election fight. Dylan Scott:

Congress’ embrace of Netanyahu therefore allows him to assume the role of international statesman and play to some internal Israeli skepticism about the Obama administration’s stance toward Iran, the Palestinian peace process and other Middle East issues. “The one thing that the opposition can play is, ‘Look, you’re screwing up relations with the United States.’ But if Netanyahu’s invited, then that’s moot,” Rynhold said. “It’s a good time, it’s a good issue. It works politically because it’s founded on what these people actually think.”

Some posts worth re-visiting: the campaign Obama re-emerges; the latest “success” for the CIA’s anti-Jihadist strategy in Yemen; a dissent on tidal and global warming; and swimming doggies. The most popular post of the day was In Which The Democrats Finally Get A Clue; followed by my live-blog of the SOTU last night.

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Just writing to say that I’ve re-subscribed after a bit of a winter break hiatus.  My gift subscription didn’t auto-renew in December, and I took the opportunity to unplug from the internet (for the most part) for a couple of weeks over the holidays.  I’m back into my regular routine now, and found I missed the Dish’s perspective on politics and culture (and even a bit of your weekend religion stuff, though I skim that a bit more as I’m online less on the weekend).

While I disagree with you often – the “Scorn of Feminism” threads really articulated something I’ve felt for a while about how you ignore or marginalize female perspectives because they are outside your own realm of experience.  But as the Charlie Hebdo events have thrown into sharp relief, there is power and value in listening to voices that challenge your own viewpoints, and the Dish does that for me often, which I appreciate.

Finally, I do want to say that I have used your work in my teaching (I’m a history professor at a university in Mississippi), particularly your “Crisis in Christianity” article from Newsweek a couple years ago, to provide some cultural literacy for my students in World History 101, and I’ve gotten consistent feedback that it is one of students’ favorite readings during the semester.  My colleagues often hate teaching the origins of Christianity because our students often bring their Sunday School biases to class, but I love it because it allows me to take something that they care about deeply (their faith) and widen their worldview, while still taking the lived experience of faith seriously in both ancient and modern times.

See you in the morning.