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Free trade: A site of potential bipartisanship?

With both foreign policy and the economy turning the corner, President Obama must capitalize upon his sudden strength and use it to broker a deal as soon as possible. With the Republican Senate poised to unveil legislation in coming weeks, the window of opportunity has arrived. International officials from TPP countries have stated that the first six months of 2015 will be critical to finish up talks and hammer out details. Thus, it is imperative to pass domestic legislation sooner, rather than later.

The tightrope of Chuck Hagel

Hagel’s exit does owe its genesis to party politics: With the Democrats reeling from the 2014 midterm elections, something had to be done, and making a change at Defense became a priority, if only because the White House needed to create the illusion of action. “For good or ill, Hagel’s [the only change],” a current administration official told Politico. A former spokesman for the State Department even likened it to a sports owner firing a coach to please angry fans, even though the team is years away from being good regardless of the coach. The general consensus is indeed that Hagel is President Obama’s sacrificial lamb.

Net neutrality

Super Tuesday columnists Johnathan Bowes ’15 and Aimee Trujillo ’15 take on net neutrality. While there is a broad consensus that the Internet must remain impartial, the two disagree on the political solution. Trujillo supports government regulations like those placed on telecommunications companies. Bowes, in contrast, argues that we should use our economic vote against the manipulative ISPs and turn instead to encouraging new ISP start ups.

What we mean by ‘never again’

This is the quandary we face in preventing the cycle of mass killing. It is not always easy to justify humanitarian missions when it seems not to follow our strategic interests. Yet time and time again, from Nazi Germany to Rwanda, we will retrospectively realize the mistake of inaction and the grave human cost of standing by.

The “unreal” can still help to hurt: Literature must inform ISIS policy

It would be smart to look to literature, leveraging its ability to allow us to empathize with dissimilar emotional states to our own. If we better understand what we might consider to be warped psychologies or twisted thought processes, we will be better able to address conflict involving such entities. As we can learn from Sun Tzu’s The Art of War,it is only by beginning to understand the enemy, as uncomfortable as that might be, that we can effectively deconstruct them.