The world is becoming unbalanced. In pockets across the globe, women are giving birth to too many boys. In China, the sex ratio is 121 boys to 100 girls. In India, it's 112-to-100. Sex selection also is a force in the Balkans, Armenia and Georgia. In her eye-opening book, "Unnatural Selection: Choosing Boys Over Girls, and the Consequences of a World Full of Men," journalist Mara Hvistendahl estimates that ultrasound and abortion have "claimed over 160 million potential women and girls -- in Asia alone." That's more than the entire female population of the United States.
Here is what I do not understand: President Barack Obama is acutely aware of what will happen if Congress fails to raise the government's $14.3 trillion debt ceiling. As he told the nation Monday, if Washington does not raise the debt ceiling by Aug. 2, rating agencies are expected to downgrade the government's AAA credit rating, and interest rates will rise for everyone. The fallout could spark "a deep economic crisis."
In 2007, Norwegian Justice Minister Knut Storberget proposed extending Norway's absolute maximum criminal sentence of 21 years to 30 years for genocide, crimes against humanity and terrorism. That proposal didn't go anywhere. The maximum criminal sentence in Norway is 21 years.
Former Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty's bid to win the GOP presidential nomination hasn't exactly been catching on fire. Earlier this month, The New York Times ran a story about his candidacy under the headline "Will Republican Race's First In Be the First Out?"
I've been plagued with migraines for years. So when The Daily Caller reported that GOP presidential hopeful Michele Bachmann has had severe migraines, it took my colleagues but minutes to propose that I write on the controversy.
If Washington fails to raise the $14.3 trillion debt ceiling and default follows, the results won't mirror that of L.A.'s "Carmageddon" weekend (when Angelenos stayed home in response to a major freeway closure and then blamed the media for over-hyping the story). A default on the federal debt means interest rates will rise, the cost of borrowing will balloon -- and the only sure outcome will be that voters will blame Republicans.
Democratic California state Sen. Loni Hancock is pushing legislation to end California's death penalty. "Capital punishment is an expensive failure and an example of the dysfunction of our prisons," she explained in a statement. "California's death row is the largest and most costly in the United States. It is not helping to protect our state; it is helping to bankrupt us."
President Barack Obama has billed his "grand bargain" as the adult compromise because it has something for everyone to hate. The package would raise the $14 trillion debt ceiling (which the public hates), raise taxes by $1 trillion (which Republicans hate) and cut spending by $3 trillion (which Democrats hate) over 10 years. As the president argued in Monday's news conference, it's time for Washington to eat its peas.
As "Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows -- Part 2," is set to hit theaters Friday, consider J.K. Rowling's villains.
"Weaving Spiders Come Not Here" is the motto of San Francisco's Bohemian Club. The motto is supposed to represent the club's edict against doing business during its annual Bohemian Grove retreat, which commences on Thursday on 2,700 acres, 75 miles north of the city. As club spokesman and member Sam Singer explained, "It's a group of gentlemen who are really genuinely interested in arts, theater, jazz and rock 'n' roll." The retreat gives members a chance to "get away from work. It's forbidden to talk about or solicit business at the club or grove."