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What We’re Reading | November 30, 2012

Article by Jacqueline Lowe February 1, 2013 //   3 minute read

How Two Presidents Helped Me Deal With Love, Guilt, and Fatherhood
In this article in the National Journal, former White House correspondent Ron Fournier talks about his evolving relationship with his son, who has Asperger’s syndrome, and how a few meetings with former Presidents George W. Bush and Bill Clinton helped change his perspective. “Rather than being thrown by Tyler’s idiosyncrasies, he rolled with them, exactly as he had in the Oval Office nine years earlier. He responded to every clipped answer with another probing question. Bush, a man who famously doesn’t suffer fools or breaches of propriety, gave my son the benefit of the doubt. I was beginning to think that people are more perceptive and less judgmental toward Tyler than his own father is. Bush certainly was.”

Ending Congress, China Presents New Leadership Headed by Xi Jinping
From the Freedom Collection: The New York Times reports on the conclusion of China’s Communist Party Congress that saw Xi Jinping become the new chairman of the party.  The event marks only the second time in 60 years in which an orderly transfer of power occurred.  Xi Jinping replaces outgoing President Hu Jintao and will be tasked with steering China toward a more sustainable model for economic growth.

Backing Away from the Fiscal Cliff
4% Growth contributor Ike Brannon writes this article about the true meaning of the fiscal cliff negotiations and how these talks will inform the nation of what we can expect from upcoming tax reforms and entitlement reforms. “Whatever the outcome, it will not be the most important piece of economic legislation over the next two years — or at least it better not be — but the tenor of President Obama’s negotiations during the next month will signal how — or whether — tax reform will proceed, as well as whether we will deal with entitlement reform during his administration.”

It really is that bad: A powerful speech on North Korea
The Washington Post features a speech by Adrian Hong, a strategic consultant who also co-founded a U.S.-based NGO that assists North Korean escapees. “Hong discusses the immense dangers that North Korean refugees face after crossing the border into China, where they can face imprisonment, sex trafficking and often a return home to much worse. “To go through that much risk, whatever you’re escaping from back home has to be pretty bad,” he says. “Extraordinarily bad.” Melanie Kirkpatrick, author of a recent book on the new underground railroad out of North Korea recently visited the Bush Center to share more stories from within the closed regime from those who managed the difficult escape.