Item: Pakistani authorities arrest an eleven year old girl for the "blasphemy" of burning the pages of a Koran. Seems that the girl was not only a Christian, but also had Downs syndrome; the "blasphemy" thing sparks controversy Pakistan-way, some politicians calling for its repeal have been gunned down. This sort of thing makes us look at how children are treated in the United States, where we see children arrested for, inter alia, spraying perfume on themselves, burping, doodling or throwing paper airplanes.
Item: George Will tells us "why doom hasn't materialized." You have to hand it to George Will: he merrily cashes his Establishment checks without a jot of concern as to the potential damage he might be causing should anyone pay attention to him (which, thankfully, no one does). We might actually get some entertainment value out of watching him dismiss the fact that the last twelve months were the warmest ever recorded in the United States, along with extreme drought, insane wildfires and dust bowl conditions, because "the world hasn't fallen apart yet." You see, it's either full-flown consumer culture business as usual, or Mad Max... there's no in between (and frankly, I'm sure Mr. Will would have a cheery word or two for Mad Max himself, about the fact that he can still find petrol for his motorcycle, for example, and hence, everything is A.O.K.!.)
Item: WTF? The Grey Lady gives us the run-down on Senator Chuck Schumer's seeming propensity to encourage marriages among his own staff. Naturally, the wedding announcements will almost certainly appear in the Grey Lady's Sunday Styles pages' wedding announcements, along with nuptials of others in the cultural elite (straight and gay alike, btw)... maybe George WIll is right: we'll know Apocalypse has arrived when the Times treats us to the wedding announcement of a dry cleaner and an industrial worker.
Needless to say... we're not there yet.