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(Eugene Volokh)

The case is In re Marriage of Mendlowitz. The alleged slanders were an e-mail and a letter to the estranged wife’s business associates that seemed likely to interfere with her business relationships. They might indeed have led to a successful defamation lawsuit, and a lawsuit for interference with business relations. But a trial court judge went so far as to issue a domestic restraining order against such comments:

[Y]ou are disturbing the peace of the petitioner…. You have, by your own testimony, admitted to the defaming comments that you have made in these emails. And so therefore, the court is going to grant a restraining order for the next five years. You are not to contact [the wife], [her] employers, [her] potential employers in regard to [her] … You are not to contact any third parties in regard to [the wife], her reputation, her past acts.

This meant that any prohibited speech about his wife would be a crime. And because the order included boilerplate language ordering the estranged husband not to “harass, attack, strike, threaten, assault (sexually or otherwise), hit, follow, stalk, molest, destroy personal property, disturb the peace, keep under surveillance, or block movements,” the federal ban on gun possession by people who are the targets of restraining orders kicked in. (See PDF pp. 61–65 of my Implementing the Right to Keep and Bear Arms in Self-Defense article.)

Fortunately, the California Court of Appeal reversed the trial court’s decision, concluding that this sort of alleged defamation isn’t sufficient to justify issuing such an order. Unfortunately, for the nearly two years between the trial court decision and the appellate decision, defendant had been entirely deprived of his Second Amendment rights, and been subjected to a prior restraint in violation of his First Amendment rights.

The Volokh Conspiracy

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We’re coming up fast on the deadline by which Congress needs to agree on government funding or the Feds has to turn the lights off. The negotiations remain fluid, but here’s what seems pretty clear: The House Republican leadership will win, the Tea Party will be disappointed and the Democrats will lose. But really, it’ll be the Tea Party that won, the House Republican leadership who learned a valuable lesson and the Democrats who lost. Confused? Let me explain.

Back in February, Paul Ryan unveiled what was supposed to be the opening bid from the House Republicans: $ 32 billion in cuts for the rest of 2011. But the Tea Party demanded more and House leadership quickly caved, doubling their proposed cuts to more than $ 60 billion — or almost $ 100 billion less than barack Obama’s 2011 budget request (quick note: different news stories present these numbers differently, as it depends on whether you use Obama’s budget request or 2010’s funding as a baseline. I’m using the difference from 2010 funding, which makes for lower sums). Now Democrats are offering as a compromise measure $ 30 billion in total cuts, or exactly what Ryan’s original proposal had called for. Pretty neat, huh?

And that’s not the Democrats’ final offer, either. Odds are good that the eventual compromise will see cuts somewhere between the $ 30 billion Republican leadership called for and the almost $ 70 billion the conservative wing of the House GOP demanded. “That’s not much of a compromise if we end up with what the House Republican leadership wanted in the first place,” observe Michael Ettlinger and Michael Linden. And they’re right. But the irony is that it’s entirely possible the press will report that Democrats “won” the negotiations, as Republican leadership is likely to have to lose a lot of conservative votes in the House to get any compromise, no matter how radical, through the chamber. That will make them look bad, and in the weird logic of Washington, make the Democrats look good. But if you just keep your eye on the policy, Republicans are moving towards a win far beyond anything the House leadership had initially imagined. Getting there required learning they had less control over their conservative wing that they’d hoped, but it also taught them that their inability to control their conservative wing gave them credibility in negotiations with Democrats and can lead to pretty remarkable policy wins, as no one doubts that House Republicans really will shut down the government or allow for a default.

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Democrats are planning to offer $ 20 billion in additional cuts, report Janet Hook and Damian Paletta: “The White House and Democratic lawmakers, with less than two weeks left to avoid a government shutdown, are assembling a proposal for roughly $ 20 billion in additional spending cuts that could soon be offered to Republicans, according to people close to the budget talks. That would come on top of $ 10 billion in cuts that Congress has already enacted and would represent a deeper reduction than the Obama administration and Senate Democrats had offered previously in negotiations. But it isn’t clear that would be enough to satisfy Republicans, who initially sought $ 61 billion in spending cuts and face pressure from tea-party activists not to compromise.”

The final compromise is likely to end up matching the the House leadership’s opening bid, write Michael Ettlinger and Michael Linden: “Unfortunately the administration backed away from its budget even before the negotiations started, and the Tea Party is calling the shots in the House. So instead of negotiation between the president’s original level and House leadership’s original level, we’re stuck negotiating between the Tea Party’s $ 100 billion, and the new status quo’s $ 50 billion. That means the likely compromise is right where the House Republican leadership always wanted it: around $ 74 billion. That’s not much of a compromise if we end up with what the House Republican leadership wanted in the first place.”

Mitch McConnell is pushing for a Balanced Budget Amendment, reports Manu Raju: “Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell and other senior Republicans are building a united front behind a constitutional amendment that would require a balanced federal budget, a measure that could serve as a bargaining chip in the debate over raising the debt ceiling. McConnell’s leadership team circulated documents on Friday afternoon to GOP Senate offices, laying out a new legislative plan to bridge internal differences, and sent an unambiguous call for unity among the 47-member conference…If all 47 members sign onto the plan, it could give Republicans new leverage to demand a Senate vote as a condition for agreeing to take up the politically thorny issue of raising the national debt limit. Such a deal could help shield Republicans from the ensuing political blowback.”

The economy may be weak, but financial-sector profits have “come roaring back,” reports Kathleen Madigan: “During the darkest days of the financial crisis, when Lehman Brothers and Washington Mutual went belly up and the U.S. government had to bail out other institutions, the finance sector reported an annualized loss of $ 65.2 billion in the fourth quarter of 2008. It was the only quarterly loss recorded in the government data. Since then, the sector has come roaring back. The GDP report shows finance profits jumped to $ 426.5 billion. While profits haven’t returned to their high levels of 2006, the gain in finance profits last quarter more than offset a drop in profits posted by nonfinancial domestic industries. After rising like the Phoenix, the financial industry now accounts for about 30% of all operating profits. That’s an amazing share given that the sector accounts for less than 10% of the value added in the economy.”

Republicans will include a Medicaid overhaul in their budget, report Corey Boles and Janet Hook: “House Republicans are preparing to propose a major shake-up of the Medicaid health-care program for the poor, a first step in their drive to overhaul federal entitlements, according to a member of the House Budget Committee. Rep. Mick Mulvaney (R., S.C.) told constituents at a town hall meeting in Lancaster on Thursday that the committee soon would unveil a budget resolution for fiscal 2012 that recommends revamping Medicaid to allow states more latitude in spending federal money. ‘We’re getting ready to offer people the first real, substantive discussion on a major entitlement-Medicaid-in my lifetime,’ the congressman said. Rep. Paul Ryan (R., Wis.), the budget committee chairman, is expected to release his budget proposal by the first week in April.”

Waiting for Godot becomes a video game:
Play it here. Here’s an interview with the designer.

Got tips, additions, or comments?
E-mail me.

Still to come: Global instability threatens one of the main drivers of our economy; progressives need to engage more with the Federal Reserve; the Supreme Court is considering the constitutionality of a public financing program; the administration is continuing to back new nuclear reactors; and a conga line of dogs.


Foreign crises are endangering export-based growth, report Jon Hilsenrath and Sara Murray: “To an extent unique in post-World War II history, the U.S. economy’s climb out of recession has been led by selling crops, natural resources and manufactured goods to the rest of the world. With housing and construction in the dumps and consumer spending pinched by thrift and tight credit, exports have powered nearly half of U.S. economic expansion since the recession ended in mid-2009. Now that important engine for U.S. growth-the rest of the world-is damping the improving outlook. The world’s No. 3 economy, Japan, is reeling from an earthquake and nuclear crisis. Unrest in the Middle East has sent oil prices-and global anxiety-soaring. Fast-growing China, anxious about inflation, and other emerging markets are trying to tap the brakes. And fiscal strain looms over Europe.”

State foreclosure prevention programs aren’t doing much better than federal ones, reports Nick Timiraos: “Government efforts to encourage mortgage companies to reduce loan balances voluntarily for more borrowers haven’t had much success so far. A U.S. program that lets mortgage companies refinance ‘underwater’ loans-those for more than a property is worth-if the borrower’s loan balance is cut has received fewer than 300 applications, according to the Federal Housing Administration. Efforts by some states haven’t fared any better. Arizona and California have allocated a total of $ 1 billion in federal funds for a write-down program that offers to match as much as $ 50,000 in principal reductions by banks. Both states have barred borrowers who did a ‘cash-out’ refinancing from being eligible for a write-down, and loan balances aren’t immediately forgiven.”

The economic theories embraced by the House GOP promote job growth through wage cuts, report Tim Fernholz and Jim Tankersley: “In a little-noticed economic report distributed by the office House Speaker John Boehner last week, the Republican staff of the Joint Economic Committee attempted to refute criticisms that the GOP’s economic agenda would deliver too much pain too fast…The paper predicts that cutting the number of public employees would send highly skilled workers job hunting in the private sector, which in turn would lead to lower labor costs and increased employment. But ‘lowering labor costs’ is economist-speak for lowering wages — does the GOP want to be in the position of advocating for lower wages for voters who work in the private sector?”

My take:

Progressives need to follow the example of conservatives and pay more attention to the Federal Reserve,
Matthew Yglesias
: “Few people realize it in part because progressives in general aren’t accustomed to thinking about monetary issues. That, in turn, is largely because in the progressive movement monetary policy doesn’t seem to be anyone’s job. Climate change, health care, labor unions, women’s rights, gay and lesbian equality, and poverty, among other causes, all have their advocates. And faced with an economic downturn, fiscal stimulus is an appealing prospect to liberals. After all, it offers a political free lunch—an opportunity to spend money on key priorities without doing the tough work of coming up with offsetting tax increases. And it’s easy enough to dial around to a dozen interest groups and come up with a laundry list of stimulative fiscal measures. But the vast majority of recessions are fought primarily with monetary tools rather than fiscal ones. And even in especially steep downturns, fiscal policy can work as a stabilization tool only to the extent that monetary policy accommodates it.”

Patent reform is a win for big corporations, reports Amanda Becker: “The proposed changes give the U.S. Patent and Trade Office the ability to set its own fees, manage its own revenue, establish an expedited patent-review system and expand the ways in which a patent can be challenged. But no provision generated more interest among the organizations that weighed in than the switch from a first-to-invent to a first-to-file system used in most other countries, which would grant a patent to the first inventor to file an application even if others conceived of a similar idea first. The shift was a victory for big companies such as Johnson Johnson, Eli Lilly and General Electric, which are adept at filing patents often and early and hope the new system will help keep disputes over patent ownership out of court.”

Steeply progressive income taxes are leaving some states starved for revenue:

The average American’s stagnant wages are a disgrace, writes Bob Herbert in his final NYT column: “There is plenty of economic activity in the U.S., and plenty of wealth. But like greedy children, the folks at the top are seizing virtually all the marbles. Income and wealth inequality in the U.S. have reached stages that would make the third world blush. As the Economic Policy Institute has reported, the richest 10 percent of Americans received an unconscionable 100 percent of the average income growth in the years 2000 to 2007, the most recent extended period of economic expansion. Americans behave as if this is somehow normal or acceptable. It shouldn’t be, and didn’t used to be. Through much of the post-World War II era, income distribution was far more equitable, with the top 10 percent of families accounting for just a third of average income growth.”

Waiting to balance the budget will only make the cuts and tax hikes more brutal, writes Greg Mankiw:

Depending on how you look at it, Obama’s tax policy is either a cut or a hike, writes Donald Marron: “Relative to current law, the president is proposing a $ 2.4 trillion tax cut over the next decade. That’s because he would extend most of the tax cuts that expire at the end of 2012, including the 2001 and 2003 tax cuts for ‘middle-income’ taxpayers, the AMT patch, and the estate tax at 2009 levels. Those extensions total $ 3.1 trillion, which he would partly offset by $ 700 billion in revenue increases. Relative to current policy — which we define as 2011 tax law excluding the payroll tax holiday and temporary investment incentives — the president’s proposal turns out to be a $ 2.0 trillion tax increase. That’s because he would not extend certain provisions of 2011 tax law, most notably the lower rates on ‘upper-income’ taxpayers and the lower estate tax.”

Adorable animals moving in unison interlude:
A conga line of dogs.

Health Care

Medicare premium hikes have wiped out Social Security’s latest cost-of-living increase:

Waivers are allowing “mini-med” plans to live on, report N.C. Aizenman and Robert Barnes: “Consumer advocates condemn them as the worst form of health insurance: ‘mini-med’ plans that limit payouts to as low as $ 2,000 a year, leaving often unsuspecting customers to fend for themselves if they develop a costly and serious disease. So drafters of the new health-care law made eliminating mini-meds a top priority. By 2014, the plans will be gone completely. And starting this year, virtually all are required to up their annual coverage limit to at least $ 750,000. Yet more than 2.6 million Americans will continue to face far lower annual caps for at least another year because they are in one of 1,040 mini-med plans for which the Obama administration has granted waivers.”

Five babies have died since Nebraska cut prenatal care for poor mothers, writes Andrea Nill:

Domestic Policy

The Supreme Court is taking on campaign finance reform again, reports Robert Barnes: “A Supreme Court that is increasingly skeptical of campaign finance restrictions is returning to the issue for the first time since last year’s game-changing ruling that corporations and unions may spend whatever they like on behalf of candidates…The case to be heard Monday concerns a provision in Arizona’s public campaign financing law that increases funding for those facing big-spending opponents or interest groups. It is the first time the court has considered a public finance system since its landmark decision in 1976 that the presidential public funding system was constitutional…The challengers say the system is meant to level the playing field, something the Supreme Court already said is not sufficient for overcoming constitutional speech protections.”

The Court is also considering a sex discrimination suit against Wal-Mart:

The FEC is split on how to deal with Citizens United, reports T.W. Farnam: “A year after the Supreme Court’s landmark decision easing campaign spending restrictions for corporations and interest groups, the Federal Election Commission has yet to issue regulations spelling out the full implications of the decision. The commission increasingly has been paralyzed by a sometimes bitter standoff between Republicans and Democrats on the evenly divided panel. And although most of the commissioners will soon be serving in expired terms, President Obama and congressional Republicans have not been able to agree on replacements…The effort to write new regulations has been halted by the partisan standoff over how much interest groups must disclose about their financial backers in election spending.”

Citizens United implies that Arizona’s campaign finance system is constitutional, write Charles Fried and Cliff Sloan:

Small class size isn’t everything, writes Eve Moskowitz: “The worst public elementary school in Manhattan, 16 percent of whose students read at grade level, has an average class size of 21; PS 130, one of the city’s best, has an average class size of 30. Small class size is one factor in academic success. The question, then, is whether the educational benefits of class-size reduction justify the costs. Some proponents contend that because research shows reducing class size is beneficial, spending on this should be prioritized over anything that is unsupported by research. That’s a neat rhetorical trick but unsound logic. The absence of research on, say, teacher salaries doesn’t prove that we should pay the minimum wage to teachers to dramatically reduce class size.”

All in the game interlude:

The Wire as a Victorian novel


The administration is clearing the way for more nuclear reactors, report Naureen Malik and Tennille Tracy: “U.S. nuclear regulators on Friday removed a key hurdle facing Southern Co.’s bid to build two nuclear reactors near Augusta, Ga., saying the project doesn’t pose environmental risks. The Nuclear Regulatory Commission said it completed an environmental review of Southern’s proposed Vogtle units and didn’t find anything that would prevent it from issuing licenses to the company, which could be the first time regulators approve the construction of a new nuclear-power reactor in the U.S. in over 30 years. The NRC still needs to complete a safety report on the project and finish a review of the proposed reactor’s design.”

Global carbon markets are floundering:

Senate Democrats are promoting a compromise EPA climate bill, reports Robin Bravender: “Senate Democrats hope to siphon votes from a GOP bid to hamstring EPA climate rules by voting first on a Democratic alternative. Top Democrats plan to hold a vote next week on an amendment from Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus before allowing a vote on a more sweeping climate amendment from Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, a senior Democratic leadership aide told POLITICO on Thursday. Baucus’s amendment — which aims to exempt agriculture and small industrial facilities from climate rules — would allow moderate Democrats to support limits on EPA regulations without backing the Republican effort to upend the Obama administration’s climate policies.”

Americans can live without cheap gas, writes Robert Rapier:

The GOP should lay off the EPA, write William Ruckelshaus and Christine Todd Whitman: “The Senate is poised to vote on a bill that would, for the first time, ‘disapprove’ of a scientifically based finding, in this case that greenhouse gases endanger public health and welfare…As former administrators of the EPA, both under Republican presidents, we have observed firsthand rapid changes in scientific knowledge concerning the dangers posed by particular pollutants, including lead additives in gasoline, benzene and the impact of contaminants on our drinking-water supply. In each of these cases, the authority of our major environmental statutes was essential to protect public health and the most vulnerable members of our society, even in the face of remaining scientific debate.

Closing credits: Wonkbook is compiled and produced with help from Dylan Matthews and Michelle Williams.

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Even with loss to UConn, Georgetown proves it's a player on the national stage
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Written by Nadine Toukan

Friday night marked the violent defeat of protests that began on March 24 (#March24) in Amman, Jordan. On Thursday night, protesters for democratic reform had camped out at the Dakhliyeh Circle (Ministry of Interior Circle). Throughout Friday more and more citizens gathered at the Dakhliyeh Circle raising their voices for political reform. They were met with counter-demonstrators holding up pictures of Jordan's King Abdullah and throwing rocks.

As the crowds grew and tensions escalated, security forces (Police and the Gendarmerie) stormed the Dakhliyeh Circle with batons and a water canon, forcing people away from the area. “We emptied the area after confrontation between the two sides and to ensure their safety,” said a Public Security Department press release [ar]. Video of how some of the crowd was being dispersed as security got violent with protesters.

By the end of Friday, one man had died, Khairi Jameel AlSaad, 55, and more than 100 were injured.

Alimetalhead posted a video on YouTube from March 25 in Amman that shows stones flying towards protesters who created a barricade to protect themselves.

Blogger Naser_K wrote he thought the police was coming to protect them, until the water cannons were aimed at protesters and “hell broke loose.” He described being beaten and chased home.

@Naser_K: one policeman swinging his stick to hit me asked me: bedak esla7at dostooryeh ya a5u el#_/#/#? (You want constitutional reform you brother of a #_/#/#? )

There are photos and video from March 24 at, and Amer Sweidan has posted this photo set on Flickr.

A campaign of loyalty

Meanwhile on Friday, on the other side of Amman in the AlHussein Gardens, a festival of loyalty and allegiance brought together thousands of Jordanians over national song and dance. They were rallied through a mass media campaign over the past week called Neda' Watan (Call of a Country). Many have questioned who is driving and funding the campaign as it does not appear to be the work of any specific organization or group.

Eman Jaradat from the community media team of tweeted:

امبارح اتصلت في شخص اسمه امين ملحم من منظمي نداء وطن و ساعة و انا احاول افهم منه مين دافع حق الاعلانات و هو يقلي هاد جهد شبابي

@Frekeeh: Yesterday I spoke to a Ameen Milhem, one of the Neda' Watan organizers, and for an hour I tried to understand from him who's paying for the ads and media campaign, and he kept saying this is a youth effort.

Internet entrepreneur Samih Toukan said:

مظاهرات “نداء وطن” حق ونحن نؤيدها لكن من غير المقبول صرف الاف الدنايير للاعلان عنها من جيبة دافع الضرائب الاردني

@samihtoukan: The Neda' Watan demonstrations are a right, and we support that, however it is not acceptable to spend thousands of Dinars on the ad campaign from the pockets of the Jordanian taxpayer.

Blogger Tallouza said:

@tallouza: My gut feeling tells me #NidaaWatan sole purpose was 2 sabotage free & decent voices calling for genuine and meaningful change! #Jo #mar24

A sad day for Jordan

On Twitter, there were many regrets over the escalation of violence during protests for reform.

Children's book author Shaima Albishtawi said:

تم رشق الناس بالطوب .. الطوب الذي كان يجب استخدامه في اعمار الاردن

@shaima2: Mortar bricks were hurled at people…bricks that should have been used to build Jordan.

Jordanian blogger and journalist Mohamed Omar tweeted:

قبل هجوم البلطجة والدرك كنت بفكر اكتب عن الشباب المعتصمين بوانهم يشكلون مفخرة للبلد شباب منتمون واعون قلوبهم ع البلد

@mohomar: Before the attack of thugs and the Gendarmerie, I was thinking of writing about the demonstrating youth who are a pride for the country.

شباب كانوا يجسدون فهم متقدم لانتمائهم ووحدتهم ومدنيتهم كان المفترض بالحكومة تفخر بهيك شباب بس خسارة

@mohomar: Devoted, aware youth with their hearts on the country. Youth who demonstrated a progressive understanding of belonging, unity, and civic sense. The government should have taken pride in such youth, but alas.

On Twitter, many Jordanians condemned what they witnessed either first hand or through friends.

Blogger and photographer Amer Sweidan said:

@AmerSweidan: I am really pissed off, not because I was injured, but watching a man dying, his son hugged me and started crying. this is unbearable.

In an appearance on Jordan Television later Friday night, Prime Minister Marouf Al-Bakhit accused the Islamic Front of leading the unrest based on foreign intervention and collaboration, and then went on to speak broadly about economic issues; the 21,000 jobs the government has promised to secure, and the global financial crisis.

On Twitter, people were disappointed he spoke so briefly on the unrest.

@sama7ijawi: Albakhit thinks its important to talk about Jordan' economic story with globalization now, it took 3mins to finish comments on 2day's drama!

@SaHHHar: PM what r u going on about? Blood was spilled on the streets and you're lamenting y the media didn't highlight gov accomplishments? #ReformJO

In the name of the King?

There were also many questions on Friday about why King Abdullah delayed addressing the country in a painful moment. Many believe that thugs at protests voicing support for the monarchy have misinterpreted the wishes of the king, who himself launched a reform process at the beginning of February.

Computer engineer Hamzah Nassif said:

@HamzehN: King MUST address people! Nobody else but him can put these thugs in their place. They are using HIS name. HE MUST DENOUNCE THEM! #Mar24

Samih Toukan tweeted:

جلالة الملك اكد على حرية المظاهرات والاعتصام وطلب من الاجهزة الامنية حمايتهم.لماذا نخالف تعليماته باسمه؟

@samihtoukan: His Majesty the King insisted on the freedom of gathering and demonstrations, and asked the security system to keep people safe. Why do we disobey his instructions in his name?

Jordan's Foreign Minister, Nasser Judeh, tweeted about the unrest and promised to present “all facts”. He said six people were arrested (from both sides) and insisted to his followers that the rights of the opposition to demonstrate peacefully are guaranteed by the constitution. He said police went in to separate the two groups.

Labor rights activist Thoraya said (in a series of tweets) that she spoke to several protesters with sticks on Friday who appeared to have been manipulated into believing it was a Palestinian protest against the King.

This Aramram video [ar] compares previous words of His Majesty with clips of one small group of his supporters explaining their views.

(Transcript/Translation) “What the King says and what people understand”

King: Again I don't want to say a new beginning, because work is continuity. What we need is a new mechanism, and a new phase. And like I said during the opening of Parliament, there's no time to waste. Required is serious work, continuous evaluation, and rectifying mistakes and shortcomings. The mandate of the new government is clear. I want quick results when we speak of political reform. When we speak of political reform, we want true reform.

Interviewer: Hello guys. What happened? Tell me what happened with you. Come, tell us what happened.
Young men: We are with the country, and with King Abdullah. In my name and in the name of my tribe, I send glorious congratulations to His Majesty, and we tell him, our souls are for you. And those who confront him, we will throw them out of this country.
Interviewer: Question, His Majesty said he wants reforms, he said so.
Young men: Yes, correct. Reforms he will decide what they are. Not us and the people to decide, he will decide. He rules this Kingdom, he will decide what he wants, and we are right behind him in a straight line.
Interviewer: So the King says he wants reforms, and the people on Dakhliyeh Circle want reforms…
Young men: Who are these people?
Interviewer: Who are they, you tell me?
Young men: Those who are from the Muslim Brotherhood?
Interviewer: No, not the Muslim Brotherhood. There are many people.
Young men: It is not for the Muslim Brotherhood nor us the people of this country to decide. He who decides is the owner of this Kingdom, he who rules it, it is him who decides. We walk behind him in a straight line.
Young men: Long live the great King. Long live. Long live the great King. Long live. Long live the great King. Long live. Long live. Long live. Long live.

King: And what I want to say today is that there is nothing that may affect the policy of openness, and the spirit of forgiveness, and the culture of pluralism, and the acceptance of all sincere opinions. Because these are the Jordanian constants that do not change.

What happens next?

Fifteen members of a newly formed multilateral National Dialog Committee established by Jordan's government to bring about reform resigned on Friday, issuing a statement that the provocative and aggressive behavior of security forces is proof that any official talk about political reform is insincere and futile.

@Tallouza: Taher Masri (Head of the Senate, and appointed to lead the National Dialog Committee) seemed totally stressed & displeased tonite on JTV…obviously he knows something that everybody in gov't thinks we don't…#JO

After bearing witness to the unrest across the region, Jordan seems to have lost a golden opportunity this weekend. March 25 was a day witnessed the death of progressive conversation, the death of a little bit of hope, and the death of possibility. What will we do now to lead the country forward?

Thumbnail photo shared by Rana Yaghmour on yfrog.

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Florida Gators eliminated after loss to Butler
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Three late three-point attempts that could have won or extended the game for UF were off, sending Butler back to the Final Four. Florida's Erving Walker, left, and Kenny Boynton (1) react in the locker room after their overtime loss to Butler in the
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Boston Globe
Celtics moving on after Bobcats loss
Doc Rivers and Paul Pierce try to answer the mounting questions regarding the Celtics' emphasis on team basketball. WALTHAM, Mass. — The ball rack was in its normal spot near the weight room door Saturday morning, so Celtics players
Time for big four to assert
One day later, the Celtics are still searching for a way out of their
Celtics look to Big Four to pull them through strugglesNECN
Los Angeles Times –Boston Herald –
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Kansas City Star
Florida State Seminoles program still moving up despite loss to VCU in NCAA
SAN ANTONIO, Texas — You learned to love their devotion to teamwork. You came to appreciate the sensibility of players putting egos aside. For that is what made Florida State different. All season long, it is what
VCU Edges Florida State, 72-71, to Advance to Elite 8Afro American
VCU Continues Its Unlikely RunNew York Times
Even when the going gets tough, the Rams get – –WTVR
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Kansas City Star
Florida State Seminoles program still moving up despite loss to VCU in NCAA
SAN ANTONIO, Texas — You learned to love their devotion to teamwork. You came to appreciate the sensibility of players putting egos aside. For that is what made Florida State different. All season long, it is what
VCU Edges Florida State, 72-71, to Advance to Elite 8Afro American
VCU Continues Its Unlikely RunNew York Times
Even when the going gets tough, the Rams get – –WTVR
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ABC News
Corbin accepts blame for Jazz loss
That's what Jazz coach Tyrone Corbin said Thursday night following his team's 121-117 overtime loss to the New Orleans Hornets. Ahead by two points after Paul Millsap's free throws with just 1.3 seconds left in regulation, the Jazz felt
Hornets' West has torn ACL, done for seasonVancouver Sun
West's knee injury takes away from key road
Hornets' David West out for the season with torn – –The Canadian Press
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Globe and Mail
Don't blame Duke loss on Irving's return
ESPN (blog)
Before we turn to tonight's helping of Sweet 16 madness, it seems important — well, not important, but at least worthwhile — to debunk an altogether too-common theme emerging from Arizona's 93-77 thrashing of Duke Thursday night.
Derrick Williams On Beating Duke In Sweet 16: 'It's A Great Feeling'SB Nation
Arizona's Sean Miller out of the mix for NC State jobCharlotte Observer
Staff of Rep. Giffords hails Arizona victory over DukeUSA Today
Columbia Daily Tribune –Los Angeles Times –Bleacher Report
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