The Kingkey-100, a
100-story, 1,449-foot tower [one foot shorter than Chicago’s Willis (Sears)
Tower], in the Chinese city of Shenzhen, was the tallest building completed
in 2011 anywhere in the world. It ranks 8th, but will become 9th
as soon as Mecca’s ‘Clock Tower” (see right) is finished this year.
CN Tower in Toronto? That is so 2009. That year, Guangzhou, China built a
taller one, ending the CN Tower’s top ranking since 1976. But Guangzhou didn’t get to boast for
long, as Tokyo unveils this year the world’s tallest tower (not building)
at 2,080 feet.
Recent Notable Quotes
Facial Fluke, Twitter Will
Faces of Women Affected
When I look around my campus, I see
the faces of the women affected [by the lack of free contraceptives], and I
have heard more and more of their stories. On a daily basis, I hear from
yet another woman from Georgetown or other schools or who works for a
religiously affiliated employer who has suffered financial, emotional, and
medical burdens because of this lack of contraceptive coverage.
Fluke, Law Student
to Congressional Democrats
don’t think in 140-character bits. I
think in 750-word chunks.
This Week on why he has no
Gingrich apparently asked Bob Dole
“Why do so many people take an instant dislike to me?” And Bob Dole sort of grunted and said
Dione, Washington Post Columnist
Rises from the Holy Sands of Arabia
From Middle to Far East, New Heights Are Reached
It may look like a foreboding scene from
a Tolkien fantasy movie, but in fact, it is a very real construction site
in Mecca, a city in Saudi Arabia considered most holy by adherents of Islam. These are the only skyscrapers in this ancient
city of 1.7 million, but the towers, formally called the Abraj Al Bait Towers, feature at their center a stark “Clock Tower”
that at 1,972 feet, will be second
only to the Khalifa Tower in Dubai as world’s tallest. The top of the Empire State Building in
New York City would reach only to up to several floors below the face of the clock.
But, unless you are Muslim, you will never see this tower in person,
as non-Muslims are not permitted within the city. See a nighttime video of the tower.
WORLD’S TALLEST CITIES REPORT
2011 Marked by Influx of Beta Cities
New to Top 25
Historic Shake-up in Rankings
Still No. 1, Houston out of Top 10, 3rd Chinese City Edges Past
out, to our own surprise, to have the most radical changes in the Ultrapolis
World’s Twenty-Five Tallest Cities rankings since we started the survey; and we
confidently say that in no other year since skyscrapers started being built
at the end of the 19th century in the United States, has there
been such a change in the statuses of the world’s tallest cities, or so many
records being broken in so many different new cities. For a century New York City stood as the
world’s tallest city by a wide margin, with its fellow American cities of
Chicago, Houston, and Los Angeles reigning alongside it for decades in 2nd,
3rd, and 4th places respectively, and American cities
dominated the top 25 for just as long.
In the 1990’s we started seeing the first signs of the disturbance of
that order, which was then largely overturned in the first decade of the 21st
long-maintained on these pages that construction of his type is one measure
of future economic power, and the benefits of that power. For the full report, please visit The 2012 Update column in our permanent section.
Other developments noted in the survey:
The first and
only Latin American city makes the Twenty-Five Tallest, overtakes Los
Moscow is now
home to tallest building in Europe, and is building another, taller one, as
part of a construction boom there.
huge lead in construction, as U.S. and Western Europe are at almost at a
Long-Term, No One Convinced, National Division to Deepen
Rush Limbaugh Stumble Seriously Wounds
It was a question that strangely presaged (but
not coincidentally), the heated national debate over contraception. It was
posed by George Stephanopoulos, in a Republican debate back in January, days
before the topic blasted into the public sphere with the Obama administration’s
decision to require certain religious institutions to provide contraceptives
free of charge to employees thru their healthcare plans – plans they are not
currently required to provide at all.
In this question, which came out of nowhere and had people scratching their
heads as to why Stephanopoulos was so insistent on the hypothetical answer
from Governor Mitt Romney, Stephanopoulos did nothing if not persist (see video clip).
Romney evaded the trap, but Republicans as a whole, and one major
radio talk show host, have not fared so well.
Actually, for the radio host, the trap was spectacularly successful.
The notion of contraceptives provided by others
has now become synonymous with a right to access. The, at best intellectually confused, at
worst deliberately disingenuous equation of having the freedom to obtain-by
your own means-contraceptives, with having others provide it for you,
particularly those who object to it on religious grounds, has been incredibly
successful in galvanizing millions who have never liked conservatives or the
Catholic Church in the first place.
This will, temporarily, convince some middle, independent voters who
are not well-read that Republicans are trying to ban contraception, and keep
women from accessing them anywhere.
Long-Term, Contraceptive Access Reality
However, this will not last. The facts make it plain to anyone who wants
free contraception that you can easily get them for free thru many state and
federal programs (voted for by Republicans, including Santorum), as well as at
Planned Parenthood offices everywhere, and that even if you are in the
horrendous, human-rights-violating condition of having to pay for them with
your own actual money, they do not typically cost $250 a month, as alleged in
Congress by some very needy, yet very sexually healthy Ivy League law students
(at the low end, if sexual intercourse is truly an urgent matter, a box of 40
condoms is $13 – hopefully enough to tide someone over for a month). Some serious liberals are not in agreement,
or comfortable with the subterfuge. Joe Klein’s opposition
has surprised a few. And, in an
interesting exchange two weeks ago on ABC’s This Week, when liberal commentator Clarence Page claimed that Rick
Santorum favored banning contraceptives, Page was quickly, and forcefully corrected
by others, while erstwhile ally Dee Dee Myers (former White House press secretary
under President Clinton) remained seated awkwardly silent.
As for Rush Limbaugh, his massive audience
will stick with him, including women.
The question will be how long will advertisers stay away. If the pressure falls away quickly, the
advertisers will return, with the exception of privately held companies with
ideological ties to the left- and even they may return if the outcry fades
over the long haul.
The propaganda effect will fade, though not
the policies effected – which may be all good and well with the Obama administration. But what will also not fade, what will
harden just a little more, is the national divide that has been growing for
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