FBI spyplanes over America; Aziz Ansari's secrets to romance

I'm an Anglophile who came of age when the special relationship between the US and the UK was at some of its best points. I was born into Reagan and really began to pay attention to politics during the Blair years when America and the UK could not have been tighter. That's why I greatly enjoyed reading The American Interest's view on the history of this special relationship: that it was not always as rosy as it is today, how it came to develop, and the role of the special relationship in balancing:

The US-UK-EU Triangle
What role does Britain wish to play on the world stage going forward? And if it's not one of a country who still wishes to be the leader and global power it once was, does that mean there's any value in a special relationship with the United States?

Russia's agency of Internet trolls
Adrian Chen from The New York Times Magazine traveled to St. Petersburg earlier this year in an attempt to learn more about the Internet Research Agency, a Kremlin front that is used to create panic (including two terrifying examples in America) and create pro-Russian opinions on social media. A reminder: you can't believe everything you read on the Internet.

The FBI covertly flies surveillance over US cities
Filed under: sad, illegal, and not surprising. Apparently the FBI has been using shell companies to run secret surveillance flights over major American cities. I feel like I have to ask the same question several times per month: has no one in government read the Constitution? I suspect our founding fathers would be horrified at the level of intrusions we suffer today.

The fantasy of pundits' China
China in 2015 is a country that has come a long way, and still has a ways to go. The Washington Post argues that the real China is not a monolith intent on beating the United States, or a country on the edge of precipitous decline. Rather, that like every country, it's a place of nuance, and that America would be better served with this approach in analysis than the current style which often transposes American anxieties onto the Chinese narrative.

Why the Chinese military is not bothered by Obama
And on the heels of a request for nuance, the opposite thereof. With good reason, it appears that China is not particularly anxious about the Obama administration's ability to check its designs for the Pacific. I wish I could see any indications they were wrong, but I suspect for the balance of this administration we'll be laying the groundwork for our next president's biggest problem.

It's harder and harder to teach anything in university
Last week I linked to a story about Laura Kipnis and the issues surrounding her article on campus sexual abuse. Vox has a good, anonymous follow-up from a different college professor who speaks to the same issues Ms. Kipnis does. If these anecdotes have truth to them, they point to a scary future for the country where young people leave school with a level of expectation wholly incongruent to how the world around them actually operates.

Greece won't be rebounding anytime soon
As awful as things are in Greece today, they won't be getting better anytime soon. More and more of Greece's educated, talented young people are leaving the country, and not surprisingly, there's no one coming in to replace them. Greece is not only in crisis today, but it's losing the very people it needs to rebound and stay out of crisis tomorrow.

Everything you know about love is wrong
Oh, Aziz Ansari. I wish Craig Robinson hadn't let you die. Those of us in our early thirties are a generation who has dated in both the pre- and post- online dating world. This article is not particularly insightful, but as a person who also takes four hours to decide what he wants for dinner, I am sympathetic to dating in the online world and also yearn for days when matchmaking was a little simpler.