The FAB FIVE
1) The protests in Iran: The long awaited counterrevolution has not yet occurred, but the preconditions for it did.-- Turbans off to the brave men and women who have continued to flock to the streets, defying death and prison, to protest the theft of yet another election and the suppression of democracy in Iran.
2) The inauguration of the first African-American (which he literally is) president of the United States, who finally gave the speech in Oslo that he should have given in Cairo and at West Point. The essential bookend of his engagement strategy.
3) A surprising recovery of the global markets and the U.S. market upswing: the NASDAQ, S&P 500 markets have soar almost 60 percent since the mid-March lows despite the depressing jobless recovery. Let's put the surge in context of what didn't happen: the very real risk of a world financial meltdown.
4) Over-the-knee boots: Fashion finally acknowledges that at least half of American women live in cold climates. Being chic and warm at last is great.
5) Meryl Streep as a-60-year-old Hollywood star has changed the entertainment paradigm and pilot cool Sully Sullenberger. What endures are talent and character, not just looks and hype. Cougars rock!
The unFAB FIVE
1) The ongoing decline of great American newspapers.
2) Tiger Woods (I'll skip the unprintable golf puns)
3) Iran's nuclear program churns along while the world watches in pathetic paralysis, endangering us all along with the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty, which has helped stem the spread of WMD.
4) Tony Marshall's conviction. A sorry ending to the life and legacy of Brooke Astor, who made big giving an essential ingredient of entry in New York society. (Required Reading: "Ms. Astor Regrets" by my friend Meryl Gordon.)
5) The jobless recovery, which for far too many Americans, is no recovery at all.