Story 1 – What Obama’s nominations say about the future of our country

Why Hagel Was Picked, New York Times (David Brooks)

Story 2 – Bashar Assad and the addictive narcotic of power

Syria President Bashar Assad Makes Clear He Won’t Step Down, Los Angeles Times (Ned Parker)

Story 3 – What to call an unmarried spouse? A vast moral conversion

Unmarried Spouses Have A Way With Words, New York Times (Elizabeth Weil)

Story 4 – The “Python Round-Up” – a cultural parable

Python Round-Up Starts Saturday, The Sun Sentinel (David Fleshler)