FROM Jenna Johnson
Can the Trump Family Reality Show Unify the Republicans? The first day of Donald Trump's nominating convention was short on policy but long on a Dystopian view of America in 2016 — and there was no doubt about who was getting the blame. Tonight, House Speaker Paul Ryan gets his turn to rally a divided convention behind a candidate many delegates don't support. Trump's own role has been compromised by evidence of plagiarism in his wife's speech and his Fox News interview that upstaged the convention. Chris Christie and Ben Carson will continue the dark theme of American decline. Will delegate spirits get a lift from two of Trump's children? We get a preview of the politics -- and the prime-time entertainment.
Is College Really Worth the Price of Admission? As senior year begins, high school students already are trying to decide what college they want to get into. Both they and their parents are wondering if higher education will mean a lifetime of debt. College tuition is going up faster than medical costs and outstanding student loans have surpassed total credit-card debt. But regardless of what parents have been led to believe, they may be borrowing more than they need to, especially to get to the "right" college. Do big-name schools provide the biggest bang for the buck in teaching or in getting that first job? Once they're in, do students use the available resources? Do colleges have to be so expensive? Will too much debt spoil the benefits of higher education?
Mixed Messages from US diplomats on the new hard line on Syria Since President Trump's surprise retaliation against Syria's use of chemical weapons, Bashar al-Assad has used the same airport to launch conventional attacks on his own people. It's not clear what the US, its allies — or Vladimir Putin's Russia -- plan to do now.
Why Don't Facts Matter? "Fake News" may have a long history, but social media and 21st Century politics have brought it front and center. One reason for its appeal and its power is the tendency of so many people to cling to their beliefs — even when confronted with contradictory evidence. Today, another look at the Emotional States of America.