Weekend Reads: Jack Lew’s Boasting Before the G-20, al Qaeda’s Narrative, Asia Summit Roundup, and More

New this week

Jack Lew’s boastful advice ahead of the G-20. David Wessel highlights the Treasury secretary’s speech earlier this week and his “be-more-like-us economic advice” to Germany and Japan.

Life, liberty, and the pursuit of broadband. Access to broadband Internet is now a legally protected right in Finland, but Stuart Brotman identifies roadblocks in the government’s effort to provide speedy Internet to every Finn.

A busy week of summits in Asia. Richard Bush had an interesting observation from the Obama-Xi press conference, Bill Antholis called the U.S.-China climate agreement “dramatic,” and Michael E. O’Hanlon chimes in on U.S.-China military accords. Read a full roundup of what Brookings experts have been saying about Obama’s multi-summit trip to Asia this past week.

Billionaires’ influence in the 2014 midterms. This updated index accompanies Darrell West’s new book on billionaires’ political influence. Also read Michael Lewis’s thoughtful review of the book and why extreme wealth is bad for everyone—even the wealthy.

Washington’s failure to counter al Qaeda’s narrative. Bruce Riedel says that to defeat Islamic extremism, “drones need be matched with deeds that expose the false precepts of Al Qaeda’s narrative.” But do we understand the narrative enough to defeat it?

Five policies that help parents help children. Isabel Sawhill and Joanna Venator look at new research on “two generation” approaches to child welfare.

What our experts are reading

Superb piece by Nick Kristof on teen pregnancy and U.S. backwardness on contraception and sex-ed, which cites Isabel Sawhill’s new book. (@RichardVReeves)

Mud, boredom and uncertainty. Compelling photos of life for Syrian refugee teenagers in Lebanon. (@Beth_Ferris

Thought-provoking New York Times op-ed by Luay Al-Khatteeb on why the Kurdistan Region of Iraq should remain part of Iraq. (@CharlesEbinger)

Always pointed Mike Grunwald nails it here on U.S.-China emission announcement. (@MarkMuro1)