With so much time and attention spent chronicling the latest barbs in the Obama-Clinton spat over their respective diplomatic chops that emerged during the YouTube debate last week, we suggest readers might find the following two articles a refreshing respite from the Am not-Are too deluge:

In a piece for McClatchy Newspapers on Friday entitled “Clinton’s foreign record questioned,” Matt Stearns took the time to examine just what experience, exactly, Clinton keeps referring to. He outlined her foreign policy record as a senator and even pulled out a few salient examples from her time as First Lady.

The other piece, in today’s Boston Herald, takes a historical look at speaking to dictators: “No harm in talking to tyrants: Presidents have long done just that.” The author, none other than Patrick J. Buchanan, recalls U.S presidents meeting with Joseph Stalin, Nikita Khrushchev, and Mao Zedong—men, he says, whose records of brutality trump those of the five current dictators that sparked the Clinton-Obama contretemps.

Actual reporting and historical reality trump stenography every time.

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Adrianne Jeffries is an intern at CJR.