To Our Readers

  • Share
  • Read Later
DONALD MORRISON Editor, TIME AsiaAsians might marvel at all the fuss over President Bill Clinton's sex life, but to Americans it's clearly the story of the year. And for TIME's Washington bureau, it has been a frustrating challenge, wheedling information one fact at a time from reluctant sources. Until now. Once Independent Counsel Ken Starr's report was made public late last week, journalists suddenly had more information to digest, more leads to run down and more legal and political implications to assess than they had in the preceding eight months. Jay Branegan, a former Hong Kong correspondent who now covers the White House, describes last Friday as the day the information drought suddenly ended. Concludes Washington bureau chief Michael Duffy: It will take weeks, if not months, for the country to process what it has learned. Our cover story this week should give you a head start toward that goal, with insights into why many Americans now want Clinton to step down.But there are other important issues facing the world today, not the least of them whether China will fully succumb to the Asian financial crisis. From Shanghai, East Asia correspondent Terry McCarthy examines the Chinese economy and the fate of the renminbi in the article that opens the magazine. His report should help frame discussion later this month when leading economists and businessmen gather in Shanghai for the Pacific Rim Forum, co-sponsored by Time Warner. Another good text for that gathering would be the accompanying report by senior writer Anthony Spaeth and Beijing bureau chief Jaime A. FlorCruz on the booming but alarmingly over-built city of Shanghai and its own uncertain future.We also journey into the past this week with a special eight-page excerpt from The Singapore Story, the lively new memoir by the city-state's longtime leader Lee Kuan Yew. But perhaps our most entertaining offering is something that's not actually in the magazine: an interactive poll. By visiting our website, at , you can offer your opinion on two questions involving Malaysia, a country very much in the news these days. We ask whether recently ousted Deputy Prime Minister Anwar Ibrahim has a future in politics, and whether Malaysia's newly imposed currency controls will help or hurt the economy. In the first day after we posted the questions, nearly 2,000 votes had been received, and more are pouring in as I write. The results are also posted on the site, updated every few seconds. Last I checked, both Anwar and the Malaysian economy appeared to have brighter futures than Bill Clinton.