Tweedledum and Tweedledee: Two great essays from very opposite sides of the barricades, but embodying the same healthy bloody-mindedness: reverent Roger Scruton, English, conservative and monarchist ,on the Right, and irreverent Glen Newey, Scottish, socialist and republican, on the Left. The differences are plain to see. But it's the similarities, I think, that point to the enduring strength of the British political spirit. posted by MiguelCardoso at 9:08 PM PST - 9 comments
In his 1947 letter to the General Assembly of the United Nations Albert Einstein wrote of 'enhancing the moral authority of the UN' and portrayed the United Nations as a "transitional system toward the final goal, which is the establishment of a supranational authority". Is the United Nations the depository of the moral authority of the international community? Some say no. Is there really such a thing as moral authority or is it one of those intangibles that, as a Supreme Court justice once said about obscenity, we cannot define, but we know it when we see it? Could a "one world government" work and would it really produce "moral authority" ? (More Inside) posted by Mack Twain at 3:58 PM PST - 42 comments
Well known for speaking the truth about governments and getting pressured for it [7th paragraph from the top], Alain Labrousse recently published his Dictionnaire géopolitique des drogues [Geopolitical Dictionary of Drugs]. I don't think it's been translated in English yet, but all his previous works have, so I'm sure an English version is on the way.
His latest book is being well received by everyone who's interested in "open source" information about drugs, particularly how the various national economies profit from them.
A recent review [in French], cites one example of twisted international relations concerning drugs [my translation]: Europe speaks no evil about activities in Morocco, the most important source of cannabis in the world, or in Turkey, where scores of laboratories transform afghan opium into heroin, simply because these two countries provide a frontline of resistance to radical Islam. In North America, in Mexico, the United States tolerated for 70 years the Institutional Revolutionary Party (Partido Revolucionario Institucional - PRI), even though its leaders supported, and even chose mexican drug cartels. Geostrategic interests outweigh the most basic needs of the war against drugs. posted by titboy at 3:45 PM PST - 0 comments - Post a Comment
Hey, did you see Romenesko today? Now it really is Romenesko. The blog that everybody calls "Romenesko" has just officially changed its name due to a rather silly threat of a lawsuit from MediaNews Group. Poynter president James Naughton explains, "The gist of the law firm's concern seems to be that eliminating the space between the words Media and News might prompt the unsophisticated, raffish crowd who tune in to Poynter Online to think it was Dean Singleton in his pajamas pecking away at the keyboard in Romenesko's Evanston apartment." So, from here on out, it's just plain old "Romenesko." posted by soyjoy at 2:33 PM PST - 9 comments
Why articulate people make bad colleagues Nick Denton, proprietor of various websites, sometime columnist for Management Today, and supposed intelligent person has come up with this gem in his weblog:
"But I've been interviewing software engineers, and find myself prejudiced against those that talk fluently. . . . Either they were born persuasive, and so they've always been able to get away with it; or else they've always broken promises, so they've had to learn how to explain away their failures."
For the most part, I think he's wrong, but I can see where he's coming from. Should articulate people be banned from time-sensitive positions? posted by gkostolny at 2:31 PM PST - 41 comments
kevin mitnick, the famed hacker who was released recently from jail has granted Slashdot an interview in which he debunks many of the myths about him. He provides some insights into the ethics of the journalists that profitted from his case. posted by Raichle at 1:47 PM PST - 3 comments
Japanese create "invisible" cloak. Well, not really. Technically, just a two sided cloak, the front of which is a projector, and the back of which is a camera. Only works, one would imagine, if you're looking at a person straight on, and even then it would help if you were partially blind, or at the very least, raised in the wilderness & easily fooled by modern technology. posted by jonson at 1:14 PM PST - 55 comments
The Chuck Hagel voting machine ownership story gets even scarier. In today's Best of the Blogs, Jerry Bowles reveals more bizarre details about the Chuck Hagel/voting machine story, including the fact that the majority ownership stake in the voting machine company that counted Senator Hagel's upset victory in 1996 (and his reelection in 2002) is held by a man long associated with the radical organization Christian Reconstruction, which believes in overturning democracy and replacing it with a Christian theocracy. This is really weird and frightening stuff, if it checks out. posted by mitsu at 1:14 PM PST - 11 comments
Look and Read offers storylines, songs, video clips and my first introduction to Wordy from this classic BBC School series. As someone who grew up on Sesame Street and Schoolhouse Rock, I found it interesting to see the British equivalent. Plus, it's good campy fun. posted by snez at 1:10 PM PST - 4 comments
Powell's address to the UN. In a direct, long and rich presentation, Colin Powell has laid the cards on the table, and presented what's likely to be our most explicit case for war. While it's difficult to separate the larger issue of War on Iraq from just this presentation, I'm interested in other takes on Powell's speech. Anything substantially new? Truly irrefutable? Strong enough to justify immediate action? Does this have more heft coming from Powell (considering he's more trusted than Bush on this issue), or is he acting as a mouthpiece? Or, to be succinct, did Colin change anyone's mind? At the very least, he satisfied my need to know more about why our administration is acting so urgently. posted by kokogiak at 10:44 AM PST - 227 comments
From the always excellent Sharpeworld comes a true gem: her father's comedy duo's site, Coyle and Sharpe. Harking back to another era (1960's San Francisco), the site features images, articles, and videos, but the hidden audio tracks of man-on-the-street bits are not to be missed. They have all the innocence of Candid Camera, but are quite a bit funnier. posted by mathowie at 9:52 AM PST - 8 comments
The denizens of Fark are having a crisis of conscience after one of their members died in a car accident. There are only a few holdouts against the outpouring of sympathy from the biliously sarcastic community. "Farkers, seriously - where's your irreverence?" asked Labberdasher. "Not one 'he should have gone for a Darwin award' ... ?" posted by rcade at 5:31 AM PST - 60 comments