What Does Pussy Riot Mean Now?
"With all eyes on Russia, two members of the country’s most notorious band of shit-stirrers are free after nearly two years of political imprisonment and enjoying the rock-star treatment during their first trip to the U.S. But the group’s unlikely journey from art-school project to international icons shows just how rotten Russia has become and how much the mission has changed."
posted by homunculus
on Feb 7, 2014 -
A man who served as UKIP's Commonwealth spokesman
for a year is the former leader of a kidnapping gang in Pakistan, BBC Newsnight can reveal.
Mujeeb ur Rehman Bhutto's gang were behind a high-profile kidnapping in Karachi in 2004 and he then took a £56,000 ransom payment in Manchester.
In 2005, Bhutto, of Leeds, admitted being the gang's "boss" and was jailed for seven years by a UK court.
UKIP said Bhutto, 35, had "recently" resigned his party membership.
posted by marienbad
on Feb 4, 2014 -
Starting in 2011, Senator Al Franken (D-MN) has hosted a Minnesota delegation Hotdish
competition - a friendly bipartisan and bicameral competition for all of the Minnesota congressional delegates. [more inside]
posted by bibliogrrl
on Feb 1, 2014 -
Earlier in the week, Slate posted an article
on the massive Atlanta traffic jam. The article quoted a book about the Southern character that stated it was "Proud, brave, honorable by its lights, courteous, personally generous, loyal." Yet the same book also stated the South had the less admirable qualities of "suspicion toward new ideas, an incapacity for analysis, an inclination to act from feeling rather than from thought, an exaggerated individualism and a too-narrow sense of social responsibility." The book was 1941's "The Mind of the South" and its author was W. J. Cash
. [more inside]
posted by AlonzoMosleyFBI
on Feb 1, 2014 -
is best known for providing the voice of Mr Burns in The Simpsons and as Derek Smalls in spoof rock band Spinal Tap. His next role sees him take on former US president Richard Nixon in a series based on the disgraced politician behind closed doors... To borrow from Sir David's opening line - the following conversation was recorded by the BBC and these are the words actually spoken by Shearer and edited only for time." - The Beeb interviews Harry Shearer on his new role as Nixon.
posted by marienbad
on Jan 30, 2014 -
The defense of the illiberal activities of the actually-existing state cuts across superficial partisan lines, and the dominant political philosophy of both American parties is a venerable ideology of realpolitik imperial supremacy that deploys the rhetoric of liberalism as pacifying propaganda and recasts the completely mundane application of basic liberal-democratic principles–the kind at work in the activities of Wikileaks and Snowden–as irresponsibly adolescent, anarchical, and even libertarian (eww!) challenges to the very idea of the liberal state. “Liberal” apologists for the actually-existing criminal state spook actual liberals from the practice of actual liberalism by insinuating darkly that any doubts about the liberal legitimacy of the security state probably makes you a loathsome, possibly racist Paultard. Wil Wilkinson on why liberal critics of the "liberal" state seem "libertarian." [more inside]
posted by grobstein
on Jan 21, 2014 -
MSNBC's Up with Steve Kornacki
has been collaborating with NJ journalist Brian Murphy
on some investigative journalism about the Chris Christie administration's alleged withholding of Sandy Relief funds until the Mayor of Hoboken agrees to fast-track a real-estate development. Hoboken was one of the hardest-hit communities and has so far received $6 per resident. Christie became governor after leading a US Attorney investigation which convicted NJ politicians of crooked real-estate deals.
posted by East Manitoba Regional Junior Kabaddi Champion '94
on Jan 18, 2014 -
In China, there are certain "bad notes" that frighten people and are refused as legal tender. Why?
posted by reenum
on Jan 16, 2014 -
Hard right Conservative
South Australian Senator Cory Bernardi
, who in 2012 year was removed as parliamentary secretary and opposition whip to Tony Abbott as a result of arguing that same-sex marriages would lead to legalised polygamy and bestiality
, is no stranger to controversy.
A noted climate change sceptic
, and critic of both Islam
and publicly-funded broadcasting
, Bernardi has just published his manifesto -- The Conservative Revolution
-- calling for "a reversal back to sanity and reason"
Reviews on Amazon have been less than favourable
, but his book has put contentious issues such as abortion
, the structure
of the modern family and WorkChoices
firmly at centrestage as the unpopular conservative government seeks to reconnect with voters
who so comprehensively removed the Labor Party from Government in September 2013.
that the danger in Bernardi's comments is that they shift the goalposts on what is considered outrageous
, and re-ignite
the culture wars
. Or is it too late
The Prime Minister has again been forced to distance himself from Bernardi's views
, and Warren Entch has criticised him for his "gay obsession
In 2012 the Global Mail called him Australia's Sarah Palin
, but he also shares the Six Fs philosophy
of Rick Santorum
: Faith, Family, Flag, Free enterprise, Federation and Freedom
posted by Mezentian
on Jan 7, 2014 -
Labour has accused the government of using the centenary of the start of the first world war to "sow political division" after the education secretary, Michael Gove, tore into "leftwing academics" for peddling unpatriotic "myths" about the role of British soldiers and generals in the conflict. Gove's original article in the Daily Mail.
posted by marienbad
on Jan 4, 2014 -
Newly released cabinet papers from 1984
reveal mineworkers' union leader Arthur Scargill may have been right to claim there was a "secret hit-list" of more than 70 pits marked for closure.
The government and National Coal Board said at the time they wanted to close 20. But the documents reveal a plan to shut 75 mines over three years.
A key adviser to then-PM Margaret Thatcher denies any cover-up claims.
The miners' strike began in March 1984 and did not end until the next year. [more inside]
posted by marienbad
on Jan 3, 2014 -
About the only place this book hasn't been is in my hands, open and upright, with my eyes pointed at it. But that's about to change. Because I'm going to read this book in 20-minute bursts over the next eight hours. Why 20-minute bursts? Because that's how long it takes for a batch of my mother's Slog-famous Christmas Snowball cookies to bake. I'm going to put a tray in the oven, read, swap trays out, read some more. And I think it's fair to say that by the end of the day today—after all my Christmas cookies are baked—I will have read more of this book than Sarah Palin wrote.
- Dan Savage reviews Good Tidings and Great Joy: Protecting the Heart of Christmas.
posted by Artw
on Dec 22, 2013 -
And if a series of well-timed massacres by the regime would provoke outrage in the West, Assad also knew that images of carnage would cause Gulf states to arm the Islamist opposition and escalate the sectarian warfare. This was his strategy: to make intervention so unpalatable that the international community would take no steps to alter the course of the conflict. “These jihadists who have come in, largely courtesy of private Gulf money, these are his enemies of choice,” says Frederic C. Hof, the Obama administration’s former envoy to the Syrian opposition and currently a senior fellow at the Atlantic Council. “I call it a coalition of co-dependency.”
- An in-depth piece in The New Republic Examines Bashar Al Assad
posted by beisny
on Dec 20, 2013 -
There is another bubble.
Before it's burned, Coal, Oil and Gas sit for years on the balance sheets of private (and national) resource companies, as "known reserve" assets. Assets that, someday, will become revenues. Or will they?
And if they won't, what will the balance sheets of ExxonMobil, Chevron, BP, Petrochina, and Gazprom actually look like? [more inside]
posted by anthill
on Dec 19, 2013 -
An Evening with Private Eye.
"Ian Hislop takes a satirical look back at the people and events of 2013 with special guests Craig Brown, Harry Enfield, Lewis Macleod, Jan Ravens and John Sessions. This is a recording of a live (National Theatre) Platform event from December 2013." [SLYT]
posted by feelinglistless
on Dec 14, 2013 -
We were left wondering why a man who served 16 terms in Congress and who bravely came out as gay all the way back in 1987 felt the need to hide his atheism until he was out of office. Was it really harder to come out as an atheist politician in 2013 than as a gay one 25 years ago? Incredibly, the answer might be yes. For starters, consider that there is not a single self-described atheist in Congress today. Not one.
posted by Chrysostom
on Dec 10, 2013 -