Monthly Archives: August 2013

Copa Havana

Former Cuban leader Fidel Castro has said that he decided to step down and transfer power to his younger brother, Raul, because he was diagnosed with a fatal illness in 2006. In an article published to mark his 87th birthday, Fidel Castro said he didn’t expect to survive the stomach ailment and live for so […]

Pacu Man

Experts have warned Swedish men to keep their swimming trunks on if taking a dip in a sound off the country’s southern coast, after a South American fish known for attacking testicles was discovered in the area. The alert came after a fisherman in the Oresund Sound last week retrieved a 21 centimetre pacu – […]

Social bully politics

I have previously articulated what I call the paradox of politics (or the paradox of rulership)–we need the state to protect us from social predators but the state itself is the most dangerous social predator. The paradox can never be solved, merely managed more or less well. The guardian delusion The delusion that one can solve […]

Fracking Hell

The whole of the country must “get behind fracking”, which ought to get “real public support” once its benefits are explained, David Cameron has said. Writing in the Daily Telegraph, he said he wanted all of the UK to benefit from shale gas drilling – “north or south”. The prime minister moved to allay concerns […]

What’s Spanish for Deja Vu?

A Royal Navy warship is to pay a “routine” visit to Gibraltar, the UK government has said, amid a continuing row with Spain over border checks. Relations between Gibraltar and Spain have deteriorated in recent weeks. But the Ministry of Defence said the visit was “long-planned” and one of many “regular and routine deployments”. HMS […]

Hybrid military systems

In my previous post, I analysed medieval societies as being marked by the bundling together of military service and income extraction in some sort of fief-warrior system, though the forms of fiefs varied considerably across different medieval societies. There were also various hybrid systems developed from the C6th to the C11th.  Late Sassanid and Thematic […]

The medieval as franchised protection

In my post on the French Revolution as Chinese dynastic cycle, I denied that China as had a medieval period as such. Accepting the Naito Hypothesis that Song dynasty China (960-1279) was the first modern society, I hold that China went from its late antiquity to the early modern without a medieval period. This post […]


Wandering around YouTube I discovered, via a very funny excerpt below from The Graham Norton Show, that fans of Chris Pine (the new Capt. Kirk), are called Pine Nuts. And that fans of Benedict Cumberbatch (Pitt the Younger, Sherlock Holmes, the new Khan) are called Cumberbitches. I tend to be a fan of shows and writers or […]

Melbourne Law School High Court Blog

Melbourne Law School has just set up a new High Court Blog (Opinions on High) with yours truly as one of the editors. I won’t be writing regular detailed posts in the way that I have traditionally done for Skepticlawyer, although I did write this one on malicious prosecution for the new blog. The other […]