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Category Archives: Events

That exporting revolution business

Afghanistan successfully held provincial and first-round presidential elections. Various folk are in the running for President. Part of building a viable democracy is building the habit of elections and change-through-elections. Since the incumbent is barred from running again (two-term limit), a new President must result. The high turnout is encouraging, especially as the Taliban threatened to disrupt the […]

First they came for the pagans and the queers

The upside of Mozilla’s purging of Brendan Eich is various folk are getting the point that penalising opinion and purging workplaces is so not a good idea. The downside is a lot of folk just don’t get the bigger issue. This piece, for example, First They Came For The Mormons, exemplifies the common notion that “this” started with […]

The Russian conundrum

Bryan Caplan thinks there should be more analytical humility: in particular, that none of us know the best way to deal with Russia. Part of the difficulty is trying to work out Putin’s intentions. According to someone who spent some years as his major economic advisor, they are to take what he can get away with (via). (Which is not […]

Historical analogies

The crisis in the Crimea has folk reaching for their historical analogies. Taking the most directly resonant one, the original Crimean War (1853-1856) was about blocking Russian ambitions towards the decaying Ottoman Empire, which then controlled most of the Middle East. The Russo-Turkish interaction had huge strategic implications. Russia-Ukraine, not so much. The Appeasement analogy Then we come to […]

Doctor Who 50th Anniversary

“It’s the most ambitious episode we’ve ever done,” he said. The episode, The Day of the Doctor, will be broadcast in more than 90 countries at the same time as it airs on BBC One on Saturday night. The BBC says it is likely to be the largest simulcast of a TV drama in history. […]

I Found My Thrill

PRIME Minister Kevin Rudd and Opposition Leader Tony Abbott will face-off in the third election debate in western Sydney tonight. The people’s forum hosted by Sky News will be held at the Rooty Hill RSL from 6.30pm. The night will follow a similar format to last week’s debate in Brisbane where the two took questions […]

Of fact and fiction

Novelist Kerry Greenwood (the author of the Phryne Fisher books, now a successful TV series), has recently published a book on the Somerton Man mystery, Tamam Shud: the Somerton Man Mystery. The book interweaves Kerry’s memories of her late father–a wharfie who loved telling stories–and her memories of Adelaide with the famous mystery of the unidentified man […]

Boston Manhunt Ends

You are correct: westerners care more about Boston than Baghdad – guest post by Jacques Chester

[SL: I have long been of the view--while I have great sympathy for my libertarian and leftist friends who want calamity in the developing world taken as seriously as calamity in the developed world--that the lesson that Jacques teaches below is important, and needs to be taken seriously. There is a reason why 'if it […]

The year in review

It’s fair to say that this blog, although newsy, is not a news site. It represents the eclectic contributions of a group of people with disparate interests to whatever happens to take their fancy. Fair and accurate, yes (lawyers tend to be paranoid about this sort of thing), but comprehensive and unbiased, no. To that […]