Economics and similar, for the sleep-deprived
A subtle change has been made to the comments links, so they no longer pop up. Does this in any way help with the problem about comments not appearing on permalinked posts, readers?
Update: seemingly not
Update: Oh yeah!
Thursday, June 30, 2005
I have added some links to my short but exclusive link list. The Maxspeak link has been changed to one which works. Perfect.co.uk is about British politics and is reasonably sound; its presence there indicates the fact that the operator asked me to put it up (actually he asked if I could put a link on CT but the answer is that I don't have the technical acumen to do so) and seems like a decent bloke.
Balkanalysis.com is your one-stop news portal for the former Yugoslavia, run by a chap who lives there and has a rather contrarian opinion about the net benefit of the ur-"humanitarian intervention" which took place there. I don't necessarily endorse Chris' political views, mainly because I don't know what passing loony or medieval philosopher might have grabbed his enthusiasm this week, but it is an excellent website and chock full of useful information. If you want to know the visa requirements for Macedonian nationals to travel to Greece, for example, Chris is certainly the man to ask. He's on his summer holidays at the moment but it is a very worthy enterprise.
If anyone else wants to be added to the link list, just send me an email, although do be aware that the Taliban ruled Afghanistan when I first started promising to put up the balkanalysis one.
this item posted by the management 6/30/2005 06:35:00 AM
Monday, June 27, 2005
Around the rugged blogs, the ragged rascal ran
Hullo ... this week I have been mainly indulging my predilection for hit-and-run jibes, but in more substantive commenting, I've been defending the Common Agricultural policy over at Blood & Treasure and sticking up for modern art (and music) chez Abiola.
From the "Greatest Hits" vault, for your amusement, the "Harry's Place International Law Wars", volumes One (which earned me my first ever ban from that site) and Two, in which I tag-team with Matthew Turner and the leaked AG advice turns up to completely vindicate us.
No "too hot for CT" item this week; it's been more a case of "no time for CT". I have acquired a copy of "Freakonomics", though, and may review it soon. Yes, yes, like the Doug Henwood review which is also coming in the eternal near-present. Mind how ye go.
I see that another ban is presumably in the post for me since the owner of the site has pretty much lost it (Whoah!). Probably a good thing time-management wise for me, but a bit of a shame; Harry & Co have a more or less explicit policy of deleting and banning articulate people who don't agree with them and allowing the morons to stand, which if you ask me is a pretty pathetic way to make yourself look good.
this item posted by the management 6/27/2005 01:41:00 PM
Wednesday, June 08, 2005
Around, but not around the blogs
On holiday in Crete last week, lovely, thanks, so not much in the way of blog comments. A few observations:
1. Gynaecomastia is absolutely rampant among North European males. I know what it�s like to have a pot belly, even a beer gut. But there are chaps walking along beaches these days who have what I can only describe as a bust. In particular, there are plenty of retired Germans who have a figure not that dissimilar to that of Demi Moore on the famous Vanity Fair cover, a figure which Ms. Moore was only able to achieve in the first place through plastic surgery. What gives? I suspect too much use of gym equipment to develop the pectoral muscles, without doing similar amounts of cardiovascular exercise to burn off the actual fat.
2. Once you have referred in your mind to beach volleyball as monkey tennis, it is impossible to ever after regard this sport with the seriousness its Olympic status merits.
3. Six hours stopover in Athens airport with a three-year-old and a baby will not kill you, though you might wish it could.
and anyway, on with the "Too Hot For CT" miniseries, an opinion on the State of Israel.
As I see it, the reason why Israel is singled out for criticism relative to, say, Burma, Zimbabwe, etc has nothing to do with hunman rights. Anti-Semites, Palestinian apologists and associated bores do bang on endlessly about exaggerated claims of human rights abuses, it is true, but this is actually not at the centre of what people object to with respect to the State of Israel (by the way, that is the name of the country; I have no idea what Mr Ben Stein thinks he is talking about when he writes about a place he blieves to be called "Eretz Israel" but I would appreciate it if you lot did your best to ensure the appellation did not catch on).
In general, people do not give much of a fuck about human rights abuses happening to foreigners overseas, viz the fact that there are no very large protests against Burma, Zimbabwe etc, and there were no large protests about Iraq before it was decided that they were an enemy of ours (or indeed after).
What people do care about is the illegal occupation of territory; as Jamie put it, most of us are Westphalians at heart. There is something about the fact that the Palestinians have to live on ground that is controlled by a foreign power which seems not just wrong, but an appropriate thing to have an opinion about and demand action on. Whereas much worse offences against individual human beings, apparently, do not have this property. There are lots of liberal internationalists who think that the majority of the population is dead wrong to think this way, but I'm reporting the sociological facts here, I think.
So Eve Garrard's "plagiarism" analogy is disanalogous. There are lots of nations which commit human rights abuses, of which Israel is in the greater scheme of things a Second Division offender at most. However there aren't lots of nations which are illegally occupying territory; I can only think of Israel; one might make a case for Syria in Lebanon but I think one would struggle to say it was the same sort of situation. So we are not in a situation where boys and girls are both plagiarising but the university only punishes the girls. We're in a situation where the boys are committing public order offences, driving drunk and vandalising property and the girls are committing plagiarism. In that sort of situation it seems to me that it is much less inconsistent for the university to concentrate on the particular transgression that is within the sphere of its legitimate action, rather than the more serious offences which are not.
this item posted by the management 6/08/2005 05:32:00 AM