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!

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Oh goody, a Krugmalanche

err umm, err, let's keep this under our hats, shall we lads? The Paul Krugman clickstream is a bit notorious for containing quite a few people with rage issues. Don't be surprised if comments temporarily disappear.
9 comments this item posted by the management 9/23/2008 02:57:00 PM

Monday, September 22, 2008

Measure what you manage, manage what you measure

Target met; MRSA cases in the UK halved over three years. I wonder what lesson the people quoted a year ago, who were in full supply pontificating about how this shows that targets can't work and blah blah managerialism have drawn from this? Note the Tory spokesman accusing the government department responsible for this achievement of "moving the goalposts" by ... errr ... not talking about C difficile - ie, not moving the goalposts.
4 comments this item posted by the management 9/22/2008 10:44:00 AM

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Imperialist definite article, part 2

See this, from the Guardian readers' editor in 2004. He seems to suggest that "the Ukraine" was specifically introduced into English translations from Russian by Soviet-era translators who saw the pattern of the IDA and wanted to linguistically imply that Ukraine was similar to Sudan, Gambia, Yemen et all.
17 comments this item posted by the management 9/21/2008 10:42:00 AM

Friday, September 19, 2008

Not exactly a parable, but surely an allegory of something or other

Set your videos for March 4th, 2009 at 1945 GMT, when Manchester United (sponsored by AIG, ie the American government) travel to Newcastle United (sponsored by Northern Rock, ie the British government) for a football match.
5 comments this item posted by the management 9/19/2008 01:15:00 PM
Still busy, another parable

In the film Braveheart, the Mel Gibson character hardly ever stops talking about "freedom" and, of course, iconically inspires his brave clansmen to charge into battle screaming "FREEDOM!" at the top of their lungs. But in the context of the film, he's clearly being totally hypocritical. He doesn't actually propose anything of the sort - the system of government he's in favour of is another autocratic monarchy, just with him in charge.

Isn't it interesting a) that nobody seems to spot this (just as in A Few Good Men, surprisingly few critics noticed that despite the contention of the Jack Nicholson character in his big speech, it's very obviously that you do not "save lives" or "guard people while they sleep" by beating your own recruits to death for minor disciplinary infractions). And b), that as proved by the film's ticket sales and continuing popularity, the concept of "freedom" embodied in this film (ie, xenophobic authoritarian power-worship) seemed to resonate so deeply across the English-speaking world, which when thinking with its brain rather than its blood, is quite clear that "freedom" means something very different indeed.

More on today's startling events in the financial markets coming never (or at least, not till I write my memoirs). Project Africa restarts soon as I crack open The Kapelwa Musonda Files

Update: Another parable, of sorts, at Chris Brooke's site. How the disastrous design flaws of the Daleks, can show us that disability is a socially constructed concept rather than a real one (Update: Matt McGrattan think it doesn't, see comments). (thanks to Charlie in my comments on that post for the key insight).
12 comments this item posted by the management 9/19/2008 01:15:00 PM

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

A parable, in place of a proper post because I am busy

In business circles, particularly among a certain kind of aggressive American businessman (or consultant, or banker, or politician, they're fairly interchangeable), there is a favourite proverb about a pig:

"When you have bacon and eggs for breakfast, you've got your breakfast from a chicken and a pig. The difference between them is that the chicken is 'involved' but the pig is committed"

which is of course, true. It should also be noted, however, that when you go out to get your next few breakfasts over the course of the rest of the month, the chicken will have laid another egg every day, but the pig will eventually run out of bacon.

Stay lucky guys, and never read your own marketing material.
6 comments this item posted by the management 9/16/2008 10:22:00 AM

Friday, September 05, 2008

And meanwhile, in Darfur

More chaos and black comedy with the (thankfully successfully resolved) hijacking of an internal flight to Libya by two members of SLA/Nur. Interesting in that they were actually trying to hijack the plane to Paris and demanding to speak to Abel Wahid Mohammed al-Nur. As so often in this conflict, it is hard to get one's analysis above the level of "what the fuck". I've heard of having stretched communication lines and Patton's "sense of the commander" doctrine, but to have your troops reduced to hijacking planes to talk to you seems like taking a good thing too far.

Meanwhile, scenes from the ongoing tragedy of the refugee and IDP camps; Sudanese Army now carrying out massacres in refugee camps, which is a new development - obviously disgusting, equally obviously a predictable result of the ongoing militarisation of the camps (I can't find the official Sudanese Government press release on the Kalma massacre, by the way, but it really was a blood-boiling piece of mendacious crap; although it's pretty clear that rebel troops are using the camps as bases to some extent this does not excuse the murder of civilians).

And just to depress us even more, food riots in a refugee camp (actually a camp for Chadian refugees from ethnic conflicts in Eastern Chad, who have fled to a relatively peaceful part of West Darfur), who have had their rations cut because aid convoys are being attacked by SLA/Nur rebels.

Happy fucking weekend, I suppose, folks.
4 comments this item posted by the management 9/05/2008 08:45:00 AM

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