America

Another Zimmerman/Martin link

Thanks to Gaby Charing for this opinion piece from William Saletan in Slate: Trayvon Martin is dead, George Zimmerman has been acquitted, and millions of people are outraged. Some politicians are demanding a second prosecution of Zimmerman, this time for hate crimes. Others are blaming the tragedy on “Stand Your Ground” laws, which they insist […]

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Zimmerman and Martin

As much for my own reference as anyone else’s enlightenment, here are four articles about the Zimmerman case that you might be better off reading than some of the hysterical, race-fixated nonsense in the media. That first link was to the Shooting of Trayvon Martin Wikipedia article. These next two are from commentators who happen […]

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International Edition with Levy and Counsell Episode 12: Michael J Totten

This week, Judith Levy and I interviewed independent international correspondent Michael J. Totten. Michael Totten, who has reported extensively from the Middle East, the Balkans, and the Caucasus. Sohrab Ahmari of Commentary wrote of Michael that he "practices journalism in the tradition of Orwell: morally imaginative, partisan in the best sense of the word, and delivered in […]

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Sexing down

Here’s an extraordinary thing: a documented cover-up by a US administration—not one imagined by conspiracy theorists: There's new evidence, obtained by ABC, that the Obama administration did deliberately purge references to "terrorism" from accounts of the attack on the Benghazi diplomatic mission, which killed four people including the US ambassador to Libya. Conservatives have long […]

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Mittigation

Mitt Romney is a US Republican Presidential candidate who has chosen a Right-wing running mate. All right-thinking people here know therefore that he wants to rape female college students and force them to have their babies so they can be child labour in one of his corporations’ asset-stripped factories. Or, if UK observers fancy themselves […]

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Bush Was Right

This would be a good day to quote and laugh at some of the many racist articles written over the past few years that warned us not to “inflame the Arab Street”, that rhetorical mass of undifferentiated savages that “we” created by interfering in the Noble Civilizations of the region with our Imperialist Adventures, and […]

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The Not Vote

The always-interesting marketing guru Seth Godin wisely alerts citizens of democracies who fail to exercise their franchise because they claim to hate politicians to an important fact they have probably overlooked: many politicians want them not to vote: Political TV advertising is designed to do only one thing: suppress the turnout of the opponent’s supporters. […]

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Who’s Mad?

Martin In The Margins makes an important criticism of an otherwise mostly admirable and well-intentioned enterprise: As for that plea for a focus on ‘tolerance’, it would have helped if the rally organisers hadn’t included a performer who has expressed the most outrageously intolerant opinions. Appearing onstage in the National Mall was Yusuf Islam, the […]

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The Great Typo Hunt

Incensed by a “no tresspassing” sign, Jeff Deck launched a cross-country trip to right grammatical wrongs. He enlisted a friend, Benjamin D. Herson, and together they got to work erasing errant quotation marks, rectifying misspellings and cutting unnecessary possessive apostrophes. The Great Typo Hunt is the story of their crusade.

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Don’t Say I Didn’t Warn You

Sarah Palin is a phenomenon: Sarah Palin is a singular national industry. She didn’t invent her new role out of whole cloth. Other politicians have cashed out, used the revolving door, doing well in business after doing good in public service. Entertainment figures like Arnold Schwarzenegger, Jesse Ventura, and even Ronald Reagan have worked the […]

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Sounds of silence

Via Slashdot, here’s an abstract of a study of graffiti found on the walls of the Joseph Regenstein Library at the University of Chicago, performed by a member of its IT staff. You can also browse the full dataset, including photographs of the inscriptions made available under a Creative Commons licence. The take-home messages (as […]

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Unfortunate headlines of the day

The BBC News Website has changed its original headline: SARAH PALIN LASHES OBAMA AT FIRST TEA PARTY CONVENTION —bring your houseboy, and let’s party like it’s 1779!—to this one: SARAH PALIN CONDEMNS OBAMA AT FIRST TEA PARTY CONVENTION but, Liz Jones’s latest wibble—search for it if you like; I’m not going to link to it—retains […]

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Bloggertarians, Tin Foil Hat Wearers, Loons

Foes of President Barack Obama and his policies can vent their frustrations by engaging in fictional warfare, thanks to a new online strategy game with a heavy political component. The satirical game 2011: Obama’s Coup Fails, launched last month by a group of Ron Paul supporters that call themselves The Founders, throws players into combat […]

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v v good fun

This [HD YouTube video] is a bonkers slab of wonderfully British-sounding soul-pop from V VBrown. Shame about the over-compressed production/mixing/mastering that turns every peak into white noise. This [HD YouTube video—censored version] is an equally bonkers slab of ironic hair metal from the self-proclaimed “modern Spinal Tap“, Steel Panther. I know it’s meant to be a […]

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For Statistical Sneerers Everywhere

This has to be one (if only one) in the eye for all those people who say there’s no point in listening to passenger plane safety announcements about how to slide down the inflatable ramp and put on your flotation aid because if there’s a crash the best you can hope for is to be […]

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On The Thrown

[J]ust how effective is it to insult someone in an alien cultural idiom? Bush, naturally enough, looked bewildered, but he ducked speedily and seemed none the worse for wear afterwards. Gordon Brown, I suspect, would have stolidly absorbed the blows; Obama would probably have caught one shoe in each hand before throwing them across the […]

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Always To The Swift

This is a neat little article that sketches out why your skin colour doesn’t determine your chance of growing up to become an elite sprinter; but your genetic make-up might: There are no sprinters of note from Asia, even with more than 50 percent of the world’s population, a Confucian and Tao tradition of discipline, […]

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Tall People Got No Reason

If you’re over six feet in height, squeezing yourself into an economy seat on a plane can be torture, but if you’re seriously overweight and on a domestic flight in Canada, you get another seat: The Supreme Court of Canada has upheld a regulatory ruling requiring the country’s airlines to provide an extra seat — […]

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Shug/Shag/Cad

I’ve been very busy this weekend, but here are three things that I enjoyed reading in between upgrades and back-ups: Minette Marrin on Jacqui Smith and UK prostitution1, Shuggy on Barack Obama and the US constitution, and an obituary of William Donaldson: [Donaldson] first came to prominence in 1961 as the London producer of Beyond […]

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Ooh, That’s A New One

Last year, Newsbiscuit ran a spoof “NEWSPAPERS RUN OUT OF ‘LORD LEVY IS JEWISH’ EUPHEMISMS” story [requires free registration] I was reminded of it when I read this from the latest statement by “the neo-Nazi North German Action Office”, as reported in the Wall Street Journal: Inasmuch as it is a determined opponent of the […]

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USA Gets Black President; BBC Notices Al-Qaeda Racist

Al-Qaeda in Iraq have reacted to the US presidential election by issuing a statement on Friday directed at President-elect Barack Obama and his incoming administration. … [H]ardliners have greeted Barack Obama’s election victory with a stream of racist and other insults. Because, previously, when Al-Qaeda in Iraq referred to Kurdish-speaking bomb victims as “Kuffir to […]

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Those Beige Headlines In Full

TIGER WOODS WINS 2008 US OPEN DESPITE KNEE INJURY CAUSED BY ILLEGAL KARATE ATTACK FROM EVIL MAFIA GOLFER ROCCO MEDIATE. OBTAINS CRUCIAL PAR SCORE ON SUDDEN-DEATH HOLE USING “CRANE KICK” BEFORE COLLAPSING ON THE FINAL GREEN IN AGONY, MUTTERING “I DID IT FOR YOU, ELIN!” LEWIS HAMILTON CLINCHES WORLD F1 DRIVERS’ CHAMPIONSHIP IN HIS MCLAREN, […]

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Best Of Three Five

John. [originally uploaded by Ryan Brenizer] Excellent shots of the candidates for the US Presidency taken at the Alfred E Smith dinner by a wedding photographer are here on flickr. I wish there were more to look at. (And I wish the photographer hadn’t added that crappy “exposed film” border. It’s digital. Get over it. Don’t tart […]

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Too Horrible To Contemplate?

Imagine several million small children across the planet waking up on Christmas Day to discover that six of Santa Claus’s reindeer had had pixie dust blowouts at 30 000 feet over the North Atlantic, leading to a catastrophic loss of power and Santa’s sleigh plunging into the freezing ocean, killing all on board and scattering the […]

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