Saturday, December 24, 2005
Thursday, December 22, 2005
May the coming months bring more awareness of the wonders of existence, from creatures like this spotted cuscus to the mind blowing potential of quantum computation in a universe that may be just one among 10500.
This blog will pretty much shut down until mid January (see travel plans here).
Wednesday, December 21, 2005
...In the coming months, diplomats will debate and international organisations will issue their periodic rebukes and contemplate their sanctions. And, all along, Iran will inexorably edge closer to the nuclear threshold"
- Ray Takeyh: Diplomacy will not end Iran’s nuclear programme.
Tuesday, December 20, 2005
Betrand Russell quoted by Gavin Schmidt in How to be a real sceptic, a useful piece that's been needed for a while.
Monday, December 19, 2005
Joh Uys of Bellville, South Africa quoted in Does Anything Eat Wasps? (page 23)
Only about 85,000 out of South Africa's approximately five million HIV positive people can get the ARVs, which cost about £15 per person (not cheap, but affordable for a middle income country like RSA, even if you don't take into account the enormous benefits to the economy of bringing very large numbers of adults of working age back into the economically active population).
(another demonstration, as if it were needed that John le Carre and his film making successors, for all theirstory-telling skills, chose the wrong moment with The Constant Gardener. Big pharma is no longer the big villain, in this case at least) .
Saturday, December 17, 2005
Friday, December 16, 2005
Thursday, December 15, 2005
Wednesday, December 14, 2005
Louis Menand: Everybody's an Expert , a review of Tetlock's Expert Political Judgement: How Good Is It? How Can We Know? (New Yorker, 5 Dec), which should be read in full.
Tuesday, December 13, 2005
Ken Silverstein of the Los Angeles Times quoted by Michael Massing in The Press: The Enemy Within.
(see also The False Objectivity of Balance, which I was glad to quote in public discussion at IMES)
Monday, December 12, 2005
Kanan Makiya, 11 Dec
Sunday, December 11, 2005
The press release issued today Oxford Research Group's report of this title contains a call, among other things, for “build[ing] legitimacy in the Iraqi political process” post election by:
Reach[ing] agreement among the communities on key constitutional provisions, in particular on the equitable distribution of future oil reserves, and establish a genuinely inclusive political process enabling a negotiated end to the nationalist insurgency.
But if the analysis in Crude Designs from Platform et al is correct then something that will appear to Iraqi eyes to be the equitable allocation of future oil revenues may prove especially hard. According to this study, at least 64% of the country's oil reserves have already been allocated for development by multinational (US and British) oil companies.
Without question, ethical monotheism. The idea of one true god. The idea that our life and ethical conduct on earth determines how we will go in the next world. This has been responsible for most of the wars and bigotry in history.
But religion has also been responsible for investing countless lives with meaning and inner richness.
I lead a perfectly healthy, satisfactory life without being religious. And I think more people should try it.
(from What's the big idea?, an interview with Peter Watson)
Friday, December 09, 2005
Isabel Hilton’s interview for openDemocracy with Daniel Ellsberg who leaked the Pentagon papers (published 7 Dec) contains much that is interesting. I guess few people will listen to it as it takes the best part of an hour to do so. Further, the blurb on the web site undersells the content of the interview, and is carelessly written (for example, in the second quote the words “to be killed” are omitted after “any number of Americans”). A well cut and restructured transcript might attract more of the attention this exchange deserves. Here are quick comments:
- Six hundred million dead in
Russia, Chinaand Eastern Europeas a result of nuclear attack in the early 1960s would have been quite a party. Ellsberg does not mention the likely level of casualties in the US, although his reference to the Russian determination to totally anihilate in the event of war is notable. His comments make a useful complement to McNamara’s ninety million or so American deaths – a price which (according to McNamara) Fidel Castro would have been glad to inflict along with the eradication of his own country in 1961 just to make a point. Germany
- The proposition that the
USdoes not plan to get out of until the oil runs out – forty or years or more – may be about right. James Fallows was prescient to describe it as The Fifty-first State. But can it "work"? If Hersh is right, then plans to maintain control by Iraq air power in support of a friendly Iraqi government’s ground forces could run into severe problems. US
- Philip Giraldi’s assertion in The American Conservative that Dick Cheney has ordered plans for a full scale air attack on Iran to be ready by June [05, presumably] would seem to accord with what I heard in Washington on 4 Nov 04 (see my 12 Nov 04 post War Gaming Iran in Grains of Sand Nov 04 archive). Among the notable things Ellsberg says here: “There probably is not one general or full colonel in the Pentagon who wants war with Iran. They are appalled but they are doing the plan, which is always the case”.
- Ellsberg’s two key recommendations for averting an attack on
Iran, which he considers extremely likely (if by the only to avert the Israelis doing it first), should be more widely circulated and discussed. The first is that just a small handful of insiders need to leak key papers now in acts of Zivilcourage. The second is for European countries to put their airspace and air bases off limits for US forces preparing for and executing the attack. This doesn’t look likely at present. But if it is to happen then civil society groups in US Europeneed to start organising now, not a few months hence when it is likely to be too late.
Wednesday, December 07, 2005
Ramadan said true respect meant being ready to pay attention to the full complexity of "the other" - and specifically the complexity of different Muslim interpretations and experiences as they are now playing out in Europe. This needed to be acknowledged by all of us alongside other European experiences, be they Christian, Jewish or indeed Buddhist.
He said there was a danger of a rising idiology of fear. He warned against the dangers of a victim mentality. He called for more education across European societies of the different memories and traditions of more recently established communities. And he stressed the importance of a critical mind.
He said much more that was all well and good, and - given the perilous times we live in - worth repeating however platitudinous much of it may seem. (For something a little more challenging, see John Vinocur on The US model for Europe: Immigrant work ethic, NYT 5 Dec.)
But in my view Ramadan said at least one thing that was not all well and good. For Ramadan "Islam is not a culture"; it is a fundamental which is mediated through various cultural forms.
I put it to him that for people who define themselves as secular, Islam - like other religions - is, precisely, a product of historical contigency and culture. Where, I asked, would he put in his mental model the experience of those from a Muslim background who self-define as secular - as do, for example, some Brits of Pakistani ancestry that I know?
Ramadan's answer bore no relation to my question. (He talked of the importance of distinguishing cultural practices in some Muslim communities that are against women's rights from the true Islam).
My interim hunch is that Ramadan avoided the question because even to acknowledge it opens a crack in the foundation of his world view. He calls for universal recognition of the complexity of the experience of the other but - from the evidence of this encounter at least - dodges the most important developments in Europe over the last five hundred years or so from Copernicus through Voltaire, Kant and beyond: the move beyond reliance on revelation from spirits, gods and magical thinking to the exercise of reason (notwithstanding the catastrophes that result when reason is abused).
I'd be glad of further discussion.
And I wish Tariq Ramadan well and am open to honest and respectful encounters.
Tuesday, December 06, 2005
In Batang Ai national park I was one of the guests of WWF Malaysia and Sarawak Forestry. The chief technical officer for WWF's Borneo Programme alerted us to news that appears here on the sighting of what may be a new species of mammal. The timing is fortuitous for WWF's campaign for a huge transboundary "Heart of Borneo" reserve.
The day before yesterday I was hiking high on a precipitous ridge in the forest not too far from where the discovery was made. A Mexican colleague and I were with biologists and local assistants surveying wild orang utans. We didn't see any of our primate brethren, but did count seventeen of their "nests" high in the canopy.
The local Iban people do not kill orang utans because they believe them to be descendents of their ancestors. This is, of course, literally true in a scientific sense.
We did see a tiny, very fast-moving squirrel that resembles our much more remote ancestors. Later when traveling upriver we saw two large eagle owls, and beautiful frogs in the rushing cascade of fast water over smooth ancient stone.
Thursday, November 17, 2005
Wednesday, November 16, 2005
- The use of such a weapon in such a way is appaling (if not exactly suprising). Also, it is likely to prove to be "worse than a crime: ... a mistake". In that regard it is entirely consistent with other actions and tactics by the US-led coalition (not to mention torture being used by the Iraqi government etc).
- It ill serves the Iraqi people, or anyone else, to use the issue to make misleading comparisons. Making an equation between the coalition governments and US-led forces on the one hand and the government of Saddam Hussein on the other is gross. We need more sophisticated critiques.
They cannot come to you, so you must go to them, trekking ever southward. The cold is unrelenting. Most days the sun barely makes an appearance: at midday the contours of the coast are shrouded in a dismal, leaden twilight, while curtains of icy rain undulate across the bay. When I finally arrive, it feels like I've reached the edge of the world. This is Torquay, surely one of the most inhospitable places on the planet.
Tuesday, November 15, 2005
Recycling the petro dollars, a fascinating piece in The Economist (Nov 10), reports that "most of the extra money is being saved, not spent".
Social spending is reported to be more limited: $4bn for "doctors' salaries and other social spending" in 2007 is the only figure stated in the article.
In view of the daunting scale and depth of Russia's social, health and educational challenges this seems like very little.
(Oil exporters will receive earn around $700bn this year)
Monday, November 14, 2005
On "Europe", for example, there were two schools of thought: pessmists and optimists.
"[The pessimists] argue that Europe will be less able and less willing to fulfill its historic role as America's key ally, pointing to a declining and aging population, a low tolerance for immigration, deeply embedded resistance to necessary root and branch reform, slow economic growth, political stagnation, and a refusal to seriously engage in defence modernization. Their bottom line is that while the U.S. should seek good and fruitful relations with Europe, it should not kid itself that [Europe] can ever again be the robust and loyal partner that it once was.
The optimists argue that prophecies of Europe's decline are greatly overstated....Europe has a) over 100,000 troops overseas, b) supported every U.S. military actitivity since the end of the Cold War except Iraq, c) complements the U.S. in important ways, d) exercises considerable soft power, e) expanded and continues to expand the zone of democracy eastwards, f) is a pioneer of international aid, and g) has a compelling social model that appeals to large parts of the world."
As the report almost says, the reality may be a mix of both (plus some things it doesn't mention).
Recent events in France would seem to add to the pessimist's case. But France is not all of Europe. Some of those among the most critical of the state of France, such as Nicola Bavarez, author of La France qui tombe, emphatically distinguish it from other countries. See: Why a sick France needs a true cultural revolution. Is he right?
Friday, November 11, 2005
"From the Jewish-Israeli side, Israel would have to be reimagined and reconstructed in the only stable formula ever truly available to Zionism: a democratic state embracing both Jewish and Palestinian national homes within an overarching civic nationalism...
From the Palestinian side...The Israeli government would no longer be seen as the unjust alien occupier of Palestinian land but as an unjust apartheid government in a unified land."
Expecting such fundamental ideological shifts still seems hopelessly utopian to many people, says Tilley. Yes, but if it's the right path how about a big push to reframe the challenge, led (at least symbolically) by the likes of a global hero like Mandela along with a notable - and conspicuously peaceful - figure from a Muslim tradition (e.g. Shirin Ebadi)?
I guess this would never fly, for a million and one reasons?
(Tilley's piece was published together with Sara Roy's 'A Dubai on the Mediterranean')
My review of Climate Change Begins at Home is here.
Dave Reay writes to say to correct my comment that there is nothing in the book on carbon offset. It is indexed under "Trees: planting to offset emissions..." And here's the relevant passage:
"It's unrealistic to think that all our air travel emissions can simply be offset by planting trees. The primary worth of such schemes is to get people thinking about their climate impact, rather than to solve it. Some schemes - such as 'Climate Care' for example - now allow you to offset your emissions not with trees but with funding renewable energy schemes in the developing world. The climate benefits of doing this may be more transparent, but there's no easy way round this. To minimise your contribution to global warming fly less, or not at all".
This is OK, but it should be emphasized that :
- the case for tree planting is, at best, weak. There may be many good reasons to plant trees in some circumstances, but carbon sequestration is unlikely to be one of them.
- funding energy efficiency may very often be a better priority than renewables (Climate Care's compact flourescents for
townships being a case in point) South Africa
I would therefore suggest that a future edition of the book discuss offset in more detail.
As for flying less: yes, objectively this makes sense. It does, however, bring one to a big question not addressed in my review. That is, the willingness - or otherwise - of most relatively wealthy people (the richest one billion) to consume less.
Hair shirts don't go down well, as Jonathon Porritt almost put it. And a writer at The Economist was on to something when he or she observed observing that you need to appeal to people's self-interest because that tends to trump tight-fistedness (see Virtue for Sale).
It's a tough challenge to influence attitudes, market products and promote behaviours that are less environmentally destructive. It may require a careful mix of greed and fear (...and wanting to do the right thing, of course!). And even the most ambitious initiatives concieved hitherto may be hopelessly inadequate with regard to the objective challenges.
So, for example more thing on flying: booming air travel in Asia will easily wipe out even the most spectacular gains in passenger kilometre efficiency in the richest countries thought to be vaguely credible (see the post Air apparent from July).
Thursday, November 10, 2005
Wednesday, November 09, 2005
Explanation 1. GB genuinely believes that it is a good idea to hold people for 90 days without charge. Habeas corpus, schmabeas corpus.
Explanation 2. GB maneouvering to be cast as "saviour" of Labour party in time of crisis
Explanation 3. ?
Tuesday, November 08, 2005
There was a moment of laughter in the room.
I had been collecting Iraqi jokes, and I weighed telling the Shaker brothers one. There was a joke about the newlyweds in Falluja (Falluja jokes abounded in Iraq). The man asks his new bride to suck his dick. "No, no," she says, "it's haram." "We're married now," he says, "please, please do it." "I can't, it's haram". "Please." "Okay, if you cover it in honey." "Are you kidding?" If I cover it in honey, I'm sucking it".
A glance at the faces of somber Ali and devout Shamir made me file the Falluja joke away.
Then there was the joke I'd recently heard, from an Iraqi Shiite, about Ayatollah Mohamed Baqr al-Hakim, the spiritual leader of the Tehran-based Shiite political party, who had been killed by a car bomb in Najaf in August 2003. In the joke, he is blown into so many pieces that his body can't be identified. Finally, investigators bring a severed penis to his widow and apologetically ask her whether she can make a positive identification. The widow glances at the object and says, "That's not my husband. That's his driver."
This joke was so haram that I felt a quiver of fear just thinking about it.
Finally I remembered a repeatable joke. Ten Kurds locked up in a mental hospital spend six months fighting one another to look through the tiny hole in the wall of their cell. A doctor, curious, enters the cell and asks to have a look. He puts his eye to the hole for ten minutes: nothing. "There's nothing there," he says. One of the patients answers, "We haven't seen anything in six months - you expect to see something in ten minutes?" But by the time I remembered the Kurdish joke, the moment had passed.
From George Packer's The Assassins' Gate (page 266)
Instead, I am embarking on a couple of other projects. One of them - an investigation into whether tropical coral reefs may be the first ecosystem to be eliminated by climate change - is noted here.
It's hard to know what the right choice is, or would have been. Perhaps there is no such thing.
Monday, November 07, 2005
"Realists ...refuse to don rose-colored glasses when considering the
So writes Andrew Bacevich in a relatively clear-eyed piece. Nevertheless, he still appears to believe in a form of American exceptionalism (or deploys a seeming belief in it for rhetorical purposes) when he writes of a "distinctively American realist tradition" (unlike those oh so dastardly, moustache-twirling Europeans).
Another assumption here is that modern nation states retain most of the characteristics of their nineteenth and twentieth century predecessors.
Sunday, November 06, 2005
While it's obviously true that the Bushmen are far fewer in number than those who died in Darfur (not to speak of some of the more notable episodes in the twentieth century), they may - and this is a slightly strange notion to grapple with - have a value in disproportion to mere numbers because of their extraordinary place in the history of the humanity (that is, as representatives of one of its oldest and most continuous strains).
That being said, Ditshwanelo's warning on the possible danger of inflammatory language must be taken seriously - given their far greater knowledge than many of us outsiders.
Friday, November 04, 2005
Thursday, November 03, 2005
Clearly, if the rate of miscarriage has only increased by 40%, the security forces need to double and redouble their efforts again.
Pressure must be increased so that those who harbour terrorists are brought into line, and the population levels are set on a more sustainable course.
Francis Fukuyama: A Year of Living Dangerously. An interesting piece, but when considering the alienation that leads to trouble in Europe there is no mention of conditions in France, despite the week of riots in Paris
Wednesday, November 02, 2005
The CIA has been hiding and interrogating some of its most important al Qaeda captives at a Soviet-era compound in Eastern Europe, according to
Among the notable quotes is Stanislas Dehaene, of the Institut National de la Santé in Paris: "We vastly underestimate the differences that set the human brain apart from the brains of other primates".
Tuesday, November 01, 2005
Stephen Magesa, an entomologist at Tanazania's National Institute for Medical Research, quoted in Michael Specter's valuable report on the Gates Foundation and malaria (New Yorker, 24 Oct) - and a bit of extra context for latest reports of what could be important grants from the Foundation.
Monday, October 31, 2005
"Two important implications can be drawn from Finkelstein's study, one political and the other academic. Politically, Beyond Chutzpah reveals how Israel has defied the rule of law in the Occupied Territories by providing a condensed and precise summation of literally thousands of pages of human rights reports. In this way, Finkelstein does a great service for those who long for a better Israel, since one is left with the conclusion that the only way of putting an end to the violations of Palestinian rights is by ending the occupation. There is no other option.
Academically, the section discussing Israel's human rights record raises serious questions about intellectual honesty and the ideological bias of our cultural institutions, since it reveals how a prominent professor holding an endowed chair at a leading university can publish a book whose major claims are false. The significant point is not simply that the claims cannot be corroborated by the facts on the ground--anyone can make mistakes--but that any first-year student who takes the time to read the human rights reports would quickly realize that while The Case for Israel has rhetorical style and structure, it is, for the most part, fiction passing as fact.
...The major irony informing this saga is that [Norman] Finkelstein's book, not [Alan] Dershowitz's, constitutes the real case for Israel--that is, for a moral Israel".
So writes Neve Gordon in a useful review of Beyond Chutzpah.
A question for Gordon and others: can Israel ever be a normal country (one in which people screw up big time as well as do amazing things), or will myth bury the values of Enlightenment liberalism on which the best hopes of some Zionists, like some other European thinkers, were based?
(P.S. Jon Wiener also had a useful piece on Finkelstein/Derschowitz in The Nation back in July)
"There are nearly $2,000bn of foreign exchange transactions every day, double the level of just five years ago. The daily value of financial derivatives transactions has risen from nearly zero in 1990 to well over $1,000bn. Foreign investors control 40-50 per cent of the capitalisation of most European equity markets and the
Jeffrey Garten: Crisis-management skills will be needed at the Fed.
'Look,' says Chomsky, 'there was a hysterical fanaticism about
They didn't 'think' it was false; it was proven to be so in a court of law.
But Chomsky insists that 'LM was probably correct' and that, in any case, it is irrelevant. 'It had nothing to do with whether LM or Diane Johnstone were right or wrong.' It is a question, he says, of freedom of speech. 'And if they were wrong, sure; but don't just scream well, if you say you're in favour of that you're in favour of putting Jews in gas chambers.'
Eh? Not everyone who disagrees with him is a 'fanatic', I say. These are serious, trustworthy people.
'Like my colleague, Ed Vulliamy.'
Vulliamy's reporting for the Guardian from the war in
'Ed Vulliamy is a very good journalist, but he happened to be caught up in a story which is probably not true.'
"When we inFrom Orhan Pamuk's As Others See Us, an acceptance speech for the 2005 Friedenpreis.
Turkeydiscuss the east-west question, when we talk of the tensions between tradition and modernity (which, to my mind, is what the east-west question is really all about), or when we prevaricate over our country's relations with Europe, the question of shame is always lurking between the lines.
...The novel, like orchestral music and post-Renaissance painting, is in my opinion one of the cornerstones of European civilisation...The great novelists I read as a child and a young man did not define
Europeby its Christian faith but by its individuals. It was because they described Europethrough heroes who were struggling to free themselves, express their creativity and make their dreams come true, that their novels spoke to my heart... If Europe's soul is enlightenment, equality and democracy, if it is to be a union predicated on peace, then has a place in it". Turkey
Sunday, October 30, 2005
Friday, October 28, 2005
(John Dunn, in a useful article published 20 Oct, only takes three paragraphs to get to conceptual confusion at the heart of Barnett and Hilton's piece that I pointed out here on 14 Oct.)
Thursday, October 27, 2005
The split personality has continued with regard to climate change, with the latest example being a reasonably straight report in the news pages about the so-called hockey stick controversy: Global Warming Skeptics Under Fire by Antonio Regalado.
And so they wait. And they sniff the royal throne. They tell the Beloved Leader he's the victim of a partisan plot...They assure him all is well. But all is not well. People are looking over their shoulders. The smart ones have stopped taking notes in meetings. The very smart ones have stopped using email for all but the most pedestrian communications. And the smartest ones have already obtained outside counsel".
From Paul Begala's What it's like (see responses #26 and #43, among others)
"God has not been so merciful with the rest of his family. One of his brothers and a nephew have died fighting the Americans; another brother was killed a month ago as he was setting an IED on the side of the road. But Abu Theeb's faith remains strong" - Ghaith Abdul Ahad We Don't Need Al-Qaida, 27 Oct
Wednesday, October 26, 2005
"Iraqis are trying their former rulers in the middle of an insurgency that is sliding toward civil war. This is what makes the trial in
...[the Trial] has elicited criticism from human-rights organizations that should have been helping to collect new evidence of Saddam’s crimes. It has brought out the worst in
George Packer - Saddam on Trial, 24 Oct
Tuesday, October 25, 2005
Monday, October 24, 2005
One of the most telling lines from Lt. Col. Nathan Sassaman, the star soldier and quarterback, is "Don't they have those people [who do nation-building] at the State Department?"
Well, yes, exactly.
(see also Leadership Failure, from Human Rights Watch)
Sunday, October 23, 2005
There is...plenty of evidence that other species of bee... played a much greater role in the origin of the apple [than the honey bee]...[solitary bees such as] Leaf cutter and mason bees (including Osmia)...[are] much better evolved for the transfer of pollen in an apple flower.
Osmia starts work earlier in the season [than honey bees], gets up earlier, does not take lunch breaks...and, it is estimated, one red mason bee (Osmia rufa a [UK] native) can do the work of 120 honey-bees".
Barrie Juniper author of The Story of the Apple (Timber Press, Oregon, forthcoming), writing in the Marcher Apple Network Newsletter no. 11, Summer 2005
...The guerrilla movement destroys infrastructure deliberately. Electricity facilities, petroleum pipelines, rail transport. And it deliberately baits the U.S. military in the cities, basing its fighters in civilian neighborhoods in hopes that a riposte will cause damage, because Iraqis, even urban ones, are organized by clan. Clan vendettas are still an important part of people's sense of honor. So when the American military kills an Iraqi, I figure they've made enemies of five siblings and twenty-five first cousins who feel honor-bound to get revenge. The Sunni Arab guerrilla movement has taken advantage of that sense of clan honor gradually to turn the population against the United States. Many more Sunni Arabs are die-hard opposed to the U.S. presence in Iraq now than was the case a year ago, and there were more a year ago than the year before that".
- Juan Cole, speaking to Tom Englehardt (interview, part one)
"People say the most amazing things. Like, 'Well, Iraq is already in civil war, so why would it matter if we left?' No! No! No! This is the stage before proper civil war. The difference is a matter of scale. You have hundreds of people a week being killed by guerrilla violence in Iraq. That's different from thousands of people, or tens of thousands, or hundreds of thousands. I mean we've seen it in other countries -- Cambodia, Afghanistan, Congo -- you can lose a fifth of the population in this kind of struggle. I think it's outrageous that people would say, 'Let's just up and leave and let what happens happen.' I know the Bush administration has mismanaged this thing so badly that one's tempted to say, let's get them away from this before they do any more damage, but do we want a genocide on our conscience?
...I know one person who said, 'Well, once we're out, whatever happens is not our responsibility.' Is it really true? You can invade a country, overthrow its government, dissolve its military, and then walk away, and a million people die, and that's not your problem? I don't understand this way of thinking".
- Juan Cole, speaking to Tom Englehardt (interview, part two)
Saturday, October 22, 2005
Friday, October 21, 2005
"Philip Green has banked £1.2bn (approx US$2.1bn)…the biggest pay cheque in British corporate history…and more than four times the [
Thursday, October 20, 2005
Wednesday, October 19, 2005
Could the current situation in Malawi be seen as a test case for this? There may be a danger of looking through the wrong end of a telescope in the sense that the terms may be too abstract and remote. In Malawi, as elsewhere, one would need to break down what one really means by "democracy" - the strengths and weaknesses of formal institutions, media, civil society and so on - not to speak of the role of unelected international organisations.
Matthew Lockwood argues that de facto one-party states in Africa offer the best chance to contain patronage and create developmental states.
Tuesday, October 18, 2005
...Amid the mutual congratulation, it is worth taking a moment to compare the impressive-sounding numbers with another figure that originates in
Monday, October 17, 2005
An unstated question, but ones that presumably occupies Schelling's fellow prize winner and others, is whether uncertainty about the use of nuclear weapons in the Middle East enhances or reduces stability.
Harford also notes:
"Schelling has involved himself in the debate on climate change. Often painted as a straightforward sceptic, his views are far more subtle. A short essay he wrote in 2002 for Foreign Policy argued for immediate action ..., but he also – as always – looked at the problem with fresh eyes, emphasising the fact that the climate change debate was fundamentally an argument about sharing costs and benefits."
Ray Kurzweil and Bill Joy on the publication of the full genome of the 1918 influenza virus on the Internet in the GenBank database by the United States Department of Health and Human Services.
Sunday, October 16, 2005
They are just part of the range of fruits recorded in the Herefordshire Pomona, and brought to prominence by the Marcher Apple Network.
As you can see from the lower photograph, the members of this sinister network are fomenting a conspiracy to undermine the Western way of life by nibbling away at the profits of leading corporations - and hence our very sense of what we are. If ever there was a case for preventive action , this is it.