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Archive for August, 2012

Farwell to summer

Friday, 31 August, 2012

Traditionally, summer extends for the months of June, July and August in the northern hemisphere. And now that it’s ending, filled with grief as its passing, we’ll bid farewell to those lazy, hazy days with the immortal, ethereal verse of Emily Dickinson. As imperceptibly as Grief The Summer lapsed away— Too imperceptible at last To […]

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The aphrodisiac of power

Thursday, 30 August, 2012

In 1975, when Margaret Thatcher was bidding for the leadership of the Conservative Party, the Labour Party health secretary, Barbara Castle, was prompted to commit the following observation to her diary: “The papers are full of Margaret Thatcher. She has leant herself with grace and charm to every piece of photographer’s gimmickry, but don’t we […]

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The non-review review of NW

Wednesday, 29 August, 2012

In the Sunday Telegraph, a person named Gaby Wood, “the head of Telegraph books”, purported to review the “long awaited NW“, the latest novel by Zadie Smith, in a truly obsequious, vapid piece titled “The return of Zadie Smith“. One of the commentators on the piece summed it up perfectly: “Please don’t include biographical facts […]

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Damn! They couldn’t even spell Kurfürstendamm

Tuesday, 28 August, 2012
Damn! They couldn’t even spell Kurfürstendamm

Under the shade-giving plane trees, Berliners parade up and down the Kurfürstendamm, the city’s shopping boulevard. Along this avenue of materialism, consumers have the choice between Louis Vuitton, Chanel, Hermès, Giorgio Armani, Ermenegildo Zegna, Prada, Burberry, Yves Saint Laurent, Jil Sander, Gucci, Valentino, Cartier, Versace and Dolce & Gabbana, to name the main outlets. But […]

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The Patents and Trademarks of Steve Jobs

Monday, 27 August, 2012
The Patents and Trademarks of Steve Jobs

From 11 May to 8 July this year, the Smithsonian Institution in Washington D.C., hosted an exhibition titled “The Patents and Trademarks of Steve Jobs“. The lawyers representing Samsung in its failed attempt to justify stealing Apple’s intellectual property should have paid heed to this celebration of Jobs’ passion for filing patents. Clearly, the Apple […]

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The Games of the XX Olympiad in Munich and their victims

Sunday, 26 August, 2012
The Games of the XX Olympiad in Munich and their victims

On this day in 1972, the Games of the XX Olympiad began in Munich and continued until 10 September. At 4:30am on the morning of 5 September, a group of Palestinian terrorists broke into the Olympic Village and entered two apartments being used by the Israeli team at 31 Connollystraße. The memorial plaque on the […]

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Come sail your ships around me and burn your bridges down

Saturday, 25 August, 2012

Because she’s an architect by training, one assumes that Camille O’Sullivan would be more comfortable with fixed structures than with sea-going vessels, but seeing that she grew up on the sea-swept island of Ireland, Nick Cave’s Ship Song offers her lots of potential for reconstruction.

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Karl reMarks about Fisk and Friedman

Friday, 24 August, 2012

In times of trouble and strife, one turns for light relief to the great Karl reMarks. This week has been brightened by the superb “Robert Fisk: Reporting from Syria ‘with sensational quotes in the headline’“. Background: The fanatical idiotarian Robert Fisk is employed by the likes of The Independent and Raidió Teilifís Éireann to channel […]

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Prodding a man-shaped Assange bag with a pitchfork

Thursday, 23 August, 2012

After nearly three decades in the UK’s Diplomatic Service, Charles Crawford retired from the Foreign and Commonwealth Office at the end of 2007. So, when it comes to matters consular and tactful, he knows the score. In his blog post, “Diplomatic Bags (Assange)“, Crawford points out that, “… if a man-shaped diplomatic bag is seen […]

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Niall Fergsuon responds to the liberal blogosphere

Wednesday, 22 August, 2012

Historian Niall Ferguson did the unthinkable at the weekend. He challenged those ideologically loyal to the Obama White House in a Newsweek cover story titled, “Hit the road Barack: Why we need a new president “. The firestorm that followed scorched all in its path. Did Ferguson run for cover? Far from it, he came […]

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Noam Chomsky: Not a gadfly or a lunatic, but an actual monster

Tuesday, 21 August, 2012

Benjamin Kerstein, author of Diary of an Anti-Chomskyite, believes that the leftist ideologue Noam Chomsky is more than a mere crank and crackpot. He’s a monster. Kerstein makes his case using the example of the German thinker Martin Heidegger: “Now, there is no doubt that Heidegger was a brilliant philosopher, and most of his philosophy […]

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