7 December 2011

Unsavery

You may be familiar with SnowSaver and RedPill, two popular Mac screensavers I wrote. I recently signed up as a Mac developer, with the intention of making my screensavers available on the App Store. After some technical hurdles, I submitted my first screensaver, and it was rejected on the grounds that it didn’t provide enough functionality to be worthy of the App Store, because it was just a screensaver. I appealed the rejection, pointing out that there are already screensavers on the App Store. ... Read more

21 November 2011

Broken Britain

I’ve written before about my perception that the UK took a drastic turn in the wrong direction during the 1970s, and that it has been deteriorating ever since. My perception is that the UK now has political and economic problems worse even than the USA. This is not a popular opinion, particularly among those who still live in the UK. Some accused me of callousness, but I have friends and family in the UK. ... Read more

20 November 2011

Liverpool Football Club and torture

Something I learned this month: Phillip Morse is the co-owner of Liverpool Football Club. He also runs a company called Richmor Aviation, which supplies chartered jets. Between 2002 and 2005, a company called Sportsflight contracted for use of a Richmor jet. They chartered a number of flights for “government personnel and their invitees”, as the president of Richmor put it in court testimony. The flights went to various places. One location which frequently appeared on the flight plan was Guantánamo Bay, Cuba. ... Read more

20 November 2011

Will oil drown the Arab spring?

A recent article by Michael L. Ross talks about how oil money may yet destroy the democratic gains of the Arab Spring: Oil has not always been a barrier to democracy. Until the early 1970s, oil—producing countries were no less likely to be democratic than any other state. Ironically, this was because until that point, the so-called Seven Sisters, a handful of giant Western oil companies, dominated the global oil industry and collected most of its profits. ... Read more

16 November 2011

Adam Curtis: All Watched Over By Machines of Loving Grace (3/3)

Part 3: The Monkey in the Machine and the Machine in the Monkey Or: The Episode You Shouldn’t Bother Watching I know that quite a few people were disappointed by the first two episodes in Adam Curtis’s series. I rather liked them, but to me the third episode really went off the rails. The Rwanda Watusi vs Bahutu genocide, caused by an imposed myth, is undoubtedly bad. It brought to mind a much longer lasting—yet in many ways similar—deadly myth: that of the Jewish exile to Egypt, their return to the Holy Land, and their racial separateness from the Palestinians. ... Read more

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