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* Two items on how cell phones effect plots: James and John. Cell phones and third world poverty; getting commodity prices at range is old news to me, but not the phone banking.

* Sweden has been at peace for the past 195 years, after they conquered Norway. Mind you they helped the Nazis somewhat, though they also helped the Allies. But they didn't get bombed or attacked. Norway... I assume part of the difference is Norway being more strategically vital in terms of coast, though Sweden also has more people.

* Fox News has a problem, mislabeling scandalous pols as (D): Sanford, and this, Foley and Toomey. "Fair and balanced" liars.
* Rush Limbaugh blames Obama for Sanford's affair.

* Seeing patterns when not in control.

* Barney Frank on Weaponized Keynesianism. the view that the government does not create jobs when it funds the building of bridges or important research or retrains workers, but when it builds airplanes that are never going to be used in combat, that is of course economic salvation.
* Krugman on optimism in 1930.
* Public option vs. near-monopolies of health care. Echoed by a Kaiser Permanente executive in this Economist article. TNR on medical innovation and universal health care.
* Long piece comparing the VA and Medicare, to the VA's advantage.

* Mr. Darcy as autistic, or maybe just shy; not the "pride" you were thinking of.

* Cossack military republics: Cossack Hetmanate and Zaporizhian Sich
* The Golden Liberty, the elected monarchy of the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth. Elected by nobles consisting of 10% of the population, comparable to Athens. "The political doctrine of the Commonwealth of Both Nations was: our state is a republic under the presidency of the King." Moderately liberal, high religious freedom, right of rebellion. Did itself in with excessive veto power.

(From Randy)
* Doug Muir on West Africa, African French, and Francophone Islam. If you’re a human being who speaks French, you’re more likely to be African than European.
* Imperial Allied armies of WWII
* Japan's worst century
* He's also had a bunch of posts recently about la Francophonie, which is driven more by Africa and Quebec than a France burned on colonialism. Israel apparently has enough French speakers to make a fair bid of being a member, but probably won't be let in.

Christian Science Monitor links:
* Analysis of Khamenei. Somali pirates vs. fishermen. The success of Swedish banking. Redeeming the LAPD. WTF: Chavez endorses Ahmadinejad. Will someone recognize Somaliland, already? The overhyped Taliban threat in Pakistan.


Damien Sullivan

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May 2018


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