A digest of the best of the blogosphere published each weekday and compiled by Ken Parish, gilmae, Gummo Trotsky, Amanda Rose, Tim Sterne, Jen McCulloch and Stephen Hill
Apathetic Sarah anticipates an interesting judgement in the Mercedes Corby defamation action and delights in Red Kezza’s roasting of Rob McLelland.
Irfan Yusuf finds that The Oz has a bit of a pot-kettle-black problem with its beat-up on the Griffith University Islamic Research Unit.
Via Shakesville via Mark Steyn via Tim Blair via Currency Lad, tigtog finds that Bob Ellis is sexist scum.
The Editor has devised a drinking game which will help political tragics endure Brendan Nelson’s next doorstop.
comicstriphero has abrogated his personal responsibility in response to the excise hike on alcopops.
The Analyst believes Morris Iemma has dug himself a hole over electricity privatisation and that the state party has just handed him a bigger shovel. Niall Cook believes that the Queensland experience of electricity privatisation should worry the NSW public. Harry Clarke admires Iemma for standing up to union bullies, while Andrew Landeryou argues why Labor supporters should be able to embrace privatisation.
George Megalogenis has an edited extract from the revised edition of The Longest Decade, detailing how Howard failed to see the wind change and Kevin Rudd coming. Struggling bravely to make psephology interesting in the early part of the Rudd government’s term, Possum Comitatus analyses the state of the polls between the parties and on Rudd’s and Nelson’s respective leadership.
Boris Johnson has ousted “Red Ken” Livingston as Lord Mayor of London. Tim Blair, Jennifer Marohasy’s co-blogger Paul, Bernard Slattery and Andrew Bolt are all delighted with this victory for the Conservative International and celebrate with the usual combination of gloat & snark. Suz, JLo at Grodscorp, and Troppo’s Seamus C are less enthusiastic. Meanwhile, Tim Train composes the Blue City Blues.
What does the case of Joseph Fritzl tell us about the Austrian psyche? Gary Sauer Thompson says sod all. Kim also takes a skeptical view of the insta-sociology that’s being peddled on the case, but most of her commenters are happy to ignore that and provide their own insta-sociological takes on the Austrians.
Apparently talentless but attractive girl singer upsets Islamists in Bahrain.
John Quiggin thinks the US is taking a holiday from sanity.
Andrew Russel explores the idea of Punishment Capitalism.
Legal Eagle explains in detail a recent Federal Court judgment regarding attempts by investors in the collapsed Opes Prime to reclaim “their” shares.
For those (like me – KP) who once marvelled at the occasionally bizarre logic of (now retired) arch-conservative High Court Justice Ian Callinan, this note from Hilzoy may give you cause to see him as a veritable beacon of Enlightenment Rationalism by comparison with US Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia.
tigtog has some distressing news for chemophobes.
Jim Fryar is pro-anti-government-intervention. Harry Clarke, on the other hand, is sometimes anti-pro-anti-government-intervention and sees benefits to a bit of intervention. Smoking, for example. On the third hand, Pommygranate feels that the media and opportunist interest groups push for intervention – for example, when teenagers get killed in boating accidents – and is irritated by it. Peter Martin uses some basic economic realties to demonstrate how intervention short of prohibition – in the case of the alcopops tax – can work – when prices go up, demand goes down.
barista has a lengthy reaction to an article on the repatriation of the body of a US solider killed in Iraq and finds hints of an unhealthy focus on death.
Mark Richardson contends that human happiness requires marriage, children and church, has some happiness research to back him up.1
Derek Barry finds that journalists couldn’t care less about the future of journalism.
Jonathan Rauch convicts Republican Presidential candidate John McCain of Burkean conservatism (or more accurately awards him the mantle), while Ilya Somin analyses its deficiencies as a political philosophy: “its excessive deference to tradition and its failure to recognize that rapid change is often preferable to a more gradualistic approach”.
Alison Croggon argues that The Age newspaper’s theatre critics are waging an unfair Culture War against Melbourne’s Malthouse Theatre, and muses learnedly about naturalism in theatre before reviewing Ollie and the Minotaur (on at fortyfivedownstairs in Melbourne).
Derek Barry previews Balibo, a new film about the Balibo Five.
Marcellous goes to another SSO concert.
Darlene photoblogs Melbourne graffiti art.
Cast Iron Helen hits the road to the Apollo Bay Music Festival and finds herself at Twin Peaks. (Alt by GT)
Niall Cook on goings-on in the car racing world, including a picture of the poster every rev-head kid wants as his bedroom wallpaper.
At the 2020 conference, Nicholas Gruen learned that Mick Malthouse doesn’t know what to do with an otherwise excellant forward line. See, the conference wasn’t just waffle.
Snark, strangeness and charm
In an eerie real world echo of Roald Dahl’s short story The Sound Machine, Eugene Volokh discovers the Swiss Federal Ethics Committee on Non-Human Biotechnology’s report, The Dignity of Living Beings with Regard to Plants. A sample:
The Committee members unanimously consider an arbitrary harm caused to plants to be morally impermissible. This kind of treatment would include, e.g. decapitation of wild flowers at the roadside without rational reason.
skepticlawyer files a report from Oxford on (failed) moral lessons disguised as sporting events.
Possum Comitatus photoblogs his honeymoon in Tassie (well, the G-rated bits anyway).
- I wonder how Mark would react if Soma was a fourth requirement, or a second alternative.~gilmae