UNIPOLAR DISORDER: Robert Kagan on Europe and the U.S. Have only skimmed it now--will read later--but looks really interesting. Superbrief excerpts: In the end, however, Europeans have not sought to counter U.S. hegemony in the usual, power-oriented fashion, because they do not find U.S. hegemony threatening in the traditional power-oriented way. Not all global hegemons are equally frightening. U.S. power, as Europeans well know, does not imperil Europe 's security or even its autonomy. … [Read more...]


FIVE BLOGGERS JAILED IN IRAN: Via Andrew Sullivan. … [Read more...]


RED CROSS FINDS DETAINEE ABUSE IN GUANTANAMO. Excerpts: The International Committee of the Red Cross has charged in confidential reports to the United States government that the American military has intentionally used psychological and sometimes physical coercion "tantamount to torture" on prisoners at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba.The finding that the handling of prisoners detained and interrogated at Guantanamo amounted to torture came after a visit by a Red Cross inspection team that spent most of … [Read more...]


FIGHTING INSOMNIA. Too-true hilarity, via Ratty. … [Read more...]


IRAQ, TWO LINKS: BBC Iraq log. "What is life like for ordinary Iraqis and others caught up in events? We are publishing a range of accounts here from people inside Iraq about how they, their families and friends live day to day and what the bigger events in the headlines mean to them." I can't remember where I found this.And Senator Jim Talent (R-Mo.) will be blogging from Iraq and Israel, here. … [Read more...]


I want to lie, shipwrecked and comatose, Sipping fresh mango juice, Blogwatch, oh! nibbling at my toes..."Biology, Culture, and Persistent Literary Dystopias." Interesting piece, though I have some disagreements with the piece's take on 1984 and think the over-abbreviated section on The Handmaid's Tale seriously weakens the piece. ...Via Hit & Run.Congratulations to the Yale Free Press on the recent theft of their print run!1970s After School Specials now on DVD. Via Relapsed … [Read more...]


But the example of Homer, Shakespeare, and others does suggest that aesthetic laws can sometimes be suspended. Suspending recognizable aesthetic laws of course means taking risks, and the teacher who wishes to play it safe may say to his students, "That's all right for Shakespeare, but not for a beginner." The trouble with this solution is that it tries to teach the art of fiction by shrinking the art, making it something more manageable but no longer art. --John Gardner, The Art of Fiction … [Read more...]