RICH AND STRANGE: My review of Amy Chua's World on Fire: How Exporting Free Market Democracy Breeds Ethnic Hatred and Global Instability. … [Read more...]

A LIFE IS A WORLD ENTIRE. Heartbreaking post from AgendaBender. … [Read more...]

NOT MY THING, but I imagine many of my readers would be interested to know that Sean Collins is blogging as he reads through the Lord of the Rings trilogy. First installment here.(I love the birthday party, and the slow menace of the very beginning of The Fellowship of the Ring, but I can't make myself reread the books now. Not that you need to care.) … [Read more...]

ACTONE 2004!: "Nearing its sixth year and with more than 200 of its graduates now striving to move up through the entertainment ranks, ACT ONE: WRITING FOR HOLLYWOOD announces that it is once again accepting applications for two four-week training sessions in 2004-one at its campus in Hollywood, and the other within view of the Washington Monument in Washington, D.C. Application deadline is March 1, 2004.and July 5 in Hollywood. ..."An inter-denominational training program for aspiring … [Read more...]

"DESIRE: REAL MASK": Part three of my current short story has been posted. You can get the whole story-so-far here; or just the most recent (fall) episode here.This episode is mostly about Holly, Laila, and Suha in high school, but also includes this little flashback: "Since early childhood I'd created these utterly obscure, private costume ideas--when I was ten I was 'the ghost of a wolf,' which was not even the most bizarre. I would ring the doorbells, waiting, secretly wishing that behind … [Read more...]

DISAPPOINTMENT IN SAMARRA?: Unqualified Offerings looks at the very weird math behind reports of a major US victory in Iraq. Scroll down for more.UPDATED: Tons more stuff. Just go here and scroll. … [Read more...]

THE STRAIGHT DOPE TAKES ON ETHANOL SUBSIDIES: "Money-wasting government schemes are hardly rare. But how many do you know of that flout the second law of thermodynamics?"more … [Read more...]