Links Overkill!

Apols for my blogging laziness in the last couple of weeks. I have let the side down and I did promise at the start of 2010 to be pretty regular in my postings. Blame a post-General Election comedown. This is a bit of a recompense, with lots of links to various stuff I’ve seen in recent days which I hope is of interest/use.

Hat-tip: Roderick Long

BP has overseen a shambolic catastrophe, although it appears to be more interested in managing perceptions than dealing with the reality. At least the literal ‘nuclear option’ has been ruled out, although the Gulf of Mexico might be hit by a (non-BP) similar spill soon. In recent weeks BP has also being spilling the black stuff up in Alaska.

For a genuine anti-capitalist, pro-free market perspective on dealing with the likes of BP, try here.

Back home, we are very much in the ‘Phoney War’ stage of the Coalition’s plans for public spending cuts, with June 22nd set to be ‘Emergency Budget’ day. It seems to be one part of a much wider European phenomenon, although there is much talk of copying Canada in the mid 1990s. There are good reasons to doubt whether the Coalition can simply replicate the deficit-cutting strategy of Jean Chretien’s Government.

There is much talk of the extent the Coalition’s public spending cuts will mirror those of the Thatcher Government in the 1980s. Chris Dillow suggests Thatcherism’s reputation for public spending cuts is far from deserved. For me, Thatcher’s Government can be reviled simply for the destruction of a good chunk of  Britain’s industrial base and metaphorically urinating the windfall from  North Sea oil against the proverbial wall while wrapping itself in the Union Jack.

A reasonable discussion of how the Coalition could make or break the Lib Dems can be found here.

In spite  (or because of?) being a supporter of  the Third Camp Against US Militarism and Islamic Terrorism I am normally very wary of discussing the Middle East, mainly because one cannot normally discuss the whole Palestine/Israel situation on the Net without being accused of being an ‘anti-semite’ and/or an ‘Islamaphobe’ P.D.Q. However, this time I will suggest a few links which you may find of interest in the aftermath of the Gaza Relief Convoy killings.

Flying Rodent wonders aloud whether the Israeli Government is its own worse enemy:

It’s been clear for years that the Israeli right is utterly dependent on the looniest fringe of Palestinian society for their power and legitimacy, and that both sets of nutters use violence against the other as a means to cementing their rule.

The basic situation over there is that both Hamas and the Israeli government are committed to policies that harm their populations but ensure their own continued rule. It’s a godawful, mutual death spiral that’s heading in precisely the wrong direction.

Blood and Treasure notes similarities between the countries Bibi Netanyahu and Kim Jong-il lead.

‘Look, I want Berlitz English-style American  accent in three months. Then I can wow Bill O’Reilly and Glenn Beck on Fox TV like Bibi Netanyahu and get away with anything. Even if I nuke Seoul and Tokyo the White House will call it a ‘regrettable tragedy’.

Robert Dreyfuss also discusses the current Israel/Palestine situation, and while calling for talks between the two sides, has no illusions in Israel or Hamas:

As far as I’m concerned, Hamas is a radical-right organization whose main leaders are fundamentalist Muslims with a penchant for blowing up pizza parlors. There are elements in Hamas that are more enlightened, but overall Hamas is a creation of Israel itself: first, because in the 1970s and 1980s, the Israeli secret service helped fund and organize Hamas because it believed that radical Muslim Palestinians would split the Palestinian movement and fight Fatah, and they did; and second, because during the 1990s and 2000s Hamas’ nihilistic radicalism fed off the cynical radicalism of extremist Israelis such as Ariel Sharon and Netanyahu. It was the extremism of Sharon and Netanyahu that led to the growing popularity of Hamas. If Hamas were serious about peace, they’d agree to accept a permanent ceasefire with Israel and to accept the principle of a two-state solution by recognizing Israel. That’s what the PLO, under Yasser Arafat did, in the 1980s and 1990s.

The Bilderbergers had their annual shindig a few days back. A list of attendees can be found here. Among the global big shots at the Bildies event was Gordon Campbell, British Columbia’s PM, which, if the opinion of my Canadian friends is anything to go by, suggests they’ll let anyone gatecrash it these days! Several people associated with The Economist were there, although whether there will be a special Bilderberger supplement in the magazine remains to be seen. Having said that, The Economist has recently admitted that a Global Superclass exists.

Robin Ramsay (the latest edition of his  Lobster magazine is available from here) also discusses how Obama’s close associate Cass Sunstein sees the internet as a theatre of warfare

For those of you who see the Politicians and the Mainstream Media as irredeemably opposed to each other, you may find this an eye opener.

A good overview of the battles between News Corp and Google, with Facebook as the proverbial elephant in the New Media room, can be found here.

Finally, on more cultural matters, Madam Miaow has a programme on how the West has (mis)interpreted Chinse music down the years (available on BBC iPlayer for the the next week or so). Matthew Norman also discusses why giving someone a book by a New Labour politico in the months to come may be the best way to end a friendship.

I’ll leave it there for the moment.  I am on my hols in a couple of weeks, so things around AngloNoel Towers could be quiet for a while. However, I’ll try and share interesting snippets that come my way with you all!

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One CommentLeave a comment

  1. Links Overkill!…

    I found your entry interesting do I’ve added a Trackback to it on my weblog :)…


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