International news and events

    Donal's picture

    The High-Priced Spread



    I thought oil was supposed to be fungible, so I was curious as to why a barrel of Brent could be selling in the low $100s while WTI was around $85/barrel. That sixteen dollar spread is some sort of record.

    Topics: 
    Michael Wolraich's picture

    Will Iran Be Next?

    "The conspirators are nothing but corpses."

    -- Hossein Hamadani, Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps, Iran

    As Egypt glows bright and the media buzzes sunnily about the benevolent power of online social networks, anything seems possible.

    Topics: 
    Doctor Cleveland's picture

    About the Muslim Brotherhood

    The protest movement in Egypt has suddenly alerted many Westerners to the existence of the Muslim Brotherhood, a newish group who did not emerge in Egypt until almost the end of the Coolidge Administration. Furthermore, this fast-breaking development has alerted Western pundits, bloggers, and politicians to the urgent need to say something about the Muslim Brotherhood.

    Doctor Cleveland's picture

    Staying Allied with Democracies

    There's an old chestnut that says that two democracies have never gone to war. It's not quite true, or only true if you aggressively redefine "democracy" until you've fallen into the "no-true-Scotsman" fallacy. ("No true democracy ever goes to war with another ...." ) But it is an instructive half-truth: functional democracies very rarely go to war with one another.

    William K. Wolfrum's picture

    I support the Egyptian people – provided it doesn’t affect me

    Having watched events unfold in Egypt this past week, I must say I am impressed by the bravery and strength of will shown by the Egyptian people. They are standing tall against a dictatorial regime, and that is to be applauded.

    William K. Wolfrum's picture

    Vital Egypt information for Americans

    Egypt on map

    There. Now you can find it on a map.

    You can find out more about the protests in Egypt and the U.S. response here, or follow the breaking news on Twitter with the #Jan25 hashtag. Or just be happy that you now know where it is.

    –WKW

    Topics: 
    William K. Wolfrum's picture

    The Love of a Dog in Brazil

    caramelo- a dog's love

    A story of a dog’s dedication to its family, following their deaths last week in Brazil. Translated from Fohla.com:

    The former street-dog Caramelo helped rescue the bodies of its owners, whose were killed during last week’s rains, then did not want to leave the makeshift grave of his owner.

    Topics: 
    Donal's picture

    Foodflation, Food Insecurity and Civil Unrest



    My wife and I noticed several months ago that the food we chose to buy was getting much more expensive. I was probably more inspired by Michael Pollan and she by Mehmet Oz, but years ago we agreed that we would cut out the hydrogenated stuff and the high fructose stuff and the high sodium stuff.

    Topics: 
    Donal's picture

    Monsters from the Id


    "Anne Francis stars in ... Forbidden Planet" RIP

    Doomer James Kunstler is telling us, Gird Your Loins for Lower Living Standards. He says something like that every year right about now, so it must be time to put the Xmas tree back in the box. Still, he is entertaining.

    Topics: 
    Michael Maiello's picture

    Assange, Irony and Secrets

    I agree that hearing Julian Assange's lawyers outrage that leaked information pertaining to the rape charges against him should have never been made public is funny.  I also agree with David Seaton that politics is politics and that anything that makes Assange look like a hypocrite is bad news for him.  In the game he's playing image is important.  You can't be for the release of all secrets except for your own.  All absolutists find their petards hoisted sooner

    Topics: 
    Donal's picture

    What Do YOU Think?



    One of my fondest memories was showing Fahrenheit 451 to my stepson. After Guy Montag finds the community of living books at the end (of the film), my stepson proclaimed them heroes with the sort of ardor most kids reserve for famous athletes. He's a librarian now.

    Topics: 
    Donal's picture

    Assange On the Spot + Update



    Someone at Energy Bulletin finds a prefiguration of WikiLeaks in The Shockwave Rider, a 1975 scifi novel by John Brunner.

    Topics: 
    Donal's picture

    Feasta on Energy and Money

    The Post Carbon Institute posts this series of videos of a talk by Richard Douthwaite, co-founder of Feasta, an Irish think tank concerned with sustainable economics. He was speaking by phone and video to a group in Michigan, about a month before last year's Copenhagen Summit climate talks, so it is like watching Max Headroom do a slide show. The first four videos are about the problem, the last two are Feasta's proposal for a cap and share system and debt-free currency to keep the poorer folk going.

    Topics: 
    Donal's picture

    Wikileaks: More Crap + Updated Crap



    This evening, I was amused to see last night's Daily Show discussing Wikileaks as regards transparency vs privacy:

    Topics: 
    Doctor Cleveland's picture

    Understanding Obama via WikiLeaks

    The latest Wikileaks document dump, filled mostly with low-grade diplomatic communications, does lay bare one thing that should have been painfully obvious all along: President Obama's Iran strategy.

    Here's part of the New York Times write-up:

    Pages

    Latest Comments