Tuesday, 9 September 2008

Briefs - Things Read

1. The first of a series of discussions of the Israel-Palestine conflict in 'a cool hour' by Samuel Fleischacker at Norm's. I'll keep reading this. Almost anything said calmly in the arena is worth listening to.

2. Christopher Hitchens on Sarah Palin at Slate. I have said nothing about Palin because I have no real idea what to think of her. I would sooner have a Democrat in and would be happy if that Democrat were to be Obama, but Hitchens is right about the kind of attacks launched on her. I can see that a pretty, fiery, straight-speaking, hockey-mom makes a useful iconic figure and counter-weight to Obama for the Republicans. On the other hand the anti-abortionist, creationist, global warming dismissalist (I don't mind global warming argument providing it comes from intelligent well-informed sources, but simply shouting It's rubbish! is not an argument) side of her don't tally with my folk back home. Actually, the Democrats wouldn't be attacking so hard if they weren't scared of her. Ironically, of course, the more they attack the more reason they have to be scared.

3. This report in The Guardian on the argument for GM foods. It follows from an earlier guest post by Prof Anne Osbourn, about which I wrote a further post here. I am deeply suspicious of pious, wealthy, foodies imposing their superstitions on the starving. If that's what it is.

4. And lastly, back to Hammershoi, the ever-readable Ms Baroque I know we cross-refer each other but I think she is excellent and am flattered when she occasionally quotes from here.

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