Bush in Beijing

10 August 2008 16:44

Unsurprisingly folk are having fun with the photographs taken when George W Bush called upon the US women's beach volleyball team in Beijing. My complaint is rather different however. Consider… Continue reading


Department of (Terrible) Framing

10 August 2008 1:52

Film critic and cultural historian Neil Gabler has an interesting column on the Presidential race in today's Los Angeles Times. He concludes: It is axiomatic that the more powerful the… Continue reading


Trouble in the Caucasus, Day 2

9 August 2008 19:14

Edward Lucas concludes his op-ed in The Times on the Ossetian dilemma with this: The fighting should be a deafening wake-up call to the West. Our fatal mistake was made… Continue reading


Opening Proceedings

9 August 2008 15:55

James Hamilton is quite right to suggest that there's no way London can compete with Beijing's spectacular and often beautiful (if also, as he says, "frenziedly gauche") opening ceremony. And… Continue reading


Hague’s Wisdom

9 August 2008 12:07

William Hague warns David Miliband not to challenge Gordon Brown and offers this priceless spot of advice: "People want normal politicians and David Miliband is more geeky, more like me…… Continue reading


National Enquirer (More or Less) Vindicated

8 August 2008 20:32

John Edwards admits affair with campaign staffer  -  but denies fathering her child – in an interview with ABC News. I remember when this was rumoured last year everyone of… Continue reading

1 Comment

Trouble in the Caucasus

8 August 2008 17:54

Far from Beijing, Russia and Georgia kick-off in South Ossetia. I suspect that this is going to prompt people to raise the whole "should Georgia join NATO" thing all over… Continue reading


Notice for Edinburgh Readers

8 August 2008 11:17

And art lovers… You still have time to pop into the Flaubert Gallery in Stockbridge (opposite The Baillie, an excellent location for a post-purchasing pint) where you will find an… Continue reading


The Eeyore Olympics

8 August 2008 9:43

Well, the Olympics have finally arrived. James Fallows has been my go-to China blogger for some time. I heartily recommend his blog to you and suggest it will be well… Continue reading


The Temptations of the Leader Page

8 August 2008 0:45

In an editorial written, judging from its cadences, by Leon Wieseltier, welcoming the arrest of Radovan Karadzic, The New Republic argues that: Whatever one thinks of the war in Iraq,… Continue reading


Simon Gray, RIP

7 August 2008 23:15

Sad news. Simon Gray, the playwright and memoirist, has died. Just last month I read the latest, and, I suppose, final installment of The Smoking Diaries, a wonderful, funny, poignant… Continue reading


The Belgian Example

7 August 2008 21:13

Whither Belgium? Again. Ian Buruma frets that the break-up of Belgium would be A Bad Thing. As is generally the case with such articles, concrete arguments for this proposition are… Continue reading

1 Comment

In Suburbia

7 August 2008 19:36

Megan McArdle writes: Because I've always lived in cities, I don't even understand the utility of the big yards I see in the suburbs.  I get the purpose of a… Continue reading


Australian Summary

7 August 2008 17:58

Having come-off second-best in our West Indies game, I'm duty bound to suggest (gently) that I've had the better of Norm in the Australian leg of the series. In large… Continue reading


Education Briefing

7 August 2008 16:05

The best political programme of the 1980s explains school choice – and the opposition to it. As always Yes, Minister and, subsequently, Yes, Prime Minister were on the money: Hat-tip:… Continue reading


Playing Australia

7 August 2008 11:39

After the West Indian misfortune, in which my selection was, I'm afraid, bested by Norm's we move on to episode two of our series in which we select cricket teams,… Continue reading

1 Comment

Paris Hilton’s Energy Policy

6 August 2008 0:15

Give her publicist a medal. Seriously. Did the entire campaign just jump the shark? See Paris Hilton Responds to McCain Ad and more funny videos on See more funny… Continue reading


Cartooning the War

5 August 2008 23:41

Via Andrew, a fascinating collection of cartoon maps from the First World War. This one, by the Dutch artist Louis Raemaekers, is, for obvious reasons, my favourite:


FBK Kaunas 2 Rangers 1

5 August 2008 20:12

There’s no need for the Scottish football league to kick-off on Saturday. Cancel it. The season can’t* get better or more more amusing than this. *OK, it can. It would… Continue reading


Department of Markets

5 August 2008 19:26

The US Army is proposing to pay Arabic-speaking recruits bonuses of $150,000. James Joyner explains how this situation is largely one of the Army’s own-making, dating back more than a… Continue reading


Apart from lasting 400 years and dominating the known world, the Roman Empire was obviously a failure, right?

5 August 2008 15:53

Apparently in 2002 the Pentagon commissioned a study (which I’ve not read yet) of imperial power entitled the “Military Advantage in History,” with a view to appreciating what the United… Continue reading


Why is the race so close?

5 August 2008 13:22

It’s August and there are still acres of newsprint and hours of newstime to be filled. Something has to be published or aired. And in any case everyone agrees that… Continue reading

1 Comment

The West Indian Draft

5 August 2008 12:27

Readers awaiting the announcement of my M XI of test cricketers should fret not. It will appear. And soon. In the meantime the estimable Norm has challenged me to a… Continue reading


Media navel-gazing

4 August 2008 20:21

Panorama tonight: The Olympic Games are special. The biggest show on earth – with an estimated global television audience of four billion people. But hosting the Games brings extreme attention… Continue reading


Lessons in Punditry

4 August 2008 19:27

Ross Douthat makes an excellent suggestion: I think it would be an excellent discipline for pundits deeply invested in the ideal of the “independent” politician to attempt, at least once… Continue reading