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[BLOG] Some Thursday links

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  • At The Dragon’s Tales, Will Baird reports that Sweden and Finland, spooked by Crimea, are now contemplating NATO membership.
  • On a very different note, The Dragon’s Tales also notes that Saturn’s icy moon Enceladus, with a Europa-like ocean underneath, is perfectly suited for a space mission.
  • Lawyers, Guns and Money notes that workers are dying on World Cup construction sites in Brazil as well as in Qatar.
  • At the Planetary Society Blog, Emily Lakdawalla notes the very recent discovery of Kuiper belt object 2013 FY27, big enough to be a dwarf planet.
  • The Volokh Conspiracy links to a profile of the blog and its blogger in Tablet magazine.
  • Window on Eurasia has a series of links. One argues that Russia’s weakness not its strength motivated the move into Crimea, another argues that a Russian invasion of Ukraine would be a catastrophe and that the Russian government knows it, another observes Belarus’ alienation from federation with Russia.

[BLOG] Some Wednesday links

  • Centauri Dreams looks at reddish brown dwarfs, objects that may lie just on the cusp of being planets.
  • The Dragon’s Gaze links to a paper analyzing the stellar cycles of Alpha Centauri A and B.
  • The Dragon’s Tales links to a Singaporean academic’s argument that Sino-American misunderstandings (lack of understanding, more precisely) could lead to catastrophe.
  • Joe. My. God. shares a Seattle editor’s argument that Musab Masmari, charged with trying to burn down a crowded gay bar, should be charged with multiple counts of attempted murder.
  • Lawyers, Guns and Money shares more depressing rape rhetoric for right-wingers.
  • Marginal Revolution notes that Switzerland’s immigration controls are directed against those who are quite like the Swiss–Germans, Italians, French, and so on–rather than outsiders.
  • Strange Maps notes the town of Agloe in upstate New York, placed by mapmakers eager to trap thieves of their work.
  • Understanding Society shares Theda Skocpol’s analysis of the 1979 revolution in Iran, one that differs substantially from her theory.
  • Now at the Washington Post, the Volokh Conspiracy’s Ilya Somin takes issue with people who would like to abolish early voting. (Among other things, these people are generally more informed about their political choices.)
  • Window on Eurasia notes Karelian activists in Russia who want to keep their republic in existence and open to Finland.

[BLOG] Some Tuesday links

  • Crooked Timber’s Jon Mandle reflects on his experiences of a visit to Auschwitz.
  • The Dragon’s Tales’ Will Baird notes the development of a robot that can walk like a cat.
  • Eastern Approaches suggests that Croatia, set to enter the European Union, should pick up economic tips from Finland’s experience in the 1990s.
  • Marginal Revolution’s Tyler Cowen argues convincingly that the lack of payment for sperm donors in Canada means that domestic sperm–from paid domestic sperm donors, at least–is short.
  • Savage Minds considers language revival among tribal peoples in Taiwan by looking to the mixed experience of Southern Maori revivalists in New Zealand.
  • The Search offers guidelines as to the digital archiving of images. (Keep them in TIFF but don’t worry if they’re JPEG.)
  • Torontoist’s Desmond Cole notes a recent protest in Toronto to commemorate the one-year anniversary of the federal government’s limiting of access to healthcare to refugees.
  • Towleroad reports on the GLBT components of the anti-government protests in Turkey.

[BLOG] Some Sunday links

  • Acts of Minor Treason’s Andrew Barton shares a photograph of a San Francisco streetcar
  • Eastern Approaches describes how the Serbian ambassador to Turkey was cut off by the protests.
  • Geocurrents’ Asya Pereltsvaig traces the etymology of book in different world languages.
  • GNXP’s Razib Khan notes that imagined far futures where humans are recognizably the same despite huge changes otherwise, or where the only changes are superficial or ridiculous, are lacking.
  • Marginal Revolution discusses the question of whether the city of Detroit should sell off the works in its collection, leaning towards the sale.
  • Progressive Download’s John Farrell notes that scientists may have found pluripotent adult stem cells.
  • Steve Munro finds it ludicrous the extent to which Metrolinx has exaggerated the job benefits of mass transit system construction.
  • Torontoist examines the birth of the Toronto neighbourhood (once municipality) of Leaside as a planned suburb.
  • Van Waffle takes his readers on a garden tour of Toronto, with photographs.
  • Window on Eurasia notes how Karelians, facing assimilation in their Russian republic, are looking towards Finland for help.

[BLOG] Some Wednesday links

  • Acts of Minor Treason’s Andrew Barton photographs the Gibraltar Point lighthouse and wonders about the Toronto Islands.
  • Bag News Notes visits Iraqi Kurdistan and the survivors of Saddam Hussein’s gassing of the Kurdish city of Halabja.
  • At Behind the Numbers, Mark Mather notes that the projected size of the American population in decades hence has decreased owing to the recession-related fall in the birth rate.
  • Eastern Approaches notes the church-sponsored attack on a gay pride protestin Georgia, its implications for law and order in Georgia, and the impact on Georgia’s reputation abroad.
  • Geocurrents’ Asya Perelstvaig goes over the fluctuating Russo-Finnish border regions.
  • GNXP’s Razib Khan argues that devoting ten thousand hours to practising a particular skill, as described by Gladwell, won’t do anything if one doesn’t have the requisite talent.
  • Language Hat notes an article on the life of Alice Kober, one of the linguists who helped decrypy the Minoan script Linear B.
  • Open the Future’s Jamais Cascio wonders how astronomers would recognize artifacts of a supercivilization–Dyson spheres, FTL warp bubbles, et cetera–as artifacts.
  • Window on Eurasia’s Paul Goble notes that many Russian nationalists are opposed to integrating with post-Soviet countries, particularly in Central Asia, that are currently de-Russifying.

[BLOG] Some Monday links

  • Burgh Diaspora notes the migration of Spanish professionals to Morocco. (It’s close and the cost of living is low.)
  • Daniel Drezner, in contrast to other writers, has become somewhat more dovish since the Iraq War, but not that much more.
  • At the Everyday Sociology Blog, Jonathan Wynn examines the sociological settings of the coverage of the Steubenville rape trials. Among other things, he suggests that the search for novelty, more than an insensitivity to the victim, played a role in CNN’s infamous coverage.
  • At A Fistful of Euros, Alex Harrowell argues that the British government’s diagnosis of the problems with the British economy is fundamentally flawed, with obvious implications for the recovery of the British economy.
  • Geocurrents’ Asya Pereltsvaig examines the fascinating birch bark documents from the medieval Russian state of Novgorod.
  • GNXP’s Razib Khan notes the evidence of substantial non-European ancestry among South Africa’s Afrikaners.
  • Language Hat notes the influence of the Polish language and Roman Catholicism in early modern Ukraine.
  • Lawyers, Guns and Money’s Erik Loomis starts an interesting discussion of ethnonational identity, history, and social class in culture from a book on Mexican food.
  • Supernova Condensate considers the possibility of life evolving on worlds orbiting bright, massive stars. Planets, at least, seem able to form even around the brightest …
  • Technosociology’s Zeynap Tufekci discusses the right of children to privacy.

[BLOG] Some Monday links

  • Centauri Dreams features a guest post by anthropologist Cameron M. Smith speculating on the kinds of evolutionary change that could occur among humans via long-distance, long-duration interstellar flights and later pplanetary colonizations.
  • Geocurrents notes that politics in Kenya, as evidenced by the recent election, are still strongly marked by the polarization of different ethnic groups behind different candidates.
  • John Moyer is bored by the over-the-top superhero genre.
  • Marginal Revolution’s Tyler Cowen seems appalled by the weekend decision to impose a haircut on depositors in Cypriot banks.
  • Noel Maurer, writing at The Power and the Money, notes the division of Japan on east-west lines by incompatible national electricity grids. Eastern Japan including Tokyo, hit hard by the aftermath of the tsunami and nuclear plant closures, stayed afloat thanks to rolling blackouts.
  • Strange Maps charts the frontiers, exclaves, and territorial disputes of the Vatican City.
  • Torontoist notes the growing popularity of Gaelic footballs in Toronto. It’s useful for networking for new immigrants from Ireland, too.
  • Towleroad reports on a Turkish campaign, led by the prime minister, against the two lesbian foster mothers of a Turkish child taken into custody at six months of age. (He’s now 9.)
  • The Volokh Conspiracy’s Eugene Volokh notes that the Catholic cardinal of Durban in South Africa, Wilfrid Fox Napier, has said that pedophile priests who in turn raped children shouldn’t be considered criminally responsible.
  • At Window on Eurasia, Paul Goble reports that Vladimir Putin defended the Winter Wage waged against Finland.

[BLOG] Some Monday links

  • Dan Hirschman, at A (Budding) Sociologist’s Commonplace Blog, wonders about sociological studies of dying fields and institutions. He raises the example of the card game bridge.
  • Far Outliers has a variety of links–1, 2, 3–describing how the Black Sea city of Odessa, in southern Ukraine, was in the 19th century a booming metropolis comparable in many ways to America’s Chicago.
  • Language Hat tackles the possible impending breakthroughs surrounding the decryption of proto-Elamite cuneiform.
  • At Lawyers, Guns and Money, Robert Farley has no truck with The Nation‘s argument that Middle Eastern dictatorships depended critically on American support. Many didn’t; many of the ones being threatened opposed the United States strongly. Cf Libya.
  • Not Rocket Science’s Ed Yong reflects on newly-published studies of old recordings demonstrating that a beluga whale held in captivity was actively trying to mimic human speech.
  • Itching for Eestimaa’s Guistino reflects on the Estonian-Finnish relationship, close but with undercurrents of conflict.
  • Marginal Revolution’s Alex Tabarrok links to a Slate article noting how an unlikely mutation to let humans metabolize milk became wide-spread. The commenters suggest that mutations which allow people to metabolize milk helps maximize the caloric value of cows, at least compared to slaughtering them outright.
  • Normblog links to an article by Iranian expatriate Roya Hoyakian noting how Iran’s revolution quickly led to institutionalized misogyny, and warning that there are signs of this also occurring in the countries changed by the Arab Spring’s revolution.
  • Torontoist’s Steve Kupferman wonders about the effectiveness and utility of The Globe and Mail‘s new paywall, soon to be adopted by the other major Toronto dailies.
  • The Volokh Conspiracy’s David Kopel makes a fair point in pointing out that Syria is Iran’s access to the sea–the Mediterranean Sea, at least.
  • Zero Geography determines the dominant language used for Wikipedia articles for different countries. English is globally dominant, unsurprisingly, but French, Russian, and surprisingly German also do above-average.

[BLOG] Some Monday links

  • Dan Hirschman, at A (Budding) Sociologist’s Commonplace Blog, wonders about sociological studies of dying fields and institutions. He raises the example of the card game bridge.
  • Far Outliers has a variety of links–1, 2, 3–describing how the Black Sea city of Odessa, in southern Ukraine, was in the 19th century a booming metropolis comparable in many ways to America’s Chicago.
  • Language Hat tackles the possible impending breakthroughs surrounding the decryption of proto-Elamite cuneiform.
  • At Lawyers, Guns and Money, Robert Farley has no truck with The Nation‘s argument that Middle Eastern dictatorships depended critically on American support. Many didn’t; many of the ones being threatened opposed the United States strongly. Cf Libya.
  • Not Rocket Science’s Ed Yong reflects on newly-published studies of old recordings demonstrating that a beluga whale held in captivity was actively trying to mimic human speech.
  • Itching for Eestimaa’s Guistino reflects on the Estonian-Finnish relationship, close but with undercurrents of conflict.
  • Marginal Revolution’s Alex Tabarrok links to a Slate article noting how an unlikely mutation to let humans metabolize milk became wide-spread. The commenters suggest that mutations which allow people to metabolize milk helps maximize the caloric value of cows, at least compared to slaughtering them outright.
  • Normblog links to an article by Iranian expatriate Roya Hoyakian noting how Iran’s revolution quickly led to institutionalized misogyny, and warning that there are signs of this also occurring in the countries changed by the Arab Spring’s revolution.
  • Torontoist’s Steve Kupferman wonders about the effectiveness and utility of The Globe and Mail‘s new paywall, soon to be adopted by the other major Toronto dailies.
  • The Volokh Conspiracy’s David Kopel makes a fair point in pointing out that Syria is Iran’s access to the sea–the Mediterranean Sea, at least.
  • Zero Geography determines the dominant language used for Wikipedia articles for different countries. English is globally dominant, unsurprisingly, but French, Russian, and surprisingly German also do above-average.

[BLOG] Some Wednesday links

  • 80 Beats has more about the newly-sanctioned use of anti-retroviral drug Truvada to prevent HIV infection. Apparently it’s quite effective–75% efficacy in heterosexual couples which use it consistently, 90% among homosexual couples which do the same.
  • Centauri Dreams considers how the next generation of space telescopes will be able to pick up the signature of water oceans on distant worlds.
  • Eastern Approaches notes the exceptionally controversial (and possibly doomed) plan by the Czech government to compensate religious organizations for property expropriated under Communism.
  • Geocurrents notes the substantial evidence of influence of Finnic groups on the culture of the Eastern Slavs–Russians particularly, but also Ukrainians and Belarusians.
  • Language Hat remarks on a religious song of the Ainu making use of nonsense words.
  • Lawyers, Guns and Money wonders why people who watch China’s development of an aircraft carrier aren’t paying attention to the much larger and longer-established naval aviation programs–including aircraft carriers–of India.
  • Registan’s Nathan Hamm comments on how Uzbekistan’s departure from a Russian-led security alliance signals Russian weakness in its immediate neighbourhood.
  • Could elements like lithium be manufactured by black holes? Supernova Condensate speculates.
  • Towleroad reports on the shameful decision of the Boy Scouts of America to continue keep non-heterosexuals out of its ranks.
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