Category Archives: US

It’s easy to forget one of modern history’s most important figures

In the category of ‘small, but annoying, errors’ we have this from the Guardian: Obama will make history in another way on Monday, becoming the first US president to be sworn in four separate times. THat should be ‘the first since Franklin Roosevelt’, of course, who got his four inaugurations the old-fashioned way by being […]

The dangers of political groupthink

There’s an interesting article on Buzzfeed about American right-wing bloggers and their determination to prove President Obama was somehow unfit or unqualified for office. (Spoiler: they failed) It’s interesting because it’s an examination because even though it doesn’t use the word, it’s an examination of political groupthink. We have a group – however informally constituted […]

Why Jeb Bush will win the 2016 Presidential election

Because history repeats itself, except for all the times it doesn’t. Barack Obama’s re-election this week meant that three successive US Presidents (Bill Clinton, George W Bush and Obama) had all been elected to two terms in office. The only other time this has happened in American politics was 200 years ago, with the Presidencies […]

David Cameron is right about the right

There’s been much joking recently about how part of the wake of the presidential election would be a wave of ‘why the US election means we must support my politics’ columns and blog posts. Lo and behold, you can probably find one on most comment sites in the country, but I wasn’t expecting David Cameron […]

Possibly Scary Analogy Watch

There are possibly historical analogies one can draw that compare to the rise of the Tea Party movement in the US, but there are some you might want to think twice about. For instance, while there are parallels possible between the US and the Roman Republic (though they tend to fall down under too much […]

Predictions for 2011

I’m reliably informed that if I want to be taken seriously as a blogger again, then I must post some predictions for things that will happen in the next year. So, here goes: 1) Wolves will be relegated for the Premiership. Even when relegation is mathematically certain, Mick McCarthy will insist that things can still […]

Emperor Norton

“Everybody understands Mickey Mouse. Few understand Hermann Hesse. Hardly anybody understands Einstein. And nobody understands Emperor Norton.” (Principia Discordia) A conversation last weekend reminded me that not many people know the story of Emperor Norton, even though many of you will have seen him regularly as I use a picture of him (larger version to […]

In other news, the White House is now located in Wisconsin

This is real: Cass Sunstein, a Harvard law professor, co-wrote an academic article entitled “Conspiracy Theories: Causes and Cures,” in which he argued that the government should stealthily infiltrate groups that pose alternative theories on historical events via “chat rooms, online social networks, or even real-space groups and attempt to undermine” those groups This is […]

The Ghost of Shopping Past

Here’s an interesting collection of photos of empty American shops and shopping malls, including the abandoned mall near Chicago where one of the chases in The Blues Brothers was filmed. Interestingly, it had been recently abandoned when the filming took place, and remains unused and undemolished today. (original link via Anton Vowl on Twitter) For […]

Not lucky enough to be a victim

Interesting story here about employees of a Las Vegas casino being arrested for scamming money from the poker room’s bad beat jackpot. (via Tao of Poker) Especially interesting to me as the Planet Hollywood poker room was one I played at a few times when I was in Las Vegas last year, so it’s possible […]