» jack of Kent ¦ What You Can Get Away With

Why Vote Liberal Democrat? – Alex Marsh has read Jeremy Browne’s latest book. It’s fair to say he’s not impressed.
How long would it take us to put people on the moon? – Andrew Ducker asks a question I’ve wondered about before, but unlike me, he gets answers.
The Status Quo Is Not a Neutral Position: Fiction and Politics – ” I expect these folks who think pure genre fiction is free from politics think we should just write about a post-racial capitalist utopia, where men are men and women are women. Because writing such a thing is not a statement of politics or morals or values, but of cold, objective fact.”
Politics – why can’t we admit mistakes? – Paul Bernal asks, though I don’t think anyone’s yet found the answer, or an alternative.
Why have the Conservatives not published their “Bill of Rights” proposals? – “The Conservatives do not really want to know what you think about abolishing the Human Right Act and they do not want you to have access to their plans, independent of any media outlet; the Conservatives instead care more about what the Press thinks and what the Press will tell you to think.”

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Around the world in five links:

America: The Grim Truth – “I am not writing this to scare you. I write this to you as a friend. If you are able to read and understand what I’ve written here, then you are a member of a small minority in the United States. You are a minority in a country that has no place for you.” (via)
New Account of a Russian Cosmonaut’s Death Rife with Errors – As I linked to an account of the death of Vladimir Komarov a couple of weeks ago, here’s a counterpoint, arguing that many of the claims in the book that article is based on are erroneous (via)
Why I have joined the Liberal Democrats – Blogger and lawyer David Allen Green (aka Jack of Kent) explains why he’s joined the party. “There is only one political force which is having an actual liberal effect in our polity as it is presently constituted, and it is the Liberal Democrats.”
AV is the voting system for non-fanatics – Jason O’Mahony gives an Irish perspective on the referendum, including a lovely takedown of a pointless opinion piece in the Telegraph. “By her own words, it took Melissa an hour to count eight votes. I’ll say no more on the subject.” (via)
The Grand Tour – A New Yorker journalist joins a group of Chinese tourists on a trip round Europe. (via)

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Worth reading

A new and irregular feature for this blog, as part of my drive for more content here, featuring things I’ve found interesting elsewhere. Or, shamelessly copying other people’s linkblogging idea, you decide.

Ten years of the ‘War on Terror’ - Jack of Kent on just how much ‘anti-terror’ has come to dominate our lives.
Reasons to be Cheerful – Charles Stross on ways the world has improved recently that you might not have noticed
New Year… New Money – Cicero’s Songs on the introduction of the Euro in Estonia, including the information that this is their ninth different currency in a century
What is the point of joining a political party? – Paul Sagar asks at Liberal Conspiracy, and poses some interesting questions. At the time of writing, the debate in the comments is still pretty interesting too.
Detroit in ruins – From the Observer, a collection of photos of abandoned and crumbling buildings in Detroit, looking somewhat like all our post-apocalyptic fictional futures breaking through into the present, like the mirror version of William Gibson’s The Gernsback Continuum.

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