Brian Micklethwait's Blog
In which I continue to seek part time employment as the ruler of the world.Home
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Most recent entries
- White Van Brians
- A Shiny Thing by Frank Stella Hon RA
- Richard J. Evans on how evidence can become more significant over time
- Another from the archives
- Big 4
- Another quota sign
- Magic clarified
- Viewing the clutter at Centre Point
- Giant cat head worn by a human
- BMdotcom abusive comment of the day
- Made-up London detectives in real London places
- Marc Morris on how the Bayeux Tapestry ought not to exist
- Fantastic day
- Another use for a drone
- London is getting more colourful
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6000 Miles from Civilisation
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Alex Ross: The Rest Is Noise
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Category archive: Latin America
Lexington Green, here:
What if … ?
What would a history of the British Empire look like if it did not use the “rise and fall” metaphor?
What would that history look like if it examined not just the political framework or just the superficial gilt and glitter, or just the cruelty and crimes, but the deeper and more enduring substance?
What if someone wrote a history of the impact of the English speaking people and their institutions (political, financial, professional, commercial, military, technical, scientific, cultural), and the infinitely complex web of interconnections between them, as a continuous and unbroken story, with a past a present … and a future?
In other words, what if we were to read a history that did not see a rising British Empire followed by a falling Empire, then a rising American Empire which displaced it, but an organism which has taken on many forms over many centuries, and on many continents, but is nonetheless a single life?
What if we assume that the British Empire was not something that ended, but that the Anglosphere, of which the Empire was one expression, is something that has never stopped growing and evolving, and taking on new institutional forms?
What if it looked at the unremitting advance, the pitiless onslaught, universal insinuation, of the English speakers on the rest of the world, seizing big chunks of it (North America, Australia), sloshing up into many parts of it and receding again (India, Nigeria, Malaya), carving permanent marks in the cultural landscape they left behind, all the while getting wealthier and more powerful and pushing the frontiers of science and technology and all the other forms of material progress?
What if jet travel and the Internet have at last conquered the tyranny of distance which the Empire Federationists of a century ago dreamed that steam and telegraph cables would conquer? What if they were just a century too early?
I recall musing along the same kind of lines myself, a while back.
The important thing is, this mustn’t be advertised first as a plan. If that happens, then all the people who are against the Anglosphere, and who prefer places like Spain and Venezuela and Cuba and Hell, will use their ownership of the Mainstream Media to Put A Stop to the plan. What needs to happen is for us to just do it, and then after about two decades of us having just done it, they’ll realise that it is a fate (as the Hellists will describe it) accompli.
Because, guess what, we probably are already doing it.
The other day, and as always with other days it does not matter which other day, I was walking across a road junction on a green pedestrian light, and then nearly got driven into by a cyclist who was ignoring red lights, who then shouted at me for not getting out of his way.
All of which made we want to show you this:
Drunk drivers. They do what you only want to do.
The former communist leader published an article in local press in which he said, “The State of Israel’s hatred towards the Palestinians is such that it would not hesitate to send 1.5 million men, women and children to the crematoriums in which millions of Jews of all ages were killed.”
It really is time this lying, tyrannical old bastard died, isn’t it? Sadly, it looks like being of natural causes and at a very advanced age.
I have long believed that if the only thing you know about something is that the Communists dislike it, then that is a seriously good reason for liking it. And yes, that is yet another link back to me. See below.
It sounds like a suitably madcap finale to a zany political season: the “winner-takes-all” Puerto Rican primary. A small Caribbean island ends up annointing the Democratic candidate for president by virtue of its 63-delegate bloc, even though Puerto Ricans don’t get to vote in the general election.
A lot of people seem to have been making noises like this lately:
… [T]he celebrations of Fidel Castro´s social achievements usually ignore that Cuba was highly developed before communism. Before 1959 Cuba had more doctors per capita than Britain, lower infant mortality than France and West Germany, more cars per capita than the Japanese and more television sets than West Europeans.
Did they all get it from Johan Norberg? Or is he merely passing on what he too has recently been hearing? Norberg supplies this link for those who want to know more. Me, I’m already convinced that Communism was silly.
It’s been a while since I’ve visited this blog. I particularly liked this bit of video dialog that I found there, between Michael Moore and John Stossel. Moore takes a group of American sickos to Cuba, to get some of that superior Cuban medical treatment.
Moore: “I asked them to give us the same exact care they give their fellow Cuban citizens, no more, no less. And that’s what they did.”
Stossel: “Do you really think that’s what they did?”
And yes, Cuba does indeed seem to have quite a low infant mortality rate, because any baby that looks like it will have problems gets aborted, and if it dies within only a few hours of being born, that doesn’t count.
There may have been a time in his ignorant youth when Moore really believed the kind of nonsense about Cuba that he serves up in Sicko (thanks for that link Garner), but I don’t think he believes it now. He sounds to me like he’s just going through the motions. I think he’s lucked into a gap in the market, for loony lefty drivel in the cinema fronted by a guy who looks like a regular Joe rather than a loony lefty, and he is now filling it, with very little concern for stuff like evidence or accurate quoting of his sources. He’s changing no mind that matters, merely massaging the minds of mental defectives. What he does now believe in is doing business.
With the departure of Rangel there was really no one left with enough stature in Chavez’s cabinet to be able to say ‘no’ even occasionally.
There’s a referendum coming up, which asks “Am I your undisbuted boss for ever?” But it will do the Chav little good even if he wins. If he does win it will merely be assumed that he used the powers he already has to fix the result in his favour. But if he loses he will lose huge.
Cuba’s rulers promised individual liberty. Instead they denied their citizens basic rights that the free world takes for granted. In Cuba it is illegal to change jobs, to change houses, to travel abroad, and to read books or magazines without the express approval of the state. It is against the law for more than three Cubans to meet without permission. Neighborhood Watch programs do not look out for criminals. Instead, they monitor their fellow citizens - keeping track of neighbors’ comings and goings, who visits them, and what radio stations they listen to. The sense of community and the simple trust between human beings is gone.
Cuba’s rulers promised an era of economic advancement. Instead they brought generations of economic misery. Many of the cars on the street pre-date the revolution - and some Cubans rely on horse carts for transportation. Housing for many ordinary Cubans is in very poor condition, while the ruling class lives in mansions. Clinics for ordinary Cubans suffer from chronic shortages in medicine and equipment. Many Cubans are forced to turn to the black market to feed their families. There are long lines for basic necessities - reminiscent of the Soviet bread lines of the last century. Meanwhile, the regime offers fully stocked food stores to foreign tourists, diplomats and businessmen in communism’s version of apartheid.
Cuba’s rulers promised freedom of the press. Instead they closed down private newspapers and radio and television stations. They’ve jailed and beaten journalists, raided their homes, and seized their paper, ink and fax machines. One Cuban journalist asked foreigners who visited him for one thing: a pen. Another uses shoe polish as ink as a typewriter ribbon.
Cuba’s rulers promised, “absolute respect for human rights.” Instead they offered Cubans rat-infested prisons and a police state. Hundreds are serving long prison sentences for political offenses such as the crime of “dangerousness” - as defined by the regime. Others have been jailed for the crime of “peaceful sedition” - which means whatever Cuban authorities decide it means.
Good stuff. I know, bad stuff really. But you don’t always get politicians talking this bluntly and vividly about nastily governed countries, and when they do, that is indeed good.
There are some weird verbal and grammatical oddities, though. “Shoe polish as ink as a typewriter ribbon”? All that alcohol in his youth? Maybe just a missprint.
Che Guevara was a murderer and your T-Shirt is not cool
Juan Bautista Alberdi
The (very) slow fade of Bolshevik Cuba
So what’s this about then?
Other people’s photos (6): More bridges
Not everything means anything
Latest Brian and Antoine mp3 - Middle East, Mexico, USA
Latest Brian and Antoine mp3 on democracy etc. - UK, Latin America, China
One for Global Guido to celebrate
Antoine gets Mexican election right
The latest Brian and Antoine elections around the world mp3
Latest Brian and Antoine elections around the world mp3
Brian and Antoine mp3s now into double figures