Recommended Reading (2010-04-18) – SUNDAY Edition

The Chain Bridge; Budapest, Hungary; March 21, 2010.

Kings of War unearths a 1940 BBC recording that provides proof of the British stiff upper lip.

– Christopher Hitchens re-reads Animal Farm and realizes what Orwell left out (via The Arabist):

There is, however, one very salient omission. There is a Stalin pig and a Trotsky pig, but no Lenin pig. Similarly, in Nineteen Eighty-Four we find only a Big Brother Stalin and an Emmanuel Goldstein Trotsky. Nobody appears to have pointed this out at the time (and if I may say so, nobody but myself has done so since; it took me years to notice what was staring me in the face).

– Daniel Gross explains why the U.S. will have a bigger, better recovery from the Great Recession than a) everyone assumes and b) everyone else.

– Obama v. Roberts: the struggle to come.

– John Robb on societal collapse:

…Complex societies, over time, develop a yawning mismatch between the local and the general.  More formally:

The need for evolutionary advances at the local level will always outstrip the pace of evolutionary change at the center.  When the mismatch grows too large, the entire system collapses [emphasis in original].

– Al Sahwa considers the ‘active shooter scenario‘ (think Columbine, the Fort Hood shooter, etc.) as part of their series on emerging threats.

– A great new photoblog out of Tokyo (and other destinations across Japan).

– Richard Archer offers a new take on the Boston Massacre:

Historians and other interpreters of the massacre, however, have ignored or avoided the question of intent. They haven’t investigated whether the soldiers fired purposefully at particular persons. Their accounts create the impression of the troops shooting mindlessly and arbitrarily at an undifferentiated mass of humanity.

Yet a closer examination suggests a new possibility — a possibility that tips the scales towards military culpability. Some of the soldiers got away with murder.

– Frank Furedi examines the electoral success of Jobbik in Hungary and proclaims ‘zombie politics‘ once again ascendant.