Department of "Huh?!": What Model Is Jeffrey Sachs Working in? Edition
Liveblogging World War II: June 8, 1940

links for 2010-06-07

  • "the 65m wide Darvaza gas crater. It used to be a modest Soviet mine shaft that collapsed into a cavern of gas... local engineers set the gas on on fire – it’s its been burning and lighting up the desert sky ever since. Even for an experience junkie a visit to the crater is difficult to adequately describe... a couple of hours driving through the relentless desert to reach from Ashgabat; it's a very large 65m x 20m hole; and it's on fire... you’re downwind of a massive bbq where your on the menu. Actually you are on the menu in more ways than one – sitting on the lip of the crater at night the ground is overrun with large, nibbling spiders. That and the guide’s extensive tattoo collection. Good to sleep under the stars after a nightcap of vodka and to catch a light sandstorm over the crater at dawn (above).... Visa applications to the Turkmenistan Ministry of the Interior please. Don’t hold your breath. Or do. Or whatever."
  • CD: "READ CAREFULLY. By reading this paragraph, you agree, on behalf of your employer and all others, to release me from all obligations and waivers arising from any and all NON-NEGOTIATED agreements, licenses, terms-of-service, shrinkwrap, clickwrap, browsewrap, confidentiality, non-disclosure, non-compete and acceptable use policies (”BOGUS AGREEMENTS”) that I have entered into with your employer, its partners, licensors, agents and assigns, or any other persons, in perpetuity, without prejudice to my ongoing rights and privileges. You further represent that you have the authority to release me from any BOGUS AGREEMENTS on behalf of your employer and all other persons."
  • RA: "If markets are scared about debt generally... America and Britain should be embracing... austerity. If markets are simply spooked about Europe, then America and Britain should be doing the opposite—boosting demand.... America and Britain do have real debt problems. .. there's no reason steps couldn't be taken now to put in place policies that will shrink future deficits. Credible plans should eliminate the possibility of crisis... (unless markets are sceptical that the governments will make good on their promises, but if they were they should be freaking out about American debt right now).... [I] would certainly be very wise for heavily indebted nations to be preparing concrete and credible paths to fiscal sustainability.... [But] leaders are reading a European political crisis as a generalised sovereign debt crisis.... Given the continued weakness in developed economies, this could be a huge and costly miscalculation."
  • MW: "The longer someone is submerged in what they and their organizations regard as traditional "straight" reporting, the more gruesome the results are when the gloves come off.... Straight reporters have been taught for six decades to submerge or even smother their political and philosophical views.... Whatever it is that you feel prevented from saying, you will be more likely to scream once given the chance.... Degradin... still further is the... journos haven't bothered to construct their own self-conscious political philosophy.... Show me the world's most intractable problems... and I'll show you reporters in bars having conversations worthy of the Alex Jones show.... [W]hen straight reporters transition to opinion journalism, one of the first things to go is the "journalism" part.... Now they can say what they really feel, dammit, and what they really feel is that the Bad Guys are preventing us from Fixing Problems. There's no longer any need to grok the Bad Guy's point of view."