Open newslist 8

There has been a disturbing lack of content here lately. Let’s have an open newslist to fix that.

Some ideas: That Android vs Symbian post. That #Savileweek post about him as the first postmodern celebrity (will include pictures). A technical look back at the phone-hacking scandal, because I think there is at least one big issue that has submerged.

But this is stuff I’ve had on a back burner for some time. Ideas?

11 Comments on "Open newslist 8"


  1. The prospects for surveillance-containment policies and proposals for civic and/or party initiatives in Britain. Remember your anti-Cameron post – picturing him as an outlier – right before Obama came out with the same encryption-backdoor notion? This issue should be a top priority – and I don’t hear or read much that could be characterized as reassuring. (Big topic, I know. May take time.)
    Especially frightening: the sheer idiocy of Oettinger in Brussels. The pirates have their little cottage industry going and Glyn Moody sort of serves as their inofficial PR agency, but I fear some of our PMs, presidents and chancellors in Europe may just ask Stalin’s question re: the Vatican and forge ahead anyway. What can we do other than to declare – as Charlie Stross did – that criminalization will not deter us? Or maybe Charlie is exactly right about this and – assuming the backdoor proposal is put before Parliament – we should campaign on social media and in newspapers the way the abortion legalization movement once did?
    (Another data point is the tech industry’s “Blue ribbon”-campaign back in the 90s.)

    (The Android vs. Symbian-thing would also be interesting, though.)

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  2. – Phone hacking is news again with the Mirror stuff, so that’s something.
    – You are probably the leading blogger on Savile, so always appreciate that, although I also appreciate that it may not be fun to do.
    – Android v Symbian… sure, tech is always interesting to me.

    Something about Greece might be good. After all, you can’t always leave it to DD and just comment to point out his dodgy assumptions…

    FCFT has been on the age/generation/money gap. I think there’s a regional analysis to be added, perhaps.

    RFL vs E(W)CB?

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    1. Labour are sure trying hard to disguise any reasons for left of centre voters to support them and trumpet Daily Mail positions instead. Their buy-in to the “war on motorists” myth is the red line for me (although, living in a safe Tory seat, my vote is near worthless anyway).

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  3. Your review of that Langewiesche essay on AF447 if it’s ready yet, please (the last part of that essay, albeit necessarily speculative, about the copilot’s final thoughts, was just heartbreaking)

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  4. Did you finish reviewing the various books by military bods about the Iraq and Afghanistan invasions? Do you have any more thoughts?

    There was something on Open Democracy a few days ago that echoed some of your thoughts about the failure of anyone to accept any responsibility: every decision was taken by somebody else who has just left !

    https://www.opendemocracy.net/ourkingdom/janet-harris/misdirection-at-chilcot-inquiry

    I was staggered, though, by some of the things in this review by Robert Fox in the world today.

    http://www.chathamhouse.org/publication/review-senior-officers%E2%80%99-mess-iraq-and-afghanistan

    For example, this. “The campaigns in Iraq and Afghanistan were planned to be short and sharp.”

    Did the military really think that there would be only a very short occupation of both countries? Do they really think that it is possible to put in a new regime like changing a light bulb? Is this the basic problem behind all this buck-passing: no-one realised there would be a long occupation? Why did they think that? Did the military make that assumption or did someone else make that assumption and assure the military that the campaigns would be short and sharp?

    What was in the books you read?

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  5. You’re alive! I thought you had given up on the blog. In that case more Savile please, can’t get enough of that horrorshow

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  6. Android vs Symbian.
    In the wider context
    a) does it matter for Britain / Europe that all the major operating systems (putting aside Linux as the common heritage of mankind or whatever) come from the West coast of America?
    b) why are there no large British non-services software companies? Old Rectory syndrome or what?
    c) Could Quantel have been Adobe?

    If we are going to have city regions what do we do with non-cities? Otherwise known as ‘how do we prevent combined authorities being a ludicrous carve up of the map?’

    Would you rather fight a Nigel Farage sized badger or 10 badger sized Nigel Farages? Show your working.

    Savile is of course interesting. One of the most intriguing bits of the book was the bizarre double life i.e. invalid and cyclist. Was he a Bevin Boy at all?

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    1. He was a Bevin Boy, but more or less everything he subsequently said about that period of his life was a lie.

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  7. I think at this point a post on the whole Cyril Smith/elm guest house story/cover up would be more interesting than Savile, especially with the purported invocation of the Official Secrets Act and use of D-Notices.

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