Treasure hunt in the stacks

by Eszter Hargittai on November 6, 2003

Kieran has previously reported on all the fun one can have browsing the stacks in Firestone Library at Princeton. The library used to require that patrons sign their name when borrowing a book and Kieran managed to find the signatures of some famous people on the cards that had been left in some books. The system wasn’t so great about privacy, but it sure allows for an interesting glimpse into a book’s life.

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Dianne Abbott revisited

by Harry on November 6, 2003

An update on Dianne Abbott: her choice was the topic of this week’s The Moral Maze which you can hear on the web till next Tuesday. Worth a listen, even if you’re not particularly interested in the topic, for an insight into the workings (or otherwise) of the journalistic mind.

Incompetence in Iraq

by Chris Bertram on November 6, 2003

A few weeks ago I had a conversation with someone who was in a position to know the reality of what is happening inside Iraq. He painted a gloomy picture of poor preparation (or rather no preparation) for the period after the military defeat of the Iraqi army, of Iraqi attitudes ranging from entrepreneurial friendliness to outright hostility, and of a US army which may be good at warfighting but is utterly incompetent when it comes to peacekeeping. Max Hasting, veteran military correspondent and a man of decidely conservative political views has “a piece in the Spectator”:http://www.spectator.co.uk/article.php3?table=old&section=current&issue=2003-11-08&id=3697 which essentially corroborates this picture. Hastings reports that the British military are very angry indeed with the Bush administration.

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Ducking the question

by Henry on November 6, 2003

Peter Briffa, “leaping to the defence”:http://publicinterest.blogspot.com/2003_11_02_publicinterest_archive.html#106785076132375360 ^1^ of soon-to-be-anointed Tory leader, Michael Howard, offers us a revisionist interpretation of Jeremy Paxman’s infamous “skewering”:http://news.bbc.co.uk/olmedia/video/newsnight/howard.ram of Howard in a television interview. Paxman asked Howard fourteen times whether or not he’d instructed Derek Lewis, the head of the prison service to suspend the governor of Parkhurst prison; Howard refused fourteen times to give a straight answer. For Briffa, this is evidence of Howard’s basic honesty.

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