The biggest game in town

by Daniel on December 24, 2013

I never really got round to writing a proper Christmas sermon this year, but given that it’s been kind of topical recently, I thought I might have a go at explaining one of the phenomena of online political debate which is as persistent as it is puzzling – that is to say, why does everything end up turning into a flamewar about Israel?

Consider, reader, a person who is a bit of a nut. His very favourite thing in the world is to have arguments on the internet about the politics and government systems countries he will never visit. There are two issues in the world which he regards as massive injustices which cry out to heaven for redress – the Russian occupation of Chechnya, and the military junta in Burma/Myanmar. He also, broadly, supports the cause of the Palestinians, but this really isn’t much of an issue for him; he’s much better informed and much more concerned about Chechnya and Burma.

So why, when the NSA takes a snoop over this fellow’s online output, does he seem to spend all of his time arguing about Israel and Palestine?
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Have An Uncanny Christmas!

by John Holbo on December 24, 2013

Might as well give away some copies of my silly old Haeckel spoof (PDF 19 megs or so.)