Newsletter 144


Hic sunt camelopardus: this historical edition of The Browser is presented for archaeological purposes; links and formatting may be broken.

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Writing Worth Reading

[2]Legal Highs: Chemists Outfox Law
    Links:
      2. http://b.rw/9JhVyd

Jeanne Whalen | WSJ | 30 October 2010

Eye-opening report on "laboratory-adept European entrepreneurs" who make and
  sell synthetic recreational drugs, such as mephedrone, Nopaine. When
  governments ban a particular drug, makers just change the formula

[3]The Marijuana Frontier
    Links:
      3. http://b.rw/bdGKcJ

John Gravois | Washington Monthly | 1 November 2010

Writer buys house in Mendocino County, California, finds two-thirds of local
  economy geared to marijuana. Food stores sell turkey-roasting bags by the
  case, because they're used to package pound-weights of cannabis

[4]A Machine For Recording Dreams
    Links:
      4. http://b.rw/9cUbon

Charlie Brooker | Guardian | 1 November 2010

Funny but persuasive. It won't stop there. "Your dreams will consist of a
  gigantic mouth shouting the words 'Diet Coke' over and over, until you wake
  up and reach for a Diet Coke without really understanding why"

[5]Straight Outta Comp 101
    Links:
      5. http://b.rw/cuYMsI

Sam Anderson | New York | 31 October 2010

Highly enjoyably. Language writer with no previous knowledge of rap plunges
  into new Yale anthology of rap lyrics "It feels like it was published,
  exclusively for me, by the vanity press of my own subconscious"

[6]The Clintons Told You So
    Links:
      6. http://b.rw/ah2x9G

John Heilemann | New York | 31 October 2010

What if Hillary had won presidency? Outcome would probably have been pretty
  similar. Same policy priorities. Right would have hated her just as much. On
  the upside, she'd have had Bill as strategist

[7]Loneliest Shop In The World
    Links:
      7. http://b.rw/a9yrNH

Mike Dash | Blast From The Past | 30 October 2010

Mulka Store, in Australian outback. Only shop in 70,000 square miles. Run by
  ex-policeman turned anthropologist. Fine stock of medieval armour. Best
  selection of duelling pistols outside Europe

[8]Twitter And The Dunbar Number
    Links:
      8. http://b.rw/912T32

Robert Paterson | Weblog | 31 October 2010

Group size crucial when it comes to getting humans to work together. It's a
  Fibonacci sequence: 8 for close team; 34 for compound group; 89 for tribe;
  144 as biggest possible unit regulated by mutual trust

[9]Holiday Spirits
    Links:
      9. http://b.rw/c0zyLw

Igor Galynker | Barnes & Noble Review | 1 November 2010

Russia doctor describes correct way to drink vodka. "If you have done
  everything right, you should be feeling tender warmth deep in your chest,
  spectacular tastes in your mouth, and no burning anywhere"

[10]Modern History Of Cancer
    Links:
      10. http://b.rw/bG62fq

Steven Shapin | New Yorker | 31 October 2010

Fight against cancer has taken central place in post-war Western medicine,
  as other killer diseases have become curable. No silver bullet. But getting
  closer to treating cancer as manageable, chronic illness

[11]Working In Wal-Mart Hell
    Links:
      11. http://b.rw/9D5B06

John Olympic | AlterNet | 29 October 2010

Blackly humourous account of worker playing avoid-the-customer. "I didn't
  used to, but that was before the guy who was looking for blenders in the
  garden section. Next time I'm cornered I'm trying, 'No hablo inglés'"

[12]
Ignoring Yemen At Our Peril
    Links:
      12. http://b.rw/dyhuuM

Gregory Johnsen | Foreign Policy | 31 October 2010

If you want to know where the sophisticated parcel bombs found on cargo
  planes in Britain and Dubai came from, you have to go back to 2006 when 23
  men tunnelled out of a maximum-security prison in Yemen

[13]
A Sane Debate On Drugs
    Links:
      13. http://b.rw/bGWmzA

Mary Ann Sieghart | Independent | 1 November 2010

Embracing cannabis legalisation would be good politics for Democrats, and
  good policy for America. Prohibition ties up police and prison system,
  exacerbates race relations, costs budget billions

[14]
The Western Myth Of Arab Men
    Links:
      14. http://b.rw/ckLNQj

Khaled Diab | Guardian | 30 October 2010

Arab men are often perceived through stereotypes. Not all are negative, such
  as reputed generosity, hospitality. But this bank clerk won no prizes: "We
  have a guy called Osama here, should I open an account for him?"

[15]Stimulating Debate
    Links:
      15. http://b.rw/azfxgZ

Tim Harford | Undercover Economist | 30 October 2010

Plain thoughts on economic stimulus. Sometimes, ramping up public spending
  will be right thing to do, but hardly possible to calibrate accurately.
  Economies change. Historic data of limited value

[16]Nudge The Vote
    Links:
      16. http://b.rw/ddi2NS

Sasha Issenberg | NYT | 29 October 2010

Behavioural scientists experiment on voters, find they don't respond well to
  robo-calls, excitable emails. Best way to get out the vote: peer pressure.
  Publish information on who's voting, who's not

[17]
Führer In The Making
    Links:
      17. http://b.rw/9pP1Tm

Norman Stone | WSJ | 30 October 2010

New biography "fundamentally alters our understanding" of Hitler. He didn't
  have a particularly traumatic time in First World War. His emergence as
  fascist demagogue in 1922 was more opportunism than ideology

[18]Carlos The Jackal's Missing Years
    Links:
      18. http://b.rw/a32oP4

Tony Paterson | Independent | 30 October 2010

Shredded Stasi documents show terrorist spent 1980s in East Germany, where
  the secret police gave him office space, cars, and a staff of 75, enabling
  him to carry out attacks in Germany and France
  [19]Topic: Legalising Cannabis
    Links:
      19. http://thebrowser.com/topics/legalising-cannabis

Arguments in favour: legalisation would be good for US budget, for health, for
civil liberties—and bad for organised crime in US and Mexico... [20]Continue
reading...
    Links:
      20. http://thebrowser.com/topics/legalising-cannabis

[21]Today on FiveBooks: Scott Turow on Legal Novels
    Links:
      21. http://fivebooks.com

About [22]The Browser: _Editor_, [23]Robert Cottrell; _Managing
  Partner_, [24]Al Breach. Please [25]write to us if you would like to make a
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