Newsletter 863

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

Best of the Moment

Basketball Diaries, Afghanistan

Peretz Partensky | n+1 | 5 December 2012

Gorgeous long read. Triumphs and tragedies of young American coaching pickup basketball team in Jalalabad. Starts well. Team thrives, gets invited to tournament in Kabul. Then the problems start. Small ones first, lethal ones later Comments (

What Is Peace?

Margaret Paxson | Aeon | 5 December 2012

Why is it so usual to study war, and so rare to study peace? "Contemporary research that says it is about peace is really about conflict. It’s about resolving conflict, cleaning up after conflict, bringing aid in conflict settings" Comments (

The Debtor Prisoner's Dilemma

Harold James | Project Syndicate | 4 December 2012

Argentina thought it had got out from under huge debts by devaluing and defaulting, but a recent US court ruling favoured holdout creditors. It's a dramatic raising of the stakes. What happens when unpayable debts can't be erased? Comments (

How The North Dakota Fracking Boom Shook A Family

James William Gibson | Guardian | 4 December 2012

Many farmers and ranchers own only surface rights to their property, not subsurface mineral rights. So what happens when the oil prospectors turn up? On this account, there's little you can do to stop them ruining your life Comments (

Remains Of The Day

Matt Mendelsohn | Washingtonian | 28 November 2012

A husband who died. Another who turned out to be gay. And a wife who never imagined she'd be so happy. A wedding photographer sets out to learn what happened to the couples who hired him for their big day (h/t @longform) Comments (

Families In Flux

Bruce Bower | Science News | 29 November 2012

What we do and don't know about how different household arrangements are affecting children Comments (

FiveBooks Interview


Mary Warnock on Godless Morality

Which comes first, morality or religion? And what happens when religious dogma clashes with the morality it purports to uphold? The philosopher suggests some essential reading on the subject Read on (


American Prisons

An epidemic of incarceration. A prison system that provides neither retributive justice nor rehabilitation. Is this America's moral catastrophe? Read on (

Reader Recommendations

@polit2k (  Simon Johnson: The Real Fiscal Risks in the United States  -  #browsings (!/search?q=#browsings)  #gfc2 (!/search?q=#gfc2)   @baselinescene (
More like this (

Book of the Day

Book of the Day (

The Master Spy  by Phillip Knightley

Richard Beeston says ( : "The book describes Philby as an establishment figure who betrayed the West, who decided to go against his class and his upbringing for what he believed to be the best and impeccable motives."
FiveBooks Archive (

Video of the Day

Driving In Russia


Take care out there, people!
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Quote of the Day

Susan Sontag, on principles (

“Principles invite us to do something about the morass of contradictions in which we function morally”

More quotes (

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