Nigeria, Smoking, Holodomor, National Enquirer, Gender

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

In Defense Of Nigerians

Ayo Sogunro | 11th June 2014

“I am corrupt because the alternative is dangerous. In the final analysis, the price of honesty outweighs the consequences of corruption. Because there is no safety net for the honest person. Because a banknote donated to the policeman is less cumbersome and less problematic than an honest trip to a police station. I am corrupt because corruption is a logical process, because integrity is unreasonable. I am corrupt because corruption is ordinary. I am corrupt because corruption works” (959 words)

Mr Throat And Me

Arnold Thomas Fanning | Longreads | 13th October 2017

A smoker writes: “The first cigarette of the day, there is a definite head rush, a clear hit of a high. The next one is merely a settling of accounts, a getting comfortable. Later, if there have been notable gaps between smokes, there is the relaxing cigarette that takes the edge off of absence. Cigarettes with beer, refreshing and frivolous; with wine, studied and reflective; with green tea, delicate and palatable. There are many sensations that come with smoking, and I love every one” (4,695 words)

How Stalin Hid Ukraine’s Famine

Anne Applebaum | Atlantic | 13th October 2017

The Western press in the Moscow of the early 1930s knew that Stalin was starving Ukraine to death, but suppressed the news for fear of damaging their own privileged relations with Soviet officials. Walter Duranty of the New York Times was the worst offender. “Russians Hungry But Not Starving”, he wrote. And yet, as Duranty well knew, and admitted in private conversation, “it quite possible that as many as 10 million people may have died directly or indirectly from lack of food” (3,100 words)

The Tabloid Triangle

Popbitch | 13th October 2017

First part of a history of the National Enquirer. Interesting throughout. William Randolph Hearst put up the money to found the paper in the 1920s, but it went nowhere until it was taken over in 1952 by Generoso Pope Junior, an MIT graduate and CIA alumnus, with help from Roy Cohn and Frank Costello. “There’s a reason that Gene Pope ran the Enquirer like a Mafia don, and it’s probably helpful to know why — so let’s jump back a generation quickly and meet Gene’s father” (3,800 words)

Male Dominance

Peta Henderson & Stephanie Coontz | Verso | 13th October 2017

The dominance of men over women has come to seem like a fact of life. But was it always so, and was it necessarily the case? Brute force alone is not an answer. “Western history testifies that the strongest workers and best warriors often serve the dominant members of society, who may be physically very weak”. The defining feature seems to be motherhood. Biology makes women “society’s source of new members”. But does that lead inevitably to submissiveness, and, if so, why? (16,400 words)

Video of the day: A Night At The Garden

What to expect:

Documentary footage of a pro-Nazi rally of 22,000 New Yorkers at Madison Square Gardens in 1939 (7’05”)

Thought for the day

Impartiality is a pompous name for indifference
G.K. Chesterton

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