The Poetry of Revolution

Il est en ce moment dans une situation de puissance dont il n’apprécie pas l’importance stratégique. Tous les acteurs politiques et sociaux principaux se tournent vers lui, lui demandent de persister, se proposent de le protéger, se réclament de lui, retiennent leur souffle tous les vendredis pour voir s’il sera là. C’est extraordinaire cette découverte […]

Ugarit

The romance of the Bronze Age. In the early years of Ramesses III’s reign [around 1200 B.C.], worrying news began to reach Egypt from the pharaoh’s emissaries in the Near East. All along the eastern seaboard of the Mediterranean, cities were being sacked and torched, harbors burned and looted, entire nations laid low. While coastal […]

Solar Storms and Grand Strategy

Boeing’s continued use of pulleys to control its 737s, even the most recent generation, is some of the better news to emerge from the MCAS disaster so far. One wonders whether an excellent first-strike strategy would not be this: (1) unlike the rest of the world, engineer away from electrical solutions; (2) wait for a […]

The Streets Should Be Free. Let’s Decongest While Keeping Them That Way.

In her column on congestion pricing, Emily Badger exhibits the unquestioning acceptance of the legitimacy of the price system that lamentably characterizes so much work by progressives today. She argues that because driving has a cost, drivers should be asked to pay that cost through congestion pricing, and she suggests that our current system, in […]

A Tale of the Tail

Legal forms that were well adapted to a world in which wealth was zero sum, and borrowing against an estate could serve no purpose other than to carry out a slow transfer of it to others, were poorly adapted to a world in which wealth could be created, and borrowing against an estate could fund […]

Knowledge is Danger

At the end of Who We Are and How We Got Here, David Reich observes that genetic analysis of ancient DNA “has overwhelmingly had the effect of exploding stereotypes, undercutting prejudice, and highlighting the connections among peoples not previously known to be related.” This because the study of ancient DNA has revealed that most groups […]

Knowing and Wanting to Look

Matt Levine argues in opposition to my call for an advertising ban that Google is not a good substitute for advertising because it can’t help you find products you don’t know to look for. Wrong for three reasons, I think. First, there are lots of Google-discoverable websites devoted to informing you about things, including products […]