WHITE TERRORISM

After El Paso, read the right-wing National Review on “the fruit of a murderous and resurgent ideology — white supremacy — that deserves to be treated by the authorities in the same manner as has been the threat posed by militant Islam”. Further reading: Mehdi Hasan on Trump’s role in white supremacist terrorism and an explainer on the role of the cesspit that is 8chan (well, cesspit is generous, but this is a family column) and its role in fostering fascist terrorism.

The American Conservative has a superb piece on the amnesia of Democrats about the roles of Joe Biden and Robert Mueller in the Iraq War lie: “As families mourn their children, babies are born with irreversible deformities, and veterans dread trying to sleep through the night, America’s political class, many of whom sold the war to the public, have moved on”. A new book argues American political culture automatically accords legitimacy to Republicans when liberal values are in fact the country’s foundation. Meanwhile, a distracted United Kingdom was tricked by the US and outwitted by Iran on Gulf shipping

WE’LL ALWAYS HAVE Париж

The Soviets loved Western culture, and especially Paris. Well, their idea of Paris. More from the city of love: getting off on the right foot, or re-examining Rodin’s most well-known work.

I’ve always been mystified by the fondness with which the work of the anti-Semite G.K. Chesterton is held. Now his racism has helped stymie an inexplicable push for his canonisation. Maybe read Rachel Kaadzi Ghansah’s 2015 profile of the late Toni Morrison instead.

Blow for equality or attack on Muslims? India has just outlawed instant divorce. And I love a good copyright yarn: Liverpool Football Club wants to trademark a fan chant.

ROTTEN POLICY

South Korea has a massive problem with suicide — and it has an even lower birth rate than Japan. Read all about a society collectively and individually destroying itself.

Elsewhere, climate change has played havoc with Houston’s already appalling criminal justice system and what passes for its infrastructure. Racism in Japan is not trivial, and not just forgivable naiveté. Don’t be a ding-dong: Amazon and US police join forces to get householders to subvert their own privacy. And no biggie, but July was the hottest month ever — so next time someone says to you “but the climate has always changed”, point out that that’s right, and it usually caused misery and civilisational collapse.

STAT OF THE WEEK

While anti-alcohol lobbying groups like the publicly funded nanny statists at FARE continue to insist Australia is in the grip of some kind of alcohol epidemic, the data relentlessly expose their claims. The latest research from the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (AIHW) shows Australians are drinking less, and the number of Australians who don’t drink at all is rising… which is bad news if you base your entire career on arguing the opposite.

Also from the AIHW: the level of social housing in Australia is falling (the guilty parties are, as I reported in Crikey, Labor governments in NSW and Victoria).

THE BODY IN QUESTION

“Gender reveal” parties are another item on my rapidly growing list of things that convince me I no longer understand modern society. Thus, I enjoyed this piece on the existential stupidity of gender reveal videos, and why we love seeing them go wrong.

Something much more important: the US approach to fighting cancer is failing, and prior success may have been mainly tobacco-related. Also: is sport suffering from millennial burnout as sports grow ever more professional?

It took me seven, mostly part-time, years to finish my PhD and I came close to quitting more than once. Ultimately I stuck at it because *Nixon voice* I’m not a quitter. Some people know better, though, and bail out. When is it OK to abandon your doctorate? If you are stressed out and thinking about quitting, maybe this video of pills dissolving will make you feel better.

AND FINALLY

On to more serious matters: how a revolutionary American toilet conquered Japan.

Peter Fray

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