A DAY THAT WILL NOT LIVE IN INFAMY
Some years ago I wrote a piece mocking the use of the phrase “cyber Pearl Harbor” (or, “digital 9/11” for variation by cybersecurity hysterics, to the extent that that isn’t a redundancy). We’re still beset by the abuse of that term in relation to the SolarWinds hack apparently — which was, senator, no cyber Pearl Harbor. For a very different view, though, see Wired.
Fossil fuels aren’t just a key driver of climate change, but deadly for a host of other reasons as well. A holistic look at how many Americans die because of fossil fuels. Human extinction is an idea that has only been with us for a few hundred years, a new history of the concept shows. Journalists have a responsibility to declare a climate emergency if they’re going to remain consistent. And some charts on what COVID-19 did to airlines.
The wonderful Clinton Fernandes talks about Noam Chomsky. How neoconservatives are adapting their language to urge America to continue its foreign military adventurism. And just what exactly is our beef with China again?
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A new biography of the war criminal Kissinger demonstrates he was more a politics-focused tactician than any above-the-fray strategist. Iran’s murder of Ruhollah Zam should be a warning to those who want detente with that regime. Cam Doig on that great biographer of undersexed British men of post-war intelligence, John Le Carré.
THE CITY-SIZED STAR
If this kind of science doesn’t amaze you then I don’t know what will: through a combination of gravitational wave data and light, we can examine the internal composition of neutron stars. If you’re less than whelmed by that, barely more than five years ago, gravitational waves were still theoretical…
“It’s usually January that white blindfold think pieces around Invasion Day start, but this year they’re getting in early.” Celeste Liddle calls out the right’s rank hypocrisy over freedoms.
Gen X and work: how two key films explain a missing generational industrial relations narrative (normally I can’t stand reductionist takes like this, but this is very good). How offshore betting agencies made a motza from gullible Trump supporters. And a twist on It Came From Outer Space: anti-Semitism and UFO theories.
‘THE LAST MAN THAT SAID THAT TO ME WAS ARCHIE LEACH JUST A WEEK BEFORE HE CUT HIS THROAT’
There are two major new books on Cary Grant, which get the magisterial review treatment from film doyen David Thomson. Tanya Gold weighs in at the Spectator on them as well. Considerations of Hollywood’s most elusive, allusive superstar — and biggest LSD fan — are a dime a dozen, of course, but while Pauline Kael was never my cup of tea, her 1975 appreciation was quite something (though, for a rejoinder that she missed the point, see here).
This edition of Side View was delayed a week because this time seven days ago I had a cat at death’s door due to a paralysis tick, despite his being on anti-tick medication. If you live anywhere near bushland, don’t just give your pets tick medication but check them every day for ticks and rush them to a vet if they start limping, have breathing issues or have a change in voice. We didn’t put Monty’s symptoms together until it was nearly too late, but he’s now recovering thanks to some amazing veterinary work.
So here’s some quick footage of Monty, who loves catching hairties, in his prime, which we’re hoping he’ll be back to in the course of the summer. And I’ll see you again when Side View resumes in 2021. Have a great break.