You! Drop what you’re doing and read Chris Mooney’s critique of George Will’s hissy little column on “global cooling.” Mooney’s article is everything that op-ed writing ought to be: polite, well-reasoned, utterly devastating. I wish that all writers cared so much about explaining the problems of reliable knowledge that subtend superficial and overheated policy disputes.
Cleopatra had her sister Arsinoe murdered on the steps of the temple of Diana in 41 BC. Have we found her skeleton? Mary Beard is skeptical. Rogue Classicist is waiting for the mitochondrial DNA, obviously.
“Repudiate the literary judgment of Aunt Hepsy?” Natalia Cecire on Ezra Pound and his notion to model the history of poetry on the history of science.
“The trouble with living on two dollars a day is that you don’t actually get two dollars a day:” Tim Hartford explains fascinating new findings on microcredit and the actual lives of the people who use it.
Basic (8 letters) = Alkaline. Get it? Watch Tyler Hinman win the American Crossword Puzzle Tournament.
“Thinking outside of the box – Why use at all?” In Britain, the Local Government Association publishes a list of fancy words that do not successfully communicate. Also see John McIntyre’s comments on the futility of such efforts.
And: where does aesthetic taste really come from, Denis Dutton? The Pleistocene.