The United States has only five percent of the world’s population, but somewhere between 35 and 50 percent of the world’s privately owned guns. Is it a surprise, then, that we have significantly higher rates of gun violence?
According to research published by the National Institutes of Health, homicide rates in the U.S. are 6.
In the early ’90s, the so-called “Iron Archives” of Russian political documents from the Cold War era opened up to historians, shedding light on the earliest days of Mao Zedong and Joseph Stalin’s diplomatic alliance.
But not all of the Russian documents were declassified at that time.
Bertrand Russell saw the history of civilization as being shaped by an unfortunate oscillation between two opposing evils: tyranny and anarchy, each of which contain the seed of the other. The best course for steering clear of either one, Russell maintained, is liberalism.[...]
Like the idea of totalitarianism, perhaps best articulated by Hannah Arendt in her post-war Origins of Totalitarianism, George Orwell’s post-war scrutiny of repressive governments has become a staple, catch-all reference for pundits on either side of the political spectrum, particularly the concepts of doublespeak, doublethink, historical revi[...]
In a terrific historical prank that sent Nazi Propaganda Minister Joseph Goebbels storming out of the screening room, British minister Charles A. Ridley edited together scenes from the film Triumph of the Will with the music from the musical Me and My Girl to create a spoof that infuriated leaders of the Third Reich.[...]
Even if you hate or fear statistics, you’ve surely become more than aware in recent months of one particular statistician: Nate Silver.[...]
Somehow this one slipped by me, and perhaps by you too. In recent weeks, Chinese dissident artist Ai Weiwei posted a video parodying Gangnam Style, the unexpectedly massive hit recorded by the South Korean rapper Psy. To date, the music video for Gangnam Style has been viewed 792 million times on YouTube. That has to be some kind of record.[...]
Worth a quick mention: Stanford’s Election 2012 course (previously mentioned here) wrapped up with a post-mortem. It starts with Steve Schmidt, a former John McCain and George W Bush advisor, giving a fairly blunt assessment of where the Republican Party stands right now. (The video above starts with his assessment.[...]
German poet, playwright, and theoretician, Bertolt Brecht—author of such famous works as The Threepenny Opera (1928) and Mother Courage and Her Children (1938)—was a committed Marxist who proposed a new theater to shatter what he saw as the comfortable middle-class conventions of both tragic and realist drama.[...]