Sunday, November 20, 2011

Six of the Best 203

"A major characteristic of the Great Recession is the way that chronic and long-term problems finally lead to an acute crisis. The public sector profligacy in Greece or the high debt position of Italy are the consequence of decades of policy mismanagement. The US deficit is the result of long term political deadlock, while in the UK and Ireland the roots of the crisis lie in an obsession with property, rather than production, as the key to wealth." Cicero's Songs says our economic sins have found us out.

Did Gladstone really chew each mouthful 100 times? Sandy Walkington investigates.

"If the national movement to “reform” public education through vouchers, charters and privatization has a laboratory, it is Florida. It was one of the first states to undertake a program of “virtual schools” - charters operated online, with teachers instructing students over the Internet - as well as one of the first to use vouchers to channel taxpayer money to charter schools run by for-profits." Writing for The Nation, Lee Fang examines developments in American education.

A Scottish Liberal marks the passing of Basil D'Oliveira and reminds us of the events of 1968 when his eventual inclusion in the England party led to the cancellation of the tour to South Africa and that country's exclusion from international sport.

Another cricketer who died recently was Peter Roebuck. Jon Hotten reconsiders his books for The Dabbler: "It Never Rains played a wholly different role. It was the first book I’d read that was equivocal about the game, that made it okay to feel ambiguous about something that dominated your life. It was self-aware, knowing, courageous in its way."

An Overgrown Path examines the links between folk music and far-right politics.

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