April 14th, 2010

[BLOG] Some Wednesday links

It's that time of the week again.

  • Bad Astronomy observes that there seems to be evidence that there can be liquid water on the Martian surface for at least a few minutes, as has long been suspected, and observes that recent observations suggesting that many hot Jupiter planets--massive but closely-orbiting planets--orbit their sun in the direction opposite to their star's rotation have surprised a lot of people.

  • Centauri Dreams suggests that the above-cited observations of hot Jupiters makes it unlikely that planetary systems with close-orbiting gas giants have worlds as potentially Earth-like as even Mars, never mind Earth.

  • Crooked Timber is one blog among many reacting to a misbegotten libertarian's assertion that American women were freer in 1880 than now, reacting again to a reply by the libertarian that begins by discounting the concept of martial rape.

  • What makes a country? Edward Lucas writes about the difficulties facing polities that don't quite enjoy general recognition as independent states.

  • Far Outliers makes the point that the emergent middle classes of the Muslim world aren't starting their rise through the socioeconomic ranks by becoming more secular, if anything the contrary.

  • Geocurrents' Martin Lewis blogs about the Kerguelens, a desolate French-owned archipelago in the Southern Ocean.

  • Lawyers, Guns, and Money's Robert Farley doesn't think it at all likely that the United Kingdom and France will set up a joint submarine nuclear deterrent, for reasons of national prestige as much for logistics.

  • Marginal Revolution suggests on the basis of a new study that Internet users aren't nearly as divided into rival political camps as some fear.

  • Torontoist reveals that the Toronto Blue Jays baseball team had branded products in many Toronto-area stores a couple of decades ago.

  • The Volokh Conspiracy takes a look at the problems posed by the adoption of UAV technology--unmanned, but armed, aerial probes--outside of the United States for the law of war.

[OBSCURA] Jussi Jalonen from Warsaw on Katyn

Over at his blog, frequent commenter jussi_jalonen snapped some picture sof the scene in Warsaw this weekend past, as Poles reacted to the Saturday plane crash that killed Polish president Lech Kacynszki along with 95 others outside the Russian city of Smolensk as they traveled to mourn the tens fo thousands of Poles massacred seventy years ago in the Katyn forest. He took some striking pictures for his photopost "Vigilia", one of which I've reproduced below with his permission.

Go to his blog post to see the rest.