Tyrants In The Palm Of Your Hand & Links to Links to Links

Theodore Dalrymple at Takimag.com: ‘From Sir, With Love.’

‘I have always liked banknotes as physical artefacts, and have kept one or two from the foreign countries that I have visited (I am not so much a collector as an accumulator). There was displayed in the window what was called “The Tyrant Collection”: six colorful banknotes marked with the portraits of various tyrants’

A surprising amount can be contained in a banknote collection.

‘Among the other lessons I learnt from banknotes is that, in modern times, only communist countries count in threes. Thus I have a Cuban three peso note (with the ghastly Che Guevara on it) and an Albenian three lek note. This in turn demonstrates that the spread of communism was also the spread of Russian cultural influence, for while the Soviet Union printed 3 Ruble notes, this was a continuation of Tsarist practice.’
Tyler Cowen has some links on Gary Becker’s passing, including this quote from Kieran Healy on Foucault on Becker:
The shifts in focus Foucault picks out here, and the concepts and methods that accompanied them, are why Becker’s influence has been so enormous, why his work has been the straw man in so many social science articles, why his methods allow for such broad application, why the imagery of choice and responsibility that so often accompanies them has proved so politically attractive, why the world is now full of economists who feel empowered to dispense advice on everything from childrearing to global climate change, and why the audience for this advice is so large.’
A final note:  I’ve got a title worked-out for an upcoming Dan Brown-esque Vatican City intrigue Catho-holic mystery/thriller for any takers:  “The Bergoglio Imbroglio:  Papal Fire
I’d like to see it in airport bookstores by the end of the year.
Another Addition: That’s a joke.
Also, check out Les Gelb at the American Interests on what Obama needs to change (note: he’s ideologically rather rigid and rather thin-skinned when it comes to genuine challenges and contrary points of view):
‘To his credit, he questions his subordinates with great intellectual ferocity and skill. Rarely, however, does he allow his own thinking or policies, some already packaged for public consumption, to be rigorously scrutinized beforehand. Even after a productive meeting of top senior officials in the Situation Room, President Obama is said to repair to the Oval Office with a limited group of personal advisers’

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