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Category: Aside

Europe: Dirty Word?

Something noted by Judt, and now Kristoff notes more of the same.

London Calling

I haven’t been posting because I am going to London from 2 Feb to 12 Feb. A lot of trip planning to do!

“Privilege”

“Public service is not a sacrifice; it is not a burden or imposition. Public service should be a calling; it is an honour and a privilege.”

Now how many people in Singapore actually believe that, or is it as convenient a punch line as the statement it’s opposing?

Oxford!

I got my letter from Oxford today, admitting me to study PPE in the year 2013 at St. Hilda’s College!

How to be a dictator

A tutorial in dictatorship. I especially like these sentences; indeed, it makes more sense to look at how things work instead of throwing goodwill at hardcases: “It’s not possible to reform a system by imploring people to do the right thing. You have to know how it works. Dictators already know how to be dictators—they are very good at it. We want to point out how they do it so that it’s possible to think about reforms that can actually have meaningful consequences.”

Collaboration

From Postwar: “Accusations against women, for what French speaking cynics were already calling ‘collaboration horizontale’, were very common…and in more than one French novel of the 1940s collaborators are depicted as either women or weak (‘effeminate’) men, seduced by the masculine charms of their Teutonic rulers.”