Oz Blog News Commentary

Articles from Club Troppo

Sex and war in Afghanistan

August 16, 2021 - 23:51 -- Admin

I visited Afghanistan only once, on a brief visit in 2014. I fell off a donkey to great hilarity of the local villagers, slept in a compound with the armed owner keeping watch the whole night, heard stories of how life was in Soviet times, and got a glimpse of why the Afghan problem was so intractable.

Time to Dissent

August 8, 2021 - 16:32 -- Admin

I have been fully vaccinated. I wear a mask. I believe that lockdowns drove the numebr of infections in Melbourne to zero. I scan the QR code whenever I have the chance. When I go to the supermarket, it is just me. Yet, I see many couples shopping and not being challenged by security. Most importantly, I keep the away from people on the street and at the market, which is really the only thing that matters.

Do lockdowns work in Europe?

July 28, 2021 - 22:56 -- Admin

Let us divide the countries in Europe that have at least 1 million inhabitants into three groups: the ones that had high movement restrictions in 2020, the ones with almost no restrictions, and the ones in between. The graph below gives you the punchline that countries with more restrictions had higher numbers of covid-deaths, but in order to discuss the many other implications, I need to explain how the graph was put together.

Unseen trends and the society we are becoming.

July 21, 2021 - 17:49 -- Admin

Societies are evolving and complex, which often makes it hard to see at any moment where things are going. It was thus with the move of Northern European countries towards democracy in the 19th century, which seems inevitable and clear in hindsight but blurred at the time by lots of other developments that have now been forgotten, such as an increase in Protestant fanaticism and an anti-technology (Luddite) movement.