Emily Crawford (Sydney): Territorial Jurisdiction and Statehood. Christopher J. Coyne (GMU) and Adam J. Pellillo (WVU): The Art of Seeing Like a State: State-Building in Afghanistan, the Congo, and Beyond. Sidney C. Turner (George Mason): Country Size, Institutions, and Trust: Some Evolutionary Evidence. Raghuram G. Rajan (Chicago): Failed States, Vicious Cycles, and a Proposal. Simone Florio (Granada): The Fragmentation of Geopolitical Space: What Secessionist Movements Mean to the Present-Day State System. David Gartner (Arizona State): Beyond the Monopoly of States. Hannibal Travis (FIU): On the Existence of National Identity Before "Imagined Communities": The Example of the Assyrians of Mesopotamia, Anatolia, and Persia. Brendan McSweeney (London): The Myth of Cultural Communion: Civilizations, Nations, and Ethnic Groups. Bloodlust: Russell Jacoby on why we should fear our neighbors more than strangers (and a response). Immanuel Wallerstein on self-determination of peoples: Which self? Nation-state or country-state: how do we discuss belonging in an age of fluidity? (and a response) Alternative to obsessive compulsive military might: Thomas Naylor on small nation neutrality. When a country as large as Tunisia is routinely called “tiny,” how then are we to refer to Lichtenstein, a state one thousand times smaller — "super-teeny-tiny"? Treating microstates as equivalent to ordinary countries wastes effort and leads to misleading comparisons. How to start your own country: Is Sealand better than Canada, do micronations have tiny fights? Filmmaker Jody Shapiro explains the weird world of DIY democracies. Who owns the world? The Queen, the family of the actress Nicole Kidman, King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia and the media tycoon Ted Turner are just some of the most powerful global landowners. Check out Territory and Justice, a research network.
Michal Barton (Palacky) and Pavel Mates (Western Bohemia): Public Versus Private Interest: Can the Boundaries Be Legally Defined? From Foreign Policy, a special series on Big Oil. Inside the drone missions to Fukushima: The Honeywell T-Hawk, an 18-pound flying machine, was used to explore the disaster site at Japan's devastated nuclear power plant. Melissa Harris-Perry on Cornel West v. Barack Obama. Italian-American food and the legacy of Chef Boyardee: America's long, rich legacy of red-sauce Italian cooking, from real-life food entrepreneur Hector Boiardi to Mario Batali. The Neurocritic on Simon Baron-Cohen, empathy, and the atrocities in Afghanistan. Rolf Potts interviews Paul Theroux, author of The Tao of Travel. Welfare-queen states: The red states plunge us into the slough of dependency. Dude, where's my magazine? They’re dudes, they’re editors — ladies and dudes, meet the Dude-itors. How does one explain the difference between poetry and prose? Vincent Czyz begins his essay on the subject by considering Ikea's arrival in New Rochelle, New York. Ramesh Ponnuru reviews Radical-in-Chief: Barack Obama and the Untold Story of American Socialism by Stanley Kurtz and The Roots of Obama’s Rage by Dinesh D’Souza. Stats geek Bill James applies his science to serial killers. An oral history of the Playboy Clubs: Bruce Handy hears from Hef, his execs, and a hutchful of former Bunnies about the rise and fall (and rise?) of the nightlife empire that spawned an all-American sex symbol. A review of Future Babble: Why Expert Predictions Fail and Why We Believe Them Anyway by Dan Gardner. Fear Itself: A one-in-a-million risk may not be imaginary, but it's pretty damned close to it. Bad Credit: Kai Wright on how payday lenders evade regulation. For collective fight against capitalism: An interview with Angela Davis, U.S. civil rights activist.
Out of Eden: Pre-modern lifestyles were fraught with violence, disease, and uncertainty — we should be happy that indigenous societies are increasingly leaving them behind (and a response). Is "civilization" an idea worth saving? (and more). Half a century ago, the WWF was formed to help save endangered animals; today, it’s human beings who are increasingly at risk, through overpopulation and food scarcity. The Library of Utility: Imagine a library atop a remote mountain that collects the essential information needed to re-learn practical knowledge essential to civilization, the cultural equivalent of the Svalbard seed bank, a vault on the Arctic Circle that holds frozen seeds of crop plants from around the world. From TED, Marcin Jakubowski on open-sourced blueprints for civilization. From h+, an interview with Steve Omohundro on the global brain, existential risks and the future of AGI. From IEET, Sascha Vongehr on global suicide: No Singularity, just evolution of deadly rationality. A review of The Final Summit: A Quest to Find the One Principle That Will Save Humanity by Andy Andrews. In case some kind soul hasn't informed you yet, the Rapture is fast approaching; according to Family Radio's Harold Camping, it's scheduled for May 21, 2011 (and more and more and more and more and more). The enduring appeal of the Apocalypse: Why are prophecies of doom so commonplace in human history? The answer lies in the brain's evolution. From Cracked, here are 7 horrible ways the universe can destroy us without warning. A review of Deep Future: The Next 100,000 Years of Life On Earth by Curt Stager. What will happen to us? Forecasters tackle the extremely deep future. If alien geologists were to visit our planet 10 million years from now, would they discern a distinct human fingerprint in Earth's accumulating layers of rock and sediment?