Eitai Bridge Skyline wallpaper and some news snips

Eitai Bridge Skyline wallpaper

Former MI6 chief says Britain was ‘dragged’ into Iraq war

Britain was “dragged into a war in Iraq which was always against out better judgment” the former deputy head of MI6 has claimed, in a remark that will reignite the debate over political interference in the war.”The Foreign Office no longer does foreign policy,” Mr Inkster said. “It acts as a platform for a multiplicity of UK departments and the lack of a clearly articulated sense of our strategic location in the world explains how we got dragged into a war with Iraq which was always against our better judgment.”

His views on Iraq, expressed for the first time in public, may also explain why he was passed over as the head of MI6 in favour of Sir John Scarlett, who took responsibility for the dossier during the Hutton inquiry into the death of Dr David Kelly.

Fits in with what is already known via the series of Downing Streey memos,

The two leaders [Bush and Blair] were worried by the lack of hard evidence that Saddam Hussein had broken UN resolutions, though privately they were convinced that he had. According to the memorandum, Mr Bush said: ˜The US was thinking of flying U2 reconnaissance aircraft with fighter cover over Iraq, painted in UN colours. If Saddam fired on them, he would be in breach.

On January 31 2003 – nearly two months before the invasion –  Mr Bush made it clear the US intended to invade whether or not there was a second UN resolution and even if UN inspectors found no evidence of a banned Iraqi weapons programme.

Freeman Dyson and the irresistible urge to be contrary about climate change

Of course, models have been tested against the real world (both today’s and eons ago’s) and many of Dyson’s other objections have been rebutted elsewhere. He also did not address the real world impacts already observed: ice melt, sea level rise, ocean acidification and more. His main concern seems to be that worrying about climate change distracts from more important problems such as poverty and infectious disease. Many might note that poverty (the inundation of Bangladesh) and infectious disease (improved conditions for transmission) are also problems exacerbated by climate change.

Dyson is getting rather old and I suspect that he’s just enjoying the attention some picking at some threads to generate controversy where there is a consensus. he even admitted in one speech he didn’t know much about climate science.

Justice Souter’s Jurisprudence

Equally persuasive, and pleasurable to read, is the series of dissenting views that Justice Souter has filed in so-called “federalism” cases, in which the Rehnquist Court crafted ex nihilo new constraints on Congress’s power under both the original constitutional and Reconstruction-era amendments to remedy state-level discrimination. In opinions alive to the travails of discrimination’s victims, Souter traces a convincing account of our national commitment against the subordination of others. In an era in which Justices can blandly claim to see no difference between Jim Crow and affirmative action, this lively awareness will be sorely missed.

Rather than cede the ground of “original meaning,” Justice Souter has filed persuasive accounts of constitutional origins to rebut the reductionist offerings of Justice Scalia in particular. In the school prayer case of Lee v. Weisman, Souter wrote a compelling rebuttal of Scalia’s account of the origins of the Religion Clause that will long merit study.