Liberty & Power: Group Blog
"It is striking that Blair has desperately tried to invent a quirky addiction. His so-called ‘drinking problem’ was no such thing; a whiskey before dinner and a couple of glasses of wine after is perfectly normal behaviour. Yet Blair instinctively recognises that having a personal weakness, in this case a penchant for booze, is a great selling point in our ‘look at my emotional wounds!’ era. I prefer that drunk Winston Churchill’s attitude to booze over Blair’s phoney alcoholism: ‘Alcohol may be man’s worst enemy, but the Bible says love your enemy.’"
"Even serious issues like Iraq are now understood entirely through the prism of the personal. In the most ‘emotional chapter’, Blair defends his decision to invade on the basis that it ‘felt’ like the right thing to do. . . . And what is the media’s reaction to this self-pity? To demand that Blair publicly apologise for the war, to help bring about some ‘closure’. In short, far from critiquing his emotional self-exposure, they demand more of it, . . . Like Blair, they’re so vain they think the war in Iraq is about them and their emotional state of mind."
And if you're curious to know what's in Blair's 624-page book but your time is limited, you might wish to read John Crace's digested read.
"Mr Roberts has a dry wit and hostly politeness and gives his interviewees more space than they would get on any broadcast outlet. Both presenter and most guests come from various points to the right of the political spectrum and their arguments are sometimes – how shall we say this? – barmy, being far too trusting of free markets. But with EconTalk it is the journey that counts – and Mr Roberts lets the arguments unfurl at just the right pace for both non-specialists and economists. He shows listeners how economics approaches questions differently from other disciplines. And at the end of an hour, the dismal science doesn't seem so bad after all, but a fun and useful set of tools to approach some of society's biggest questions."
"The Iraq war will be seen by history as a catastrophe that did more than anything else to alienate Atlantic powers from the rest of the world and disqualify them as global policemen. It was a wild overreaction by a paranoid, overmilitarised American state to a single spectacular, but inconsequential, act of terrorism on 9/11. As such it illustrated how little international relations have advanced since the shooting of Archduke Ferdinand in Sarajevo. Its exponents are still blinded by incident."
And yet some libertarians tell us it was all worth it!