Ecuador: Voters Approve a New Constitution

CSM: “Ecuador votes to lock in its shift to the left” The overwhelming approval by Ecuadoreans of a new Constitution that gives leftist President Rafael Correa a tighter grip on the economy puts the country firmly on a socialist track similar to Hugo Chávez’s Venezuela. “Today Ecuador decided to found a new country,” Mr. Correa […]

61 Floors, the Hard Way: the Banyan Tree Vertical Marathon

Yesterday my friends S and J and I participated in the 10th annual Banyan Tree vertical marathon here in Bangkok. The rules of the contest were as follows: 1. Sprint up the stairs to the top of the 61-floor hotel. 2. Go as fast as you can. 3. There is no rule three. Just run! […]

American Friends Abroad: Vote Absentee

American friends who live abroad: don’t forget to register to vote or request an absentee ballot for the fast-approaching presidential election. Most states close registration in early Oct., and forms must be mailed in via snail mail. Go to the easy-to-use Federal Voting Assistance Program site for more info. (This PSA has been paid for […]

Subprime, the Credit Crisis, and Naked Short Selling

For an in-depth explanation of the subprime crisis — which has now, of course, led to the current chaos involving mortgage-backed securities — look no further than “The Giant Pool of Money.” That’s the name of a special, hour-long episode produced by This American Life and NPR News. The show aired back in May and […]

Incredible Photos from India

Don’t miss “Scenes from India,” from the Boston Globe’s exceptional photo blog. Number 19 — the pic of the Bengal tiger being returned to the wild — is one of my favorites. Number 24, the shot of the human pyramid, is also incredible. (My own meager attempts to make compelling photos in India can be […]

“Visitors from Another Planet”

Photos of tourists in Washington, DC during the 1980s. I love it. For so many reasons. (Via World Hum.)

Thailand Update: Samak Out, State of Emergency Lifted

It’s been less than a week since I last wrote about the protests here in Bangkok. A lot has happened since then. Prime Minister Samak Sundaravej has been forced from office. Thailand’s Constitutional Court found him guilty of breaking the law by continuing to host his TV cooking show. At first, Samak’s political party, the […]

Thai PM Quits (for now) Over Cooking Show

CNN: Thailand’s Constitutional Court ruled Tuesday that the country’s prime minister, Samak Sundaravej, should resign from his post for violating the constitution by hosting a TV cooking show while in office. Tuesday’s ruling against Sundaravej, who has faced weeks of violent street protests, also forces the resignation of his cabinet. Ministers are barred from working […]

What I’ve Been Reading

Okay. I’ll be writing more about the political situation here in Bangkok next week. But for now, let’s move on to this: Conundrums solved by MacGyver. North Korean agitprop. And dope raps about supercolliders. Here’s a list of some links that have caught my eye over the past fortnight. — Storyboard: a profile of a […]