Links, 9/25/10

  • Spencer Ackerman, “CIA Snitches are Pakistan Drone-Spotters” (h/t Josh) – from the article: While U.S. officials describe the CIA’s Afghans as “one of the best Afghan fighting forces,” others aren’t so convinced. Author and Afghanistan traveler Robert Young Pelton crossed paths with them. “I did some advising on local militias (called Arbakai) and the Agency big footed us with their version, which is essentially to hire the least trustworthy, least liked and most brutal groups,” Pelton says in an email. “I think CIA paramilitary Billy Waugh described them to me as ‘No good cheating shitheads’ in my book.”
  • Jay Cost, “Goodbye to the Clinton Majority, Those Lucky Dems, and More!” – from the article: Those upscale, socially moderate, fiscally conservative suburban voters in the wealthier cities are fleeing the Democratic coalition. That is an essential part of the story of how Deeds was gobsmacked in Virginia last year, why Kirsten Gillibrand in New York has a fight on her hands (and according to SurveyUSA trails by twelve points in the NYC suburbs!), why Joe Sestak in Pennsylvania is so far behind, and why Patrick Murphy is down by a baker’s-dozen-plus-one in independent polling.  And if this pattern does indeed hold in the big urban centers in the East, it should also manifest itself in the Chicago suburbs, and be enough to make Mark Kirk the next senator from Illinois.
  • “Philosophy under fire” (BBC) – from the article: You might imagine that a podcast in which philosophers talk to a philosopher about philosophy would be a minority interest. But Philosophy Bites, a podcast based on exactly that premise, is proving surprisingly popular – it has now been downloaded nearly eight million times and has made it into the top 20 podcasts in the United States.
  • “Once in Royal David’s City,” performed by the Choir of King’s College, Cambridge – yeah, I’m in a Christmas mood, in September.

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