If the US government had any capacity for self-reflection, this turning of the tables by Wikileaks might spark a feeling of identification with, and empathy for, its beleaguered citizens, whose Constitutional right to privacy it is currently violating with its airport pornoscanners and sexual assaults, by its warrantless reading and storage of emails, by its warrantless eavesdropping on, and recording of, phone calls, by its analysis and storage of every credit-card purchase, and by its stalking and storage of every click we make, and bit of information we post, on the internet.
Fate of the Cave Bear: The lumbering beasts coexisted with the first humans for tens of thousands of years and then died off. Why?
Hunters may have delivered fatal blow to mammoths.
Rehabilitating Cleopatra: Egypt’s ruler was more than the sum of the seductions that loom so large in history — and in Hollywood.
The Edison Curse: Thomas Alva Edison Junior could never get a break. Part one and part two.
The species seekers: The 18th century was a great age of discovery when a frontiersman mentality yielded scientific breakthroughs in natural history. Richard Conniff’s latest book, The Species Seekers: Heroes, Fools and the Mad Pursuit of Life on Earth is available at Amazon US & UK.
There’s a lot of chatter, for obvious reasons, about the Wikileaks document dump and whether or not it’s a dangerous and despicable act. My personal feeling is that any allegedly democratic government that is so hubristic that it will lie blatantly to the entire world in order to invade a country it has long wanted to invade probably needs a self-correcting mechanism. There are times when it’s necessary that the powerful be shown that there are checks on its behavior, particularly when the systems normally designed to do that are breaking down. Now is one of those times.