The economics and politics of instability, empire, and energy, with a focus on Latin America and the Caribbean, plus other random blather and my wonderful wonderful wife. And I’d like a cigar right now.
I clearly need a new tag. What should it be? “Pirates” is too specific for my taste. “Failed states” is a possibility, but seems a bit, well, anodyne given the rather horrible reality of just what happens when a state fails in the modern world. “Empire” is another, but might be too ... whatever the opposite of anodyne is. I'm looking for a short pithy one or two-word phrase that covers places and situations in which the writ of the local state does not apply (or at the very least is not the sole source of authority) and in which other states or institutions might have to substitute for the local government. Ideas? Reasons to pick either “failed states” or “empire”? C'mon, help me out.
Returning to the topic of the day, in theory there is a way to make policing the sea lanes leading to the Suez Canal much easier. For reasons which I do not yet fully understand (help?) the Suez Canal authority organizes transits in three daily convoys. The implication is that, in theory, such convoys could be organized not at the Canal entrance, but at some point in the Indian Ocean. Naval vessels could then shadow the three daily convoys. This would require far fewer ships than the impossible 180-vessel armada.
The organizational details, however, seem rather daunting. Still, it might be possible for an enterprising contractor to organize convoys around their protective vessels. It would be more expensive than simply hiring out a security vessel, because the convoys would need to be managed, but it would allow the security firm to enjoy economies of scale from the point of view of the companies that hired its services: the more clients, the less cost-per-client.
The Typepad editor crashes when I try to edit after having uploaded a picture. The Typepad editor crashes when I try to insert a fold. The Typepad editor, in short, is terrible. As a paying customer of Typepad, this has me somewhere between angry and furious.
Regular blogging will resume when the problem is fixed. Perhaps in an hour, perhaps never. Has anyone else had these difficulties?
This is weird. I could have sworn that I had a post up here where I discussed Charlie Stross and science fiction. But I can't find it. It's gone, pffft. Anyone out there who can help me figure out where and how I misplaced an entire post?
I just changed the name of this blog. Why? Well, three reasons. First, the original name, while cute, didn't really capture what I mostly write about. Which is, well, power and money, with the occasional digression into other stuff.
Third, it's punchier. (Sadly, I seem to have lost my Caribbean readers in the switch from the Muirs' blog.) I suppose I like punchy titles.
In related news, I switched the font size down one level. Is it now too small? Typepad doesn't seem to offer much of a range of choices in that regard, and the old font seemed a bit big. But I'd be happy to switch it back: the idea is to be reader-friendly.
Once we figure out the easiest way to port over my existing posts, I'll be leaving HDTD for another space on the internet, turning this place back over to its rightful owners. I'm sure my new spot will soon become the hot go-to spot for Caribbean politics, early-nineties hip-hop, and random photographs. Plus, pirates!
Of course, it needs a name. "Pure Product of America" is taken by an excellent blog that y'all should go over and start reading regularly. (Go! Now!) Which leaves me at a loss, because while I'm sure that my posts have a pattern, I'm too close to see it, let alone come up with a pithily descriptive phrase. "Orgulloso de ser argentino" would work, except I'm not. (Argentino.) "Shwingalokate" is one of the best tracks ever, but seems a bit too random. I'd love to do "Radio Free Brooklyn," only I'm, like, not in Brooklyn any more, and "Radio Free Boston" just sounds wrong. Which leaves me with "Notes from the Gabacho," or perhaps "Notes from teh Gabacho." The problems with that one are obvious.
"The Power and the Money"? Too serious. "A Wee Bit Down the Charles"? Derivative. "Econ Dub Style"? "Mexican Pie"? "Yeah, We Did Start the F@#&in' Fire"? "Rico Suave"?
Quality Control ... Debout là d'dans ! ... Con Todo Respeto ... Lo Que Sea?