Daily catch-up: procrastination, open letters and unusual street names

From the weird world of the websphere, half a dozen curios and whimsies

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The Independent Online

1. Well, this photograph (above) amused me. “Procrastination level: expert.” From Dr K.

2. An open letter to Michael Rosen by Brit (Andrew Nixon) at The Dabbler.

“Dear Mr Rosen

“I wonder if you can help me. I’m on a quest, you see, and it seems to me that you might be just the man for the job. I’m trying to ascertain whether the Open Letter is the most irritating format for a newspaper opinion piece, and if so, what exactly it is that makes it so...”

Thanks to Gareth Williams. As I less elegantly put it to Neal “The Wrong People Are Voting Labour” Lawson, if you are thinking of writing an open letter, think of something else.

3. Hopi Sen has read a collection of “working-class” Tories’ essays so that you don’t have to. He spots a theme of poorly disguised contempt for their less successful fellow citizens, although Sajid Javid’s contribution escapes this. “Sajid’s article, which will surely form the basis of a leadership bid one day, should be required reading for those considering the future of the Conservative Party.”

In other news from the Not-the-People’s Party, Alex Massie reports on the latest heroic effort by the Conservative leadership to step up its campaign to lose the election.

4. First prize for missing the point yesterday was awarded to Paddy Ashdown, in The Independent, for his fascinating comparison of jihadist terrorism today to anarchist terrorism in the late 19th and early 20th centuries.

The lesson of this historical sweep, he argues, is that we should ignore any requests from the security forces for “more powers to tackle the threat”.

The point well and truly missed is not just the nature of the threat, but the changing technology of communications, which might possibly, as it did with the invention of the postage stamp and the telephone, require changes in the law governing intelligence-gathering.

5. Thank you to Lucinda Hawksley for drawing my attention to this street name in Norwich.




I immediately began compiling a Top 10 Street Names. Many outstanding nominations in reply to this tweet.

6. And finally, thanks to John Peters for this:

“Everywhere I look, I see confirmation bias.”