Friday links

17th century advice on how to encrypt and send secret messages.

Why We Divide the Day Into Seconds, Minutes, and Hours.

7 TV Characters Killed Off Out of Spite

The evacuation of Dunkirk by a flotilla of small boats, the inspiration for Churchill’s “We shall fight on the beaches…we shall never surrender” speech, took place between May 26 and June 4, 1940. 

How the Self-Esteem Craze Took Over America.

Becoming Bond: How a Car Salesman Landed the Role of James Bond 007.

ICYMI, Thursday’s links are here, and include Japan’s ninja shortage, who started the first fire, finding owners of Nazi-looted art, the 50th anniversary of the release of The Beatles’ Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band, and lots of goat-related links for Goat Trauma Awareness Month.

Most Popular


Romney Is a Misfit for America

Mitt’s back. The former governor of Massachusetts and occasional native son of Michigan has a new persona: Mr. Utah. He’s going to bring Utah conservatism to the whole Republican party and to the country at large. Wholesome, efficient, industrious, faithful. “Utah has a lot to teach the politicians in ... Read More

Fire the FBI Chief

American government is supposed to look and sound like George Washington. What it actually looks and sounds like is Henry Hill from Goodfellas: bad suit, hand out, intoning the eternal mantra: “F*** you, pay me.” American government mostly works by interposition, standing between us, the free people at ... Read More
Film & TV

Black Panther’s Circle of Hype

The Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) first infantilizes its audience, then banalizes it, and, finally, controls it through marketing. This commercial strategy, geared toward adolescents of all ages, resembles the Democratic party’s political manipulation of black Americans, targeting that audience through its ... Read More