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Duesseldorf, Germany
Recent Activity
Another reason air-conditioning is a blessing: A new study just released by the National Bureau for Economic Research [argues]that it is warmer temperatures that may be the real economic cost [of global warming]. The paper, by Tatyana Deryugina of the... Continue reading
Posted yesterday at German Joys
The Final Episode Of Serial from Funny Or Die If you haven't been following 'Serial', the podast from Chicago Public Radio, you should. It's like nothing you've ever heard before. Go to the podcast website and listen to the episodes... Continue reading
Posted yesterday at German Joys
I found this notecard on the sidewalk a few weeks ago and have been puzzling over it ever since. I recognize a few words in the body and the sentence at the end ("Alles nur eine Frage der Form?") but... Continue reading
Posted 3 days ago at German Joys
So, the comments are in (thanks!), and the consensus seems to be that there's no special focus on campus sexual assault in Germany because (1) Most German universities don't have traditional campuses or an insular 'campus culture' like American universities;... Continue reading
Posted 4 days ago at German Joys
There's been a recent increase in odd political messages being posted in the halls the university. I presume these folks are attempting to reach the 'leaders of tomorrow' and may not be aware of the Internets. In the name of... Continue reading
Posted 7 days ago at German Joys
Given my interest in public opinion and constitutional law, I've been following the so-called University of Virginia rape story with considerable interest. Briefly put, here's what happened: On November 19, the US pop-culture magazine Rolling Stone publishes an explosive story... Continue reading
Posted 7 days ago at German Joys
A little blatant self-promotion here. Katharine Whittemore in the Boston Globe just began a round-up of seven books about capital punishment and life sentences with this punchy, but essentially accurate, abstract of my book's argument: Why has Europe ended the... Continue reading
Posted Dec 7, 2014 at German Joys
One of my favorite podcasts is Chicago Public Radio's Love and Radio, and it's things like this interview with Mathias Rust (in English) that have earned my love. Continue reading
Posted Dec 6, 2014 at German Joys
"What most people call conscience is one-fifth fear of others, one-fifth fear of gods and idols, one-fifth prejudice, one-fifth vanity, and one-fifth habit." -- Arthur Schophenhauer, On the Basis of Morality, § 13 (my very loose translation). Continue reading
Posted Dec 2, 2014 at German Joys
The New York Times looks at art seizures by the Stasi: Between 1973 and 1989 the East German police, known as the Stasi, seized more than 200,000 objects in hundreds of raids, according to experts and official archives. As part... Continue reading
Posted Nov 28, 2014 at German Joys
Language learner mistakes: My own contribution to this genre happened in 2004-ish, when I went to a camera store and told the guy behind the counter that I needed 'eine Speichelkarte'.* * As the video shows, explaining the mistake is... Continue reading
Posted Nov 26, 2014 at German Joys
Andrew Gimson, a former Berlin correspondent for the Daily Telegraph, has written a solid little article on the 'Conservative Home' website about the main misconceptions his countrymen have about Germany (h/t MTW): 1. Angela Merkel The British have no idea... Continue reading
Posted Nov 24, 2014 at German Joys
Probably the finest Canadian song praising the Communist Party of Albania you will hear today (h/t RM): I wonder if there are any English-language songs praising East Germany? If you're interested in the internecine squabbles of Canadian Marxist splinter parties... Continue reading
Posted Nov 21, 2014 at German Joys
Rod Dreher, a conservative American commentator, can hardly believe his eyes when he reads about the German church tax (Kirchensteuer): In Germany, as in a number of other European countries, if you are a member of a church or mainstream... Continue reading
Posted Nov 15, 2014 at German Joys
Over the weekend I set out for the Neander Valley, where the first Neanderthal skeleton was found. It's also an ultra-pleasant hiking destination, complete with babbling brooks, succulent green meadows, winding forest pathways, mildly dramatic shale rock formations, and quaint... Continue reading
Posted Nov 12, 2014 at German Joys
Thomas Rogers, a writer living in Berlin, takes to the pages of the New Republic to describe the oddity of 'Wetten, Dass...?' and the crappiness of German TV in general: ...[T]he mediocrity of [German] TV—and “Wetten Dass..?” in particular—is currently... Continue reading
Posted Nov 7, 2014 at German Joys
Last Friday a friend and I went hiking in the Siebengebirge, gradually ascending the Löwenburg. Below are a few pictures of the fall splendor, and of Haus Neuglück (g) a funky villa in Königswinter where a young Guillaume Appollinaire fell... Continue reading
Posted Nov 4, 2014 at German Joys
Doing a bit of research I came across the online version (g) of the Bambergische Peinliche Halsgerichtsordnung, one of the first European criminal codes. It was written by a German knight, one Johann the Strong, Baron of Schwarzenberg and Hohenlandsberg.... Continue reading
Posted Nov 3, 2014 at German Joys
A bit of imitation Bill Viola, courtesy of GoPro's 240-fps video mode. Continue reading
Posted Nov 1, 2014 at German Joys
A while ago I speculated on why Americans and Europeans perceive temperature so differently. I pointed out that the United States is a much hotter country than many Europeans realize. A recent study has suggested that there is a strong... Continue reading
Posted Oct 24, 2014 at German Joys
Section 25 of the State Hunting Law in Northern Rhine-Westphalia (NRW) provides (g, my translation) (4) Those who are entitled to protect hunting conditions (Jagdschutz) are permitted: 1. To detain persons who enter a hunt area without permission or who... Continue reading
Posted Oct 23, 2014 at German Joys
European friends often mock me for my aversion to raw meat. 'So American', they say, fingering their monocles and twirling their mustaches. But I defend my disgust for raw animal flesh. Mankind realized fire made meat good thousands of years... Continue reading
Posted Oct 21, 2014 at German Joys
Open Culture looks at a documentary (above, NSFW) on East German sex: The documentary proposes that, for all its deficiencies, the German Democratic Republic actually put forth a remarkably progressive set of policies related to such things as birth control,... Continue reading
Posted Oct 20, 2014 at German Joys
The new batch of photos from the inimitabe Internet K-Hole is up on tumblr. Curator Babs welcomes submissions -- in fact one of the new photos is from my personal hoard (can you guess which one? No, not the one... Continue reading
Posted Oct 17, 2014 at German Joys