Fragment Ones and Tooze: The United States vs. Europe

Tooze picks apart Europe’s failure (mostly political in nature) to keep up with the United States on a bunch of areas.

He also mentions that Germany is debt unconstrained and could borrow much more than it is doing right now to fix its broken infrastructure but won’t do it because of stupid politics.

Fragment Ones and Tooze: Tooze Unplugged

Tooze talking for five minutes about the difference between European and American academic traditions. Excuse the low quality but my WordPress has a 2MB file limit.

That is what we were training people to do to write essays which had powerful attack, big full body and a conclusive finish and ideally you’d have a student who could make a whole bouquet of different essays across 5-6 exam papers, 3 essays per paper, 15 different essays and what you would want is a student who could really modulate across that range of essay writing types.

And another one:

The formula of British economics, French politics and German philosophy is the tried formula for making Marxists and that’s basically —though that’s not my politics— that’s basically the frame within which I understand comprehensive intellectual engagement with modernity. It requires those three elements:

  • You need to have a sophisticated political grip
  • You need to have a philosophy of history which in the German sense of course comes from Hegel
  • You have to understand capitalism otherwise you’re stuck

Fragment Piratensender Powerplay E131: Lina, Law & Order

Once in a while they knock them out of the park in this podcast. In this episode Friedemann Karig goes out and asks for people to understand the necessity and reasons behind violent antifascism in the void left behind when the state fails to protect its citizens.

Putting this receipt here about life in the DDR and its eventual downfall:

Anekdote 3: im November 89 kam eine neue Schülerin in unsere Klasse. Aus der DDR. Wie ich später erfuhr, war ihr Vater in einer verantwortlichen Position in einem VEB. Er hat seine Familie in Sicherheit gebracht, weil er Angst hatte, was passiert, „wenn alles rauskommt.

It’s anecdata but it’s plausible and pretty damning and there’s a bunch more where that came from. Don’t listen to people glorifying how nice and functional things were under the GDR.

Every time I mention slack time as one of the most important things for healthy engineering teams people look at me as if they’re seeing water burning.

That doesn’t make it any less true though. Here’s a brief note by Martin Fowler on the topic: