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The Plundered Planet Podcast Series: Day 5

Which is more important: saving the environment or fixing global poverty? Economist Paul Collier argues that we can find a middle ground and do both in his new book The Plundered Planet: Why We Must—and How We Can—Manage Nature for Global Prosperity. A former director of Development Research at the World Bank and author of the widely acclaimed and award winning The Bottom Billion, Collier’s The Plundered Planet continues his life mission of advocating for the world’s poorest billion people.

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The Plundered Planet Podcast Series: Day 4

Which is more important: saving the environment or fixing global poverty? Economist Paul Collier argues that we can find a middle ground and do both in his new book The Plundered Planet: Why We Must—and How We Can—Manage Nature for Global Prosperity. A former director of Development Research at the World Bank and author of the widely acclaimed and award winning The Bottom Billion, Collier’s The Plundered Planet continues his life mission of advocating for the world’s poorest billion people.

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The Plundered Planet Podcast Series: Day 3

Which is more important: saving the environment or fixing global poverty? Economist Paul Collier argues that we can find a middle ground and do both in his new book The Plundered Planet: Why We Must—and How We Can—Manage Nature for Global Prosperity. A former director of Development Research at the World Bank and author of the widely acclaimed and award winning The Bottom Billion, Collier’s The Plundered Planet continues his life mission of advocating for the world’s poorest billion people.

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The Plundered Planet Podcast Series: Day 2

Which is more important: saving the environment or fixing global poverty? Economist Paul Collier argues that we can find a middle ground and do both in his new book The Plundered Planet: Why We Must—and How We Can—Manage Nature for Global Prosperity. A former director of Development Research at the World Bank and author of the widely acclaimed and award winning The Bottom Billion, Collier’s The Plundered Planet continues his life mission of advocating for the world’s poorest billion people.

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Superstition and self-governance

By Peter T. Leeson
Government is conventionally considered the source of citizens’ property security. And in the contemporary developed world, at least, often it is. In the historical world, however, often it was not. In eras bygone, in societies across the globe, governments didn’t exist—or weren’t strong enough to provide effective governance.

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The politics of green shopping

By Thomas Jundt
On this day forty-four years ago, some 20 million Americans took to the streets, parks, and lecture halls for an event billed as a national environmental teach-in—Earth Day.

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Ancient Syria: trouble-prone and politically volatile

By Trevor Bryce
I have long been fascinated with Syria. Like other Middle Eastern regions, it has many layers of civilization and has seen many conquerors and raiders tramp and gallop through its lands over the centuries. That of course has been the fate of lots of countries, ancient and modern.

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The death of Edmund Spenser

By Andrew Hadfield
Writing to his friend Dudley Carleton on 17 January 1599, the enthusiastic correspondent John Chamberlain (1553-1628) noted that “Spencer, our principall poet, coming lately out of Ireland, died at Westminster on Satturday last.” Chamberlain’s testimony confirms that Spenser died on 13 January. Chamberlain is a good recorder of court gossip and a barometer of what interested the upper echelons of London society.

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Kelly Gang folklore clanks ever onwards

By Ian MacFarlane
Bushranger Ned Kelly belongs to Australia, doesn’t he? You might think so, but Australians are surprised to find that there is interest in Ned Kelly far beyond our shores. There are quite a few UK titles from the past, and Australian volumes about him turn up on US book sites all the time.

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London’s Burning!

Today we are celebrating the UK publication of The Day Parliament Burned Down, in which the dramatic story of the nineteenth century national catastrophe is told for the first time. In this blog post, author Caroline Shenton presents the top ten London fires that have changed the face of the capital city.

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Barry Landau and the grim decade of archives theft

By Travis McDade

Ten years ago, responding to $200,000 worth of thefts by curator Shawn Aubitz, United States Archivist John Carlin said he had “appointed a high-level management task force to review internal security measures” at the National Archives. “A preliminary set of recommendations are under review and a number of new measures are already in place.” Four years later, an unpaid summer intern smuggled 160 documents out of the very same Archives branch. His only tool was a yellow legal pad.

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The Sack of Rome

This Day in World History
On May 6, 1527, a mass of German Lutheran and Spanish Catholic troops—unlikely allies—reached Rome angry at being unpaid for months and resentful of the riches of the papacy. As the soldiers—by now a rampaging mob—entered the Vatican, Pope Clement VII was saying a mass in the Sistine Chapel. With Swiss Guards being slaughtered in St. Peter’s Square, the pope was hustled away to safety in the stout Castel Sant’Angelo. And the sack of Rome was on.

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Why are Russians attracted to strong leaders?

By Geoffrey Hosking
After a decade of a chaotic but exhilarating democracy in the 1990s, Putin as president and prime minister has been restoring a strong state. At least, that is how we usually understand it. He has certainly restored an authoritarian state. On assuming office in 2000, he strengthened the ‘power vertical’ by ending the local election of provincial governors and sending in his own viceroys – mostly ex-military men – to supervise them. Citing the state’s need for ‘information security’, he closed down or took over media outlets which exposed inconvenient information or criticised his actions. Determined opponents were bankrupted, threatened, arrested, even murdered. He subdued the unruly Duma (parliament) by making it much more difficult for opposition parties to register or gain access to the media, and by encouraging violations of electoral procedure at the polls. Until recently, the Russian public seemed to accept this as part of the natural order.

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Roger Williams & Church-State Separation

These days, separation of church and state is in danger of becoming a hollow cliché. And on other days, it has been in danger of being regarded as a communist plot or, more recently, as a secularist one.

A look back at the life of the seventeenth-century founder of Rhode Island corrects these misunderstandings as well as gives a passionate freshness to the whole subject. Roger Williams was no communist, no secularist, and above all no huckster of empty slogans.

He was a deeply religious believer, in some ways even more religious than the Puritans who ejected him from Massachusetts in 1635. And he advocated religious liberty not because religion mattered so little but because it mattered so much.

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