iOS app Android app

Alexander Wooley
GET UPDATES FROM Alexander Wooley
Alexander Wooley is a Toronto and Washington, DC-based writer, the author of the upcoming Discontented Drones: Unmanned while Stoking the Fires in the Boiler-Room of the American Empire.

Entries by Alexander Wooley

Air Force One Escape Pod Character Test

(0) Comments | Posted December 26, 2013 | 2:21 PM

At a party this holiday season, we played a game whereby you identify famous people using the minimum number of word-clues, and as fast as possible. There, I discovered something disturbing (besides the fact that a plurality think the characters from Duck Dynasty are famous): anyone who picked President Clinton...

Read Post

Big Seven African Aid Species -- Capitalists and Documenters

(0) Comments | Posted October 24, 2013 | 6:10 PM

Type 3: The Capitalist. Occasionally one still spots, skulking in the high grass, the leather-skinned Westerner in multi-pocket safari jacket. His passport, stashed billfold, hat collection and 175cc Yamaha are always handy. Still referring fondly to his time in 'Zaire', he is divorced at least twice, alcoholic, nicotine-stained, heavily in...

Read Post

The Big Seven African Aid Species: Owning "The Real Africa"

(0) Comments | Posted October 8, 2013 | 10:08 AM

Type 7 -- "The Real Africa". People in international development earn competitive points for degree of difficulty. This can take various forms: you can boast about how your intestinal parasite is so much more voracious and intractable than a colleague's. About how you never take malaria meds but instead have...

Read Post

The Big Seven African Aid Species -- Financiers and Conservationists

(0) Comments | Posted October 3, 2013 | 5:12 PM

It is a chaotic mixture of tribes large and small. Artificial man-made borders cannot contain historic conflicts and rivalries. Inter-marriage is rare, incest within the group common, as are predatory raids. It is a cash culture, but also one of barter. A variety of dialects - too many to count...

Read Post

The Big Seven African Aid Species

(0) Comments | Posted October 2, 2013 | 5:31 PM

It is a chaotic mixture of tribes large and small. Artificial man-made borders cannot contain historic conflicts and rivalries. Inter-marriage is rare, incest within the group common, as are predatory raids. It is a cash culture, but also one of barter. A variety of dialects -- too many to count...

Read Post

Cybersurveillance: We Put the Law on Our Side, Part I

(0) Comments | Posted September 20, 2013 | 1:03 PM

Black Code: Inside the Battle for Cyberspace, by Ronald J. Deibert; 2013, McClelland & Stewart

The Citizen Lab's Ron Deibert began his academic career as an arms control specialist, monitoring treaties, counting ICBMs and the like. The mantra back then was "trust but verify." He believes we need an updated...

Read Post

Cybersurveillance: We Put the Law on Our Side, Part 2

(0) Comments | Posted September 19, 2013 | 5:41 PM

Black code: Inside the Battle for Cyberspace, by Ronald J. Deibert; 2013, McClelland & Stewart.

In 2004, 18 months after the invasion of Iraq, I was sitting in my Unconventional Weapons Technology class, part of the Security Studies program at Georgetown University. Our professor arrived a few minutes late to...

Read Post

A Spectacular Avalanche of Distraction

(0) Comments | Posted September 17, 2013 | 7:31 PM

I was watching the CBS Sports Spectacular when a network newsbreak came on telling of three snowboarders killed by an avalanche. They died while off-trail in backwoods Colorado. This blurb was followed by an ad for the Chevy Avalanche. Initially I felt bad for whoever had done the media buy...

Read Post

Strategies for Bringing the Used Bookstore Into the 20th (sic) Century

(4) Comments | Posted August 26, 2013 | 7:16 PM

I believe used bookstores are an indicator of a city's health. Proof? Under Mayor Bloomberg, the number of second-hand shops in New York has quadrupled. That isn't true, but feels like it could be. Used stores are at least as reliable a pointer to urban vitality as miles of bike...

Read Post

D.C. American Power Career Fair Quiz

(0) Comments | Posted August 8, 2013 | 2:05 PM

This is an automatic e-mail. Please do not respond.

You have registered for the United States Government Career Fair, Presented by Booz Allen Hamilton: "American Power."

Secretary of State Kerry has re-affirmed the three equal cornerstones of American Power: Defense, Diplomacy and Development. Implementing "The Three D's"will be key...

Read Post

Counter-Counterfactuals

(0) Comments | Posted August 6, 2013 | 1:30 PM

Did the original marathon runner (490 BC) also run for breast cancer research? To his armor-plated singlet, did he affix the message "I'm running for Pericles"?

Did 16th century Germans, anxious for a holiday between Xmas and Easter, ever campaign for a 'ML Day'?

How much longer do we...

Read Post

A Primer To Finding A Good Read

(9) Comments | Posted July 22, 2013 | 3:44 PM

According to UNESCO there were 328,000 new books or editions published in the U.S. in 2010.
Since 1865 there have been some 60,000 books on the U.S. Civil War alone. I have wide-ranging interests in fiction and non-fiction, but can realistically only read 20-30 books a year (0.000091 of...

Read Post