Archive for September, 2008|Monthly archive page

“What ‘common European values’?

In Turkey and Armenians, Turkey and Cyprus, Turkey in Europe, Turkish foreign policy on September 30, 2008 at 00:26

What ‘common European values’?

The German Marshall Fund of the US sponsors annual surveys on "Transatlantic Trends." The "Key Findings" of the 2008 survey conducted last June in the US and a number of European countries, including Turkey, was published this month. The report’s section titled "Turbulent Turkey" opens by pointing to the fact that "in recent years observers have expressed concerns about Turkey turning away from the Western alliance."

Read the rest of this entry »

“Credit crunch hits European banks……..

In EU Foreign Policy, European Economy, European Parliament, State of Europe on September 29, 2008 at 17:25

Credit crunch hits European banks

Top officials from Belgium, the Netherlands, Luxembourg and the EU held emergency meetings over the weekend to prevent bank and insurance giant Fortis from becoming the eurozone’s first major victim of the global financial crisis.

In defence of Anglo-Saxon capitalism

By Centre for European Reform

by Charles Grant

Those who never liked ‘Anglo-Saxon’ capitalism are feeling smug. Marxists, fans of ‘Rhineland’ capitalism and those who simply cannot stand American power are crowing. “The US will lose its status as the superpower of the world financial system,” says Peer Steinbruck, Germany’s finance minister. “Self-regulation is finished, laisser faire is finished, the idea of an all powerful market which is always right is finished,” says France’s president, Nicolas Sarkozy. The British academic (and sometime fan of Margaret Thatcher) John Gray proclaims that “in a change as far-reaching in its implications as the fall of the Soviet Union, an entire model of the government and the economy has collapsed.”


Read the rest of this entry »

“25 Harshest Reactions To the Wall Street Bailout

In Uncategorized on September 29, 2008 at 16:53

25 Harshest Reactions To the Wall Street Bailout

By Mark Frauenfelder

Read the rest of this entry »

“AAA proposes changes to code of ethics

In Anthropology on September 29, 2008 at 07:47

AAA proposes changes to code of ethics

By Rex on Ethics

The AAA Public Affairs blog has a long post by AAA president Setha Low on proposed changes to the AAA code of ethics that deals with the hue and cry raised at the AAA meetings last year. Why not give the AAA blogs some love, head over, and comment over there?

Read the rest of this entry »

Erkan’s 10-day writing camp begins

In Erkan as a dissertation writer, Erkan as a lecturer, Erkan's habitus on September 27, 2008 at 14:31

After a few very angry and agitated days, I am alone and relaxed. Turkey has entered a 9-day official break. An ultimate statement of a lazy society. The occasion is Ramadan Bairam or Şeker (sugar) bayramı. Naming the bayram is an ideological act- oh i begin to be agitated again. For a person like me who fasted all Ramadan, all of the month, it feels like a Ramadan bayram. But sensibilities play a role. Our secularist citizens would prefer the latter. Attempting to ignore the religious connotations. Understandable at that level and I don’t care really. Nobody can ignore the other at this stage.

But whatever the case, Erkan has a plan. This is a 10 day writing camp for me. In the end, on the evening of October 6, I intend to submit the very first full draft of my dissertation! I now postpone all other anxieties, tasks, duties until Oct 6. I intend to forget huge credit card debts, failed relations, annoying people around me.

Last week was the first day in the classes.
I have met with my new first year students. We will be together all year. My first impression is positive. It wasn’t so last year. Among 18 students there is not a single Beşiktaş fan or Heavy Metal listener. This is not good but i can survive with that.
Because a huge break was about to start my Friday afternoon course was not very eventful. Half of the class did not show up and thus missed the beginning of my lecture on Enlightenment. I intend to lecture on Enlightenment for three more weeks though.

Just an hour later I passed through there:

Strong winds topple Istanbul minaret, 1 killed – International Herald Tribune


"We won’t be Bush’s dog" 

Turkish court acquits British artist over portraying PM as US poodle
A Turkish court acquitted Michael Dickinson of criminal charges despite citing "some insulting elements" in his depiction of Erdogan as a dog attached to a 

Radikal offers here a gallery of anti-Erdoğan cartoons. 

PM Erdoğan is frequently subject to pejorative cartoons. Still, his attempts to stop them was one of the biggest mistakes he made, I believe….

” The high cost of anti-democratic fantasies

In Turkey and Kurds, Turkish military, Turkish politics on September 27, 2008 at 01:15
Macroeconomic indicators, released one after another, show that Turkey’s economic growth has slowed and that there has been a sharp decline in inflow of foreign direct investment (FDI) to Turkey.
Turkish singer Bulent Ersoy arrives at a court house in Istanbul, ...

Turkish singer Bulent Ersoy arrives at a court house in Istanbul, Turkey, Wednesday, Sept. 24, 2008. Ersoy, a popular transsexual Turkish singer, has showed up for the second hearing of her trial on charges of trying to turn the public against obligatory military service. Ersoy could face more than two years in prison for saying during a live television show that if she had children, she would not want them to join the army to fight Kurdish rebels. Military service is obligatory for men over the age of 20 in Turkey, and it is a crime to speak against it. Banners in Kurdish in the background read that:

‘Long live the diva’ (AP Photo/Ibrahim Usta)


Kılıçdaroğlu and Fırat remain unsatisfied

The ruling Justice and Development Party, or AKP, deputy leader defended himself against claims made by the main opposition Republican People’s Party, or CHP, parliamentary group deputy leader


What happens when the military defines the concepts? by LÜTFÜ ÖZŞAHİN

Relations between the military and politics in Turkey have once again become the focal point of discussion following the recent press conferences held by the General Staff, additional arrests in connection with the Ergenekon case, a visit paid by the military to retired generals held in prison and the discharge of retired Gen. Şener Eruygur, who is also a prime suspect in the Ergenekon case.

Read the rest of this entry »

“EU agrees on key immigration pact

In EU Foreign Policy, European Economy, State of Europe on September 25, 2008 at 16:00

EU agrees on key immigration pact

EU ministers agree on a plan to curb illegal immigration while easing the rules for highly-skilled workers.

Read the rest of this entry »

fluorescent lamps vs soft yellowy desk lamps

In Erkan's habitus on September 24, 2008 at 23:07

I never claim to have high aesthetic standards. I like the brightness indoors, which is best provided by fluorescent lamps. I hate a somber office environment provided by only using desk lamps. Unfortunately all female personnel I know like to have that. If we are in a bar, that’s all right. But i would like to have a brightly lit office. Today I wasn’t allowed to turn on the office light. Until today, I was allowed to turn on the light as long as I turned off when I left the office.- this pattern started two weeks ago.

Today when I entered the office, one of the new comers cried to turn off and she asked an intellectually snobbish guy who fools around as a volunteer which way was better. Maybe I should have resisted. Unfortunately I cannot always act on time. I am very angry with myself being so tolerant and being so exploited most of the time.

* One day I enter the office: a major re-design by others. 

-Erkan did you like it? What the f*** if I don’t like. Will you change it back?

anyway, of all things around, a trip to İnönü with Celil Hoca was the most peaceful moment in my recent life: 


Bartholomew’s speech in the European Parliament

In European Parliament on September 24, 2008 at 15:30


(Brussels, September 24, 2008)

* * *

Your Excellency Mr President of the European Parliament,
Your Excellencies, Honorable Members of the European Parliament,
Distinguished Guests,
Dear Friends,

First and foremost, we convey to you salutations from the Ecumenical Patriarchate of Constantinople, based for many many centuries in what is today Istanbul – greetings replete with esteem and respect. In particular, we express our gratitude to an old friend of ours, His Excellency Hans-Gert Pöttering, President of the European Parliament. We likewise express our sincerest appreciation for the extraordinary honor to address the Plenary of the European Parliament, especially on this occasion that commemorates the European Year of Intercultural Dialogue…………..

click here for the full text. 

“Neo-Ottomanism and Kemalist foreign policy

In Turkey and Kurds, Turkey in Europe, Turkish foreign policy, Turkish judiciary, Turkish politics on September 24, 2008 at 02:36

Neo-Ottomanism and Kemalist foreign policy

Davutoğlu argues that Turkish foreign policy had been unbalanced, with an overemphasis on ties with Western Europe and the United States to the neglect of Turkey’s interests with other countries, particularly in the Middle East. His vision displays familiar characteristics of "neo-Ottomanism," which builds on the approach of former President Turgut Özal. According to this view Turkey needs to rediscover its imperial legacy and seek a new national consensus where the multiple identities of Turkey can coexist. ………

Read the rest of this entry »