EH Carr & other articles: Temporary Catalogue

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Feature Carr What Is History?

ORT_Logo Breadtag Sagas ©: Author Tony, 26 October 2021

EH Carr & other articles: Temporary Catalogue because you can’t find them on Google Search

How I stuffed up

It’s not just me but often when you have upgrade your WordPress or any other component system, your website sometimes doesn’t work properly and you have to scramble to find out what’s wrong and fix it! I did fix it a month ago but missed the signs of something else that was wrong. And it took me a month to realise.

Sitemaps are how Google indexes your web site and all your articles. Now many of my articles have disappeared from Google. Hopefully that will be fixed soon! However, all my most popular articles have disappeared from web searches. I don’t know if they’ll ever come back.

Thousands of university students around the world, many from developing countries or areas in South Asia, Asia and Africa, will no longer be able to access My three articles on EH Carr What is History?

So as a vain attempt to allow people access and even get them up and running again, I’m at least trying to help anyone visiting my site to permit instant access to my most popular posts.

EH Carr What is History?

These articles are a fantastic summary of the difficulties in writing about history. Have a read! You’ll find the articles entertaining and informative. Thousands of students can’t be wrong.

What is History? by EH Carr 1961 a compilation of the George Macaulay Trevelyan Lectures delivered at The University of Cambridge in 1961.

EH Carr was an erudite maverick. The Cambridge University History Department never warmed to him.

EH Carr What is History? 5: The Historian and his Facts

EH Carr What is History? 7: Causation in History

EH Car What is History? 8: History as Progress

Continue reading “EH Carr & other articles: Temporary Catalogue”

Investing in Shares 101: 2 Value Investing

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Security Analysis 1934 Feature

Dr Tony Stewart is a scientist and analyst by training. He has run a strategic market research business and has an extensive background in statistical analysis. At the beginning of his investment career, he read widely and undertook courses on investing run by the Securities Institute of Australia. He has invested in the Australian stock market for thirty years.

ORT_Logo Breadtag Sagas ©: Author Tony,  1 October 2021

Investing in Shares 101: 2 Why Value Investing?

Approaches to Investing in Shares

1 The Bogus Concept of a Free-Market

Unfortunately, there is a lot of ideology involved with stock markets. This is primarily associated with the wealthy trying to assure themselves and others that whatever they do to acquire their wealth is honest and good for us all. Much of this ideology is associated with the concept of the free-market, which has been around for a long time.

Fitzherbert, quoted in article 1 Basics, criticises the academic theories (espoused even by nobel laureates) called efficient-market theories from the 1970s and 1980s (based on free-market ideology). The efficient-market theories were debunked by the early 1990s, but have continued in different guises under the banner of neo-liberalism. They are nonsense!

Now, I’m not suggesting you abandon your political beliefs or change your dinner party conversation, or your detailed knowledge of economic theory. I don’t want to interfere with your outside life.

I mentioned Dr Turf in 1 Basics. Whenever you engage in buying or selling shares, or anything to do with the stock market, just don’t put a pumpkin on your head. It makes it too hard to see!

Leave the free market or efficient-market theory for when you are bullshitting with your mates.

Also continuing with the horse racing analogy, if you want to speculate on daily swings in the market, getting out and going to the racetrack is probably healthier. Continue reading “Investing in Shares 101: 2 Value Investing”

Investing in Shares 101: 1 Basics

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John Rothfield 1987 Feature

Dr Tony Stewart is a scientist and analyst by training. He has run a strategic market research business and has an extensive background in statistical analysis. At the beginning of his investment career, he read widely and undertook courses on investing run by the Securities Institute of Australia. He has invested in the Australian stock market for thirty years.

ORT_Logo Breadtag Sagas ©: Author Tony,  1 September 2021

Investing in Shares 101: 1 Basic Concepts & Pitfalls

1 Introduction

There are so many complex and simplistic guides to investing that confuse rather than inform. Shares 101 Basics addresses the problem. Shares 101 Basics is biased slightly towards Australia and the ASX (Australian stock exchange), but it applies generally to the USA and UK as well, which are usually in step.

The book I used in the 1990s to help me understand the basics of investing said:

These days, people who either own shares, get appointed as trustees, attend seminars or otherwise advertise their interest in investment matters, will soon, will soon find themselves receiving unsolicited material containing offers of assistance, ‘research opinions and newsletters. (Fitzherbert)

In today’s Internet era, this is magnified. Perhaps I am too suspicious when it comes to finances, but even an organisation that I support wholeheartedly, The Australian Shareholders Association, seems a little suspect in recent years in its educational activities.

A tour of my experiences in the share market might help those starting out. First, I am going to cover the basics. The second article on value investing will look at the best approaches to investing in shares. The third article will detail my personal experiences warts and all.

In Q Research, I often used the David O’Gilvie 1963 quote based on an earlier one: where he bemoaned the reluctance of marketing executives to use their own judgement; instead they use research as a drunkard uses a lamp post for support, rather than for illumination.

In this overview of best practice and my experiences of thirty years investing in shares, I want to offer illumination in Shares 101 Basics rather than support for your prejudices. Continue reading “Investing in Shares 101: 1 Basics”

Extreme Polo in Gilgit Pakistan: Our Trip 3

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Shandur Pass Polo, photo by Shipton TrekkingFeatured Image: Shandur Pass Polo Festival, photo by Shipton Trekking, the polo ground is at 12,300 feet (3800 metres) and the mountains rise up to 8,000 feet higher

ORT_Logo Breadtag Sagas ©: Author Tony,  1 August 2021

Extreme Polo in Gilgit and surrounding areas on the KKH 1995: Our Trip 3

This is the fourth article on our trip up and down the KKH. The first is The Karakorum Highway, the second The Lower Karakorum Highway and the third Besham to Gilgit the Terrain.

We arrived in Gilgit on 18 May 1995 at 7pm in the evening after a long day’s travel from Besham and were snagged or touted at the bus stop by the delightful Mr Ibrahim owner of a new lodge called the Mountain Refuge (more of whom later).

We enjoyed our stay in Gilgit marred only slightly by intermittent rain. We even hired a motor-bike. Though the state of the roads meant that we could not travel as far as we would have liked and bits kept falling off the bike, sometimes making the travel uncomfortable.

We left Gilgit on 27 May when the rain seemed to have set in permanently. Surprisingly, at our next stop in the Hunza Valley the rain stopped and we had delightful weather during our stay there, though the rain began again immediately we left and we saw almost no scenery up to the Pakistan border post at Sost.

Whilst in Gilgit, one of the things we most enjoyed was the series of polo matches in a tournament several of which we managed to see. These matches would eventually lead up to the famous Shandur Pass match in July.


History of Polo

Polo probably began as a simple game played by Iranian equestrian nomads in Central Asia. In time polo became a Persian national sport played by the nobility. Women played as well as men.

The first recorded tournament was in 600 BC (between the Turkomans and the Persians – the Turkomans were victorious). The name is supposed to have originated from the Tibetan ‘pholo’ meaning ‘ball’ or ‘ballgame’. Although all of this is debatable.

Polo Persian Miniature 1525-30, MOMA New York
Polo Persian Miniature 1525-30, MOMA New York

The modern game was derived from British tea-planters observing it in Manipur (located between Burma & India). The first official rules were not created until the 19th century by an Irish Captain in the 13th Hussars and the modern International Rules are based on them. The size of the polo pitch (nearly 10 acres in area; the largest field in organised sport) has not changed since one was built in Isfahan Persia in the 1500s.

Each team has four players and each player must have at least one spare horse. The game is played over 4, 6 or 8 chukkas. Each chukka lasts 7 minutes with a break of 3 minutes between chukkas and a five-minute break at half time. More chukkas normally require more spare horses.

Polo mallets are made of wood. The head is of a hardwood called tipa and the shaft of varying types of wood and flexibility. The mallet must be exactly 2 foot six inches in length. The ball was originally bamboo, then wood and has mainly been fibreglass since 1990. The object of the game is to score goals by hitting the ball through the goal posts. The game is fast, furious and exciting. There are a range of tactics, strategies, allowed manoeuvres and fouls.

As with most equestrian sports the need for a number of horses and equipment make polo an expensive sport to play.

This is the same with polo played in the Northern Areas of Pakistan. The upkeep of the horses is expensive. Although less horses are required.

Denise used to play a game in Australia called polocrosse (a cross between polo and lacrosse) which is more widely played and is less expensive than polo because it requires only one horse. Another similarity with extreme polo is that the game is also played with six players on a smaller ground. Continue reading “Extreme Polo in Gilgit Pakistan: Our Trip 3”

Besham to Gilgit the KKH Terrain: Our Trip 2

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Indus Valley from Alai Road Looking Towards Besham

Featured Image: Indus Valley from Alai Road Looking Towards Besham

ORT_Logo Breadtag Sagas ©: Author Tony,  1 July 2021

Besham to Gilgit, the Terrain on the Karakorum Highway: Our Trip 2

This is the third article on our trip up and down the KKH. The first is The Karakorum Highway which gives an overview of the terrain on the whole journey. The most difficult section to construct was in Indus Kohistan, which includes part of the area described in the second article The Lower Karakorum Highway: Our Trip 1.

We drove from Besham to Gilgit in a long day. Being stuck in a wagon all day, I did not get the opportunity to take photographs and need to fudge by showing other photographs from around Gilgit and Hunza to give you some idea.

The Gorge Country

The gorge country begins below Besham and continues after Besham for some time. One can see from the featured image a view of the Indus Valley from the Alai road the beginning of the difficult terrain in Indus Kohistan. One can imagine I think from that photograph that this is only the beginning of the mountains and that things are going to get worse rather quickly.

In the two articles, I said in the Karakorum Highway:

From Abbotabad on, the KKH winds mostly through narrow gorges on the Hunza, Gilgit and Indus rivers, which flow into one another down from the Khunjerab Pass. There are many bridge crossings across seemingly endless tributaries. The deepest and narrowest gorges are on the road from Abbottabad to Gilgit. The gorges open out somewhat above Gilgit. The climate at the bottom of the gorges is unbelievably hot and oppressive in summer.

‘It is like an oven’ said the gloomy bank manager from Dasu who travelled with us on a ‘Wagon’. The heat radiates from the cliffs thousands of feet above and is reflected down into the bottom of the valley. Although heat rises, it does not rise quickly enough. We met some walkers who had walked down from Fairy Meadow near Nanga Parbat base camp to the Raikot Bridge. The soles of their boots had melted on the black rocks. They regretted not paying for the jeep.

And in the Lower Karakorum Highway:

The canyon walls were high and slide prone for the first part of the trip. We were mostly in dry country at the bottom of chasms, but we saw all that there was to see of the river fans of the tributaries we passed over and small plateaus of cultivation above and near the edge of the river. We passed Chilas, the Raikot Bridge, the turn off to the Astore Valley and Bunji, but were not versed enough in history to pay much attention. We did however, stop at Talechi and viewed the largest number of snowy peaks viewable from the KKH, including Nanga Parbat (8126 m) behind us and Rakaposhi (7790 m) ahead of for the first time.

I also mentioned in in the first article about falling rocks. How these are the major cause of death for locals on the Pakistan side of the Karakorum Highway. And how rocks rained down on our wagon not long out of Besham.

Continue reading “Besham to Gilgit the KKH Terrain: Our Trip 2”

Clarice Beckett Painter, 1887-1935

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Clarice Beckett Feature

ORT_Logo Breadtag Sagas ©: Author Tony,  1 June 2021

Clarice Beckett Australian Painter, 1887-1935 rediscovered in 1971

Introduction

We are house-sitting in McLaren Vale in South Australia for three-and-a-half weeks. I have covered house-sitting before in Germany and England in earlier articles.

House-sitting is a great alternative to tourism because it takes you to wonderful places that you probably wouldn’t go to otherwise, sometimes off the tourist track. You have a chance to experience culture and lifestyle different from one’s own. This, of course, has been the driver for most of my travel in Australia and overseas.

Because, I left behind certain materials I can’t continue with my Karakorum Highway articles until I get home.

In the 1970s and early 1980s several feminist friends were of the firm opinion that women artists in Australia as with overseas had been neglected because of the male dominance of the arts. Yet, in those days they were struggling to provide anything more convincing than anecdotal evidence. Continue reading “Clarice Beckett Painter, 1887-1935”

The Lower Karakorum Highway: Our Trip 1

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Featured Image: Harvesting Wheat Taxila, near the Museum & archaeological site, lower KKH, 1995

Featured Image: Harvesting wheat, Taxila, near the Museum and Archaeological Site, Lower KKH, 1995

ORT_Logo Breadtag Sagas ©: Author Tony,  3 May 2021

The Lower Karakorum Highway: Taxila, Abbottabad, Khagan Valley and the Alai Valley

Background

I wrote in the last article The Karakorum Highway why it was still important to write about a trip undertaken in 1995. It was soon difficult and dangerous to travel the KKH after 2001 until not that long ago. The landslide in 2010 that created Attabad Lake closed the KKH and made it difficult to travel on the KKH for some years. The changes in Kashgar covered in another article on the Kashgar Sunday Market and China’s repression of the Uyghur population have made Xinjiang problematical for the responsible traveller. And, eventually the new upgrades to the whole KKH may make the trip no longer adventurous. The towns mentioned are no longer the same, whereas in 1995, they still retained some of the flavour of the 19th century British colonial entry into the region.

As I concluded in my last article, 1995 was a more innocent era and we need to remember rather than to lose reminders of our recent past.

The Trip

We flew to Lahore from Thailand on 28 April, 1995. I’d encouraged Denise to undertake the KKH when we took a year of in 1995. As I said in the last article:

I‘d done this firstly because I’d always been fascinated by Hunza and Nagar kingdoms when I first heard about them in 19th century British colonial writings. Although not in Tibet, they symbolized a sort of Shangri-La beautiful, remote and exotic. Subsequently, I’d heard about the Karakorum Highway or KKH and thought it would be marvelous to travel up it to China.

Naran, Looking Upwards
Naran, Looking Upwards

We both subsequently read William Dalrymple In Xanadu for inspiration though we didn’t stay with British ambassador’s or the Wali of Swat while setting out.

Continue reading “The Lower Karakorum Highway: Our Trip 1”

The Karakorum Highway KKH

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Featured Image: Nanga Parbat, Killer Mountain, KKH 1995

Featured Image: Nanga Parbat, the ‘Killer Mountain’ 8126 metres, from Fairy Meadow, 1995

ORT_LogoBreadtag Sagas ©: Author Tony, 2 April 2021

The Karakorum Highway (KKH) in 1995

The Karakorum Highway (KKH) runs from around Rawalpindi in Pakistan to Kashgar in China a distance of about 1300 km, through some of the highest mountains and deepest valleys in the world.

The KKH is sometimes called the eighth wonder of the world as a tribute to the engineering feat when it was constructed. Like similar roads in similar regions, for example Nepal and China, the KKH requires extensive maintenance to keep it open. Nowadays, in China there are endless spectacular engineering feats high bridges and roads that make the KKH seem old-fashioned.

The KKH threads its way through a ‘knot’ of four great mountain ranges: the Pamir, the Karakorum, the Hindu Kush and the [western edge] of the Himalayas, all of them part of the vast collision zone between [the Asian and the Indian tectonic plates]. (Lonely Planet)

Chinese Danyor Bridge, Constructed 1960s, Gilgit, KKH, 1995
Chinese Danyor Bridge, Constructed 1960s, Gilgit, KKH, 1995

The highest peaks near the KKH are Nanga Parbat (Himalaya 8126 metres or 26,660 feet), Rakaposhi (Karakorum 7790 m), Batura Peak (Karakorum 7785) Mt Kongur (Pamir 7719), un-named peak at the head of the Passu Glacier (Karakorum 7611), Muztagh Ata (Pamir 7546), Malabiting (Karakorum 7450), Haramosh (Karakorum 7400), Ultar Peak (Karakorum 7388).

There are many others slightly lower. In the Northern Areas of Pakistan there are about three dozen peaks over 7000 metres. K2 (Karakorum 8611 m or 28,250 feet), the second highest mountain in the world, near Skardu is not far from Gilgit in the Gilgit-Baltistan region.

Continue reading “The Karakorum Highway KKH”

The Last Five Years: Global Threats 2021

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Featured Image: Car in Garage, South Canberra, Canberra Bushfire 2003

Featured Photo: Five hundred homes were lost in Canberra in 2003; the whole coastal and near inland of south-eastern Australia was aflame in 2019/2020.

ORT_Logo  Breadtag Sagas ©: Author Tony, 1 March 2021

The Last Five Years, Global Threats in 2021: mass extinction, climate change, human population, refugees, Covid-19 and the Internet

 

This article is a companion to my last article Killing Osama bin Laden, Update 2021 in which I also covered what has happened in global politics in the last five years.

Climate change is now becoming front and centre in global politics as has been predicted for some time. Many countries are beginning to treat climate change as an emergency that must be solved, but are not to date doing anything much about it.

Australia is coming to the issue late, neither major party in Federal politics is doing anything and will have to be dragged kicking and screaming to the table. The less significant National Party is still in denial. Yet, the corporate sector, business, non-government agencies and to a lesser extent State governments are beginning to act, as is much of the corporate sector around the world.

In my view this is all too little too late. I am reminded of the trope in cartoons and elsewhere of the gloom-laden man holding up a sign that reads the end is nigh! I am not going to present arguments here. The facts are too self-evident.

Let’s look at the last five years and forward to the next ten.

Continue reading “The Last Five Years: Global Threats 2021”

Killing Osama bin Laden, Update 2021

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Photo: Pete Souza, Official White House Photographer, 4.06 pm EST, 1 May 2011, Situation room

Featured Photo: Pete Souza, Official White House Photographer, 4.06 pm EST, 1 May 2011, Situation room

ORT_Logo  Breadtag Sagas ©: Author Tony, 1 February 2021


The Killing of Osama bin Laden, Update 2021

Introduction

In July to September 2015, I wrote three articles on The Last Days of Osama bin Laden. These were: 1 Abbottabad, 28 July 2015; 2 9/11, 9 August 2015and 3 The Killing 8 September 2015.

(For some reason article 1 was inadvertently erased (my incompetence), and I reposted it immediately on 19 February 2018, in case you are confused.)

Denise and I had spent a couple of days in Abbottabad in 1995 and knew a bit about the location. Osama bin Laden’s residence and compound was constructed in 2005. Osama bin Laden lived there from 2006, until the raid on the compound by a covert team of US Navy SEALS (from Bagram Air Base in Afghanistan) and the ‘killing’ of Osama bin Laden on 2 May 2011.

The reason I wrote the articles in 2015 was that I had been uneasy about the US claims about the death of Osama bin Laden since 2011. In particular, I thought that it was impossible that no one in Pakistan knew bin Laden was there, as Abbottabad is a major military cantonment. I also thought it most unlikely that the US would have mounted the raid, without some type of approval from the Pakistani military or ISI (Pakistan Inter-services Intelligence Service). President Obama didn’t strike me as that gung ho.

I decided that having begun a blog in 2015 I should investigate and at least decide for myself what had happened.

I’ve reread the three blogs and don’t really think that there is anything that I would change. Nevertheless, a lot has happened in the past five years and an update is warranted.


Seymour Hersh

Seymour Hersh is a senior and respected investigative journalist who exposed the Mai Lai massacre in Vietnam in 1969 and the mistreatment of prisoners by the US military at Abu Ghraib prison in Iraq in 2004. Coincidentally, Seymour Hersh, published a bombshell expose entitled The Killing of Osama bin Laden in the London Review of Books on 21 May 2015, just as I was beginning my task.

Continue reading “Killing Osama bin Laden, Update 2021”