“I have been taunting the Reaper into taking a free scythe in my direction and have now succumbed to something so predictable and banal that it bores even me. Rage would be beside the point for the same reason. Instead, I am badly oppressed by a gnawing sense of waste. I had real plans for my next decade and felt I’d worked hard enough to earn it. Will I really not live to see my children married? To watch the World Trade Center rise again? To read—if not indeed write—the obituaries of elderly villains like Henry Kissinger and Joseph Ratzinger?”

— Christopher Hitchens

The picks of the week from around the web. (A little late, sorry.)

  • Christopher Hitchens on his cancer. The contrarian author and political commentator has been diagnosed with cancer and writes about it with candour. Our best wishes — get well Hitch!
  • Washington Post: Top Secret America. I’ve only started digging into this major investigative project, on the proliferation of secret service and intelligence agencies in the US, but from what I’ve read, it seems great.
  • Google’s villainous turn. Another step towards the crippling of net neutrality perpetrated by the “Don’t Be Evil” people. Ryan Singel has a fine write-up at Wired, while Robert X. Cringley offered a counter-intuitive caution at the New York Times.