All in the mind

Psychology, cultural change

Why does the Regressive Left worship the NHS?

30/12/2017

Or rather why do metropolitan elitists not trust the Working Classes? Before we can answer this question, let me clarify two key terms in the title to avoid any misunderstandings. By regressive left I refer mainly to a widespread current of political thought that positions itself on the progressive left, but when push comes to shove always sides with elitist institutions who do not have the best interests of ordinary people at heart. 

Guilt by Association

02/12/2017

Recently British author Douglas Murray took part in a video chat with the renowned YouTube sensation and self-proclaimed libertarian philosopher Stefan Molyneux. While critical of Radical Islam and mass migration, Douglas Murray has been careful to steer a middle ground. Initially he came across to me as a Blairite, not least because he’s associate director of the Henry Jackson Society, a neoconservative think tank that has counted Labour MPs such as Ben Bradshaw and Jim Murphy in its ranks.

Sexual Egalitarianism

20/11/2017

Why it will always remain a wild fantasy... Sex, as practiced for the last billion years, has been an awfully competitive and selective affair. Erotic desire drives much of human behaviour. It motivates us to keep fit, take care of our appearance, elevate our status by excelling at school and in our careers and show off our physical prowess and dexterity through sport, dance and music. 

On Social Competitiveness and Human Nature

18/11/2017

As a species we combine social solidarity and shared culture with a strong competitive spirit. In a way these variant behaviours represent the true yin and yang of the human psyche, collectivism versus individualism or social cohesion versus self-betterment. One could argue that our social and technological reality would never have progressed without these instincts.

Manufacturing Identities

29/10/2017

Humanity has always had a wide range of cultures, vocations and two biologically defined sexes. For most of our history we identified with our family, our tribe, our gender and our vocation. We had no choice over family and gender, seldom switched tribes and had a limited window of opportunity to find a vocation within the cultural paradigm of our era. To the above list we may naturally add status, something we traditionally acquired from a mix of our family’s social standing and any natural talents we can exploit in a socially advantageous or entrepreneurial manner.

Intellectual Freedom

30/09/2017

In the era of hate speech laws, safe spaces and fact checkers... Many may argue that hunger, environmental depredation, nuclear war or extreme disparities of wealth are the main challenges of our times. I don’t dispute for a moment that without life’s necessities, a hospitable environment, peace and social stability, free speech may seem a luxury. 

The Emerging Age of Absolutisms

26/08/2017

What do corporate globalism, Islamic fundamentalism, communist idealism and neo-fascist romanticism all have in common besides being abstract isms? If you look at their attitudes to the key ethical questions of our age, their notional position on the left-right spectrum or their virtuosity in the public mind, they may appear at variance or even diametric opposites.

Just gimme some Truth

19/08/2017

On the importance of intellectual freedom... Hardly a week passes without a brand new high profile campaign against the Orwellian concept of hate speech, perceived public ignorance or the spectre of unofficial fake news. 

The Brave New World Test

02/07/2017

Human history has had plenty of upheavals, but I believe we have never experienced such a rapid rate of technological and cultural change with worldwide reach. In 1931 Aldous Huxley wrote Brave New World not so much as a reliable prognosis of human development over the coming 6 centuries (as the story is set in the year 2540 AD), but as a warning of how our socially progressive trajectory could lead us to a dystopia of complete submission to a technocratic elite. Huxley failed to foresee the likely implications of artificial intelligence and nano-robotics.

Our Workless Future

11/06/2017

Could the universal basic income usher in an age of hyper-dependence, hyper-surveillance and a growing divide between technocratic elites and mainstream humanity?

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