Power Dynamics

The #Remain Youth Marketing Campaign

21/05/2016

In the forthcoming referendum on British sovereignty, you'd be forgiven for thinking it were some sort of X-factor style contest on the relative merits of continental Europe. The latest propaganda from the StrongerIn campaign press all the right psychological buttons:

7 Reasons why you should vote #Remain

17/05/2016
  1. You love French wine, German beer, Dutch cheese, Italian recipes, Spanish beaches, Austrian ski resorts, Czech castles, Swedish furniture, Finnish saunas and, did I forget, Belgian chocolate. Beethoven, Debussy, Chopin, Verdi and Mozart may also be music to your ears. Modern philosophy would not be complete without Voltaire, Descartes, Hegel, Nietzsche, Wittgenstein, Plato and Aristotle? Just think of the all wonderful art galleries and museums of Paris, Vienna, Barcelona, Prague, Cracow, Florence, Athens and Talinn?

Infantile Leftwing Globalism

14/05/2016

You might naively imagine the main focus of the Green Party is to promote environmental sustainability, while the Labour Party seeks to defend the rights of ordinary working people in their country. Yet increasingly both serve the interests of global corporations, just as much as their nominally centre-right counterparts in misnamed conservative, liberal or separatist parties.

In Defence of Red Ken

30/04/2016

Ken Livingstone, former Mayor of London and Labour MP, is back in the news for having allegedly misinterpreted a politically sensitive chapter of the 20th century. John Mann MP, an avid supporter of all recent US-led wars in the Middle East and Central Asia, accused Mr Livingstone of rewriting history by suggesting Hitler’s National Socialist Party supported Zionism.

On admitting you're wrong

20/03/2016
Intellectual Dishonesty and Cognitive Dissonance: Is it better to be wrong for the right reasons or coincidentally right for the wrong reasons? For sake of argument, let us imagine a school teacher asks you to write an essay on the origin of the human species and let us also assume the teacher has a strong bias in favour of scientific orthodoxy on this subject.

Meet the new Universalist Establishment

24/02/2016

Trendy leftwingers are the new ultra-conformists. Many of still tend to simplify political analysis on a one-dimensional left / right spectrum. We might use many other scales such as state ownership vs private enterprise, libertarian vs authoritarian, individualism vs collectivism, local vs national, national vs international or environmental friendliness vs economic growth, equality vs meritocracy or cultural diversity versus social cohesiveness, but somehow we still try to place each opinion somewhere on the elusive left-right scale.

Out-of-touch Euro-phobic Elites

31/01/2016

I love Europe, its peoples, its cuisines, its landscapes, its architecture, its music, its literature, its languages and its philosophers. Call me a nostalgic but I don’t want the French to become German, the Germans to become English, the English to become Polish, the Italians to be Swedish or the Swedes to become Moroccan. I’m quite happy with the French being French and the Swedes being Swedish, just as long they do not impose their ways on everyone else.

Our Emerging Brave New World

28/12/2015

Mental Health Mantra: If you believe vocal lobbies, we can never devote enough resources to tackle our ongoing mental health crisis. Politicians of all hues like to champion the rights of mental health patients to better care. They try to score points on the perceived lack of funding for mental health services. The subtext is ...

Should we still call the global lingua franca English?

19/12/2015

In more innocent times we associated a language with its national community. For much of history nations and languages had a symbiotic relationship. Language is the ultimate propagator of the cultural traits that hold together communities and enable the development of hierarchical command structures. A multilingual country is effectively an empire, for it has to unite peoples unable to communicate easily except through the medium of a common higher-register language that is not their own.

Destabilisation on the eve of WW3

24/11/2015

Opinion leaders in the West seem to take four positions on the fast-moving Middle East quagmire:

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