Unrepresented

When it finally happened, it was almost as bad as we had imagined. Sixteen million Brits woke up with a bump. Nigel Farage, in many ways the sickly progenitor of this situation we now find ourselves in, his pathological grin plastered across the front pages, gave the speech he’d been begging to give. Charlatans have …

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Modern mythologies: from Trump to COP21

The walkway between the runway and Gatwick Airport’s north terminal is filled with the sound of running water. Tired passengers are treated to HSBC’s ‘A Living River’ installation, featuring images and sounds from along the river Yangtze. Promoting its partnership with the WWF, the bank has recognised an important truth about the human mind. Statistics …

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Feeling the strain: sanctions and the Russian character

An anniversary of some controversy will come around on February 27th: two years since soldiers backed by Russia seized the parliament building in Simferopol, Crimea. President Putin announced the annexation of the territory a mere 19 days later. It is beyond reasonable doubt that this move was aggressive, nationalistic and highly illegal. The Economist newspaper …

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Battle lines: Islam and the Paris terror attacks

Crises are revealing. We know now, for instance, that there is at least one way in which François Hollande, the elected president of an advanced European democracy, agrees with masked murderers at the head of an international terror organisation. “This is an act of war”, claimed Mr Hollande, speaking about the atrocities ravaging the streets …

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Markets and the climate: failing whom exactly?

Economists talk a lot about market failure – when free exchange can produce socially undesirable results despite everyone working in their best interest. The ascendancy of liberal, free-market wisdom over the past three decades unchained a host of industries to pursue their sole economic objective: profit. Culminating spectacularly in the sub-prime mortgage crisis, global finance …

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George’s gambit and the language of work

In Westminster, the extent of the Conservative hegemony early in this Parliament is beginning to crystallise. But the conquest runs deeper than the detail of governance: the Tory executive is redefining the terms of engagement. By this I mean the way British people view and understand political events; how concepts like ‘work’ and ‘desert’ can …

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A misnomer of the highest order

Thoughts on narrative, incentives and the Israeli-Palestinian ‘peace-process’ It is by now vividly apparent to observers of the recent chaos in the ‘Promised Land’ that the factions involved, on all sides, are tragically opposed to one another in the most intractable of ways. As I write, Israel has continued its bombardment of the Gaza strip …

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