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Tim Pendry
Libertarian democratic socialist, cynic, existentialist, politically non-euclidean ... loves family, women and free spirits.
Libertarian democratic socialist, cynic, existentialist, politically non-euclidean ... loves family, women and free spirits.
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Amidst the hysteria surrounding his claimed 'Swedish blunder', Trump's eventual explanation proves plausible. He wrote on Twitter that his statement was a reference back to a Fox News item that previous night. The original Fox item can be viewed here. Now you can simply dismiss the claims on which he relied as, well, Fox News, and it is clear that reasonable opinion can differ on how to judge the claims of the Fox guest but that is not really good enough. Fox News is no worse than CNN, the BBC or RT in having an agenda. The story (on which you can make your own judgment) would be a reasonable basis for sufficient concern to debate the matter further. There are almost certainly issues surrounding possible cover up of criminality (though Swedish liberals deny this), there are strains arising from the sudden huge (proportionately) influx of refugees into Europe in general and there is a cultural issue in the way that some advanced liberal societies adopt an almost totalitarian approach to dissent against being forcibly made to be 'humanitarian'.

https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/14-trumps-swedish-blunder-tim-pendry 

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The British Social Model Post-Brexit ... a New Social Britain

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This still stands up as a classic espionage thriller nearly half a century since it was written. It has spawned an excellent TV version with Alec Guinness in 1979 and a film in 2011, both of which might even be regarded by some as better than the book.

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Internationalist Future is a direct response to the rise of national populism but it does not represent simple opposition ... 

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TPPR is now co-sponsor of a think tank start-up designed for what looks to be a new era in international relations - it is called Internationalist Future. The other co-sponsor is Mark Seddon, formerly communications adviser and speech writer for UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon, amongst his many other accomplishments. The purpose of the think tank is exactly what it says on the tin - or rather the holding page on the internet. It is a direct response to the rise of national populism but not from a position of simple opposition. We need to understand not berate. 

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Book Review #14 - Thoughts on Art Triggered by the Phaidon Colour Library

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What we may be seeing in Trump's behaviour is not merely the expression of a wayward personality (which is how the media might like it to be seen) but a 'disintermediation project' much like the old Protestant call for a direct relationship between God and the People. Of course, the media remains a power in the land - in fact there are signs that it is being reinvigorated by the challenge - but the terms of its relationship to power have changed. It now has to compete directly with a parallel system of mass communication that has taken infotainment to new creative levels. 

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This is not an easy book to review so let us start with the basics. I recommend it despite its flaws. There is a lot of truth, albeit approached with a dose of healthy scepticism, in Taleb's critical view of how our society has developed and how we lack courage in facing our own condition within it.



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Alternative Universes in American Politics?
The so-called mainstream media, obsessing about its own concerns
with 'what is truth?', seems to have given up on the job of reporting
what is actually happening in Washington as the Trump administration
gets into gear. One of the best short accounts com...

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Last Wednesday the Economic Research Council, a think tank which promotes education in and debate around economics, had its first talk of 2017 - an interesting review of the geopolitics of Indo-Chinese relations by Dr. Jonathan Ward, currently of the University of Oxford's Faculty of Oriental Studies. An excellent overview but what struck us was an almost throwaway line that the (pre-Trump) US played a supportive role to India because of its leading role in showing that democracy can work in a country of nearly 1.3bn people. -
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