Deaths of stars and friends remind us how fragile we are

There have been a number of high profile deaths in the news recently: starting with Lemmy from Motorhead, followed by David Bowie and ending with Alan Rickman last week. I was never a particular fan of any of them, but they served as a familiar backdrop to the ongoing story of my own life, so it will seem strange not to have them around any more. There was also the news of the death of my good friend Richard Stainton, which I first heard about on Facebook. What was particularly poignant about this for me is that I have recently … Continue reading Deaths of stars and friends remind us how fragile we are

Unbalanced reporting is feeding our ignorance

I overheard one of my colleagues at work the other day. He was listening to a news report about the prospect of British jets bombing Isis targets in Syria. “Let’s bomb them,” he said. I often hear him saying such things. He’s not a right wing bigot or a racist, although he might be Islamophobic. Many people are Islamophobic these days. I said, “that’s exactly what they are saying about you right now.” He turned from his frame and looked at me sceptically. “So what would you do?” Unfortunately my answer was a lot less succinct than the three words … Continue reading Unbalanced reporting is feeding our ignorance

Left wing vs right wing

I’m getting very tired of the division of the world into “right wing” and “left wing”. It seems to me to be a false dichotomy. In fact if you listen to the average person, they usually hold a wide variety of views reaching right across the political spectrum. Often they are anti-immigration (a right wing position) but at the same time they are also quite likely to be sceptical of government propaganda and as vehemently opposed to British participation in foreign adventures in the Middle East as any member of the SWP. In fact it is entirely possible to hold … Continue reading Left wing vs right wing