Economics

Playing Chicken With Brexit

Who Will Blink First: Britain Or The EU?

There was a rather inflammatory article in today’s Guardian newspaper that suggested that the EU and Britain were playing chicken with Brexit.

There were several issues that the author didn’t mention, one being the thorny issue of a legally binding settlement. From the British, that is. Now to be fair, there have been murmurings that the British were actually going to produce something. However, thus far, the British have been very good at suggesting something might happen, in the way David Davis didn’t even think to write his impact report. In a democracy, this would have been enough to bring a government down: he had been ordered by the Speaker to present the report on the given date. All he could do was to turn out his pockets and say that the Russians had eaten it.

Or something like that, I can’t remember his exact words.

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A Human Menagerie · The Comfort Zone

Russians Is Rong.

I don’t quite know what has gotten into the Russians of late, but they are behaving very badly. Everywhere in the news there are new articles about their wrongdoing, from their intervention in Syria to their hacking elections across the world – including of course, the infamous Brexit vote – and being naughty at the Olympics.

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Economics · Modern Times

Would You Adam And Eve It?

Adam, Eve and the Apple: The Problem Of Our Past And Our Future.

It’s Christmas and you will need something to mull over when falling asleep over the Queen’s speech at three. Because, it’s more that Christmas is so easy to predict: it comes at the same time every year. It’s not like Easter that comes and goes as it pleases. Christmas is the same date, the same time every year. Year in, year out. Ask anyone when Christmas is and you’ll get the same answer. Ask them about Easter and it’s not so easy. Continue reading “Would You Adam And Eve It?”

A Human Menagerie · The Secret Of Systems

Ships That Go Bump In The Night.

http://navylive.dodlive.mil/tag/uss-fitzgerald/
The small hours are boring when you’ve done it for ten years. Source: Navy Live

It is the middle of the night and all is quiet. Routine on a naval ship is the normality; the routine in the small hours of the night is even more crucial, because that’s the time when people are at their least aware. It’s nature: humans are better asleep in the depths of the night. Standing around in the dark is simply not as interesting as standing around during the daytime. Even at sea, there are things to see in the daylight, like a seagull. At least there is something; when it’s dark, it’s just one fug of nothingness. The blackness becomes boring for the rating standing lookout on the bridge of the USS Porter.

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Economics · Modern Times

Grenfell Tower.

Well, it’s been all over the news. The inferno that engulfed a tower block was on the front pages from Bild Zeitung to The Times Of India. I’ve read several interesting posts regarding this incident and one brought me a snippet of news that really made me realize what a parlous state the British economy is in today.

Bill40 spoke of how the costs saved on the renovation job was £5,000. And he put this in bold numbers because the sum was so tiny. I know five grand is a lot to many people, but in terms of building, it’s the equivalent of one euro cent. That is to say, you can’t buy anything with that kind of money.

Not in building renovation, at least. The scaffolding for that job would have cost in excess of £30,000. Five grand is peanuts.

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A Sideways View · The Comfort Zone

A Sideways Look At Permaculture.

It would be a month or so ago that my new neighbour moved in, we shook hands and all was merry. He said how nice my garden was – which given the amount of weeds growing in it, came as something of a surprise to me. Never mind, like it he did. He then went on to mention something about the Kraaijbeekerhof estate which is run on bio-dynamic principles. Well, it’s supposed to be, at least. I asked him if he was interested in bio-dynamics and he said he didn’t know anything about it because he was more interested in permaculture.

‘Oh,’ I thought to myself at the time. ‘Oh, dear.’

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A Human Menagerie · Art

Auguste Rodin: The Citizens Of Calais.

majestic in appearance, for all the solemnity of the occasion.
Nothing in this man’s stature speaks of doubt.

The tale of the six citizens of Calais dates back to the time when the English king, Edward the Third had besieged the port of Calais during the Hundred Years War between England and France. A war that essentially saw the French wrest control of most of Northern France from the English Crown. At the time, in 1347, the city of Calais was still under the English crown. An English Crown that was of French, that is to say, Norman blood. European politics in the fourteenth century was complicated, and it hasn’t got any better since.

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