Deconstructing and (re?)constructing democracy

So, it’s election time again here in the UK; that solitary period every half-decade during which this country’s political elite has to actually somewhat engage directly with ordinary people and we, for our part, are asked to actually participate directly in the political process. Though it must be noted that many individual MPs do work…

The ‘FIMO’ Phenomenon

Serendipity in plasticine I was at my friend and neighbour’s house one afternoon after school recently. I have three kids, she has four. It was lively. They were all playing with this nice plasticine called ‘Fimo’. I’d never heard of it, but apparently it’s what the Aardman people use to create Shaun the Sheep and…

Comic Relief is a bad joke; Make charity history!

There are many institutions in our culture and society that, for me, highlight the depth of our dysfunctionality and despair. Such institutions express the shocking degree to which a social system of artificially-created human misery has been so successfully naturalised that its universality and ubiquity has been rendered invisible. They also reveal how we are,…

On middle-class foodyism

This is a post about a stereotype – the stereotype of the middle-class foodie: the organic, fair trade, quinoa-munching, camomile-sipping, bread-making, home-brewing, veg patch-loving middle-class foodie. But, it’s also about much more than this figure of ridicule. It’s about a wider and deeper cynicism towards anyone who seeks to take a principled, ethical stance in…

Denouncing the false god of Work

Before you read this blog, I’m going to ask you to take about five minutes to watch a short video and read a short newspaper opinion piece. First, check out this brief video. It’s called ‘Max’s Story’ and it featured in a big publicity campaign throughout Singapore earlier this year called ‘The Best of You’…

Part Two of Politicising Transition

Part Two: Politicising Transition In the first part of this blog, I praised the creativity and energy of the wider environmental movement in the UK, but identified the unwillingness of many groups to identify capitalism as the social system that generates environmental destruction as a profound flaw. I argued that their depoliticised worldview was a…