A list of all the articles published on this site

  • The brief ascendency of Kwasi and Liz

    A cautionary tale for all humankind for all time. Truly, Kwasi and Liz are the stuff of legend. If they had lived deep in antiquity they would still be remembered in fables and folk-tales, not as role models but as a warning to us all. For besides trashing the British economy in a few brief…

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  • Governments must be on our side: the absolute importance of democracy

    Given that in practice we probably do need governments we need, first, to ask what we want those governments to do; secondly, to ensure that we install the kinds of governments we think we need; and, thirdly – and at least equally important – ensure that we can get rid of governments that fail to…

  • Do we need governments at all?

    Tolstoy no less in his essay “On Anarchy” in 1900 asked whether we need government at all and concluded that on the whole we would be better off without – provided we, people at large, take responsibility for our own actions and behave as moral beings:  “The Anarchists are right in everything; in the negation…

  • What the mind-shift entails

    My excellent friend Ziauddin Sardar – a former colleague from New Scientist and now founder and editor of Critical Muslim – has summarized the mind-shift that’s needed as follows:  “We need to move from disciplinary enclaves to integration of knowledge. This journey begins with the acknowledgement of (a) the limitation of disciplinary perspectives that cannot…

  • The meaning of “radical”

    Within days of her dubious appointment as Britain’s Prime Minister in September 2022 Liz Truss and her chancellor Kwasi Kwarteng produced a budget-that-wasn’t-a-budget — which was widely condemned by experts the world over, and by people-at-large. Ah, she said, but we are merely being “radical” – which is necessary to get us out of the…

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  • Just to stir the pot a bit more: the concept of “keystone genes”

    Colin Tudge reflects on a new bill before parliament that aims to ease the passage of gene editing – and on research from Switzerland that shows once more that nature is not as controllable as some would like.

  • GMOs: Seven obvious questions in search of straightforward answers

    The commercial-political-scientific momentum is nudging us step by step towards a world of GM crops and livestock. Yet the fundamental questions remain unanswered. Does GM really solve problems that need solving? Is it really intended to save the world, or to maximize short-term wealth and centralize control?