Read my latest piece on Spiked: Even Islamists Must Have Freedom of Speech.
Chilling scene from George Orwell’s 1984, which demonstrates the true horror of total power:
“There will be no loyalty, except loyalty towards the Party. There will be no love, except the love of Big Brother.
If you want a picture of the future, imagine a boot stamping on a human face — for ever.”
Some wise words from the brilliant freethinker Bertrand Russell:
When you are studying any matter, or considering any philosophy, ask yourself only what are the facts and what is the truth that the facts bear out.
Never let yourself be diverted either by what you wish to believe, or by what you think would have beneficent social effects if it were believed. But look only, and solely, at what are the facts.
Amid the hysteria and tumult of the Trump inauguration, some of you may have missed the latest event in the Islamic State’s far too enduring campaign of wanton destruction against everything that makes human culture a worthwhile project (author’s note: I will henceforth refer to them by their appropriate name of Islamic State rather than pervert the name of a beautiful ancient Egyptian goddess). Having retaken the territory after an earlier desecration in 2015, IS destroyed the Tetrapylon structure at the site of the Roman theatre of Palmyra in Syria, one of the most beautiful structures of classical antiquity. It seems they were intent on finishing what they started in 2015 when they tore through Palmyra in a frenzy of destruction, levelling the 2000-year-old Temple of Bel and many other historical artefacts. A spray-painted scrawl of Jihadist graffiti can be seen peppering the rubble, laying desecration on demolition. Read More…
The so-called “anti-fascists” are unable to see beyond their own professed beliefs to how their behaviour actually comes across.
Last weekend, during the Trump inauguration in Washington D.C., nearly a million demonstrators descended on America’s capital city to protest the election of Donald Trump. This included the very well attended “Women’s March”, which was, for the most part, peaceful and well organized. Even if one disagreed with their reasons for taking to the streets, it has to be recognized that there was absolutely nothing sinister or ominous about it all. It was people expressing strongly held political beliefs in a perfectly legitimate way.
The same cannot be said for many within the “Antifa” or “Black Bloc” movement, also in attendance, who, storming along with their matching black outfits, flags and masked faces, smashing windows, cars and setting fires, appear just as intolerant as anything which they claim to oppose.
They behaved in exactly the same way during the 2010 students fees protests in Britain, injecting a fascistic strain of violence into normal democratic proceedings.
It is the fascist who responds to an utterance with an authoritarian fist and who engages in desecration rather than discourse.
Candice Holdsworth speaks to Robin Gilbert-Jones about the year ahead.
After the politically seismic events of 2016, what does 2017 hold?
And as identitarians switch focus from gender to race, will racial tensions only further escalate?
Political theory, free will and religion are well represented in this collection of films on Netflix now. Though the films do not deal in the complex semantics of philosophy, as it is studied in academia, they are nonetheless meaningful meditations on the essence of truth, being and existence. Read More…
While browsing the newspaper’s photography section yesterday, I found myself drawn to a series of images of a recently discovered and almost perfectly preserved Second World War Kittyhawk fighter plane that had crashed in the Sahara desert. It invoked a feeling in me I often get when looking at derelict or abandoned places and objects, and that I have often found difficult to explain. It reminded me of the feeling I had when reading Alain de Botton’s description of his exploration of an aeroplane graveyard in the Californian desert (something that has earned a place on my ‘to do’ list); there is a unique stillness to such places that is hard to replicate. The meeting point of the eerie and soothing has a very special quality and I am not the only person to notice this.
At the Golden Globes this year, award-winner Ryan Gosling took the time during his acceptance speech to thank his wife Eva Mendes (who, sadly, recently lost her brother to cancer) for supporting him whilst he was making La La Land. He also dedicated the award to his late brother-in-law. It was an honest and heartfelt tribute that really resonated with most people. He said: Read More…