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INSECURITY IN OUR TURBULENT TIMES

INSECURITY IN OUR TURBULENT TIMES

February 24, 2022

This podcast is a wide-ranging consideration of individual, psychological  insecurity and material, collective insecurity and the relationship between them. We make our observations in the context of current events, especially the war in Ukraine, global  warming, and financial meltdown, whilst drawing on inspiration from process philosophers like the Buddha, Heraclitus, Whitehead, Watts, Nietzsche, Marx and Lao Tzu. We draw on a brief discussion of the sublime and the beautiful to help us identify the emancipatory comportment to our intrinsic vulnerability and mortality. [Free. 50 minutes.] 

TORIES ON THE ROPES? - INTERESTING TIMES 43

TORIES ON THE ROPES? - INTERESTING TIMES 43

November 20, 2021

In the light of the MPs second jobs scandal, we ask, 'How much more will the public put up with?' This leads to questions about the nature of ideology, and the contradictory class consciousness of Tories who make light of in-work poverty and the cutting of Universal Credit on the one hand, and then, on the other hand, plead that MPs need second jobs because they can't discharge their familial duty on £82 per annum! We underscore the point that this current scandal isn't anything fundamentally new, but a symptom of the profound and toxic entanglement of corporate and state power in the UK. [Free. 44 minutes.]

ECONOMIC COLLAPSE IN THE UK & BEYOND - PART3 [THE FUTURE]

ECONOMIC COLLAPSE IN THE UK & BEYOND - PART3 [THE FUTURE]

November 13, 2021

This podcast continues our series on economic collapse. It considers what the future might involve using the COP26 climate change conference as an indicator and focussing on economic, ecological and cultural systems. [Free. 1 hour 17 minutes.]

WELSH LABOUR - A GLIMMER OF HOPE

WELSH LABOUR - A GLIMMER OF HOPE

October 12, 2021

In this podcast, we take a brief look at a couple of the interesting and hopeful initiatives of the Senedd Cymru [The Welsh Parliament] which is currently under Labour Party control. These are the Well-Being of Future Generations Act of 2015 which requires public bodies to consider the long term consequences of their actions, and The One Planet Development initiative which  encourages ecologically sustainable development. [Free. 27 minutes.]

TAOIST DIALECTICS

TAOIST DIALECTICS

September 5, 2021

In this podcast we playfully and seriously outline our eccentric take on 'Taoist Dialectics'. This entails brief encounters with Plato's The Sophist and Hegel's Logic as well as an engagement with a parable told by Taoist master, Chuang Tzu. We relate all this to personal resilience in these apocalyptic times. [Free. 32 minutes.]

THE DRY TINDER OF RESENTMENT & OPPORTUNITIES FOR EMANCIPATION - INTERESTING TIMES 25

THE DRY TINDER OF RESENTMENT & OPPORTUNITIES FOR EMANCIPATION - INTERESTING TIMES 25

March 6, 2021

Borrowing a metaphor from Chris Hedges, I consider the UK body politic as rather like a bulk of dry tinder waiting for a random spark to ignite a conflagration of unrest.  I suggest that both Brexit and the COV19 pandemic are intensifiers of this flammability. I treat the matter as having economic and cultural-ideological dimensions, particularly lighting on recent trade union activity in the UK. The recent UK budget receives some attention, particularly the 1% pay rise offer made to health service workers and the angry response that the health professionals made to it. I make suggestions as to how the broad left might not be caught disorientated the day after the inevitable sublime moments that are now waiting in the wings. This involves the judicious use of the utopian imagination to co-ordinate the many strands of progressive activism. [Free. 43 minutes.]

LOOKING BACK OVER 2020 AND FORWARD TO 2021 - INTERESTING TIMES 19

LOOKING BACK OVER 2020 AND FORWARD TO 2021 - INTERESTING TIMES 19

January 1, 2021

On New Year's Day 2021, we pause to look both backwards and forwards. We identify and discuss four themes: the defeat of Trump and what that means for the global right Internationale, the fragmentation of the left and signs in movements around the world of its incipient re-emergence, the intensifying struggle to control information and particularly the internet, the impact of certain technological developments such as AI and CRISPR. We indicate how these developments are interlocked and how that points towards what is to be done. [Free.  47 minutes.]

LABOUR’S CIVIL WAR, BREXIT, FRAGMENTATION - INTERESTING TIMES 17

LABOUR’S CIVIL WAR, BREXIT, FRAGMENTATION - INTERESTING TIMES 17

December 7, 2020

This episode of the current affairs series offers comment on the suspension of Jewish socialists and critical left voices in Constituency Parties from the Labour Party on very dubious grounds. I conclude that this isn't about anti-semitism or racism in general but a purge of the left from the party. The suspicion is compounded by the soliciting of funding from billionaires by party leadership. I go on to relate this fragmentation to the fragmentary forces expressing themselves through Brexit as the clock ticks down. On the hopeful side, I mention the world's biggest strike of farmers and workers in India which involved 250 million people! [Free. 36 minutes.]

 

JOHNSON’S POST-TRUTH SPEECH TO TORY CONFERENCE - INTERESTING TIMES 11

JOHNSON’S POST-TRUTH SPEECH TO TORY CONFERENCE - INTERESTING TIMES 11

October 8, 2020

In this podcast, I examine Boris Johnson's speech to the Tory Party Conference 2020. I identify several instance of incoherence within the speech. These concern the ostensible allegiance to private provision of public service which on examination is seen to obscure the actual entanglement of state and corporate power, the rhetorical reduction of the concept of freedom to a triviality, a scant regard for truth, a display of ignorance as to the nature of historical narrative, and, hoping no-one will notice, talking as though xenophobia and a concern for social justice can be reconciled, which they can't.  [Free. 34 minutes.]

WHAT IS FASCISM? 2 - THE PRESENT DAY UK & USA

WHAT IS FASCISM? 2 - THE PRESENT DAY UK & USA

October 6, 2020

In this podcast, I ask the question, "Are the US and UK fascist?" I attempt to address this question by checking if any of the features I identified in the first podcast of this series are observable in the current situations in the UK and the US. [I leave aside the matter of the economy for a future podcast.] I conclude that many of the elements of fascism are present and that some are venerable, others incipient and some are being actively cultivated. I suggest briefly what needs to be done about this dangerous situation. [Free. 1 hour 2 mins.]

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