I am your bank, here to mess you around

2nd February 2015 0

Last week I had my own little banking crisis. Having accepted the bank’s suggestion that I print my own statements direct from the internet, I discovered that the bank then set out to drive me mad. ‘To obtain your statement,’ said the webpage, ‘simply click on the link below.’ Unfortunately, there was no link below. I tried various methods to … [Read on]

Anorexia, the highest state of grace of the 21st century

26th January 2015 0

The economics of fashion shows, like those of football, are to me mysterious. The majority of football clubs make a loss, sometimes a substantial one, yet they continue to play their players millions, the wage bill being by far their principal cost. I can only surmise that such clubs are elaborate tax avoidance schemes. The peculiarity of fashion shows is … [Read on]

When Portugal almost became Europe’s Cuba

24th January 2015 0

The other night I was at Sofia’s Red House for Culture and Debate – a discussion venue which doubles as a shelter from the cold. The ostensible occasion was Portuguese Film Lab Day, a day of screening for Portuguese documentaries and arty movies with political themes. First up was a movie about the revolution of 25 April 1974. For the … [Read on]

Vulgar Celebrities

24th January 2015 1

In Britain, the use of vulgar language by the rich, famous and privileged has long been meant as a sign of attempted political rectitude. The reasoning is as follows: if the people use vulgar language and I use vulgar language, I am of the people, notwithstanding my wealth, fame and privileges. Hence I can hang on to them with a … [Read on]

“THE NHS NOT ONLY MUST FAIL, IT MUST BE SEEN TO FAIL” Really?

20th January 2015 0

What does this chart tell you? It tells you that it doesn’t matter which party is in power, avoidable deaths and disease – the purpose of any health service – have declined spectacularly since 1990. These are due to improvements in medical technology, public health and the ban on smoking. A juggernaut of scientific advance that has swept aside all attempts by ministers, … [Read on]

An hysterical blindness worthy of Dr Mesmer

19th January 2015 0

Everyone is self deluded to a certain extent, just to keep going in life, but the severely myopic fantasist can be an irritating companion and sometimes dangerous. In government there seem to be a lot of people who cling to extreme fantasy, even in the face of extremist violence. This Sunday, 18th January, we had Home Secretary Teresa May telling … [Read on]

An hysterical blindness worthy of Dr Mesme

19th January 2015 0

Everyone is self deluded to a certain extent, just to keep going in life, but the severely myopic fantasist can be an irritating companion and sometimes dangerous. In government there seem to be a lot of people who cling to extreme fantasy, even in the face of extremist violence. This Sunday, 18th January, we had Home Secretary Teresa May telling … [Read on]

Paris. The Blame Israel Brigade rides into town

16th January 2015 0

We gleaned some illuminating insights into public figures – including the sometimes predictably despicable nature of the usual suspects – in the aftermath of the Paris slaughter. And understand that I am now moving beyond discussion of the normal reactions of grief, anger, insecurity and reconciliation. Firstly, Obama is as autistic as ever – failing to either attend in person … [Read on]

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