The Importance Of Parliamentary Rail Services, Defiant Survivors Of The Beeching Axe. “No more will I go to Blandford Forum and MortehoeOn the slow train from Midsomer Norton and Mumby Road.No churns, no porter, no cat on a seatAt Chorlton-cum-Hardy or Chester-le-Street.We won’t be meeting againOn the Slow Train.”
I use the railway frequently, even more so since moving out to the leafy suburbs. But Great Britain has some serious problems with its railways at the moment, notably so with the operator in my area, Northern Rail. There’s strike action that has been going on for months over keeping guards on trains.
Some time ago I wrote about the supposed balance between public health messages and fat acceptance. I say it’s a supposed balance because the two things aren’t actually at odds with each other. But, as happens so often, this argument has reared its monstrously ugly head again and we need to address it.
In 1996 Guinness released their iconic “Fish on a Bicycle” advert, playing on the feminist slogan that “a woman needs a man like a fish needs a bicycle”. Advertising of alcoholic beverages in the UK is complicated, because there are so many restrictions on what can and can’t be shown in marketing material.
On my 35th birthday, I was asked for ID when purchasing alcohol at the supermarket. I was seriously impressed in some ways, as it’s evidently plausible that I could look half my age to the cashier. But it also felt like an indignity, and an injustice that I have acutely felt in other areas of my life.
Well, we have gotten ourselves into a terrible mess over Brexit. The Conservative Party were refusing to release a series of technical notices on the impact of Brexit this week for fear of scaring the voters.
Recently I’d had some problems with motivating myself to write and to sort myself out generally: self care, home maintenance, that sort of thing. My life is a bit of a mess, and I want to do something about it, but there’s something holding me back that never used to trouble me.
Marriage laws in the UK have been evolving since marriages first started being officiated by the Church, in the 12th Century. The 20th Century in particular brought numerous updates to the statute to make marriage more equal and reflective of society’s expectations and needs. But there are still some anachronistic terms and conditions, particularly regarding divorce.
Following publication of my article Funding UBI with a Tax on Land, I received a number of comments asking that I back up the figures with some calculations. I have now compiled some results, but these pose more questions than were asked in the first place.
WARNING: in this post I discuss homophobia, transphobia and some weird shit about seagulls. Look away now if you’re ornithophobic - shit, too late! Because I’m no doubt going to get grilled on my credentials, I identify as non-binary, and I usually read as a gay man or a gay woman, so I dunno, maybe I’m performing something like how non-binary’s supposed to look.
There cannot be a woman on the planet that has never claimed to have a boyfriend when trying to escape the clutches of a would-be suitor that we have no interest in. Why do we do this? Because simply saying that we’re not interested doesn’t work - it turns into a negotiation or a fight.
Another day, another man blaming feminists for the higher male suicide rate. I’ve covered this before in my previous article, Male Suicide: MRAs weigh in on #MeToo. It’s understandable and expected (dare we say hopefully so?) that men are going to be distressed by being caught behaving badly.
Tommy Robinson’s in the news again, and gaining support from keyboard warriors the world over (yes, some US commentators, and probably some from elsewhere, have jumped on the bandwagon and attempted to explain English law and politics to actual English people living in England).
G ermaine Greer is in the news once again, for saying something outrageous (once again). There’s so much wrong with so many of the things she says, but in order to deconstruct all of them, I’d need a book deal and a sizeable advance.
In February this year, Monica Lewinsky spoke about her #MeToo moment, regarding her relationship with then-president Bill Clinton. She views the dynamics of that relationship in a different light now, both in terms of how in control she felt of her actions and participation, and in how it was perceived by the outside world.
One of the most common questions asked about Universal Basic Income (UBI) is “how are we going to fund it?”. Based on the current UK tax structure, it could be paid for through income tax, but it would require an increase in rates at every tax band.
I read an article in Inc. about whether one has a fixed or a growth mindset, and how that can affect one’s life chances: Before I dig any further, I’m going to say that I do agree with the initial…
It’s a phrase I’ve heard again and again in business settings, yet it’s trotted out as arcane wisdom every time without a thought as to what that really means. Supposedly it’s related to CBT theory, in that the more you visualise and repeat an action, you train yourself to become better at it.
It was scary, but I lived to tell the tale. I felt inspired to finally write about my diagnosis and treatment for a brain tumour after reading Jennifer Dary’s account of her recovery from brain surgery, plus this article from the Guardian that appeared in my Twitter feed.
B oth the UK and the US have high levels of obesity. In the UK 62% of the population is overweight or obese, and in the US it’s 74%. There is a wealth of advice from government and the medical profession encouraging us to slim down, to avoid the risk of serious illnesses and early death.
One of the barriers to adopting Universal Basic Income (UBI) is the feeling in neoliberal societies that nobody should get something for nothing. Even if the money is available, and there would be tangible improvements to society, the rule is that individuals must work in order to get recompense.
Do we always have to follow the same patterns? I left an abusive relationship almost 10 years ago, and I’ve been through counselling, therapy, a domestic abuse recovery program, and I’m still not completely over what happened to me. The process has helped me understand what went on, learn more about myself, and to rebuild my life.
We never discuss the most important reason for staying. W hen we talk about domestic abuse, we miss one of the most important factors - love. We frame the argument in more rational terms, e.g. when we believe the victim only stays for practical reasons. We feel it must be because of lack of resources, or isolation, or logistics.
There is a history of racist and xenophobic policies behind this. The Windrush generation are named after one of the ships that transported large numbers of people from Commonwealth nations to the UK in the 1940s, 50s and 60s (see image above). This migration was encouraged, and was seen as mutually beneficial.