The future, and other things I have no idea about

I've not been blogging here a lot lately. Partly because I've been doing that horrible thing known as "working for money and trying to forget", partly because now that Facey and Insty exist, there's no real need to stick amazing holiday photos up here, and partly because Brexit has completely fucked up my predictions and … Continue reading The future, and other things I have no idea about

Southern Railway, now arriving in 1973

I did a piece at Citymetric on why the disastrous shenanigans at Southern Railway are actually a resumption of a very old battle. They paid me a lot less than a Southern Railway guard gets for the same hours. I probably enjoyed it more, though. Image: an EMD E6A leading the US Southern Railway's The Tennessean … Continue reading Southern Railway, now arriving in 1973

Actually, it’s about ethics in plebiscite campaigning

I've refrained from long-form comment on the UK's EU referendum, partly because the debate is generally painful, but also because there are extremely clever people who've already made most of the points I've wanted to make. One thing that I think is worth addressing, though, is the current suggestion that people are switching back to Remain because … Continue reading Actually, it’s about ethics in plebiscite campaigning

Electability and absurd arrogance

I don't know what's going to happen in the next US general election. I also didn't know what was going to happen in the US electoral primaries, although I don't think there's any great shame in admitting the current situation isn't what I anticipated. It seems highly likely, at this point, that Donald Trump will … Continue reading Electability and absurd arrogance

My preference is that the clown show leaves town

Like most countries founded by people with a passionate and blind terror that they might at some point be subjected to democracy, Australia has a Senate with more-or-less absolute veto power over its House of Representatives. As in many federal countries, Australian Senators are allocated on a state-by-state basis, not on a citizen-by-citizen basis. The result is that … Continue reading My preference is that the clown show leaves town

He was watching the defectives

Extremely sad to hear about the sudden unexpected death of long-time friend, crony and partner in crime Tom Barry, of BorisWatch and @boriswatch fame. Tom provided exactly the kind of hard-nosed, subject-expert and ruthless research and writing into London's terrible mayor and supine general assembly that nobody in traditional local journalism has (bothered to do / had time for) … Continue reading He was watching the defectives

Today we’re all gay Americans

Congratulations, the US Supreme Court, for making a sensible decision based on Constitutional precedent that horrendous rightwing idiots will pretend is overreach until long after we're all dead. To celebrate, here is a nostalgic musing on religion in education. There was a strange Welsh Baptist chemistry teacher at my high school who ran a renegade version … Continue reading Today we’re all gay Americans

There was no late swing, and there were no shy Tories

One of the most interesting questions after the 2015 UK General Election is, how could all of the electoral polling possibly have gone so incredibly wrong? Labour and the Conservatives were predicted to be neck-and-neck and both short of forming a government on their own, with Labour losing about 50 seats in Scotland to the Scottish Nationalist … Continue reading There was no late swing, and there were no shy Tories

FPTP doesn’t mean your vote is wasted – just ask a Scot

The UK's New Economics Foundation, who style themselves as nef because that's the sort of thing that was cool in 2003, are one of the worst think-tanks going [1]. With a couple of weeks to go before the 2015 General Election, they have jumped on the election news bandwagon. Their effort is well up to their normal … Continue reading FPTP doesn’t mean your vote is wasted – just ask a Scot

Some men never learn

As I noted last week, celebrated male feminist Sam de Brito wrote an extremely embarrassing article in 2005 praising the pick-up artist seminars organised by RSD, the company that now employs borderline-rapist Julien Blanc. After online political magazine Crikey picked up my story, frog-in-a-sock de Brito issued a petulant denial, both in the comments to … Continue reading Some men never learn