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The tipping point

If there’s one thing we know about climate breakdown, it’s that it will not be linear, smooth or gradual. Just as one continental plate might push beneath another in sudden fits and starts, causing periodic earthquakes and tsunamis, our atmospheric systems will absorb the stress for a while, then suddenly shift. Yet, everywhere, the programmes designed to avert it are linear, smooth and gradual. Current plans to avoid catastrophe would work in a simple system like a washbasin, in which…

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Geronimo: The Musical

What is an R rate? I can’t remember. Do you have to wear a mask? I’m not sure. Is the virus all over? Who knows and does anyone care? So it’s back to normal then. But it isn’t really, is it. 12-year-olds are going to be vaccinated, without their parents’ consent. The UK government has a traffic-light system list of countries we can visit on holiday. A travel agency will happily let you book and charge you £10k for a…

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Should I stay or should I go?

Advertising used to be great fun. In the 80s and 90s it was a creative and exciting industry to work in. You got to travel the world (business class) and spend millions of pounds of someone else’s money.  Now, though, it is run by accountants and has migrated to the internet, where creativity is anathema. No way do I want to use algorithms to target an audience with a bland message, so advertising was out. So I turned to journalism,…

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Billionaires: the new space junk

Jeff Bezos, billionaire and reptile, has been flown in his rocket to the edge of space and back. Well, straight up into the air to a height of around 63 miles, to achieve a spot of weightlessness. Bezos is the founder of Amazon and has accumulated Croesus-levels of wealth through business success and a stubborn refusal to pay taxes. He doesn’t even pretend to feel obligated to do good with his wealth.  In the past year, his ex-wife has become…

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What year is it?

If you don’t work in London, we won’t pay you London wages. ‘So why are you closing the London offices then?’. Let’s park this WFW conundrum for a while and take a look at the positive and redemptive qualities of sport. We have just had the 2020 Euros, which ended in a deserved win for the best team, Italy, and was widely regarded as a huge success. Until at least a thousand drunk English fans breached the Wembley ‘security’, like…

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What is an acceptable level of risk?

Life is full of risk and the pandemic makes us consider what are unacceptable risks to life and what can then be done to reduce them. We are told we ‘must learn to live’ with the virus; some people will inevitably die from it, so what is an ‘acceptable’ number of Covid deaths? The UK government’s chief medical adviser and now human punchbag, Chris Whitty, points out that we live with seasonal flu, which kills thousands each year. Like deaths…

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It’s all Greek from now on

You have to marvel at science. There have apparently been over 500,000 iterations of the Covid virus and the scientists have managed so far to identify four that are of sufficient interest to them  to continue lockdown. The current mutation keeping governments in a state of paralysis is Delta (previously known as the Indian variant). We will probably have progressed through the Greek alphabet at least twice before humanity can return to normal. Last August I wrote this article for…

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Let’s get physical

As the UK population suffers from increasing Stockholm Syndrome, data released by various sources place it in second place, behind Portugal, in the EU obesity league tables. With around 28% of its population obese, type 2 diabetes is soaring and 15 months’ of lockdown has considerably worsened the UK’s health. The UK, however, is not alone. Earlier this month, the European Parliament called for the better treatment and management of obesity as average obesity levels in the EU have risen…

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Be careful out there

As we receive government guidance on who to hug and for how long, and record numbers of UK citizens drink themselves to death, as newly named variants are batted from country to country, like 50,000+ different, yet essentially identical tennis balls, I would like to return to a topic that I think has far more potentially dangerous outcomes than a cuddle with granny. The perfect storm is on its way.  As I wrote in 2019: A few days ago, I…

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2020 Vision revisited

What year is it? I’ve no idea and it’s getting increasingly confusing. We are currently waiting for Euro 2020 and the 2020 Olympics, even though my diary says it’s 2021. Anyway, it seems as good a time as any to go back to our 2020 Vision, where we predicted what the following year would bring. Here is the article we published at the beginning of January 2020: In my opinion, it all started to unravel in 2016. Donald Trump was…

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