Tag Archives: Aristotle

What our politicians can learn from the Hunger Games rules of persuasion

PANEM today, Panem tomorrow, Panem forever.” You need to watch the chilling new teaser for the next Hunger Games movie, Mockingjay. Its cool irony confirms the series’s remarkable journey from minor young adult diversion to cultural milestone. The series of thrillers is no cinematic masterpiece, but 30 years on from 1984 it is helping inoculate a new generation against the horror and seductions of tyranny. Continue reading

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Filed under Film, Freedom, Liberal education, Politics

There’s no middle way: Stretch or be squeezed

THE Oxford English Dictionary has declared Ed Miliband’s phrase “the squeezed middle” its word of the year. Yes, it’s a phrase, not a word, and let’s set aside how tricky writing the definition must have been, given that Miliband’s concept of the middle appears to reach over the whole population except for far extremes of poverty and wealth. The strength this slightly flabby concept exercises in the popular mind seems to show it is getting at a real anxiety, however vaguely. But its passive phrasing misses the point. The real question for the worried middle of British society is not how bruised it feels by the nation’s current economic pinch, but how it confronts that challenge. Continue reading

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Filed under Economics, Freedom, History, Politics

The zombie menace of anti-capitalist thought

WHEN the Occupy protest movement began, how twenty-first century it seemed: leaderless, emergent and driven by a fury at unprecedented cronyism between high finance and high politics. But how quickly it has decayed, in its London incarnation at least, into reheated anti-capitalist slogans with nothing original to say. Continue reading

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Filed under Business, Economics, Finance, Freedom, History, Human nature, Politics