Monopoly and capitalism: why you’ll lose at both if you try to play nice
Monopoly is obviously based on capitalism, but the biggest difference between Monopoly and real-life capitalism is that Monopoly is just a game. Whatever happens in the game, it doesn’t mean that in real life Read more
Review of ‘Extinction: A Radical History’ by Ashley Dawson
I tend to look out for new books on extinction – I think species extinction is the clearest indicator of what’s happening to ecology, and the thing that will precipitate its collapse unless we stop it. Read more
What good might come from a Trump presidency?
Donald Trump says that when men get together in locker-rooms (or on buses), they ‘talk like that’ with each other. But they don’t – I have male friends, and if one of them talked to me ‘like that’, it would be the end of our friendship. Read more
The US presidential election is a circus, and the sooner we realise that power lies elsewhere the better
As Adam Curtis recently explained, governments are no longer for deciding how we live, or for building a better society – they have slowly morphed into institutions for managing the affairs of the finance sector. Read more
Review of Adam Curtis’s new movie ‘Hypernormalisation’
Adam Curtis has a new movie out – Hypernormalisation, about how, due to ‘perception management’, what we see as ‘normal’ is anything but – and you can see it for free on BBC iPlayer. Read more
Reimagining progress: what we can learn about ‘lean thinking’ from indigenous communities
Here’s a living example of a ‘lean’ economy (outlined by David Fleming in our last blog post), and how you can help to preserve it. The ‘unlean’ economy is encroaching onto the territory of the Kichwa and Sapara communities in the Ecuadorean Amazon, in the form of large oil corporations, and will destroy their communities, as… Continue reading Reimagining progress: what we can learn about ‘lean thinking’ from indigenous communities Read more
David Fleming’s ‘Lean Logic’ and ‘Surviving the Future’, and why they’re important
I attended the launch of two books at Daunt Bookshop in Chelsea on Wednesday evening. David Fleming died in 2010, and now his friend Shaun Chamberlin has edited his magnum opus, Lean Logic, and Chelsea Green have published it. Read more
Revisiting my old university economics textbook – how did I ever fall for this nonsense?
I haven’t opened my old university economics textbook (Economics, by David Begg, Stanley Fischer and Rudiger Dornbusch) since the 1980s, so I was curious to see how I would respond to what I was taught 30 years ago. Read more
Moving forward without the EU: clouds & silver linings
I think we all have stories about mad conversations we’ve had about Brexit since the referendum (or is it just me?). I was called a racist, for example, for suggesting that the UK is nowhere near the top of the league of ‘most xenophobic countries’, and I’ve been amazed by the vitriol this has stirred… Continue reading Moving forward without the EU: clouds & silver linings Read more
Why global capital fears Brexit
Despite its admirable qualities, the authors urge people not to lose sight of the fact that the “the main impetus behind the European Economic Union was the desire of big business to compete with the US” in economic terms. Read more
The EU referendum from an environmental perspective: are you willing to be challenged?
Almost all of my friends, and people whose opinions I respect, are intending to vote ‘Remain’ on Thursday. Here are the four main reasons I hear: Read more
Re-thinking liberalisation – to counter corporate takeover
‘Liberalisation’ – sounds like a good thing, right – like ‘freedom’? It’s rarely named or explained, but underpins the trade agenda and ‘globalisation’. It allows corporations to become mega-transnationals. Read more
The 6 main approaches to changing the world; which one do you subscribe to?
We received an email recently with these sentences: ‘This idea of those evil corporations is mistaken because we are all involved in society and economy. There is no us and them we are all part of it and need to take responsibility for that.’ Read more
A small key can open a large door: why we should all know what’s happening in Rojava
I don’t believe that any ethnic group anywhere in the world can truthfully claim that they have never carried out atrocities against another group. Every nation has been victim and perpetrator at some time. Read more
Come to the ‘How to do it’ gathering next weekend to talk about system change – full programme and timetable
We blogged in January about the ‘How to do it’ conference about grassroots change that’s happening next weekend in London. There are still places available – book your free ticket here. Read more
More on the EU referendum from a low-impact perspective: is another Europe possible?
Is the European Union an empty vessel into which any political content may be poured? Can it accommodate not just neoliberal conservatism but also Keynesian social democracy, hard-line greenery and even pro-nationalisation democratic socialism? Read more
The EU referendum from a low-impact perspective
We’ve got a referendum coming up in June that Cameron didn’t want, but was forced to promise at a time when it looked as though votes lost to UKIP might have cost him the election. His arguments now are largely based on the number of jobs that could be lost if we leave. Read more
Review of Ralph Ibbott’s book ‘Ujamaa: the hidden story of Tanzania’s socialist villages’ and how I was lied to in Tanzania
I have a special interest in this book. As a young man in the 1980s I’d read Julius Nyerere’s Ujamaa (Swahili for “togetherness”, “unity” or “familyhood”). I was inspired by his vision of a co-operative, non-hierarchical society based on sustainable villages Read more
Strange but true: energy efficiency actually increases overall energy use
In the 1960 film School for Scoundrels, which is based on the Stephen Potter “Gamesmanship” books, there is a scene where Ian Carmichael (formerly one of life’s failures) is playing tennis with Terry Thomas. Carmichael has just finished a course in lifemanship Read more