It is tragic to see a great nation bringing itself to its knees. That is what we are looking at in Britain today.

In June, 2016, Britain (though not the Scottish and Irish parts of it) voted in a referendum by a very narrow margin to leave the European Union. An extremely important aspect of this vote was that the majority was won because the over-65s voted decisively to leave while the younger generation voted to remain, meaning that the future of the nation’s young people was compromised by their elders. How can it be right that an older generation binds a younger generation to a future the younger generation does not want?

The evidence is mounting every day that the outcome of Brexit will be a Britain which is poorer, weaker, smaller, less influential, more inward-looking, more-divided – less ‘Great’ in every sense of the word. And it is already clear that in the negotiations over exit terms the EU has the upper hand. The talks will proceed along lines suggested by the EU. And Britain has already conceded that it will pay an exit bill – contrary to Britain’s Foreign Secretary’s embarrassing claim at first that Eurocrats could “go whistle” for their money. The Economist recently described ….


Get used to it: all of us are biased

In any given situation we assume that people, including ourselves, will act sensibly.

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Beware the self-righteous

One of the worst aspects of the self-righteous is that those most guilty of it most vociferously deny that they are guilty at all.

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Thinking, already, about the next general election

In a vibrant democracy elections should be a cause for celebration, an ever welcome occasion regularly marking the successful outcome of what in any country’s history has always been a long struggle to overcome authoritarian, and often brutal, rule.

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In a long life I have on a number of occasions been asked to address various groups graduating from school or university or making the transition from one stage of life to another – for instance, new recruits in a company or first-time members of a national sports team.

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What poetry teaches

I find it difficult to convince friends – or anyone – that poetry is worth reading.

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