Hiatus

Nothing will come of nothing: speak again. William Shakespeare, King Lear, Act I, Scene 1 Due to other commitments, there is no post this week. We hope to resume normal service shortly. In the meantime, feel free to peruse the archive.

Book review: Overshoot

Overshoot: The Ecological Basis of Revolutionary Change by William R. Catton Jr., University of Illinois Press (1982), ISBN: 0-252-00988-6 / 978-0-252-00988-4 I believe it was Mark Twain who defined a classic as a book that nobody wants to read but everyone wants to have read. This is a book that everyone ought to have readContinue reading “Book review: Overshoot”

On bargaining

However healthy you think you are, remember that vegetarians die too. Elisabeth Kübler-Ross, On Grief and Grieving: Finding the Meaning of Grief Through the Five Stages of Loss It is not a coincidence that I begin this week’s post with a quotation from Elisabeth Kübler-Ross. Her work on dying and on the grieving process isContinue reading “On bargaining”

On trust

Love all, trust a few, / Do wrong to none. William Shakespeare, All’s Well That Ends Well, I.1 Among the many crises that beset the modern world is a crisis of trust, or so we are told. People are losing their trust in the institutions of government, in corporations, even in the pronouncements of scientists.Continue reading “On trust”

On taking the long view

In the long run we are all dead. John Maynard Keynes, A Tract on Monetary Reform (1923) How long is the long run? At one extreme, there is a principle attributed (perhaps wrongly) to the Iroquois that decisions should be taken in the light of their possible effect seven generations hence, which is at leastContinue reading “On taking the long view”

On beginnings

VLADIMIR: It’s the start that’s difficult. ESTRAGON: You can start from anything. VLADIMIR: Yes, but you have to decide. ESTRAGON: True. Samuel Beckett, Waiting for Godot So here we are in 2022, and – if you’re anything like me – looking forward to it with some apprehension. But there’s no denying that a new yearContinue reading “On beginnings”

Predictions for 2022

Who controls the past controls the future. Who controls the present controls the past. George Orwell, Nineteen Eighty-four Well, it’s that time of year again. In this post, I’m going to re-examine my predictions for 2021 and indulge in some equally ill-founded speculation for the year to come. We’ll see how well I do… SoContinue reading “Predictions for 2022”

On endings

No one is actually dead until the ripples they cause in the world die away. Terry Pratchett, Reaper Man In the northern hemisphere, where I happen to live, today is the shortest day of the year: midwinter, a time of customary celebration – Christian or otherwise – when people gather together around a fire, feastContinue reading “On endings”

On craziness

It is no measure of health to be well adjusted to a profoundly sick society. Jiddu Krishnamurti Many people would agree that we live in crazy times. But I think there’s some value in trying to distinguish between the various kinds of crazy we are seeing, if only to keep ourselves (comparatively) sane. Some ofContinue reading “On craziness”

On having an opinion

You always own the option of having no opinion. There is never any need to get worked up or to trouble your soul about things you can’t control. These things are not asking to be judged by you. Leave them alone. Marcus Aurelius, Meditations I have a friend – let’s call him John. John isContinue reading “On having an opinion”