If your mood is low – Nicholas Bate

He has something for every occasion. Here, Nicholas Bate has the cure for those occasional, but inevitable, low moments: 2. A walk would be good. Long. Rain or shine. And your dog would love it to. 4. Escape into a novel. Read the rest, here.

Missing music – @HardenKurt

Mr Cultural Offering has lost his library. I feel his pain.

Politics and science – @mattwridley

A passionate call from Matt Ridley in Monday’s Times: ” It is time for the many brilliant scientists who are discovering great insights into quasars and quarks, Alzheimer’s and allergies, into neurons, fossils, telomeres and ice ages, to “take a public stand and be counted” against the politicisation of some science within their own ranks.” […]

Fairness, populism, reciprocity and the left – @DannytheFink

Daniel Finkelstein writes a fascinating column in yesterday’s Times: Why the left will never understand populism (free registration required). “Fairness” is a slippery subject, but Finkelstein makes a strong argument for a fundamental difference in how people understand the concept. Too often, fairness is conflated with equality and descends into an “all shall have prizes” attitude. […]

The post-Christmas reading shelf

(plus a little, stray listening too large for the music shelves) It groans in weight and eager anticipation. There is no particular order, but I’ve already started The Word Detective and Dear Mr M.    

The power of parliamentary assertiveness, reformation radicalism and Lockean liberalism – Michael Gove

Michael Gove has a thoughtful column in today’s Times (requires free registration). It echoes an argument I’ve heard in a few places over recent months; broadly that we – the liberal, democratic, West – need to be prepared to assert and defend our beliefs. Indeed, need to assert that these are our deep-rooted and long-standing […]

I want a tank, too!

Via Anderson Layman’s blog. What other reason do you need?

The cost of climate change policy – @mattwridley

Matt Ridley has posted his Times column on the cost and consequences of the government’s ill-conceived climate policy, here. It doesn’t really matter where you stand on climate change –  unreal, real and devastating or real but not actually cataclysmic – no-one is ever served by bad policy, founded on poor analysis and dishonestly presented: […]

Brand Loyalty?

Michael Wade’s (Execupundit) post on Brand Loyalty got me thinking. Like him, I find I have very few absolute loyalties in the things I give any thought too. All I can think of are: Fender J Herbin, and The Economist On things I give very little thought too, the list is longer – and probably […]

Santa Claus vs. Father Christmas

Santa Claus was the vanguard in America’s war of cultural imperialism. Who knew?!?! Mark Forsyth has an excellent piece on the origins of both Father Christmas and Santa Claus.  They are not, it turns out, one and the same, but nineteenth century, transatlantic rivals. Forsyth’s new book, A Christmas Cornucopia, is top of my own Santa […]

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