The $22,000 Fidget Spinner

The wastefulness of the obscenely rich

There are few things guaranteed to upset me more than the arrogance, vulgarity and sheer sense of entitlement displayed by the global super rich. Ipswich’s repeated failure to return to the Premier League and the existence of Victoria Beckham are the only things I can think of that give me similar attacks of rage. So, you can imagine the spike in my blood pressure when I heard about a fidget spinner for sale at $22,000 (£13,000). It reminded me of the time back in the 1980s when Mike Tyson paid £650,000 for a watch. It demonstrates clearly that the obscene wealth enjoyed by some of the global rich is also obscenely wasteful  – as well as being economically illiterate and environmentally unsustainable. Continue reading “The $22,000 Fidget Spinner”

Hatred In The UK

With apologies to the Sex Pistols

“The history of all hitherto existing society is the history of class struggles. Throughout history we see the oppressor and oppressed in constant opposition to each other. This fight is sometimes hidden and sometimes open. However, each time the fight ends in either a revolutionary reconstruction of society or in the classes’ common ruin.” Karl Marx wrote these words in 1848 but they apply equally to 2017. The British Establishment only care about money and they hate people who don’t have money.  They don’t hate you because of your race. They don’t hate you because of your religion. They don’t hate you because of your sex. They don’t hate you because of your sexuality. They hate you because you don’t have any money. Continue reading “Hatred In The UK”

I Know Nothing About Politics

UK election result

I know nothing about politics. I predicted a win for Remain in the referendum on EU membership. I thought Hillary Clinton would defeat Donald Trump in the US presidential election. And I believed that Marine Le Pen would win more than 40% of the vote in the second round of the French presidential election. Clearly, I was wrong about all of these elections just as I was wrong to predict a big majority for Theresa May in the general election on Thursday. I’m still going to have a go at predicting what happens next though (spoiler alert – chaos). Continue reading “I Know Nothing About Politics”

Tawdry, Vulgar, Mediocre

Celebrity culture at its worst

It’s hard. It’s very hard. No matter how you try, it is almost impossible to avoid celebrity culture. By a strange kind of osmosis, you become aware of people who are simply famous for being famous – Kardashians, people who have appeared on “talent” shows, so-called “WAGS” (why in this day and age would someone want to be famous because they are the wife or girlfriend of a sports star?) – even if you never watch the braindead television shows they appear on. As ever, our American friends are ahead of the rest of the world, having elected as their president a man whose main claim to fame is appearing on a reality TV show. But where America leads, the UK is sure to follow. Which brings me neatly to Pippa Middleton. Continue reading “Tawdry, Vulgar, Mediocre”

Jeremy Corbyn Is Right!

Never thought I would write those words

I am not a fan of Jeremy Corbyn. He reminds me too much of the sneering pseudo-leftists I met at university. You know the type, came straight to university from thirteen years of private education, picked up a couple of second-hand books by Lenin and think they understand the plight of the workers because they once helped the nanny with the washing up. I am well aware that this is reverse snobbery but at the same time it is a perfect description of Emily “people vote for Theresa May because they like her hair” Thornberry who is at once the stupidest and most arrogant person in British politics. Quite a feat when Diane Abbott and Tony Blair are still around. Continue reading “Jeremy Corbyn Is Right!”

Book Review

The Great Leveler by Walter Scheidel

I have a great love for History. It was my favourite subject at school and I studied it at both O-Level and A-Level. I went on to read History as an undergraduate and again at postgraduate level; I have been a teacher of (mostly) History for 25 years. I have no hesitation in recommending The Great Leveler; Violence and the History of Inequality from the Stone Age to the Twenty-First Century by Walter Scheidel. It is not an easy book to read but it is worth persevering with to get to the conclusions at the end. Continue reading “Book Review”

Quote of the Day #6

Bruce Trigger

The Aztec pipiltin (noble class) “wore cotton clothes, sandals, feather work, and jade ornaments, lived in two-storey  stone houses, ate the flesh of human sacrifices, drank chocolate and fermented beverages (in moderation) in public, kept concubines, entered the royal palace at will, could eat in the palace dining hall, and performed special dances at public rituals. They did not pay taxes.” Continue reading “Quote of the Day #6”