Brexit: my most instant, heartfelt posting ever

Britain on Tuesday: May lost by over 400 votes! The rolling, roiling disaster gets worse by the day. Lack of forethought, bullying, and downright ignorance rule the day! Epicurus would advise me to calm down, to be philosophical, to assume all will eventually settle down and rationality will be restored. It is possible that he …

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Artificial intelligence – in the right hands?

The Guardian Weekly of 4 January 2019 carried an article by Vivienne Ming about Artificial Intelligence. In theory, she says, poverty, mental health, climate change, inequality – almost everything – could be addressed by AI. The problem, she says, is not the concept of AI, but the people behind it. She points out that AI …

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A take on committees

Some people love a good committee, And revel in its nitty-gritty: Arcane debates on last year’s failings, The contents of circulars and mailings; The annual dinner, drink and eats; Optimization of receipts. Chairpersons, regardless of their gender Like to set their own agenda. This, their most important role, Gives them what they want – control. …

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The rise of in-work poverty

An Oklahoma branch of Walmart once asked its employees to donate Thanksgiving food to hungry colleagues. “Hang on,” said incredulous staff, “these people can’t feed their families because you pay pitiful wages, yet it’s up to us to bail them out?” In the UK this Christmas there are Tory MPs doing Christmas photo ops with …

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Another view on the issue of Brexit

So there is agreement on Brexit between the EU and the British government It all looks desperately important at the moment, but the details of the deal may not make all that much difference in the long run. It’s economics, not politics, that will ultimately define our relationship with Europe, and the big factors driving …

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The big decline in the birth rate

A study published in the Lancet shows that in half the countries of the world there has been a remarkable decline in the number of children women are having, which means that in over half the countries of the world, particularly in economically developed countries (Europe, the US, South Korea and Australia) there are insufficient …

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A Poem : The Strangler Tree at The Moorings, Islamorada FL

Were you a harmless, nameless tree, just standing there, Motionless and proud, your boughs spread wide, The product of a hundred fruitful summers, Surviving the convulsions of Caribbean hurricanes, Cold fronts and brisk north winds, You might neither notice nor much care about The arrival, perching quietly, of yet another bird. Thousands stop from year …

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India No.2: Vanishing children

Official figures from India’s Ministry of Women and Child Development (MWCD) show that more than 240,000 children were reported missing between 2012 and 2017. While some run away, the majority are taken by human traffickers, Victims are either kidnapped or lured away from their parents with promises of jobs and education. These children are trafficked …

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A brief rundown on Epicureanism for those new to it

Epicureanism is a system of philosophy based on the teachings of Epicurus, founded around 307 B.C. It teaches that the greatest good is to seek modest pleasures in order to attain a state of tranquillity, freedom from fear (“ataraxia”) and absence from bodily pain (“aponia”). This combination of states is held to constitute happiness in …

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