John Martyn lays his head down

Back in February of last year I misheard a radio news broadcast while driving, and in my head put together a short obituary of John Martyn, one of my all-time favourite musicians. Martyn had not died, but rather been given a lifetime achievement award. The sad news today is that John Martyn has now passed […]

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Nanotech to improve concrete lifetime

That ubiquitous building material concrete has been with us since Roman times. It may be ugly when combined with poor design, but concrete is one of the most practical building materials available. More than seven cubic kilometres of the stuff is produced each year, and it could soon see a doubling in lifetime thanks to […]

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Holocaust Memorial Day 2009

It began with a boycott of Jewish shops, and culminated in the gas chambers at Auschwitz. It may not have been the freedom envisaged by those who built the concentration camps, but the finest memorial of the Holocaust is the State of Israel. עם ישראל חי Update: Talking of Auschwitz, Pawel Sawicki of the camp […]

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The BBC: a call for more of the same

Chris Dillow argues that the BBC should not devote so much effort to news gathering. He would have the corporation close down its radio and television news operations, and focus instead on its website. Chris’s argument that the web is a better medium for news than television is partly convincing, but I suspect that for […]

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Running dogs of socialism attack workers

Bosses at the stalinist Communist Party of Britain-controlled daily paper the Morning Star are accusing their editorial employees – the majority of whom are not party members – of class treachery for demanding more than poverty wages. Journalists are now threatening industrial action. The National Union of Journalists chapel at the paper has rejected management’s 3% […]

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Language is cultural – genes follow

We have by now grown used to reports suggesting that there exist genes which encode for gayness, the tendency to put tea or milk into the cup first, and myriad other manifestations of human behaviour. The hypotheses are often interesting, but much of the work remains speculative, and some of it is highly contentious. Going […]

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Blue Monday cycling blues (2)

Since I published my comments this morning on motor insurer LV=’s survey into cycling-related accidents in Britain, I’ve been contacted by a senior company press officer. Emma Holyer has provided a little more information than is contained in the press release and Independent news report, but I remain totally unconvinced by the arguments presented. The […]

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Blue Monday cycling blues

This being “Blue Monday”, we are all supposed to be feeling suicidally depressed. Or whatever. I woke up this morning feeling totally indifferent, which for me is the normal state of affairs for a Monday. In today’s case this is quite positive, considering that my aim by early evening is to have initiated legal action […]

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Wannabe jihadis pose for their own cameras

Half way through a long cycle ride this afternoon, in London’s Trafalgar Square I happened upon the arse end of the latest anti-Israel manifestation. There was a great deal of police activity away from the square, and I pedalled past a branch of Starbucks with its windows smashed in. This proves that anti-Zionists do on […]

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Wherefore liberty?

I’m not a follower of Peter Risdon’s blog, Freeborn John, and we’ve had our differences. But this infamous “bloggertarian” writer and ofttimes Interweb ranter has hit the nail on the head with the following succinct statement: “Cooperation is by definition free and voluntary and it is, happily, the most efficient way for people to interact.” […]

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