What drives me mad: signs that tell lies …

January 10, 2014 Leave a comment

… and those who write them.

I’m driving along the A-something-or-other, a couple of hours into a longish journey, and my tongue begins to feel too big for my mouth. A cup of tea would go down very nicely – and aha! what’s this? A sign that announces

TEAS NEXT LAYBY
1/4 MILE

 
But when I reach that next layby a quarter of a mile down the road, what do I see? Nada. Nothing, that is, except a litter of styrofoam teacups strewn around a torn-apart-by-foxes black bin bag. Grrr.
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More on bureaucracy and good governance

Sherard Cowper-Coles at length on what is wrong with the way we are addressing the situation in Afghanistan.

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Do as the Romans did

March 5, 2013 3 comments

Sherard Cowper-Coles, former British Ambassador to Afghanistan, has an interesting plan to achieve longlasting stability in that country.

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Quotable Quote: Technopoly

December 30, 2012 Leave a comment

[B]ecause of its lengthy, intimate, and inevitable relationship with culture, technology does not invite a close examination of its own consequences. It is the kind of friend that asks for trust and obedience, which most people are inclined to give because its gifts are truly bountiful. But, of course, there is a dark side to this friend. Its gifts are not without a heavy cost. Stated in the most dramatic terms, the accusation can be made that the uncontrolled growth of technology destroys the vital sources of our humanity. It creates a culture without a moral foundation. It undermines certain mental processes and social relations that make human life worth living. Technology, in sum, is both friend and enemy.

From: Neil Postman, Technopoly: The Surrender of Culture to Technology (1992)

Categories: Quotable Quotes

Quotable Quote: Did you ever read what they call Science Fiction?

June 15, 2012 1 comment

In a letter to his literary agent H N Swanson (14 March 1953), Raymond Chandler wrote:

“Did you ever read what they call Science Fiction? It’s a scream. Read more…

April Fool’s Day

April 1, 2012 2 comments

It’s April Fool’s Day.

A dog, a packet of crisps, a bottle of water, the Sunday paper, a trout stream, a herd of Old English White Cattle. Birds in the sky and the whistle of a steam engine in the near distance. Read more…

Bona Books, or: The Seven Ages of Omi

December 20, 2011 Leave a comment

I’ve been reminded of my age over the last few days. Read more…

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