Too young to tan, too young to vote.

votes16

THE CAMPAIGN TO GET the voting age lowered to 16 is one of the left’s current political fashions and a useful way both to market themselves as modern and caring while badging opponents as youth-hating old fuddy-duddies. They seem to have had some success in persuading young people to vote for Labour in the recent election, despite the fact that there is no dinosaur older than Corbyn on the political scene or anyone whose policies are more paleolithic and discredited. But that’s a result of the ignorance of youth, as we shall see.

Read on at The Fortnightly Review.

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Poem in Land of Three Rivers anthology.

Land of Three Rivers

I have a poem, “The North Sea At Tynemouth”, in the new Bloodaxe anthology, Land of Three Rivers: The Poetry of North-East England.

Transnational buffoonery (or annoying the Cornish and others).

welcometokernow

JOHN BOLTON, FORMER US ambassador to the UN and recently the non-appointed Secretary of State in the Trump administration, famously quipped that if the UN building in New York lost ten stories “it wouldn’t make a bit of difference”. He also said that “There’s not a bureaucracy in the world that couldn’t be made leaner.” I think the latter is definitely true while the former errs on the side of generosity…

Read on at The Fortnightly Review.

You can read more about similar things in my book here.

 

Three Men in a Boat – latest 3-minute lecture/podcast on YouTube.

Here is my 3-minute lecture/microlecture/podcast on Jerome K Jerome’s classic, Three Men in a Boat.

 

An Air That Kills – a 3-minute lecture on Housman’s “blue remembered hills” poem.

Poem 40 from Housman’s A Shropshire Lad is one of his most famous. Here’s a microlecture on it.

 

Civilisation – who needs it? More in The Fortnightly Review

seinesaintdenis

EVEN WHEN IT IS making one of its generally excellent documentaries on art or history the BBC these days cannot help but have its presenters slip in a bit of propaganda promoting multiculturalism, diversity or mass immigration. In the first episode of a recent series, Art of France, Andrew Graham-Dixon took us through Seine-Saint-Denis, a northern suburb of Paris, to view the “truly varied faces of this modern nation”, ie, the mainly Muslim faces of North Africa. France, he later said, has always been “a nation of mongrels,” which is just a version of the “nation of immigrants” mantra repeated by those who usually don’t live in areas populated by immigrants but are happy for others to do so.

Read on at The Fortnightly Review.

If you want something civilised read my book.

Dowson’s Cynara poem – a microlecture.

Another microlecture, this time on Ernest Dowson’s “Non Sum Qualis Eram Bonae Sub Regno Cynarae”.