Faith, Doubt and Brexit

BY SAM HOOPER In the course of arguing on Twitter recently, I received back the following piece of friendly psychological analysis from a longtime follower and antagonist. The text reads: “You are almost always wrong, as if you’re from another planet. I’m starting to feel pity, not sure if for you or for the people who have to suffer the consequences of what you keep saying … Continue reading Faith, Doubt and Brexit

Anti Feminist Feminists?

BY SAM HOOPER Some women fail to vote for progressive candidates because they happen to be conservatives. Accusing them of acting against their own self-interest — or at the behest of the “white supremacist patriarchy” — is offensive, condescending and presupposes that women should vote based on a more limited palette of issues than men. The US midterms brought some results which were fairly encouraging … Continue reading Anti Feminist Feminists?

Free Speech’s Fair Weather Friends

BY SAM HOOPER A society which looks to the state to deliver retribution for non-harmful offensive speech is a society which no longer values a core tenet of liberal democracy. The battle for free speech is won or lost at the margins, which means that those who call themselves advocates of free speech without being able to point to a history of defending deeply offensive … Continue reading Free Speech’s Fair Weather Friends

The Smartest Guys in the Room

BY SAM HOOPER John Harris has long been about the only writer at the Guardian worth reading, and last week he had some wise words of advice for the organisers and stars of last week’s march in support of the “People’s Vote” on overturning Brexit and remaining in the European Union. For those who have been living under a rock and therefore missed the incessant publicity … Continue reading The Smartest Guys in the Room

Best Not Ask Bono

BY SAM HOOPER Every now and then you read an article so astonishingly un-self aware, so counterproductive, so open to attack and ridicule on multiple fronts that it is difficult to know where to begin. The latest writer to evoke this strong reaction is Fareed Zakaria, CNN’s in-house intellectual and self-touted expert on international issues and foreign affairs. The headline of Zakaria’s latest asinine column … Continue reading Best Not Ask Bono

The Perfect Storm

BY SAM HOOPER The past few years have seen an inexplicable surge in the release of implausible, cheaply-produced disaster movies, aided by the falling costs of CGI, with plots based on supersized or hybrid creatures doing battle with the unfortunate humans who encounter them. One of the first such movies, Sharknado, premiered in 2013 and is now up to the sixth film in the franchise (The … Continue reading The Perfect Storm

We’re Losing this War

BY SAM HOOPER The good aspects of this populist insurgency in America and Britain need saving from horrified (and increasingly organised) antidemocratic elites – but also from cynical and incompetent populist leaders who are squandering our last best hope of democratic renewal. For all the furious words being written and opinions expressed of late, nothing much seems to be changing. Despite a political discourse which … Continue reading We’re Losing this War

The Immigration Conflation

BY SAM HOOPER One of the traits of some accomplished liars is the fact that they are able to make themselves believe their own deceptions. This ability to convince oneself of one’s own lies is what makes many pathological liars so effective, but even many people who are not pathological liars can come to “misremember” certain events after decades of repeating a particular narrative – … Continue reading The Immigration Conflation