Notes From the Margins…
Posts by Matt
What I’m Reading: Blog Piece

What I’m Reading: Blog Piece

  • January 15, 2019
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When I’m writing non-fiction, my reading tends be dominated by the subject in hand. I try to read obsessively on whatever project i’m writing about so that I’m completely filled up by it. When I’m in between books, as I am now, I try to read more freely, either catching up on books I’ve been...

Brexit: Clowntime is Over

Brexit: Clowntime is Over

  • January 14, 2019
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‘In reading the history of nations, we find that, like individuals, they have their whims and their peculiarities; their seasons of excitement and recklessness, when they care not what they do,’ wrote Charles Mackay in his classic Extraordinary Popular Delusions and the Madness of Crowds (1852).  ‘ We find that whole communities suddenly fix their minds...

Our Man in Budapest

Our Man in Budapest

  • January 12, 2019
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As a general rule, whenever politicians tell you that they want to protect your culture or your civilisation with walls and fences, it’s a good idea to pat your wallet and check that it’s still there.

One minute you’re staring into their eyes and nodding approvingly as they tell you that your heritage and your identity...

Ceasefire:  Goddard’s ‘Westminster mob’ are a threat to our common future

Ceasefire: Goddard’s ‘Westminster mob’ are a threat to our common future

  • January 11, 2019
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Few people who pay any attention to British politics will be unaware of the small but vocal group of far-right demonstrators who have been gathering outside Westminster for the last month. Led by Tommy Robinson fanboy James Goddard and inspired by the ‘gilets jaunes’ movement in France, these protesters have heckled and abused MPs, journalists...

El Cid Meets Donald Trump:  Fascism Returns to Spain

El Cid Meets Donald Trump: Fascism Returns to Spain

  • January 10, 2019
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Until recently Spain was something of an anomaly in the ‘new’ populist/far-right European politics.  Despite – or perhaps because of – the recent memory of the Civil War and the decades of dictatorship, it had no explicitly far-right party of any influence.

Even the Partido Popular (PP), which swept up much of the post-Franco right, was...

Telling Lies About Immigration: the Far-Right and the UN Migration Pact

Telling Lies About Immigration: the Far-Right and the UN Migration Pact

  • January 08, 2019
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When it comes to migration, far-right movements and populist governments are a lot clearer about what they want than many of their political opponents.

In Europe and America, liberal, conservative and left-of-centre governments have responded to the global ‘migration crisis’ with bureaucratic and physical obstacles that have exposed undocumented migrants to death and danger in a...

About Me

I’m a writer, campaigner and journalist.  My latest book is The Savage Frontier: The Pyrenees in History and the Imagination (New Press/Hurst, 2018).  The Infernal Machine is where I write on politics, history, cinema and other things that interest me.

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