Notes From the Margins…
Posts for US politics Category
The World According to Bono

The World According to Bono

  • April 15, 2016
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I’ve got  nothing against famous people getting involved in politics or embracing political causes.  On the contrary, there’s no reason why the accident of fame and the weird cult of celebrity-worship that comes with it should place anyone above politics  or preclude celebrities from taking moral and political positions on issues that they feel strongly about.

My reservations about celebrity politics are essentially four-fold:

when an issue becomes important or interesting simply because someone famous is associated with it when celebrity-politics becomes an exercise in narcissism and self-aggrandizement when celebrities think that being famous entitles them to say...

Darkness in Trumptown: Breaking News

  • February 26, 2016
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FIONA BRUCE:   And now we cut to the White House to hear our political editor Laura Kuenssberg cover Donald Trump’s inaugural speech.  Laura, can you tell us what’s happening?

KUENSSBERG:  Well Fiona, we are really witnessing some extraordinary scenes here on what is truly a momentous occasion.

(Camera pans out to the White House, which has...

Hillary Clinton: a Hawk in Hawk’s Clothing

  • February 07, 2016
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I tend, for better or worse,  to be wary of progressive political surges in American politics that place too many expectations on who becomes president, and my attitude to Bernie Sanders is no exception.  On the one hand it’s heartening to see a self-proclaimed democratic socialist in the United States who is actually...

We Need to Talk About Agrabah

  • December 19, 2015
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Last week’s poll of Republican primary voters by the left-leaning Public Policy Polling firm has attracted  the usual mockery and arrogance from  the usual suspects.  The poll found that 30 percent of Republican voters believe that the fictional nation of Agrabah, birthplace of Aladdin,  poses a national security threat to the United States and should...

Al Qaeda: Our New Best Friend

Al Qaeda: Our New Best Friend

  • June 18, 2015
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There was a time, shortly after the 9/11 attacks, when the world suddenly seemed simple and easy to understand, when the falling towers blew away any remaining clouds of ambiguity, nuance or complexity.   In those grim but bracing days,   everything was bathed in the luminous glow of ‘moral clarity’.

We understood that the West...

Come on Let’s Kick the Poor (like we did last summer)

Come on Let’s Kick the Poor (like we did last summer)

  • June 02, 2015
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The Bible tells us that the poor will always be with us, and as long as they are around there will always be politicians willing to punish them for their poverty.     It might be the Wisconsin State Assembly, which has just approved legislation banning food stamp recipients from eating junk food and also...

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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