Notes From the Margins…
Broken English

Broken English

  • March 01, 2020
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So the government has released its post-Brexit ‘points-based’ immigration system, and no one will be surprised to hear that  ‘All applicants, both EU and non-EU citizens, will need to demonstrate that they have a job offer from an approved sponsor, that the job offer is at the required skill level, and that they speak...

Corona, Corona

Corona, Corona

  • February 27, 2020
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Fans of Edgar Allan Poe and Hammer horror films will recall Poe’s tale The Masque of the Red Death, and the Roger Corman remake with Vincent Price as Prince Prospero.   For those who don’t, the story describes the attempts by Prospero and a bunch of panic-stricken and fairly decadent medieval nobles to escape a mysterious...

Parasite: A Film for Our Times

Parasite: A Film for Our Times

  • February 21, 2020
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Donald Trump isn’t generally known for pronouncements on world cinema.  But he and his fans seem to believe that he has the right to express even the most vapid opinions on everything, and given that Hollywood mostly despises him, it isn’t as surprising as it might seem at first sight  to find the Emperor of...

Eugenics for Dummies

Eugenics for Dummies

  • February 19, 2020
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There’s been a lot of talk about eugenics in the UK this last week, thanks to Dominic Cummings’s ‘superforecaster’ Andrew Sabisky.   Sabisky’s rapid rise and fall is entirely due to the ‘controversial comments’, as the media likes to call them, that he made on various internet forums, including Cummings’s own blog.  These pronouncements include the...

Brexit:  Springtime for Racists

Brexit: Springtime for Racists

  • February 03, 2020
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For anyone seeking inspiration in these dark times, I recommend the moving Storyville documentary My Italian Secret:  Italy’s Forgotten Heroes.  It tells the story of the Italian cyclist Gino Bartali and the Italians who saved more than 10,000 Jews from Nazi extermination during World War 2, by hiding them or smuggling them to safety.   Like...

Independence Day

Independence Day

  • January 31, 2020
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More than four years after the referendum that plunged the UK into what has been the most bitter and divisive political crisis in its history, we have finally reached the day that so many Brexiters have dreamed of and yearned for.  For many of those who voted and campaigned to leave the European Union, today...

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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