Notes From the Margins…

Timothy Garton Ash’s Awfully Big War

  • February 02, 2015
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There are some liberals who give liberalism a bad name and Timothy Garton Ash is one of them.

They build up their careers as thoughtful and nuanced independent commentators, arguing that ‘facts are subversive’, yet when it comes to war and the use of military power they know what side they’re on, and they know that...

Boris Johnson and the Rise of the Porno-Terrorist

  • February 01, 2015
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Readers of this site might be surprised to know that the single most common search category that brings new readers to this site is pornography, more specifically, a category known as ‘British army porn.’    This is because of an old post I wrote called ‘the British army’s war porn’ – a post that probably...

Jacques Peretti’s Gilded City

Jacques Peretti’s Gilded City

  • January 30, 2015
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It’s been a long time since I’ve seen a good documentary on the BBC, let alone an essential one.     But for those who haven’t seen it, I really recommend Jacques Peretti’s outstanding series on the super-rich, which you can still see on podcast here.     I watched the first of its two...

Hollywood Sniper

Hollywood Sniper

  • January 28, 2015
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I haven’t seen Clint Eastwood’s American Sniper, and I probably won’t, because a film that celebrates a man who boasted about his killing ability and regarded Iraqis as ‘savages’ is not something I am prepared to go to the cinema to watch.

I’ve seen the UK trailer several times, and it hasn’t done anything to change...

In the Kingdom of TINA

  • January 26, 2015
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One of the most depressing things about the grotesque and brutal fraud known as ‘austerity’ has been the ability of its proponents to convince so many people to accept its basic assumptions.     Once you begin to believe in There Is No Alternative (TINA), so many things that might otherwise have seemed cruel, immoral,...

Why Does the Right Hate the NHS?

Why Does the Right Hate the NHS?

  • January 25, 2015
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When I was young I never paid much attention to the National Health Service.   This isn’t entirely surprising.   When you’re young, you don’t, unless you’re very unlucky, tend to have  much contact with doctors and hospitals.   In addition, the NHS has been around so long that it takes a degree of historical...

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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