Right to Left: UK foreign policy on Syria follows an historical pattern

From the colonial-imperial wars of the early 19th century through to the 1950s in Syria and the early 1980s in Afghanistan and beyond, the objectives of the Western powers has always been the same – the drive for profits. In which we critique the role both the Right and the Left in Britain have, and are, playing in the propaganda process. Has there ever been an ethical dimension in relation to UK foreign policy in Syria and elsewhere?

Asleep on the pillow: Why we don’t get better government

Miyamoto Musashi, arguably Japan’s greatest Samurais, said: “To Hold Down a Pillow” means not allowing the enemy’s head to rise . . . you must always be able to lead the enemy about. The important thing in strategy is to suppress the enemy’s useful actions but allow his useless actions.” This is also, effectively, what our Federal Governments do to us, the body politic. Journalist, Mike Woodcock examines why we don’t get better government and what we can do to stop falling for the same gag.

Did you know housing gets counted twice in GDP?

Your car gets counted once when it is built, not when it is driven. Your clothes, your bicycle, your furniture, all get counted once when they are manufactured, and not again when they are worn, ridden, or sat on. But homes are counted twice in GDP, writes Dr Cameron Murray: Once when they are constructed, and again when they are occupied. If we are going to count housing in GDP, shouldn’t we count it just once?

None so blind as those who will not see

There is no other way to describe economics in 2017 than wilful blindness, writes economist Professor Steven Keen.  Nobel Laureates who claimed financial crises were now impossible also claimed the 2008 Global Financial Crisis could not have been predicted. This is all, of course, nonsense. The evidence was there all along. Those with the power to change the course of history simply chose to ignore it.

Marriage and convenience

This September, Australians will be asked to participate in a national windsock poll to help irresolute politicians decide whether to allow the institution of marriage to encompass gay unions. Critics can’t have it both ways, writes Rachael Bolton. Either marriage is an historically sexist property exchange between two men or it’s a modern, secular, legal arrangement entered into willingly by two adults.