October 2008


31 October 2008 ‘Hold on, man. We don’t go anywhere with “scary,” “spooky,” “haunted,” or “forbidden” in the title.’ Scooby-Doo

Gautama Buddha

29 October 2008 ‘Words have the power to both destroy and heal. When words are true and kind they can change our world.’ Gautama Buddha

John Stuart Mill

28 October 2008 ‘Conservatives are not necessarily stupid, but most stupid people are conservatives.’ J.S. Mill

John Cage

27 October 2008 ‘I can’t understand why people are frightened of new ideas. I’m frightened of the old ones.’ John Cage

John Adams

26 October 2008 ‘Let us tenderly and kindly cherish, therefore, the means of knowledge. Let us dare to read, think, speak, and write.’ John Adams, 2nd US President

Edward Said

25 October 2008 ‘It is part of morality not to be at home in one’s home.’ Edward Said

Is England up for it?

24 October 2008 The slow but steady break-up of the United Kingdom signals a new progressive nationalism in Wales as well as Scotland, argues Plaid Cymru Welsh Assembly member Leanne Wood. It could also open up new possibilities in England - but is the English left ready for them?

Beyond town and gown

24 October 2008 The relationship between students and locals is fraught with long-held mistrust and resentment. Ex-student Jenny Nelson looks at the colourful history of these often segregated communities, and meets some of the student activists who are trying to break out of the ghettos they've inherited

Students are citizens too

24 October 2008 With 'top-up' fees and increasing debt leaving many students less willing to fight for anyone but themselves, London School of Economics union president Aled Fisher argues for more, not less, participation in wider politics

The fight for the NUS

24 October 2008 In trying to push through a reform package that the Guardian has called a 'Blairite revolution', the National Union of Students' Labour leadership is putting the NUS on a path to self-destruction, says executive member Hind Hassan

Back to class

24 October 2008 The falling value and rising price of a degree is hitting some harder than others. Laurie Penny looks at what's left of the egalitarian dream of universally accessible education

The Beijing Declaration: Another Economic World is Possible

24 October 2008 'Another World is Possible', the familiar slogan of the World Social Forum, is now being put to the test, writes Hilary Wainwright from Beijing. Can the activists and intellectuals of the movements for global justice propose convincing alternatives, drawing on the struggles and experiments of recent years and on interesting historical experiences?

The Beijing Declaration

24 October 2008 {{{The global financial crisis: an historic opportunity for social transformation}}} {An initial response from individuals, social movements and non-governmental organisations in support of a transitional programme for radical economic transformation Beijing, 15 October 2008}

Harriet Rubin

24 October 2008 ‘Freedom is actually a bigger game than power. Power is about what you can control. Freedom is about what you can unleash.’ Harriet Rubin

William Allen White

24 October 2008 ‘Youth should be radical. Youth should demand change in the world. Youth should not accept the old order if the world is to move on. But the old orders should not be moved easily — certainly not at the mere whim or behest of youth. There must be clash and if youth hasn’t enough force […]


23 October 2008 ‘None are more hopelessly enslaved than those who falsely believe they are free.’ Goethe

The Dalai Lama

22 October 2008 ‘This is my simple religion. There is no need for temples; no need for complicated philosophy. Our own brain, our own heart is our temple; the philosophy is kindness.’ The Dalai Lama.

Only 43 inside

21 October 2008 Whether he's talking about Boris Johnson, the credit crunch or China, Laurie Penny finds Ken Livingstone full of infectious energy - and planning his comeback

William Pitt

21 October 2008 ‘Necessity is the plea for every infringement of human freedom. It is the argument of tyrants; it is the creed of slaves.’ William Pitt

Charles Darwin

20 October 2008 ‘The world will not be inherited by the strongest, it will be inherited by those most able to change.’ Charles Darwin

Gotthold Ephraim Lessing

19 October 2008 ‘A heretic is a man who sees with his own eyes.’ Gotthold Ephraim Lessing

Eva Burrows

18 October 2008 ‘We have to be careful… not to emphasize an equality of the sexes that leads women to imitate men to prove their equality. To be equal does not mean you have to be the same.’ Eva Burrows

Raymond Williams

17 October 2008 ‘To be truly radical is to make hope possible rather than despair convincing’ Raymond Williams

Ralph Waldo Emerson

16 October 2008 ‘Do not be too timid and squeamish about your actions. All life is an experiment. The more experiments you make the better. What if you do fail, and get fairly rolled in the dirt once or twice. Up again, you shall never be so afraid of a tumble.’ Ralph Waldo Emerson

Pat Robertson

15 October 2008 ‘Feminism is a socialist, anti-family, political movement that encourages women to leave their husbands, kill their children, practice witchcraft, destroy capitalism and become lesbians.’ Pat Robertson

Agrofuels: are we winning?

14 October 2008 With mounting evidence of environmental damage and grave social consequences, making fuel from plants no longer seems such a good idea. But is the widespread criticism of agrofuels forcing policy changes? Oscar Reyes investigates

Grown up and independent

14 October 2008 Actress and comedian Elaine C Smith, convenor of the Convention for Scottish Independence, took a long time to cross what she describes as the 'mythical bridge' to a belief in independence. She argues now that there is no going back, and that independence will release the radicalism generated by the Scottish Enlightenment but held back by 300 years of being tied to the United Kingdom

Our job as citizens

14 October 2008 Strengthening human rights laws, protecting civil liberties and combating the database state are all interlinked, says Stuart Weir

Drawing back the curtain

14 October 2008 Wherever he has found himself - with the freedom fighters in the mountains of northern Iraq, as a prisoner in an Iranian jail, and now filling a whole room at the Imperial War Museum - Osman Ahmed has always gone on drawing. He spoke to Amanda Sebestyen about his passionate journey to make his art bear witness for the hidden people of Kurdistan

Giacomo Leopardi

14 October 2008 ‘No human trait deserves less tolerance in everyday life, and gets less, than intolerance.’ Giacomo Leopardi

Carrying on from the Chartists

13 October 2008 Can poetry provide a means for change? Dave Toomer, Christina McAlpine and John G Hall, the editors of Citizen 32 magazine, believe it can. Here they explain the importance of combining poetry and activism The contemporary black American poet Amiri Baraka declared that ‘art should be used as a weapon of revolution’, and indeed poetry […]

Death of the intellectual

13 October 2008 The ambition of advanced capitalism is not simply to combat radical ideas - it is to abolish the very notion that there could be a serious alternative to the present. Terry Eagleton laments the passing of a critical age

W H Auden

13 October 2008 ‘It is already possible to imagine a society in which the majority of the population, that is to say, its laborers, will have almost as much leisure as in earlier times was enjoyed by the aristocracy. When one recalls how aristocracies in the past actually behaved, the prospect is not cheerful.’ W H Auden

Alaskan women demonstrate against Sarah Palin

12 October 2008 Sue Katz looks beyond the lipstick and the sound bites to unravel the real Sarah Palin. In this extract from her new book, {{Thanks But No Thanks: The Voter's Guide to Sarah Palin}}, she examines the critical response from Alaskan women to the next possible US vice-president

Noam Chomsky

12 October 2008 ‘There’s one white powder which is by far the most lethal known, it’s called sugar. If you look at the history of imperialism, a lot of it has to do with that.’ Noam Chomsky

Mahatma Gandhi

11 October 2008 ‘When I despair, I remember that all through history the ways of truth and love have always won. There have been tyrants, and murderers, and for a time they can seem invincible, but in the end they always fall. Think of it – always.’ Mahatma Gandhi

Anatole France

10 October 2008 ‘They, the poor, have to labour in the face of the majestic equality of the law, which forbids the rich as well as the poor to sleep under bridges, to beg in the streets, and to steal bread.’ Anatole France

9 October

9 October 2008 It's John Lennon's birthday, which means that it's also Instant Karma Day and Give Peace A Chance Day.

Raymond Williams

9 October 2008 ‘To be truly radical is to make hope possible rather than despair convincing.’ Raymond Williams

Leon Trotsky

8 October 2008 ‘In a country where the sole employer is the state, opposition means death by slow starvation. The old principle: who does not work shall not eat, has been replaced by a new one: who does not obey shall not eat.’ Leon Trotsky (attributed)

United Nation

7 October 2008 ‘Women constitute half the world’s population, perform nearly two-thirds of its work hours, receive one-tenth of the world’s income and own less than one-hundredth of the world’s property.’ United Nations report, 1960

Is the future Conservative?

6 October 2008 Available free as an e-book from Soundings The British economy is tipping into a recession. After three election victories, the New Labour project is exhausted. The Conservative Party is now resurgent, attempting to reinvent its political traditions and preparing for power. Britain is at a possible turning point. This book critically engages with the ideas […]

Homer Simpson

6 October 2008 ‘I’m not normally a religious man, but if you’re up there, save me, Superman!’ Homer Simpson

St Augustine

5 October 2008 ‘The world is a book and those who do not travel read only a page.’ St Augustine

Charles de Gaulle

4 October 2008 ‘China is a big country, inhabited by many Chinese.’ Former French president Charles de Gaulle

Benjamin Franklin

3 October 2008 ‘There never was a good war or a bad peace.’ Benjamin Franklin

George W Bush

2 October 2008 ‘I’ve got God’s shoulder to cry on. And I cry a lot. I do a lot of crying in this job. I’ll bet I’ve shed more tears than you can count as president.’ US president George W Bush

Albert Einstein

1 October 2008 ‘I know not with what weapons World War Three will be fought, but World War Four will be fought with sticks and stones.’ Albert Einstein

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