Many analysts have become cynical about the Arab spring as a result of events in Egypt. There is certainly cause for it, especially since General al-Sisi is consolidating military rule while establishing a new cult of personality. Personally, I’m not hopeless. There is a trajectory to cults of personality that always has the opportunity to end abruptly, as was the case of Nicolae Ceaușescu in Romania.  (More…)

After Wednesday’s attack that left over 100 children dead, Pakistan wants blood. Khoon ka badla khoon. It is this impulse towards revenge that explains why Pakistan is facing such violence in the first place, and how it must reform itself.  (More…)

The festive period has come early! UKIP has been forced out of its South London office due to activists from AIDS Coalition to Unleash Power (ACT UP) dumping half a ton of fresh, steaming fertilizer on the doorstep of their London office on World AIDS Day. I’m trying to be sympathetic, and polite, but UKIP doesn’t make it easy for us.  (More…)

The upcoming biopic Selma stirred minor controversy earlier this month when a trailer showed Dr. King’s supporters getting beat down to the tune of Public Enemy’s Say it Like it Really Is. The decision was criticized for attempting to make the story too modern, with the charge that a period soundtrack would have been more appropriate. (More…)

Tragedy has once again struck the United States with a mass shooting at Florida State University. As a result, there will likely be another push to implement comprehensive gun control, and unfortunately, much of the discussion involves the wrong guns.  (More…)

I have never seen such an ahistorical marker of a historical event as Remembrance Day in London. Remembrance Day has never been about intellectual debates. It is a solemn holiday that is marked by macabre displays of poppies and moments of silence. (More…)

The most irritating phrase I have read about yesterday’s terrorist attack in Ottawa has been in Reuters. “The incident, shocking in Canada’s normally tranquil capital,” and so on. As a Canadian who is living abroad, my reaction was: “Sorry, but, what is so shocking about it? And how is Ottawa tranquil no more?” (More…)

Liberals and leftists frequently debate 21st century challenges by looking back at expired solutions: classical organized labor, anarchist uprisings in Spain, the New Deal, and the post-war welfare state. I was born in 1991, and have no memory of Cold War politics. I’m actually happy about the distance it affords me.  (More…)

If the goal is to decisively tackle climate change, then Germany’s Energiewende is a disaster. This wouldn’t be the case if Europe’s environmentalists weren’t so deeply opposed to using nuclear power. (More…)

In April 1990, I helped organize the Earth Day Shut Down Wall Street action. More than 1,500 activists from the United States and Canada traveled to New York on the twentieth anniversary of Earth Day with the goal of halting the New York Stock Exchange for a day. We got close, with hundreds of protesters and cops clashing in front of the exchange doors. (More…)

So the votes are in. Scotland has voted 44.7% for independence and 55.3% to remain within the United Kingdom. Voter turnout was close to 87% in a display of participation greater than we have seen in any recent election. The EU elections in May drew 33.8% of the British electorate out of their homes to the local voting booth. It’s standard in UK general elections for turnout to be almost twice as high as in EU elections. Consequently, theprotest vote looms large in one and not the other (at least usually this is the case). (More…)

Most leftists have no idea what to do with Muslims. Should we be empowered as a disenfranchised minority? Should we be forced to adopt “European values”? It’s complicated, but interestingly, the early Soviet Union was remarkably intelligent about this. (More…)