Category: The games we play

  • Propaganda

    The other day, I tried to explain to my sister-in-law that USA/NATO had effectively been provoking the Russians over a long period of time . The person I was talking to was non other than my sister-in-law. She smiled and said, “well, you would say that, wouldn’t you – you like Putin.” “I what?!!!” “Well, […]

  • The Nordic Paradox – part 2

    No doubt about it: There is more domestic violence (“Intimate Partner Violence” or IPV) in the Nordic countries and the UK than in, for instance, Spain, Italy and Ireland. In spite of greater gender parity! Allow me to draw your attention to an Icelandic TV series, “The Flatey Enigma”. This is to all appearances a […]

  • The Nordic Paradox – part 1

    Have you heard of the Nordic Paradox? I quote a paper on the subject: Intimate partner violence against women (IPVAW) is a global public health issue often assumed to be associated with gender inequality. The so-called Nordic Paradox, the apparently contradictory co-existence of high levels of IPVAW and of gender equality in Nordic countries, has […]

  • Complacency

    Have you noticed that some countries are simply unbearably smug? Take the United Arab Emirates, for instance, that have the gall to do exactly as they please, because they are rich. They don’t even pretend to care about such trifles as “freedom of expression”, for instance, because nobody will presume to castigate a country that […]

  • Race II

    The race trick has been played since time immemorial, you may be sure. For all I know, it dates back to when we were competing against and possibly exterminating the Neanderthals. Our race plays the power game with all kinds of tools, some of them legal. No country’s legal code has been able to foresee […]

  • Race

    A friend from a country far hotter than my own, sometimes asks me: “How can you consort with other species?” — I don’t consort with…— You live with a dog.— But I never let her into my bed!— Dogs carry parasites, diseases. They pick up all sorts of nasties from the ground and… He’s right […]

  • Disappearing the middle ground

    In a phone conversation with a talkative friend the other day, my counterpart’s initial volubility subsided, so that in the end, I was the only one still talking. Afterwards, wondering why his cheeriness had morphed into discouragement, I reached the conclusion that it was my fault. Over the decades, I have been considered a lefty, […]

  • Devotion

    When President Kennedy died, I was just a kid, living in, of all places, the United States of America. Yes, of course I remember when our teacher came in and announced what had happened. Of course; although I remember little else from that period of my life. I also remember how proud I was when […]

  • In the shadows

    If you read Thomas Piketty’s ground-breaking Capitalism and Ideology, you will see that a great deal remains to be done in the world, and I’m very much afraid that it will have to be done by you and me and our children and grandchildren. It will certainly not be done by any president or prime […]

  • Birds

    There aren’t many encouraging stories these days. Maybe I know of one, though. (Mind you, I make no promises.) My story starts grimly enough, with a headline that began to pop up here and there some time last spring: “Millions of songbirds vacuumed to death every year during Mediterranean olive harvest”. If you google it, […]