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Index: Currente Calamo

The satisfaction of seriousness: The Peterson Phenomenon.

Michael Blackburn: ‘Peterson addresses a hunger in young people for honest discussion about the old philosophical question: what is the best way to live one’s life?’

About being nearly dead.

Michael Blackburn: ‘It was while I lay in my bed that I considered the lost concept of convalescence. There was a time when I was growing up and still a young man that if you had suffered from a serious illness, undergone major surgery or were a woman who had just given birth, you were allowed weeks in which to recover, even if, medically speaking, you were back to full health. In the last thirty years that rather humane idea has been eradicated. ‘

Yappy Apparatchiks and the Lobster Prof.

Michael Blackburn:

Please don’t change the world.

Michael Blackburn: ‘What we are supposed to want now is over-credentialled youngsters determined to change a world of which they have little knowledge or understanding.’

Brian Higgins and the iniquity of his oblivion.

Michael Blackburn: ‘In all my decades I have not met a single person who has heard of Higgins, but someone out there has — and they’ve written a Wikipedia page for him, which is a memorial of a kind. You can still pick up copies of all three books from dealers or on the internet. And after the iniquity of oblivion has finished scattering her poppies over the rest of us I suppose that’s the best that can be hoped for.’

Russians trolled my hamster!

Michael Blackburn; ‘I love the idea of a troll factory. I also love the way they’ve managed to wangle in a bit of their own fake news, namely the suggestion of Islamophobia, in the comment about the Muslim woman on Westminster Bridge. ‘

Too young to tan, too young to vote.

Michael Blackburn: ‘Campaigners hope they can count of the ignorance of young people combined with the passion of their natural idealism and goodwill. At 16 you have little real understanding of the malevolence that lies in the heart of some individuals or the creeds they promote. At the same time you have inside you a vast reservoir of shapeless emotion, especially rage and resentment, some of which may spring from personal history but much of which has no identifiable origin, but all of which can touched and activated and shaped towards a political end by the cynical and unscrupulous. ‘

Virtue-signalling in Lincolnshire.

Michael Blackburn: ‘The process of integration and assimilation everyone was expecting appears to have gone into reverse. Twenty or thirty years ago it was unusual to see a British-born young Muslim woman wearing a hijab…Watch the clips of present day Britain and you’ll see men and women dressed as if they were still in India or Pakistan.’

The strange death of the political spectacle.

Michael Blakburn: ‘This is what we are left with: two hopeless, burnt-out political parties…’

Are the snowflakes melting into Gen-Zed?

Michael Blackburn: ‘My own grandson and his friends, now about to enter university or college, are no snowflakes either, and resent being labelled as such. There is, of course, a smattering of classic millennials in their cohort but they’re very dismissive of them.’

The Lost Art of Whistling.

Michael Blackburn: ‘The death of whistling mirrors the withering away of the old working class and its communal spirit. If I were a leftist I would blame Thatcher at this point. Thatcher, milk-snatcher, pit-killer, industry-destroyer and whistle-gagger. What a legacy. There’s a thesis in there for anyone with nothing better to do.’

Fascism 2.0.

Michael Blackburn: ‘When it comes to how communism and fascism operate there’s not much difference: they are both totalitarian. What we experiencing now is that liberal fascism outlined in Jonah Goldberg’s book of the same name.’

What did the Romans do for us?

Michael Blackburn: ‘Holding up Roman Britain as a time when the country was supposedly ethnically diverse and welcoming to foreigners is a way of rebuking those who want stricter controls on immigration as being both historically and morally wrong.’

Ms Greening’s gender bandwagon.

Michael Blackburn: ‘Some people are obviously engaged in a futile war against reality. Life is hard. It’s unfair. It doesn’t conform to what the profs and intellectuals are always preaching. Hormones don’t obey fashionable dogmas. “Evolution,” as Hayek said, “cannot be just.” Get used to it, sisters, and adapt, otherwise the rest of your days will be filled with rage and loneliness.’

Ostentatious virtue.

Michael Blackburn: ‘Why do they do it? Why do they so relentlessly, uncritically blather these inanities (apart from the fact they can, and get publicity in the process)? Maybe it’s simply because they realise they’re making immense amounts of money by doing something that’s irrelevant and trivial. Entertaining people is OK but it’s ultimately not a serious endeavour, is it? And these people are desperate to be taken seriously.’