08.04.15 |
This is a good report on Mondragon, Spain's massive coop in the Basque country. Teeth-suckers always argue that you cannot take coops to scale i.e. have big ones. Mondragon proves them wrong. It's one of Spain's largest companies, from buses to banking. The bosses are paid no more than eight times the lowest paid. Their philosophy is that jobs are more important than making as much money as possible. Radical. Buck's report is about how Mondragon dealt with a part of its business that was... more
08.03.15 |
God, I'm enjoying seeing all the Blairite New Labour people writhing over Jeremy Corbyn's success in the leadership campaign. I know Jeremy. He has been - by far - the most steadfast supporter of the liberation of the Western Sahara in the British parliament, for decades. I love him for that alone. The Western Sahara must unfortunately be close to the bottom of the list of fashionable international issues in the world. The celebs and self-promoting politicians make a big show of their concern... more
07.31.15 |

  Syria is one of those awful, bloody wars where the “international community” has more or less given up. One sign of this is the lack of prominent media attention – governments are not doing much, so the “only” news is the continual drumbeat of bloodshed (and this too is under-reported thanks to the immense danger to journalists inside Syria). Another sign of international indifference is that the issue has been more or less dumped on the UN to deal with. There are no serious initiatives... more
07.29.15 |
I recommend this profile of Yanis Varoufakis by Ian Parker in the New Yorker. Parker clearly spent some time shadowing Varoufakis, yet the portrait that emerges is not wholly flattering (but not wholly disparaging either). Parker adroitly uses the personality of Varoufakis as a device to tell the dismal story of Greece's debt debacle, although - typically - there has been way too much attention on the man rather than the detail of the issue. In the vast amount of reporting on the crisis, it... more
07.15.15 | Posted on FB:   In the rush to applaud the Iran deal, one crucial issue that risks getting lost is Syria. Iran has played an entirely negative role in Syria, providing arms, men and money to the Assad regime and thereby discouraging him from negotiating an end to the war. Iran's role has arguably been much more significant than Russia which is often inaccurately portrayed as the regime's primary sponsor. The intervention of Iran-controlled (not just "Iran-backed") Hezbollah troops, in the... more
07.13.15 | ”I see the desire for decentralisation and in some cases separation as a very natural and inevitable response to globalisation, where power has not only left people’s hands but also no longer seems to belong to national governments. Just look at Greece. Everyone feels a lack of agency over the circumstances that affect them and that matter to them. That desire to reassert agency and control will be manifested in many different ways. But the paradox is that decentralisation or separation, as in... more
07.13.15 |

Europe needs a complete overhaul of the discussion about immigration, says Carne Ross of Independent Diplomat, a diplomatic advisory group. "The debate is impoverished by its reliance on the false terminology of 'illegal' or 'economic' migrants, as if wanting to escape grinding poverty is illegitimate. The evidence is very clear that immigration benefits everyone economically in the end. Cultural diversity is better and more enriching than monocultural homogeneity and narrow-mindedness."

Quote in Newsweek article by Adam leBor on Europe's immigration crisis: Europe needs a complete overhaul of the discussion about immigration, says Carne Ross of Independent Diplomat, a diplomatic advisory group. "The debate is impoverished by its reliance on the false terminology of 'illegal' or 'economic' migrants, as if wanting to escape grinding poverty is illegitimate. The evidence is very clear that immigration benefits everyone economically in the end. Cultural diversity is better and... more
05.04.15 |

A while back, I spoke at the Carnegie Council.  This is a clip comprising a short explanation of complexity theory as a means to understand what's going on.   more
04.29.15 |

 

This was a panel I took part in at the Skoll World Forum, discussing political change with film-makers and activists. more
02.12.15 | This review appeared on a Catalan website Vilaweb in 2013, but was recently and generously translated by my friend and colleague, Jan Hartman.  Please note that there are one or two inaccuracies about me in the article, including the timing of my work on Iraq at the UNSC, which in fact concluded several months before the 2003 invasion.     A rebel diplomat on the Catalans’ side   When the protagonist of this book was 12 years old they asked him what he wanted to be when he... more