What your font says about you

The BBC’s arts-and-talk channel, Radio 4, had an interesting programme
on today called “From Arial to Wide Latin” – a half-hour documentary
about typefaces and how people use them. The programme’s web site is
and contains a link to a RealAudio version of the programme.

Compromising with the uncompromising

The Government has annnounced its new immigration policy. It’s “responding to people’s very real worries”, apparently. Well, call me a dogmatist, but I don’t think that the Government should be appeasing the poisonous libels of the Mail and its ilk. Today’s Mail headline said it all – “Asylum – You are right to worry”.

For all the undoubtedly clever wording in the Government’s position, the fundamental of it is this: rather than fighting for what’s right, they’ve allowed the Mail to present its petty, vicious racism as in some way approved of by the State. The nuancing and statements in favour of immigration will be lost in the noise and shouting.

The problem with triangulation is that the Mail and their ilk are not open to compromise. It’s like trying to compromise with a Hutu militia by adopting a “let’s just kill some of the Tutsis” policy. Hatred and bigotry cannot be appeased, they can only be fought against, and the Government has clearly bottled it.

OpenDemocracy – the All Bran of political debate

All Bran is very good for you, but sometimes – just sometimes – you want Frosties. This advert (!) from openDemocracy today:

openDemocracy writers bring life to philosophy:

  • “Iraq, philosophy in war” – articles on Immanuel Kant, Dostoevsky, and Leo Strauss
  • “Robert Nozick, anarcho-capitalist” (May 2002)
  • Ramin Jahanbegloo & Richard Rorty, “America’s dreaming” (August 2004)
  • Candida Clark, “Jacques Derrida, a Cambridge epiphany” (October 2004)