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September 09, 2013



My wife cannot bear to watch 'Yes Minister', its too much like her life at work in a quango, especially in interactions with their sponsoring government department...

We truly do live in a post-serious age.

gastro george

The problem is that satire morphs easily into cynicism, which also leads to a form of powerlessness - "all politicians are crap and we can never do nothing about it".

And this is the kind of agenda that most news media are happy to promote, as it enables the Murdochs of this world get on with looting society.


The fetish of strong leadership implies ignoring established procedures and institutions, such as international law. There is rarely, though, an open debate about whether those institutions are still relevant; there is just an implicit assumption that they are irrelevant or out-of-date.

There is also an implicit assumption that the strong leader knows what needs to be done (which happens to fit the prejudices of the fetishists).

gastro george

Yes, Cohen and Aaronovitch should be all too aware of where alpha male leadership took us last time ... but I guess that they are.


"Back in the early 90s, when his bellendery was of only measurable proportions, ..:"

Apologies for the non-brit question: ¿ what is the meaning of "bellendery" (and within this context) ?

Thank you

Ralph Musgrave


Could you get your wife to write a guide on how to extract free taxpayers money from government departments? She’d have to use a pseudonym of course.

My guess is that one needs to demonstrate to the department that the money will be frittered away to no benefit at all. For example if anyone like Chris Dillow or me with an obvious passionate interest in economics were to apply for money to support our blogs, we’d be told to eff off.

In contrast, if some hooray henry wants to go to university to study a subject he has no interest in at all, and with a view to getting drunk twice a week, then taxpayers’ money is showered on him.


The critique that we live in a post-serious age is not a new one, and can be traced back through postmodernism ("the cultural logic of late capitalism") all the way to the original reactionary thinkers of the late 17th/early 18th centuries.

In a nutshell, once we dethroned monarchs as the earthly represenatatives of God, we condemned ourselves to a squalid, mundane and anti-heroic existence. We have been banished from the garden through our own hubris and obsession with material things (well, apples).

The ideological purpose of Toby Young is to distract from the reality of commodification through the combination of defensive irony and an appeal to eternal conservative values. The absolute helmet.


What about a facebook share button so that we easily repost?


Bellendery - act of indulging in behaviour typical of an extreme tosser, otherwise known as a bellend. (Urban dictionary)


@guano: again, non-brit apologies - I still fail to understand what you're trying to convey. "Extreme tosser" = someone who drinks heavily...?


@Six8Fifty: to describe someone as a tosser, curl your fingers as if you were gripping the shaft of something, with the the tip of your thumb against the tips of your fingers. Keeping your wrist loose, jerk your arm up and down from the elbow. Keeping the gesture in the general crotch region will improve the effectiveness/offensiveness. Avoid aiming the gesture in the direction to large men, especially those in an advanced state of refreshment.

Also, the shape of a head of a small chap resembles a bell. Somewhat.


@dan: LOL. Thanks. British humor rulez. Dude....
(just doing some post seriousness posturing, very unbritish style)

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