Archive for October, 2016

Whatever happened to Halloween?

October 31st, 2016 by Roger Darlington

Last year, almost 60 children came to our door for Halloween. This year, it was less than 30. I blame Brexit. Now what am I supposed to do with all those chocolates?

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What do we do if aliens make contact?

October 31st, 2016 by Roger Darlington

As this short article makes clear, Hollywood has all sorts of answers: “There’s ‘Contact’ (we build a space ship), ‘District 9’ (coexist unhappily), ‘Close Encounters of the Third Kind’ (friendly abductions) and ‘Independence Day’ (bang!). Next week, Denis Villeneuve’s ‘Arrival’ will give its answer.” Of course, as the article makes clear, unless the laws of […]

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A review of the recent movie “The Intern”

October 30th, 2016 by Roger Darlington

There are not enough female writers and directors in film-making and not enough movies that are addressed to the issues of an older audience. “The Intern” is written and directed by a woman of a certain age and appeals to both a maturer audience (the intern is Robert de Niro) and a younger audience (his […]

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Ever heard of the Dunning-Kruger effect?

October 29th, 2016 by Roger Darlington

The Dunning-Kruger effect is defined as “a cognitive bias in which low-ability individuals suffer from illusory superiority, mistakenly assessing their ability as much higher than it really is”. The phenomenon was first observed in a series of experiments by David Dunning and Justin Kruger of the department of psychology at Cornell University in 1999. Policial commentators […]

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An excellent example of why a free society needs independent trade unions

October 28th, 2016 by Roger Darlington

GMB, the union for professional drivers, has won their case against Uber as the London Employment Tribunal has determined that Uber has acted unlawfully by not providing drivers with basic workers’ rights. GMB brought two test cases to the Central London Employment Tribunal on 20 July 2016 and it has decided that Uber drivers are […]

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How can the consumer voice be better heard in the regulation of essential services?

October 27th, 2016 by Roger Darlington

In a week’s time, in my capacity as Chair of the Essential Services Access Network (ESAN), I will be chairing a major conference to be held at the BT Tower. The title of the event is “How can the consumer voice be better heard in the regulation of essential services?” and we will be looking mainly […]

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Warm words for “Cold Feet”

October 26th, 2016 by Roger Darlington

This evening, I watched recordings of the last two episodes (7 & 8) of the new series (7) of “Cold Feet” – a return of the series after an interval of 13 years. Creator Mike Bullen has scored again with a clever mixture of drama and humour played out through a cast of five familiar […]

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U.S. presidential election (34): why wouldn’t you vote for Hillary Clinton?

October 26th, 2016 by Roger Darlington

The world has been following the US presidential race with exceptional interest this time round because the differences between the Republican and Democratic nominees – Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton respectively – are so profound and the implications of the American choice for the rest of the globe are massive. I venture to suggest that, […]

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Five consecutive nights, five different beds

October 24th, 2016 by Roger Darlington

It’s been a crazy few days in which I’ve taken a few moments in the morning to work out where I am, since I have spent five consecutive nights in five different locations: On Wednesday night, I was at a place called Sanctuary Farm at the foot of Lake Naivasha about two hours drive out […]

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Visit to Nairobi (3)

October 21st, 2016 by Roger Darlington

For the first time in my three visits to Kenya to see the family, I spent sometime outside Nairobi when I took my granddaughter (soon to be six) Catrin to a place called Sanctuary Farm about two hours drive north-west of the capital (there is a wonderful view over the Rift Valley about half way […]

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