Archive for January, 2018

As Trump prepares to give his first State of the Union address, a reminder of his dire and unprecedented approval ratings

January 30th, 2018 by Roger Darlington

With an approval rating after a year in office at least 10 points lower than that of any other US president in modern history, Donald Trump is planning in his first State of the Union address to Congress to claim success in his 12 months in Oval Office. According to the latest polling by both […]

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Visions of light: a course on film technique and style

January 29th, 2018 by Roger Darlington

This weekend, I spent a day at the City Literary Institute attending a course by John Wischmeyer which examined film technique and style. We began by watching the opening scene of “Jaws”, discussing it, and then watching it again to notice better all the techniques deployed by director Steven Spielberg. The rest of the course […]

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Flooding in Paris and drought in Cape Town

January 27th, 2018 by Roger Darlington

If I ever doubted the centrality of water to humankind (you could write a history of civilisation around the theme of water), the importance of H2O was underlined for me when I spent five years chairing the Customer Challenge Group for the regional company South East Water. So I can’t help but noticing two current […]

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Who will be the Democratic Party candidate in the presidential election of 2020?

January 27th, 2018 by Roger Darlington

Donald Trump has only been in the White House for a year and we are still nine months away from the mid-term congressional elections in November. But already there is speculation about who the Democrats will field in 2020 to take back the Oval Office from the Republicans. During his time as president, Trump has […]

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Think tank analysis highlights nursing staffing crisis facing UK

January 25th, 2018 by Roger Darlington

Analysis from the International Longevity Centre – UK (ILC-UK) published today shows: Between September 2009 and September 2017, the number of nurses rose by 0.8%, while the numbers of people aged over-65 rose by 17.6% during roughly the same period. The number of nurses per 1,000 of the population has fallen considerably from its peak […]

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Ever heard of the cockleshell heroes?

January 24th, 2018 by Roger Darlington

In 1955, there was a British film called “The Cockleshell Heroes” which told the story of a daring British commando raid of 1942 when 10 men attempted to sink ships in the port of Bordeaux in German-occupied France. Six ships were damaged as a result of the mission, but only two of the 10 commandos survived. I […]

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A review of “The Couple Next Door” by Shari Lapena

January 24th, 2018 by Roger Darlington

This novel by Canadian writer Lapena is a domestic suspense drama in the vein of “Gone Girl” and “The Girl On The Train” and indeed some have dubbed it “Gone Baby”. It has been a major best-seller but, in spite of a strong opening and a racy style, it is not as satisfactory as the […]

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A review of the new film “The Post”

January 23rd, 2018 by Roger Darlington

Steven Spielberg is one of the most commercially and critically successful directors in the history of Hollywood. Meryle Streep and Tom Hamks are among the very finest actors of their generation but, until now, have never appeared in the same movie. So a work which brings together these three titans of the screen has to […]

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New Oxfam reports reveals that 82% of all of the growth in global wealth in the last year went to the top 1%

January 22nd, 2018 by Roger Darlington

“In 2016, annual share dividends from the parent company of fashion chain Zara to the world’s fourth-richest man, Amancio Ortega, were worth approximately €1.3bn. Stefan Persson, whose father founded H&M, is ranked 43 in the Forbes list of the richest people in the world, and received €658m in share dividends last year. Anju works sewing […]

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A review of the new film “Darkest Hour”

January 21st, 2018 by Roger Darlington

“Darkest Hour”, an account of Winston Churchill’s premiership in the few weeks before the evacuation from Dunkirk in May 1940, can be seen as complementary to two other recent films: “Dunkirk” by director Christopher Nolan and “Churchill” with Brian Cox in the eponymous role. It may be a coincidence that all three works have appeared […]

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