Archive for January, 2019


Which planet is most often closest to the Earth?

January 18th, 2019 by Roger Darlington

The closest planet to the Earth varies depending on where the various planets are in their orbits. So which planet is most often closest to the Earth? The approximate statistics for which planet is closest to the Earth are:Mercury: 46% of the timeVenus: 36% of the time Mars: 18% of the time It is a […]

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My 16 predictions for the future of Brexit – how are things working out?

January 16th, 2019 by Roger Darlington

Six weeks ago, I was rash enough to make a blog posting in which I attempted to make 16 predictions for how the Brexit crisis would unfold. So, a month a half later, how are things working out? So far, the first four of my predictions have come to pass (although not always in the […]

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Ten of the films that I have most enjoyed in the last year

January 15th, 2019 by Roger Darlington

This week, I started a 12-week course of evening classes at the City Literary Institute in central London. The course is titled “Contemporary Cinema” and the tutor is the American John Wischmeyer. We have 25 students on the course, many of them with a deep knowledge of the movies (one woman goes to the cinema […]

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A review of the recent film “The Florida Project”

January 14th, 2019 by Roger Darlington

In 1984, I took my son – then coming up to aged eight – to Disney World in Florida and we stayed in a hotel in the delightfully-named little town of Kissimmee. I would never have imagined then that 35 years later I would view a film located in such an unlikely setting as a […]

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Seven charts that show the world is actually becoming a better place

January 11th, 2019 by Roger Darlington

So many people think that the world is becoming a worse and worse place when actually the opposite is the case. How can there be such a divergence between perception and reality? In short, it’s because we concentrate on the headlines – which are overwhelmingly negative – instead of looking at the trendlines – which […]

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What next for Brexit?

January 10th, 2019 by Roger Darlington

This was the title of a discussion which I attended last night hosted by the “Guardian” newspaper at Kings Place in central London. The panel participants were Jessica Elgot, Martin Kettle, Aditya Chakrabortty, Lisa O’Carroll and Polly Toynbee. All the speakers were Remainders who were close to despair at how the Brexit process was unfolding […]

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A review of the film “Disobedience”

January 9th, 2019 by Roger Darlington

Like the earlier film “Apostasy”, “Disobedience” is a story of the restrictions and repression in an ultra-religious community in England told largely through the viewpoint of female protagonsists. Whereas “Apostasy” looked at members of Jehovah’s Witnesses living in Manchster, this film is set in an Orthodox Jewish community in north London. It is an adaptation […]

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Is the decline of social democracy reversible?

January 7th, 2019 by Roger Darlington

In a short but wide-ranging article that starts with the current weakness of the Labour Party in Israel and then goes goes on to look at the standing of social democratic parties and movements in Europe and the USA, Eric Lee – an American friend of mine living in London – sees a common trend: […]

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Thought For The Week

January 6th, 2019 by Roger Darlington

“For the first time in human history, starvation kills fewer people than obesity; plagues kill fewer people than old age; and violence kills fewer people than accidents.”Author and historian Yuval Noah Harari in “The World In 2019” This is actually Thought No 970 in my long-running series. You can see all the previous thoughts and/or […]

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What does federalism mean in the context of the American political system?

January 6th, 2019 by Roger Darlington

In the Autumn of 2018, I attended a series of six lectures at London’s City Literary Institute which examined the history of the American federal system. I have used some of this information to update the section of my guide to the American political system that explains the nature of federalism which is so important […]

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