Neoliberalism, Brexit, and Higher Education

Is Brexit bad for UK universities? This appears to be the question at the centre of an article from the Times Higher Education titled “UK researchers face uncertainty over EU grant applications” (David Matthews, June 29, 2016), which was approvingly reprinted in the Bulletin of the Canadian Association of University Teachers (Vol. 63, No. 7, […]

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After a Year of Being Locked Down

Nobody (as far as I know) has commented on how hard this year of lockdowns has been on university professors. That’s good: nobody should. Many millions of workers at home and abroad, and those who have lost employment, or their health, have had a far worse time. In part because of COVID-19, and in even larger part because of the disproportional political responses that were rooted in neither science nor logic, but rather an effort to criminalize and distract populations, the world has experienced an infernal year. It is not yet over, even as a couple of countries in the Centre/the First World/the Global North begin to reopen. In most other countries, the situation remains dire, and in quite a few it is even worsening. New states of emergency, new curfews, and some particularly virulent strains of the virus (particularly the Brazilian and Indian mutations), combined with porous borders and inept state management, result in Year Two of misery. If one has faith in the efficacy and safety of mRNA treatments called vaccines, then one should note how uneven and unequal the global distribution of these products has been, a fact that brings back to life what never really went away: a worldwide division between Centre and Periphery. “The coming year could be a story of two worlds undermining each other,” as explained in an article in The Atlantic. It will be 2022 already when vaccines will become available to more than just 20% of the world’s population, and in the meantime populations in most of the world are dealing with sometimes monstrous mutations.

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Pathways for the Post-COVID New Old World

Part 5 of 5 of the COVID-19 Series. Some are openly proclaiming, “you don’t want to waste a crisis,” as they calculate how the crisis could become a series of opportunities to “change things”. We have to question whether strategic pre-positioning to shape the “post-COVID normal,” might end up even unconsciously shaping the authorities’ responses […]

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Goodbye “American Greatness”

Part 3 of 5 of the COVID-19 Series. Indispensable. Here was the so-called “indispensable nation,” the self-appointed saviour of the world, with generations of its leaders and thinkers thinking, speaking, and writing as if God had appointed “America” to lead the world. A world without America, we were told by Americans, would be so much […]

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Globalization in the Widening Gyre of COVID-19

Part 2 of 5 of the COVID-19 Series. The Routes of Panic It turns out that when people panic, they panic according to a template. Panic follows established routes, and is more structured than we might think, since we might think of it as being amorphous, uncontrolled, and chaotic. Sometimes the template is handed to […]

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State of the Empire: Reviewing 2019

Annual Review of 2019: The State of the Empire at the End of a Decade This year marks the end of the second decade of the 21st-century, and as we enter the third decade one prediction seems to be warranted: the 2020s will see the most marked and unambiguous signs of the final decline of […]

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Climate Propaganda for Corporate Profit: Bell Canada

Strategically timed to appear immediately after a heady week of international climate emergency marches, including large ones in Canada, and after the same week in which Greta Thunberg delivered her UN speech, Bell Canada sent out the message below on Monday, Sept. 30, 2019. This is only one very small, rather ordinary and everyday type […]

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Brexitannia: The Faces and Voices of Brexit

First shown at London’s East End Festival in June of 2017, Brexitannia was the very first documentary about Brexit. It is a striking and deeply pensive film, in contrast with the Brexit movie reviewed in the previous article. Brexitannia (2017) is a superb documentary that is remarkable for its sensitivity, balance, and the ability to […]

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