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Which clippings match 'Margaret Thatcher' keyword pg.1 of 1
30 JANUARY 2015

Bitter Lake by Adam Curtis: how the West fooled itself

"My aim is to try to get people to look at those fragments of recorded moments from Afghanistan in a new and fresh way. I do feel that the way many factual programmes on TV are edited and constructed has become so rigid and formulaic – that the audiences don't really look at them any more. The template is so familiar.

I am using these techniques to both amplify and express the wider argument of Bitter Lake. It is that those in power in our society have so simplified the stories they tell themselves, and us, about the world that they have in effect lost touch with reality. That they have reduced the world to an almost childlike vision of a battle between good and evil.

This was the story that those who invaded Afghanistan carried with them and tried to impose there – and as a result they really could not see what was staring them in the face: a complex society where different groups had been involved in a bloody civil war for over 30 years. A world where no one was simply good or bad. But those in charge ignored all that – and out of it came a military and political disaster.

But the film also tries to show why Western politicians have so simplified the world. Because Afghanistan's recent past is also a key that unlocks an epic hidden history of the postwar world."

(Adam Curtis, 24 January 2015, The Telegraph)

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TAGS

1945 • 1970s America • 1973Adam CurtisAfghanistanArab • BBC iPlayer-only • Bedouin • Bitter Lake (2015) • bitter rivalries • caliphate • Come Down To Us (Burial 2013) • complex problems • deal • destabilised politics • documentarydocumentary film • dreamlike documentary style • drone • epic moment • footageFranklin D. Roosevelt • generations to come • global capitalismglobal politics • good versus evil • grand hypothesis • grand political dream • Helmand • ideology • imagined past • Islamic fundamentalism • Islamism • Kabul • King Ibn Saud of Saudi Arabia • Malcolm Tucker • Margaret ThatcherMiddle Eastmilitary intervention • Pashtun • Perry Mason • Phil Goodwin • Pushtun • recorded moments • Ronald ReaganSaudi Arabia • simplified stories • Solaris (1972) • Suez Canal • Wahhabi Islam • Wahhabism

CONTRIBUTOR

Simon Perkins
05 JULY 2009

Michael Sandel: A New Politics of the Common Good

"We're living with the economic fallout of the financial crisis and we're struggling to make sense of it. One way of understanding what's happened is to see that we're at the end of an era, an era of market triumphalism. The last three decades were a heady, reckless time of market mania and deregulation. We had the free market fundamentalism of the Reagan–Thatcher years and then we had the market friendly Neo–Liberalism of the Clinton and Blair years, which moderated but also consolidated the faith that markets are the primary mechanism for achieving the public good. Today that faith is in doubt. Market triumphalism has given way to a new market scepticism. Almost everybody agrees that we need to improve regulation, but this moment is about more than devising new regulations. It's also a time, or so it seems to me, to rethink the role of markets in achieving the public good."
(Professor Michael Sandel, 2009 Reith Lecture Series)

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TAGS

2009BBC • Bill Clinton • capitalismcommon goodcrisiseconomicsethicsfinancial crisisglobal financial crisisMargaret Thatchermarket deregulation • market triumphalism • Michael Sandel • neoliberalismpolitics • public good • regulation • Reith Lectures • responsibilityRonald Reagansocial changesocial constructionismsocietyTony BlairtransformationUK

CONTRIBUTOR

Simon Perkins
15 JUNE 2009

Phillip Blond: Rise of the red Tories

"We live in a time of crisis. In such times humans retreat to safety, and build bulwarks against the future. The financial emergency is having this effect on Britain's governing class. Labour has withdrawn to the safety of the sheltering state, and the comforts of its first income tax rise since the mid–1970s. Meanwhile, the Conservatives appear to be proposing a repeat of Thatcherite austerity in the face of economic catastrophe. But this crisis is more than an ordinary recession. It represents a disintegration of the idea of the 'market state' and makes obsolete the political consensus of the last 30 years. A fresh analysis of the ruling ideological orthodoxy is required.
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On a deeper level, the present moment is a challenge to conservatism itself. The Conservatives are still viewed as the party of the free market, an idea that has collapsed into monopoly finance, big business and deregulated global capitalism. Tory social thinking has genuinely evolved, but the party's economic thinking is still poised between repetition and renewal. As late as August 2008 David Cameron said: 'I'm going to be as radical a social reformer as Margaret Thatcher was an economic reformer,' and that 'radical social reform is what this country needs right now.' He is right about society, but against the backdrop of collapsing markets and without a macro–economic alternative, Thatcherite economics has been wrongfooted by events."
(Phillip Blond, Prospect Magazine February 2009 issue 155)

TAGS

2009austeritycapitalismchange • civil association • conservatismConservativescrisisDavid Camerondecentralisation • financial emergency • free market economyglobal capitalismglobal financial crisisglobal financial systemLabour • late-modern • Margaret Thatcher • market state • mutualism • neoliberalism • Phillip Blond • politicspost-traditionalreformsocial change • social reform • stateTorytransformationUK • voluntary association

CONTRIBUTOR

Simon Perkins
16 NOVEMBER 2008

Peter Kennard: photomontage activist

"Peter Kennard has spent most of his life in London, and has been considerably more involved than most in the capital's political gatherings during the last 25 years.
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His two major subjects quickly emerged: armaments and poverty. This was the early eighties with 3 million unemployed, Thatcher in her first term girding her loins for the Falklands War, and the CND at the height of its popularity. Kennard had an audience.
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'The point of my work is to use easily accessible iconic images, but to render them unacceptable. To break down the image of the all–powerful missile....after breaking them, to show new possibilities emerging in the cracks and splintered fragments of the old reality.'

His belief at this time was that photomontage had the power to show the causes rather than the results. In recent times however, he seems to have had his doubts: 'There is a problem with montage in that you see it everywhere now because of digital technology. There is so much transformed imagery around that people accept constructed images without questioning their meaning. I think my work was losing impact because of that.'"
(David Palmer)

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TAGS

activismart • CND • culture jammingcut and paste • Falklands War • guerrilla tacticsMargaret Thatcherparody • Peter Kennard • photographyphotomontagepolitical satirepoliticspropagandare-purposeridiculetacticTony BlairUK

CONTRIBUTOR

Simon Perkins
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