Tuesday, 5 August 2008


Thanks to Reza for notice about this blog / collective resource for heretical (non-)philosophy. Also on my first brief peruse there is this link to a downloadable copy of Iain Hamilton Grant's new book (please order for your local / university library).

This may help lift my current sense of depression, caused partly by the weather and partly by an instance of para-academic fuss, the latter having left me overly shaken for its trivial nature.
For an actually depressing reflection on the contemporary neo-liberal crisis state James Meek's report in the LRB on the floods last year in the UK provides salutary reading. As he remarks, concerning the privatisation of water:
"In a way, all this is a chronicle of defeat for the notion of public service. It turns out that it is possible to create private tax-collectors to run private monopolies and legally skim a percentage off the top for shareholders, while leaving customers reasonably happy; that even when things go terribly wrong for companies like Severn Trent, even when the failure of the private system to defend critical national infrastructure is exposed, it is public servants, rather than private ones, who shoulder the greatest blame."
While the involvement of public servants in these processes is undeniable, not least in the scandal of the initial privatisations, and the obvious refusal by "New" Labour to reverse them, this direction of blame towards the state obviously supports Owen's point concerning the ideologisation of planning as necessarily bad.

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