Ultimately, the British people voted for a departure but not for a destination, which is why what really matters is allowing them to vote again on the final deal, giving them the chance to say no to an irresponsible hard Brexit that risks our economy and our jobs.
—Tim Farron, then leader of the Liberal Democrats, in 2016
Continue reading I hate referendums
They were initially bemused by the complexity of bus timetables, bin collections and—most of all—by the changeable weather. “In our country, when it’s summer, it’s summer,” says Ziead Alsaouah, Mr Batak’s son-in-law.
—The Economist | After the exodus
I had a very similar reaction to the weather when I moved here 8 years ago.
North India, where I spent the first 24 years of my life, has a very predictable weather. When it’s summer, it’s hot and dry for months on end. When it’s the rain season, it’s raining almost every day for a month. And when winter arrives, it’s bitterly cold, mostly dry, and frequently foggy (recently smoggy) for months on end.
Contrast that to the weather here on the island – it’s common to have at least two seasons in a day. Three’s not uncommon either. We had two months of constant dry, warm summers this year, and it’s already caused a mild panic. If we get a week of snow in the winter, news bulletins are full of ‘snowcalypse’ references.
It’s unsettling, at least initially, for people coming from places with stable, ‘continental’ weather patterns. Where culture, life, traditions, activities are based on the season, what do we do when the seasons just aren’t anymore?
Continue reading Welcome to the UK…
In the East, I’ve heard it said, there’s intimacy without friendship; in the West, there’s friendship without intimacy.
—Karan Mahajan, in The New Yorker
Continue reading Friendship, intimacy, commerce, and the West
Egon Bittner, a sociologist, once defined policing as responding to “something that ought not to be happening and about which someone had better do something now”
—The Economist | The blurred blue line
These days, governments prefer to raise money by stealth. In the Healey budget of 1975, there were eight big tax measures. In George Osborne’s budget in 2016 there were 86 crafty little ones, including higher taxes on landfills
The Economist: Britain’s long-standing opposition to tax-rises is slowly softening