Sunday, 29 August 2010

Conference Time

Over the summer I try to get to a few conferences to hear reports on others research, catch up on old friends and meet new people.  This coming week I will be in Greece for the European Group for the Study of Deviance and Social Control's annual conference. If I can get access to the web I will post some updates on the conference.

Earlier in the year I went to a interdisciplinary conference in Bristol entitled Writing the Empire: Scribblings from Below. It was a really enjoyable few days with some excellent papers.  These are now available to listen to on the website of the wonderfully named Backdoor Broadcasting CorporationI strongly recommend a listen.

Thursday, 19 August 2010

Man is a social being. Real fulfilment for any person lies in service to his fellow men and women

A rat race is for rats. We're not rats. We're human beings. Reject the insidious pressures in society that would blunt your critical faculties to all that is happening around you, that would caution silence in the face of injustice lest you jeopardise your chances of promotion and self-advancement. This is how it starts and before you know where you are, you're a fully paid-up member of the rat-pack. The price is too high. It entails the loss of your dignity and human spirit.
Jimmy Reid (1932-2010)

This quote is from Jimmy's 1972 acceptance speach on his appointment as Rector of Glasgow University.  The full speach can be read here

Hat tip The Herald

Friday, 6 August 2010

Thought of the Day

I came across this observation from George Orwell:
We all live by robbing Asiatic coolies, and those of us who are "enlightened" all maintain that those coolies ought to be set free: but our standard of living, and hence our "enlightenment," demands that the robbery shall continue.
For those of us who want social justice and a sustainable planet the only answer is to be significantly poorer.

Wednesday, 4 August 2010

Podcast of the Public debate - Addiction: should we penalise or treat?

On April 8th I took part in a public debate at The Watershed in Bristol about how we respond to drugs.  The debate was recorded and is now available on the web as the August Philosophy Monthly Podcast.

You can listen to the Podcast here

Tuesday, 3 August 2010

BMJ on the health consquences of the War on Drugs

The British Medical Journal has started producing short videos.  This one is worth a view.
Strict laws on the criminalisation of drug use and drug users are fuelling the spread of HIV and other serious harms associated with the criminal market and should be reviewed, say experts. In this video, epidemiologist Elizabeth Pisani and other leading commentators describe which countries are leading the way in tackling HIV infection among injecting drug users.

Hat tip Transform