“We are on the verge of the abyss in the Middle East…” António Guterres, UN Secretary-General 16 October 2023 The Israel-Gaza Crisis, as the United Nations describes the situation, has shocked the world, and confronted us with the difficulties of living in a time of war. How can we respond to these shocking events mindfully,… Continue reading How to nurture empathy through the Israel-Gaza Crisis – new podcast
https://johnmenadue.com/australias-aborted-cultural-decolonisation/ My thoughts on Australian cultural history on the occasion of the 50th anniversary of Patrick White's #NobelPrize were published by the team @johnmenadue for publishing. Thanks again to Aran, John and the team. You can also listen to my podcast on Patrick White to explore this topic further. The main episode was Why read… Continue reading New Article: Reflections on Patrick White’s Nobel Prize and Australian cultural history
On the podcast this week I did the second of my series on the Nobel Prize, and featured the winner of the 1923 Nobel Prize for Literature, William Butler (W.B.) Yeats.
What does the G20 Summit (9-10 September, New Delhi) portend for the reassembly of the world’s institutions of power, diplomatic dialogue and cultural exchange. India has invested enormous effort into its leadership of the G20 this year. How well India has accomplished its vision for its G20 Presidency?
I wrote in my previous post about the rhetoric of “as long as it takes” on Ukraine. How it is a feature of stubborn decision-makers, and the opting decisions of war. How NATO aligned elites might detach from this doomed path, but I am not holding my breath, too long. I doubt they will, not… Continue reading Endurance in War and Politics for Non-Political Souls
Meanwhile, in another cauldron of the unruly multipolar world, the Ruin of Ukraine continues. I am still holding back from commenting deeply on the Ukraine War, but there were some interesting comments I noticed during the week that coincidentally resonated with my reading 1916: A Global History. History it seems is repeating in 2023.
My latest Burning Archive podcast is episode 116. Professions vs. Managers. The rise and fall of the professions. Interview with Hannah Forsyth. Listen here on Spotify and here on Apple podcasts and other platforms. Subscribe, share and leave a review. In this podcast I do my second in-depth interview of a historian. Dr Hannah Forsyth… Continue reading Latest Podcast: The rise and fall of the professions with Hannah Forsyth
The tolling of the bell for the American dream of a single world order, made in its own image, however does not mean the story of an expanding BRICS is the rise of a new hegemon. The multipolar world is becoming less unruly, and more plural. But who is King Canute, resisting the tide of history?
No doubt the big story of the multipolar world this week was the BRICS summit in Johannesburg. It even managed to feature the Indian space mission landing on the moon Narendra Modi was gracious enough to declare this an achievement of the plural world.
There has been a growing debate in Australia over its subservient defence and security relationship with the USA. This debate is also leading into a meeting next week, the Australian Labor Party (ALP) national conference.
Whatever the outcome of the 2024 USA elections, the next 16 months in America look like they will be a time of troubles. Could political disintegration of the gerontocratic American republic occur over the next two years?
For 7 years between 2006 and 2013 I was directly responsible for alcohol and drug policy in Victoria (Australia). It is a contentious field, and it was a personally rewarding field. But it is a field in which many common problems of governing are revealed.
The third chapter of Thirteen Ways of Looking at a Bureaucrat is the title essay, 'Thirteen Ways of Looking at a Bureaucrat'. It plays with Wallace Stevens' poem Thirteen Ways of Looking at a Blackbird, and seeks to open up the reader's mind to the many unexpected, even poetic ways you can look at this plain, humble, even despised personality, the bureaucrat.
The second chapter of Thirteen Ways of Looking at a Bureaucrat is Silenced Voice of the Bureaucrat. The second way of looking a a bureaucrat is to see a subtle mind that has been gagged, and who, if that code of silence were released may have something interesting to say. In this chapter I have… Continue reading Day Two of Thirteen Days of Looking at a Bureaucrat
My new book, Thirteen Ways of Looking at a Bureaucrat, is now out! Thirteen Ways of Looking at a Bureaucrat: Writing on Governing, is both memoir and essay collection. I think it breaks new ground because bureaucrats don't publish memoirs. It will change how you see government, politics, working life, and bureaucrats.
On the podcast this week I gave a rapid fire history of the Altlantic, structured around seven key dates. These dates provide glimpses into the multipolar history of the Atlantic Ocean, and the chameleon-like character of the Atlantic idea, institutions, alliance and civilization. It tells the story of how NATO emerged from the depths of the Atlantic Ocean.
John Menadue and the team at Pearls and Irritations has published an article of mine on the public service today and the problems of the overuse of consultants.
The most interesting aspect of Tooze’s use of the idea of polycrisis is not that many big things are happening all together. That is pretty standard, messy human history, really. The more interesting part is how he identifies a mismatch between decision-makers’ mental model of social reality, and the facts of social reality.
So I have decided to write a series of posts on my substack exploring theses on the world crisis. You can join my free weekly newsletter at jeffrich.substack.com, and I would encourage all readers of the blog to do so.
As it happened, I had watched on the weekend the earlier Soviet film, Come and See (1985). Perhaps next Victory Day, Michael Pezzulo should write to his staff, and urge them to watch Come and See.