Thoughts/Readings 2017 Week 20

Photo of the Week


My favourite part of Hidcote, my favourite English garden.


No articles this week because I’ve been diving back into the phenomenal The English and Their History. So here’s a quote instead:

“We like to think that liberty is fought for. Judging by occasional comments in the media and politicians, a widespread belief is that liberty was won during the [English] Civil War. The reality is different: the war almost destroyed liberty. Only when the country rejected fighting, and zealots had abandoned their visions of a compulsory New Jerusalem, was liberty possible. To the Whigs we owe the principle — Magna Carta restated in modern form — that rulers must obey the law and that legitimate authority requires the consent of the people. From the Tories came the principle — fundamental to any political order — that people have no right to rebel against a government because they disagree with it. Combining these seemingly conflicting principles produced characteristics of English political culture: suspicion of Utopias and zealots; trust in common sense and experience; respect for tradition; preference for gradual change; and the view that ‘compromise’ is victory, not betrayal.”


  1. Marc Andreeson on the future, covering topics from is tech useful or useless, good or evil to flying cars and more
  2. Bryan Stevenson on justice, poverty and the brokenness of the American justice system in an interview with Ezra Klein
  3. Wide-ranging but fun and fascinating conversation between Steven Pinker and Tyler Cowen