Category Archives: Cultural Critique

The descent into Darkness of the UK and Victoria. Quo Vadis?

[Bottom line: the conflicting forces now being created in the UK and Australia are truly frightening.] The UK government has just announced a nationwide return of one of the most destructive elements of lock downs: mandatory social isolation. Gatherings of … Continue reading

Posted in bubble, Coronavirus crisis, Cultural Critique, Democracy, Health, History, Inequality, Journalism, Law, Libertarian Musings, Politics - international, Politics - national, Science, Social, Social Policy, Society | 101 Comments

Will busy offices return eventually? Of course they will.

[message: the “stay at home” firms will see their bored and lonely good young staff jump ship to the hip, drunk, snorting, and cavorting hard-work hard-play offices everyone loves to complain about.] The estimate from Transport for London is that … Continue reading

Posted in Cultural Critique, Dance, Geeky Musings, Innovation, Libertarian Musings, Life, Philosophy, Society | 3 Comments

Orwell that ends well: Can evaluation save us from ourselves?

When I first saw the Productivity Commission’s Draft Indigenous Evaluation Strategy, my heart sank. I’d had had several quite extensive meetings with Romlie Mokak, the Indigenous Commissioner at the PC who struck me as a person of great intelligence, straightforwardness … Continue reading

Posted in Cultural Critique, Economics and public policy, Ethics, History, Innovation, Political theory, Politics - national, Politics - Northern Territory, regulation | 11 Comments

How change has changed: changemaking then and now

Below is a piece I published on the NESTA website in early 2016 which they took down in a web revamp. It’s still available on archive.org, but I thought I’d also publish it here for the record. There’s a fascinating … Continue reading

Posted in Cultural Critique, Democracy, Economics and public policy, History, Philosophy, Political theory, Politics - international, Politics - national | 5 Comments

A review of “The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes”, the prequel to “The Hunger Games”.

[spoiler alert!] As a fan of the “Hunger Games”, a dystopian trilogy where teenagers are thrown into gladiatorial games to fight till the last survivor in a world that is a blend of ancient Rome and modern America, I eagerly … Continue reading

Posted in Art and Architecture, Cultural Critique, Democracy, Films and TV, Geeky Musings, History, Literature, Media, Social Policy, Society | 3 Comments

Non-linearities, risk, policy and administration

Slightly updated from its being published at the Mandarin. The catastrophe of Victoria’s resurgence of COVID is a lesson in non-linearity. This reminds me of Paul Romer’s recent comments to the effect that, since economists have foisted cost/benefit analysis on … Continue reading

Posted in Cultural Critique, Economics and public policy | 34 Comments

Evaluation is not a thing

An earlier version of this piece was published last week on the Mandarin. Because the idea I have called “the Evaluator General” is several ideas knitted together to try to resolve a number of dilemmas, it comes with numerous implications … Continue reading

Posted in Cultural Critique, Economics and public policy, Information, Innovation | 1 Comment