The Daily Paradox

The Art of Craft

Renyung Ho’s excellent article “Why the world needs craft” (Daily Paradox 03 Oct 2016) is important even more widely than she suggests. We are already struggling to think of how to employ those whose jobs will be lost to artificial intelligence. It is not just a matter of earning a living. We only become what…
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Why the world needs craft

Imagine a world where everything that is exchanged, bought, used and consumed is made by machine, on an assembly line. Where every item is judged only on its functionality, valued for its utility, and on its ability to achieve economy of scale. Devoid of colour, originality, meaning and context, every object is made in a…
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Our small corners

Why has the world taken against globalisation? And so quickly? As recently as two years ago the economic scene looked set for expanding international trade, increasing travel and a world fraternity that if not federal was more open to discussion than to war. In a spectacularly short time people have turned protectionist. The price of…
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Are we living in a golden age?

Three weeks ago, Chris Dixon identified eleven reasons to be excited about the future of technology. As a whole, they make a case for why we can be hopeful about the overall wellbeing of our species. Swedish author and vocal libertarian Johan Norberg’s latest book also puts forward ten “reasons to look forward to the…
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Good actors

A good actor exaggerates his gestures so that they reach across the footlights and connect with the audience. From clear enunciation and raised voice to emphasis just a little stronger than you would find in real life, she or he ensures that you don’t miss a trick. Those wishing to communicate well should watch good…
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Loneliness – ‘the horror not to be surveyed’

Loneliness leads to despair. It can be self-inflicted by people who don’t want to make the effort or who are too scared to walk into a group they don’t know. It can be caused by lack of money to travel to see others or to join groups that ask for payment. It can be the…
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The one in my arms

Good Pope Francis has proclaimed Mother Teresa of Calcutta to be a Saint. I shouldn’t think there is a living soul who would quarrel with that decision. The simple, touching ceremony in St Peter’s Square at the Vatican was more than Mother T would have wanted but less than she deserved. In other words, they…
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The Apple Tax

The majority of taxpayers, in my experience, are decent, law-abiding citizens, willing to pay their dues. They will probably plan their life to avoid paying more tax than they have to. Not to do that would label them ‘daft’. Having settled on the rules, most taxpayers obey them. I wish governments and central bankers would…
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Do we need to read more books?

When books first came on the human scene they were always read out loud. We might think that a bit strange today because a book is the epitome of private learning, experience and joy. As a British Prime Minister used to say “Nothing I like more than settling down with a little Trollope”. He meant…
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Giving must become thinking

The “giving programmes”, now widely developed by Social and Charity Organisations, are a major contribution to easing the trauma of changes taking place all around us. Singapore’s approach of individuals creating “Idea by idea” is right. Step by step is how things get done. Ideas generated and volunteerism thus enlisted are critically important in many…
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