Johann Hari – England

Linked with The battle for Labour’s soul.

Johann Hari (born January 21, 1979) is a British journalist and writer. He is a columnist for The Independent and the Evening Standard. His work has also appeared in the New York Times, the Los Angeles Times, The New Republic, Le Monde and Ha’aretz. Hari was born in Glasgow and raised in London. He attended Aylward School, John Lyon School, North Cheshire Theatre School, Weald College and Woodhouse College. He graduated with a double first in Social and Political Sciences at King’s College, Cambridge in 2001 … (full text).

We’ll save the planet only if we we’re forced to.

He writes: In Kabul hospital, half the patients who need opiate-based painkillers are writhing in agony because they have none—while in the fields outside and across Afghanistan, farmers trying to grow opiates are having their fields trashed and livelihoods destroyed by western troops. This is just the most ironic intersection between the west’s “war on drugs” and what the World Health Organisation calls “an unprecedented global pain crisis … (full text).

His homepage.

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Johann Hari – England

Rowan Williams has shown us one thing – why multiculturalism must be abandoned.

Spielberg has taken a stand. We must too.

He writes also: Liberal America may be slapping itself on the back that the two main contenders for the Democratic ticket are a woman and a black man, but the elephant in the room is a pink one. Where is the gay candidate? The republicans are all heterosexual males – that goes without saying – but for those who had higher hopes for the Democrats, disappointment is the name of the game. When Bill Clinton first won the White House, Fleetwood Mac reformed and played at his inauguration. But hell will freeze over before the Village People get back together and sing YMCA while the Pink Prez and his First Boyfriend waltz into the Oval Office. (on public interest blogspot).

Jeremy Kyle, a moral hero of our time.

… We don’t need to speculate about what these British sharia courts would look like. They already exist in some mosques across Britain, as voluntary enterprises. Last month, a plain, unsensationalist documentary called Divorce: Sharia Style looked at the judgements they hand down. If a man wants a divorce, he simply has to say to his wife, “I divorce you” three times over three months. The wife has no right of appeal, and no right to ask for a reason. If a woman wants a divorce, by contrast, she has to humbly ask her husband. If he refuses, she must turn to a sharia court, and convince three Mullahs that her husband has behaved “unreasonably” – according to the rules laid out in a pre-modern text that recommends domestic violence if your wife gets uppity. Irum Shazad, a 26-year-old British woman, travels from her battered women’s refuge to a sharia court in East London. She explains that her husband was so abusive she slashed her wrists with a carving knife. The court tells her this was a sin, making her as bad as him. They tell her to go back to her husband. (They grant a divorce half a year later, after a dozen more “last chances” for him to abuse her.) … (full text).

Reshuffling the Deck Chairs on the National Review cruise.

And he writes: … So what’s a guy to do to distract himself in these circumstances, but seduce a Nazi? Part of my task was, obviously, to befriend the people there, and to see what they were saying privately. I admit I have a rather cliched gay man’s attraction to muscly, shaven-headed louts, and they were troublingly profuse at the Marriott. There’s a whole thesis to be written about the complex relationship between homosexuality and far-right political movements … (full text).

Don’t be fooled by the myth of John McCain.

Now we all live in an episode of Tomorrow’s World, faster than we could possibly have imagined. It is easy – and a little trite – to gush with Panglossian glee about the internet. But, still. Today, anyone with a laptop and an internet connection has access to a heftier chunk of humanity’s knowledge than the most privileged visitor to the Great Library of Alexandria in the third century BC, or the British Library reading room just a generation ago. Want George Eliot’s novels, Einstein’s scientific papers or Paris Hilton’s genitals? Just click here. It is hard not to feel dizzy at the bizarre new connections of ideas and people and money suddenly surging across continents. I have a gay Muslim friend, for example, who spends all day talking to Israeli soldiers on webcams, partly for aesthetic reasons and partly to persuade them to leave the West Bank. That conversation – and tens of millions even odder still – would have been impossible five years ago. Today, you can almost feel broadband cables hum with them … (full text).

There is a way to save the rainforests.

… These über-parents have had a starring role in a number of news stories recently. A company called Blue Tree Services is marketing GPS devices you can plant on your child. You will be able track their every move. ‘He’s left the Wimpy! She’s gone to Asda! Oh my god, he’s buying a copy of Heat magazine!’ The company’s managing director, Mike Smuts, says: “We have seen a huge demand for this product across all sectors of society.” Meanwhile, universities and graduate employers complain they are being bombarded by pushy parents. Dr Paul Redmond, head of the careers service at Liverpool University, says parents are coming to university career fairs to sell their kids – and if their kids aren’t bought they want to know why. Huddersfield University has even had to set up a “family liaison officer” to save the Goldman Sachs stall from a horde of angry middle-class mothers and feed information to parents round-the-clock about their kids’ progress … (full text).

Botox is destroying Hollywood stars’ ability to act.

Find him and his publications on The Independent; on wikipedia; on AlterNet.org; on Google Video-search; on Google Book-search; on Google Group-search; on Google Blog-search.

Since January 2003:

  • he has been a twice-weekly columnist for The Independent, one of Britain’s leading newspapers,
  • and a Contributing Editor to Attitude, Britain’s main gay magazine, (on wikipedia, on my space.com, as forum).

Since 2005 he has also written a weekly ‘City Lives’ column for the Evening Standard, London’s nightly newspaper.

His writing has appeared in:

links:

McCain’s rage;

More on McCain;

Feminism or Multiculturalism (you can’t have both);

Shoot Johann Hari;

Johann Hari, liberalism, Islamism, Palestine and more discursive debris.

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