“We do not arrive at any idea of what is best for the collective unless we are prepared to seize the day and practise it on our own behalf. Most mature individuals understand what this means in respect of themselves—it’s just all those feckless others that they don’t trust to act appropriately.” Things may be for the worst in a less-than-perfect-world, but Will Self is determined to hold on to his idealism. www.newstatesman.com
“So the suggestion is that we don’t need hope at all. All we need is a purpose for our action, a purpose that need not be conceived of as a hope.” Julian Baggini only sees limited scope for rational hope. But that should not make you despair. newhumanist.org.uk
“Four rounds in a boxing ring could not undo 26 years in prison, but Dewey Bozella made the most of them, winning a unanimous decision Saturday at the Staples Center in Los Angeles in what he says will be his only professional fight.” Peter Applebome reports on Dewey Bozella’s debut as a professional boxer. Death penalty, anyone? www.nytimes.com
I was just following the swearing-in of Barack Obama as the 44th President and listening to his Inaugural Address. It appears to me that, at long last, the United States of America have got a class act to lead them.
“The Atheist Bus Campaign began when Ariane Sherine wrote an article in June 2008 about Christian adverts running on London buses. These ads featured the URL of a website which said non–Christians would burn in hell for all eternity. Ariane suggested that atheists reading her article could each donate £5 to fund a reassuring counter–advert.” www.atheistbus.org.uk
“To all those watching tonight from beyond our shores, from parliaments and palaces to those who are huddled around radios in the forgotten corners of our world—our stories are singular, but our destiny is shared, and a new dawn of American leadership is at hand.” President-Elect Barack Obama