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Category Archive for 'Food for thought'

Russell Davies talked about the “machinery of government”. Steve Hilton talked about the “machinery of political funding” in the States. They were talking at the APG’s brilliant Strategy vs Robots conference at the Royal Institution. But they weren’t talking about technology. They were talking about how things get done. Machinery is a catch-all term for […]

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Pete Townshend stole his trademark arm swing from Keith Richards. And Andrew Oldham cut the Rolling Stones from six members to five, not for an musical reasons, but to improve their aesthetic and their memorability. Here are three extraordinary passages from an extraordinary book; Stoned by Andrew Loog Oldham. Firstly Pete Townshend:   Keith went […]

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Clap traps

Claptrap is another word for nonsense. It is derived, not surprisingly, from the words clap and trap. It is a trap set to draw you into applause when none is warranted. A clap trap lures you into being impressed when you really shouldn’t be. A clap trap is an ideological smoke and mirrors trick. Lots […]

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You learn a thing or two as the managing director of an advertising agency. Like what makes a good agency tick. Like what motivates good people. Like how it feels when the agency’s heart is in the right place. I was fortunate enough to be given temporary stewardship of such an agency for six years […]

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The conditions for a worthwhile panel discussion are seldom met. Therefore panel discussions are usually disappointing. From personal experience I struggle to recall a single exception to prove this rule. I can think of several great speeches. I could rattle off a long list of great talks and presentations. But great is not a descriptor […]

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If Chuck Palahniuk did poetry readings they might be like this. Fifty eight people out of ninety in the queue are allowed into the Demonstration Room at Edinburgh’s Summerhall venue. We have been standing with our craft beers in a small car park surrounded by shabby Seventies offices. We look like a rag tag collection […]

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  instead of giving me customer service you gave me a stern talking to and let me off with a caution Ever had that feeling when someone you’ve known and liked for years inadvertently gives you a glimpse of their hitherto well-hidden or well-suppressed nasty side, and it irrevocably changes things between you? Something dies […]

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The fence is not an option in the Scottish Independence Referendum. To exercise your democratic right to vote is to get off your bum and jump down on one side or the other. Yes or No, black or white, the stark choice of the ballot box makes no allowance for the many shades of grey […]

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  The worst that could happen if Scotland votes Yes in the Independence Referendum is far worse than the status quo, and that’s why I’ll be voting No.   **********   It’s not about the trains. It’s about the track. Independence is a licence to rip the track up and start again.   My grandfather […]

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I published a post on Medium that I would normally have posted on this blog. In just 6 days that one post on Medium received nearly four times as many views as this entire blog receives in an average month. The post in question was my sixth on Medium since receiving my publisher’s invitation. So, […]

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