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Opinion

  • 2015 political insights

    It has been a month since a non-European Pope visited the European institutions in Strasbourg to address both the European Parliament and the Council of Europe. The Argentinian Pontiff started his address by saying that he visited the European...

  • We need to be prepared

    There are some people who are extremely diligent and precise in what they do and are also very concerned about what is happening around them. I used to be among them but, lately, I am a little more laid back, though I do observe and am still...

  • I simply love my pink Cadillac

    The Bicycling Advocacy Group (BAG) touts itself as an advocacy group for Maltese commuting (as opposed to leisure, presumably) cyclists. Its Facebook page enjoys the membership of over a thousand people. Quite how many of these actually...

  • Holding government to account

    As 2014 ends and we mark the beginning of the New Year, we cannot but draw the main strands from the political scene in Malta and reflect on their significance, not just for the past year but also for the year that lies ahead. Last year ended with...

  • True test for sustainability

    As we have just entered 2015, there must surely be consensual agreement that the true test for any government, entity or business is whether it is contributing to a just and sustainable world and a fairer society by using all the resources at its...

  • Human rights and globalisation

    Last Wednesday’s General Workers’ Union daily, l-oriżżont, carried a backpage story saying the film The Interview is to be shown in Maltese cinemas in February. Why this was news, more so under a heading saying that nobody in Malta objected to the...

  • How green was Varist’s valley

    I find it is generally better to draw a merciful veil over politicians’ tweets or comments on social media. For the most part they are bland bites of propaganda (government MPs – that’s you), silly taunts (over to the Nationalist side) and...

  • The Church on the periphery?

    Probably most people think President Marie-Louise Coleiro Preca devoted most of her address on Republic Day to state that the Catholic religion is no longer central to cultural activity in our country. I don’t blame anyone who reaches this...

  • The New Year wish list

    The New Year wish list

    I am always slightly apprehensive about New Year celebrations. It is this weird feeling I get every year on December 31, when I get the Irwiegel syndrome – that OCD-ish feeling that every hour of New Year’s Eve will represent the months of the...

  • A Labour of love... Blogpost 22

    I am not a happy bunny, not a happy bunny at all. I mean, let’s face it, I am... or rather was... the obvious choice to succeed little tubby Manuel, or as the elves in the glass menagerie have named him: Tweedledum, when/if he got the push. Of...

  • An invitation to dialogue?

    It is good news for the environment to hear the Prime Minister say that one lesson he learnt from 2014 is that more dialogue is needed with environmentalists. This is a good New Year’s resolution and better late than never from a government that...

  • The seasonal cop-out

    The seasonal cop-out

    It’s the time of year when lazy journalists (to be fair, they follow the trend set by politicians and other movers and shakers) put their brains into low gear, falling back onto a review of the year rather than trying to dig up stories and...

  • Wrong meaning of Jihad

    So much is said about world peace and conflicts across the globe. This state of affair has given rise to fear and anxiety. The increasing threats of extremism and dark clouds of terrorism have engulfed many parts of the world. Unfortunately, many...

  • A time to mend in 2015

    A time to mend in 2015

    In the third chapter of the Book of Ecclesiastes, the Teacher writes: “To everything there is a season and a time to every purpose under the heaven.” He muses on the world around him and identifies some of the activities which societies engage in;...

  • In search of a function

    What is the difference between Elizabeth Windsor (Saxe-Coburg Gotha), Francois Hollande, Giorgio Napoletano and Marie-Louise Coleiro Preca? None. They are all the heads of their respective nations. Their style differs, it is true. No headship is...

  • The Tunisian alternative

    The Tunisian alternative

    In Tunisia, the New Year begins with a newly-elected President while liberal news organisations around the world hail the country as a survivor of the Arab Spring. As always, however, the picture becomes grainier the closer one looks at it. It...

  • Myth of intrinsic generosity

    This piece is based on the premise that human beings are fundamentally benevolent. We do have evil, violent and egoistic streaks but we are the only creatures that can think about the morality of our behaviour and conceivably act morally...

  • Civil war in the papacy

    Civil war in the papacy

    Pope Francis may well be remembered as one of the most transformative and inspirational pontiffs of the last 200 years – if he is allowed to, that is. The month of October 2014 will probably go down as the defining moment of his papacy. To view...

  • Remote gaming challenges

    Ten years into EU membership, the remote gaming industry in Malta is still going strong. The sector has stabilised from its earlier days of significant exponential growth but the industry has remained solid, though it is facing constant...

  • Fifty-two shades of red

    Fifty-two shades of red

    In the beginning was the word and the word came from Joseph. Our first full calendar year under Labour, after a sad, long absence, is truly worth celebrating. It tells a lot about a country’s survival skills, though not so much about its electoral...

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