Tory budget set to hit poorest the hardest

The forthcoming proposed Tory budget, combined with measures introduced in the last months of the Labour party – hit the poor hardest and are likely to increase inquality. If you believe Richard Wilkinson’s ‘The Spirit Level’, then inequality matters, because a whole host of social problems – from depression to crime – are correlated with […]

The cost of the financial crisis – £4000 per year per household

That’s an overall loss to the taxpayer of about £90 billion at a conservative estimate! Just a brief summary from the WDM on the costs of the current financial crisis – yet more evidence of how the average guy on the street ends up paying  for the greed of the capitalist class (the bankers who destabilised our […]

Spending cuts, agenda setting and ideological control

I thought the following two quotes were worth flagging up – from Polly Toynbee’s latest post – about the forthcoming budget cuts… ‘Never mind that benefit fraud is only 0.7% of the benefit bill, Cameron’s crackdown smears all claimants by association. The tax evasion bill is at least £70bn, according to Richard Murphy of Tax […]

Book summary – One Blood

Book – One Blood – Inside Britain’s New Street Gangs – John Heale, 2008. This focuses on just some of the themes in this book – This book is based mainly on interviews with gang members based in London, Manchester, Liverpool and elsewhere in Britain, and provides an empathetic and some may say sympathetic insight […]

Another coffee ruined by other people’s screaming children

So there we all were – upstairs in Cafe Nero – four of us – all sitting alone, reading or surfing – quietly enjoying the peaceful ambience enhanced by some gentle classical music – and then this ends abrubtly with the arrival of two mums with toddlers – who proceded to run around and scream very loudly – (the […]

SocNews – TA – Do we have too much choice in our lives?

In this podcast Laurie Taylor, Renata Selacl and Rachel Bowlby discuss whether or not we have ‘Too much choice? (second half of the broadcast) This is relevant to ‘criticisms of postmodern thought’ Having established that ‘choice’ is the dominant way in which we experience life today’ – pointing to the areas in which we have to […]

Sociology on TV – Beckii: Schoolgirl Superstar at 14

I though this was relevant to ‘the social construction of childhood’ Beckii: Schoolgirl Superstar at 14  (aired August 2010) follows a 14 Yyr old girl from the UK who is in the process of becoming a superstar in Japan – for doing this –   Note how I picked the boarder to match her outfit. Gok would be […]

Web Site of the Week – The Bristol Centre for Market and Public Organisation

I was just clearing up my desktop and stumbled across a document with a link to this organsiation – The Bristol Centre for Market and Public Organisation funded by the ESRC – they do podcasts! (one day soon that won’t seem like such a novelty). The things they research are of direct relevance to the […]

Case study – Union Carbide in Bhopal – the worst industrial accident in history

In December 1984, an explosion at a pesticide plant in Bhopal India, then owned by the American multi-national Union Carbide, lead to deadly gas fumes leaking into the surrounding atmosphere and toxic chemicals into the ground. That was more than 25 years, but, according to the Bhopal Medical Appeal (1), a toxic legacy still remains.  […]

Criticisms of Transnational Corporations 2 – damage to the environment

All of this material is relevant to the global development module – this can be used in an essay that asks you to ‘assess the role of TNCs’ or in any essay that asks you to criticise neo-liberal approaches to development, because TNCs are one of the primary agents of the neo-liberal project. You should […]