Mother Country: Britain, the Welfare State, and Nuclear Pollution

Mother Country: Britain, the Welfare State, and Nuclear

Mother Country: Britain, the Welfare State, and Nuclear Pollution ❰EPUB❯ ✰ Mother Country: Britain, the Welfare State, and Nuclear Pollution Author Marilynne Robinson – Polishdarling.co.uk At the time when Robinson wrote this book, the largest known source of radioactive contamination of the world s environment was a government owned nuclear plant called Sellafield, not far from Wordswo At the time Britain, the MOBI ï when Robinson wrote this book, the largest known source of radioactive contamination of the world s environment was a government owned nuclear plant called Sellafield, not far from Wordsworth s cottage in the Lakes District one child in sixty was dying Mother Country: PDF \ from leukemia in the village closest to the plant The central question of this eloquently impassioned book i.


10 thoughts on “Mother Country: Britain, the Welfare State, and Nuclear Pollution

  1. Mike Mike says:

    Mother Country would most definitely not survive in the Internet age, or rather, the Golden Age of Unreasonableness Slate recently posted an article about the unsubstantiated dismissal of any study reporting correlation between two events with the adage correlation does not mean causation as pedestrian hogwash I am inclined to agree with this statement because it s best to err on the side ofinformation whether or not it entirely illuminates cause Further to say correlation does n Mother Country would most definitely not survive in the Internet age, or rather, the Golden Age of Unreasonableness Slate recently posted an article about the unsubstantiated dismissal of any study reporting correlation between two events with the adage correlation does not mean causation as pedestrian hogwash I am inclined to agree with this statement because it s best to err on the side ofinformation whether or not it entirely illuminates cause Further to say correlation does not mean causation to be a surefire negator of any relationship is to wield a logical argument under guise of a logical fallacy It is a simple ad ignoratum, only it hasput on airs to it.Also, it seems that this aphorism creeps up in response to bad news, which I can t help but take as some knee jerk, desperate need to stay docile Given the everyday calamities that pervade the world and the ability to actualize some semblance of aid to fix them, complacency can be deemed as inherently immoral unless those problems are somehow deconstructed, invalidated, or, in turn, our responsibility for them is taken off our shoulders Mother Country wishes its readers to be civilized enough to acknowledge the existence of true, abject evil in the world, which takesbravery than most anticipate I had dilly dallied in the shallow end of rationalizing cruelty for a while and that human nature does have these well intentioned mechanisms buried under all that awfulness but I struggle too with the notion that, even with all of those understandings firmly in place, there s still a component of naivete there.It is also remarkably easy to take that knowledge and turn it into sport, the likes of which one can see in satire or punditry, or any other of those surrogates for journalism with integrity that have taken its place entirely Not to be throw around the over exhausted phrase defense mechanism, which, as a phrase tends to threaten people unsurprisingly , but all in all, another barrier has been erected between abstract acknowledgment and sincere acknowledgment Textual analysis like the one containing this sentence doesn t help, either.Oftentimes, Mother Country possesses a verbose style, and sometimes veers into speculative, although logical, questioning I do not mind assertive inquisitiveness by any means, and Robinson asserts her skepticism quite well There s something reassuring in being able to ask, with confidence Why However, these passages of the book pale in comparison and urgency to the well supported, well documented horrors and neglects It also possesses the tenacity to leave its main topic Sellafield unsung for its first half, instead establishing Britain s centuries long tradition of neglecting, abusing, and killing its poor Delving into the fourteenth century Poor Laws was hugely unexpected, but greatly appreciated.The valuable lesson here, or at least the one I will take away for the time being, is how serious problems even our greatest problems will inevitably be treated as public relations problems It is not that radioactive waste is being dumped at insane rates into the ocean, or that a film of plutonium ash will sink to the ocean floor, or that it breaks down into the fardangerous though noticeably absent from the discourse americium and cesium It s that the way these problems are solved is to placate or quell public reaction One wonders if a delay in responding to an emergency is simply a way to reassure the public that it wasn t much of an emergency Mother Country reminds one that toying with lives for the express purpose of keeping up appearances happens everywhere, anywhere, and all of the time This is valuable stuff for a scant two hundred pages


  2. Benjamin Dueholm Benjamin Dueholm says:

    Through some accident of timing or subject matter or genre, this book has been easy to marginalize Picking it up in my desire to be a Marilynne Robinson completist, even I was rather stunned at how, for lack of a better word, relevant it proved to be Written shortly before the end of the Cold War, Mother Country looks beyond the framing of geopolitical and ideological rivalry that characterized that period, the collapse of which led to two decades of short sighted or dishonest optimism, to tel Through some accident of timing or subject matter or genre, this book has been easy to marginalize Picking it up in my desire to be a Marilynne Robinson completist, even I was rather stunned at how, for lack of a better word, relevant it proved to be Written shortly before the end of the Cold War, Mother Country looks beyond the framing of geopolitical and ideological rivalry that characterized that period, the collapse of which led to two decades of short sighted or dishonest optimism, to tell a shocking story of how governments and their associated experts interact with their people Two stories, really the first a retelling of the origins of the British welfare state, the second an expos of Britain s Sellafield nuclear complex and its discharge of toxic and radioactive materials into the sea and air The vices she identifies in social thought, journalism, government, and industry affiliated science are every bit in evidence, evenso, today than they are in Robinson s own account The exponents of the Poor Laws and their brutish restrictions and disciplines on poor workers are immediately recognizable in a tradition continued by Charles Murray and Paul Ryan and a hundredlions of opinion page morality The crass dilemma between jobs and environmental justice, which is no dilemma at all where the people are used up no less than the soil and water, is exploited reliably today And these things happen against a background of weird quiescence and credulity The apparatus of democracy becomes a sort of Soviet constitution in every instance where there is no will to animate it People didn t want to hear this in 1989, it seems, but we should definitely try to hear it now Mother Country strikes me as something like a Rosetta Stone for Robinson s non fiction work since, which is widely regarded as uneven The topics and themes she seems continually to be circling in her essays, striking from one direction or another, are treatedfully here though spoiler alert there is no mention of John Calvin That fuller treatment makes, in my opinion anyway, a better case for their urgency and for the preoccupation that apparently resulted than can be expected from the essays And it gives a picture of the problem she looks to some of her later touchstones, be they John Calvin or the Old Testament or Shakespeare, to provide resources for answering That may or may not be persuasive, but the problem of the disproportion of our public ideologies and practices to the requirements of human decency and flourishing is very real and urgent, and this book puts it in a harsh and penetrating light


  3. Roman Skaskiw Roman Skaskiw says:

    Changed my understanding of the world It s half expose on British History, half discussion of Britain s Sellafield nuclear reactor the country s nuclear waste industry.The first part reminded me why we had a revolution The second made me rethink the focus of Green Peace and their ilk.At times, I would have preferredexacting evidence and arguments in lieu of the verbose style Changed my understanding of the world It s half expose on British History, half discussion of Britain s Sellafield nuclear reactor the country s nuclear waste industry.The first part reminded me why we had a revolution The second made me rethink the focus of Green Peace and their ilk.At times, I would have preferredexacting evidence and arguments in lieu of the verbose style


  4. Angela Angela says:

    I feel like this should be a must read for everyone because it challenges the normal and romanticized perceptions of Britain s history and culture, butbecause it it brings to light the awful reality of nuclear waste processing in our world.


  5. Sohum Sohum says:

    robinson is such an inveterate hermeneuticist it just comes through so clearly that robinson is convinced truth lies in careful scrutiny and a trained mind i don t think, however, that robinson believes this is the only, or even the best way to understanding but certainly her prevalent mode.robinson s style is, as always, a little dense and heady, but generally lovely, with some gems for the attentive reader i think what robinson wants from us is two things.1 to enter a state of rage abo robinson is such an inveterate hermeneuticist it just comes through so clearly that robinson is convinced truth lies in careful scrutiny and a trained mind i don t think, however, that robinson believes this is the only, or even the best way to understanding but certainly her prevalent mode.robinson s style is, as always, a little dense and heady, but generally lovely, with some gems for the attentive reader i think what robinson wants from us is two things.1 to enter a state of rage about the ways that government the UK particularly, in flagrant abandonment of a myth americans apparently hold about the gentillesse and socialism of that nation treats its redundant persons, namely the working and poverty classes.2 to understand poverty as a creation that has emerged from specific, historically and ideologically located theories about labor, value, and morality that has impacted the UK and implicitly, the US.i think there a few points, in discussing sellafield, where robinson confuses scientific language with layman s uses, which also contributes to some of the shock and awe factor of this apparent expose.i think this book amounts to two separate essays which refer to each other occasionally, but mostly leave the needle unthreaded in a way, this is fine a reader who can make it through the end of robinson s book will imply the connections quite naturally still, one does not read to make the connections for oneself, but to watch another mind at work


  6. Shannon Pufahl Shannon Pufahl says:

    I read Housekeeping in college and became an evangelist for it Then I read The Death of Adam, Robinson s first book of essays, and became an evangelist for Robinson herself She has a reputation now, thirty years after those books, as a very American writer, old fashioned, religious, strident I think all these descriptions are well earned, and I won t argue them though a quick plug for their enduring value, when deployed with love and care, seems warranted Nothing in Robinson is deployed w I read Housekeeping in college and became an evangelist for it Then I read The Death of Adam, Robinson s first book of essays, and became an evangelist for Robinson herself She has a reputation now, thirty years after those books, as a very American writer, old fashioned, religious, strident I think all these descriptions are well earned, and I won t argue them though a quick plug for their enduring value, when deployed with love and care, seems warranted Nothing in Robinson is deployed without love or care, and her attention to the landscapes of the west and midwest, her continued commitment to the soul of every living thing, particularly human things, makes her I think saint like in her consideration of human experience She is, unlike so many writers and artists, interested in herself only insofar as she might be a careful and useful interpreter of experience and history.The 40 page introduction to Mother Country is as powerful an environmental throw down as any I ve read To link the destruction of the natural world to the destruction of the human species via the harnessing of nuclear power the book is about the disposal of nuclear waste is both prescient and moving this nearly 30 years before the widespread adoption of the anthropocene to describe our impact on the earth, before great thinkers like Tim Morton would date the end of the world not in a remote future, but in the past, at the moment the combustion engine was invented, or, if one prefers, in Los Alamos in the 1940s, with the splitting of the atom Robinson knows our earth is at risk not just because we created devices that can destroy it, that are destroying it, but because human cultures have, for millennia, treated their poor as grist, slaves, refuse At the heart of her book is a brilliant critique of capitalism, of the British welfare state, and the enduring costs of poverty and the treatment of the poor, which are no less than the end of the world


  7. Andrew Andrew says:

    Deeply unnerving and essential.I just finished this, and I m very nearly speechless Writing during the 1980s the years of Thatcher and Reagan Robinson is livid, and the writing does her anger justice Why is she livid On account of the apparently utter carelessness and connivance of the British government and numerous allies in the reprocessing of nuclear waste to create plutonium the world s deadliest poison while dumping the radioactive byproducts into the Irish Sea, where they sprea Deeply unnerving and essential.I just finished this, and I m very nearly speechless Writing during the 1980s the years of Thatcher and Reagan Robinson is livid, and the writing does her anger justice Why is she livid On account of the apparently utter carelessness and connivance of the British government and numerous allies in the reprocessing of nuclear waste to create plutonium the world s deadliest poison while dumping the radioactive byproducts into the Irish Sea, where they spread by tide and wind, contaminating global environment and populace for longer than we can imagine This, when the facilities are not handling spills and other accidents, including a core meltdown How is this possible in the democratic West This is the subject of much of the book, and the answer Robinson finds such as it is is none too reassuring No, it s horrendous Twenty five years later, one would like to think the situation as improved But, of course, given the half lives of the materials involved, that is completely ridiculous In so many unflattering ways, Robinson indicates, Britain is America s mother country I wasn t exactly clear what sort of a book I thought this would be, but it was not what I expected I imagined a largely appreciative American pastoral on England Nope I had never seen the meaning of the welfare state in the grim historical light Robinson unveils as a further chapter in the ongoing deprivation of sovereignty of the people, further assaulted by Thatcherism But this is not a British curiosity Clearly major questions have never been resolved concerning the rights of a national government towards the people and the terrain entrusted to its care To dispose of either, to sell the health and posterity of one, the habitability of the other, for money, is a perfection of high handedness beside which all other examples pale Even to the extent that the mass of people can be thought of as entering into this bargain freely and knowingly, they have sold for employment, or for some notion of national interest the well being of their descendants, which was never theirs to sell, and in the short or medium term, the well being of the descendants of every mote of life that stirs on the face of the earth If this has happened in a society which can be called, in any degree, open, free, and democratic, then we had better look at it very seriously indeed Our own open, free, and democratic country lives in an informational vacuum that makes us a danger to ourselves and a terror to everyone else No one is any freer than he wishes to be The apparatus of democracy becomes a sort of Soviet constitution in every instance where there is no will to animate it 227 228


  8. R. R. says:

    I had mixed opinions on this book As always, I enjoyed Robinson s eloquent writing and deep thinking However, from a scientific perspective, she had a couple of places where she went a bit wrong In general, it was well argued and interesting, but not my favorite of her essays.


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10 thoughts on “Mother Country: Britain, the Welfare State, and Nuclear Pollution

  1. Mike Mike says:

    Mother Country would most definitely not survive in the Internet age, or rather, the Golden Age of Unreasonableness Slate recently posted an article about the unsubstantiated dismissal of any study reporting correlation between two events with the adage correlation does not mean causation as pedestrian hogwash I am inclined to agree with this statement because it s best to err on the side ofinformation whether or not it entirely illuminates cause Further to say correlation does n Mother Country would most definitely not survive in the Internet age, or rather, the Golden Age of Unreasonableness Slate recently posted an article about the unsubstantiated dismissal of any study reporting correlation between two events with the adage correlation does not mean causation as pedestrian hogwash I am inclined to agree with this statement because it s best to err on the side ofinformation whether or not it entirely illuminates cause Further to say correlation does not mean causation to be a surefire negator of any relationship is to wield a logical argument under guise of a logical fallacy It is a simple ad ignoratum, only it hasput on airs to it.Also, it seems that this aphorism creeps up in response to bad news, which I can t help but take as some knee jerk, desperate need to stay docile Given the everyday calamities that pervade the world and the ability to actualize some semblance of aid to fix them, complacency can be deemed as inherently immoral unless those problems are somehow deconstructed, invalidated, or, in turn, our responsibility for them is taken off our shoulders Mother Country wishes its readers to be civilized enough to acknowledge the existence of true, abject evil in the world, which takesbravery than most anticipate I had dilly dallied in the shallow end of rationalizing cruelty for a while and that human nature does have these well intentioned mechanisms buried under all that awfulness but I struggle too with the notion that, even with all of those understandings firmly in place, there s still a component of naivete there.It is also remarkably easy to take that knowledge and turn it into sport, the likes of which one can see in satire or punditry, or any other of those surrogates for journalism with integrity that have taken its place entirely Not to be throw around the over exhausted phrase defense mechanism, which, as a phrase tends to threaten people unsurprisingly , but all in all, another barrier has been erected between abstract acknowledgment and sincere acknowledgment Textual analysis like the one containing this sentence doesn t help, either.Oftentimes, Mother Country possesses a verbose style, and sometimes veers into speculative, although logical, questioning I do not mind assertive inquisitiveness by any means, and Robinson asserts her skepticism quite well There s something reassuring in being able to ask, with confidence Why However, these passages of the book pale in comparison and urgency to the well supported, well documented horrors and neglects It also possesses the tenacity to leave its main topic Sellafield unsung for its first half, instead establishing Britain s centuries long tradition of neglecting, abusing, and killing its poor Delving into the fourteenth century Poor Laws was hugely unexpected, but greatly appreciated.The valuable lesson here, or at least the one I will take away for the time being, is how serious problems even our greatest problems will inevitably be treated as public relations problems It is not that radioactive waste is being dumped at insane rates into the ocean, or that a film of plutonium ash will sink to the ocean floor, or that it breaks down into the fardangerous though noticeably absent from the discourse americium and cesium It s that the way these problems are solved is to placate or quell public reaction One wonders if a delay in responding to an emergency is simply a way to reassure the public that it wasn t much of an emergency Mother Country reminds one that toying with lives for the express purpose of keeping up appearances happens everywhere, anywhere, and all of the time This is valuable stuff for a scant two hundred pages


  2. Benjamin Dueholm Benjamin Dueholm says:

    Through some accident of timing or subject matter or genre, this book has been easy to marginalize Picking it up in my desire to be a Marilynne Robinson completist, even I was rather stunned at how, for lack of a better word, relevant it proved to be Written shortly before the end of the Cold War, Mother Country looks beyond the framing of geopolitical and ideological rivalry that characterized that period, the collapse of which led to two decades of short sighted or dishonest optimism, to tel Through some accident of timing or subject matter or genre, this book has been easy to marginalize Picking it up in my desire to be a Marilynne Robinson completist, even I was rather stunned at how, for lack of a better word, relevant it proved to be Written shortly before the end of the Cold War, Mother Country looks beyond the framing of geopolitical and ideological rivalry that characterized that period, the collapse of which led to two decades of short sighted or dishonest optimism, to tell a shocking story of how governments and their associated experts interact with their people Two stories, really the first a retelling of the origins of the British welfare state, the second an expos of Britain s Sellafield nuclear complex and its discharge of toxic and radioactive materials into the sea and air The vices she identifies in social thought, journalism, government, and industry affiliated science are every bit in evidence, evenso, today than they are in Robinson s own account The exponents of the Poor Laws and their brutish restrictions and disciplines on poor workers are immediately recognizable in a tradition continued by Charles Murray and Paul Ryan and a hundredlions of opinion page morality The crass dilemma between jobs and environmental justice, which is no dilemma at all where the people are used up no less than the soil and water, is exploited reliably today And these things happen against a background of weird quiescence and credulity The apparatus of democracy becomes a sort of Soviet constitution in every instance where there is no will to animate it People didn t want to hear this in 1989, it seems, but we should definitely try to hear it now Mother Country strikes me as something like a Rosetta Stone for Robinson s non fiction work since, which is widely regarded as uneven The topics and themes she seems continually to be circling in her essays, striking from one direction or another, are treatedfully here though spoiler alert there is no mention of John Calvin That fuller treatment makes, in my opinion anyway, a better case for their urgency and for the preoccupation that apparently resulted than can be expected from the essays And it gives a picture of the problem she looks to some of her later touchstones, be they John Calvin or the Old Testament or Shakespeare, to provide resources for answering That may or may not be persuasive, but the problem of the disproportion of our public ideologies and practices to the requirements of human decency and flourishing is very real and urgent, and this book puts it in a harsh and penetrating light


  3. Roman Skaskiw Roman Skaskiw says:

    Changed my understanding of the world It s half expose on British History, half discussion of Britain s Sellafield nuclear reactor the country s nuclear waste industry.The first part reminded me why we had a revolution The second made me rethink the focus of Green Peace and their ilk.At times, I would have preferredexacting evidence and arguments in lieu of the verbose style Changed my understanding of the world It s half expose on British History, half discussion of Britain s Sellafield nuclear reactor the country s nuclear waste industry.The first part reminded me why we had a revolution The second made me rethink the focus of Green Peace and their ilk.At times, I would have preferredexacting evidence and arguments in lieu of the verbose style


  4. Angela Angela says:

    I feel like this should be a must read for everyone because it challenges the normal and romanticized perceptions of Britain s history and culture, butbecause it it brings to light the awful reality of nuclear waste processing in our world.


  5. Sohum Sohum says:

    robinson is such an inveterate hermeneuticist it just comes through so clearly that robinson is convinced truth lies in careful scrutiny and a trained mind i don t think, however, that robinson believes this is the only, or even the best way to understanding but certainly her prevalent mode.robinson s style is, as always, a little dense and heady, but generally lovely, with some gems for the attentive reader i think what robinson wants from us is two things.1 to enter a state of rage abo robinson is such an inveterate hermeneuticist it just comes through so clearly that robinson is convinced truth lies in careful scrutiny and a trained mind i don t think, however, that robinson believes this is the only, or even the best way to understanding but certainly her prevalent mode.robinson s style is, as always, a little dense and heady, but generally lovely, with some gems for the attentive reader i think what robinson wants from us is two things.1 to enter a state of rage about the ways that government the UK particularly, in flagrant abandonment of a myth americans apparently hold about the gentillesse and socialism of that nation treats its redundant persons, namely the working and poverty classes.2 to understand poverty as a creation that has emerged from specific, historically and ideologically located theories about labor, value, and morality that has impacted the UK and implicitly, the US.i think there a few points, in discussing sellafield, where robinson confuses scientific language with layman s uses, which also contributes to some of the shock and awe factor of this apparent expose.i think this book amounts to two separate essays which refer to each other occasionally, but mostly leave the needle unthreaded in a way, this is fine a reader who can make it through the end of robinson s book will imply the connections quite naturally still, one does not read to make the connections for oneself, but to watch another mind at work


  6. Shannon Pufahl Shannon Pufahl says:

    I read Housekeeping in college and became an evangelist for it Then I read The Death of Adam, Robinson s first book of essays, and became an evangelist for Robinson herself She has a reputation now, thirty years after those books, as a very American writer, old fashioned, religious, strident I think all these descriptions are well earned, and I won t argue them though a quick plug for their enduring value, when deployed with love and care, seems warranted Nothing in Robinson is deployed w I read Housekeeping in college and became an evangelist for it Then I read The Death of Adam, Robinson s first book of essays, and became an evangelist for Robinson herself She has a reputation now, thirty years after those books, as a very American writer, old fashioned, religious, strident I think all these descriptions are well earned, and I won t argue them though a quick plug for their enduring value, when deployed with love and care, seems warranted Nothing in Robinson is deployed without love or care, and her attention to the landscapes of the west and midwest, her continued commitment to the soul of every living thing, particularly human things, makes her I think saint like in her consideration of human experience She is, unlike so many writers and artists, interested in herself only insofar as she might be a careful and useful interpreter of experience and history.The 40 page introduction to Mother Country is as powerful an environmental throw down as any I ve read To link the destruction of the natural world to the destruction of the human species via the harnessing of nuclear power the book is about the disposal of nuclear waste is both prescient and moving this nearly 30 years before the widespread adoption of the anthropocene to describe our impact on the earth, before great thinkers like Tim Morton would date the end of the world not in a remote future, but in the past, at the moment the combustion engine was invented, or, if one prefers, in Los Alamos in the 1940s, with the splitting of the atom Robinson knows our earth is at risk not just because we created devices that can destroy it, that are destroying it, but because human cultures have, for millennia, treated their poor as grist, slaves, refuse At the heart of her book is a brilliant critique of capitalism, of the British welfare state, and the enduring costs of poverty and the treatment of the poor, which are no less than the end of the world


  7. Andrew Andrew says:

    Deeply unnerving and essential.I just finished this, and I m very nearly speechless Writing during the 1980s the years of Thatcher and Reagan Robinson is livid, and the writing does her anger justice Why is she livid On account of the apparently utter carelessness and connivance of the British government and numerous allies in the reprocessing of nuclear waste to create plutonium the world s deadliest poison while dumping the radioactive byproducts into the Irish Sea, where they sprea Deeply unnerving and essential.I just finished this, and I m very nearly speechless Writing during the 1980s the years of Thatcher and Reagan Robinson is livid, and the writing does her anger justice Why is she livid On account of the apparently utter carelessness and connivance of the British government and numerous allies in the reprocessing of nuclear waste to create plutonium the world s deadliest poison while dumping the radioactive byproducts into the Irish Sea, where they spread by tide and wind, contaminating global environment and populace for longer than we can imagine This, when the facilities are not handling spills and other accidents, including a core meltdown How is this possible in the democratic West This is the subject of much of the book, and the answer Robinson finds such as it is is none too reassuring No, it s horrendous Twenty five years later, one would like to think the situation as improved But, of course, given the half lives of the materials involved, that is completely ridiculous In so many unflattering ways, Robinson indicates, Britain is America s mother country I wasn t exactly clear what sort of a book I thought this would be, but it was not what I expected I imagined a largely appreciative American pastoral on England Nope I had never seen the meaning of the welfare state in the grim historical light Robinson unveils as a further chapter in the ongoing deprivation of sovereignty of the people, further assaulted by Thatcherism But this is not a British curiosity Clearly major questions have never been resolved concerning the rights of a national government towards the people and the terrain entrusted to its care To dispose of either, to sell the health and posterity of one, the habitability of the other, for money, is a perfection of high handedness beside which all other examples pale Even to the extent that the mass of people can be thought of as entering into this bargain freely and knowingly, they have sold for employment, or for some notion of national interest the well being of their descendants, which was never theirs to sell, and in the short or medium term, the well being of the descendants of every mote of life that stirs on the face of the earth If this has happened in a society which can be called, in any degree, open, free, and democratic, then we had better look at it very seriously indeed Our own open, free, and democratic country lives in an informational vacuum that makes us a danger to ourselves and a terror to everyone else No one is any freer than he wishes to be The apparatus of democracy becomes a sort of Soviet constitution in every instance where there is no will to animate it 227 228


  8. R. R. says:

    I had mixed opinions on this book As always, I enjoyed Robinson s eloquent writing and deep thinking However, from a scientific perspective, she had a couple of places where she went a bit wrong In general, it was well argued and interesting, but not my favorite of her essays.


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