If you want to know more of my thoughts on anything else, ask away.
Following on from yesterday, we have:
: A liberal or a social Europe? Frankly I think it’s a false dichotomy. The EU member states have a wide variety of approaches to making their economies work; the EU isn’t (clearly isn’t) going to be able to impose a single model on them. Even the states within the euro vary widely. I was at a talk about the referenda last week where it was stated that there are five consistently underperforming economies in the EU – France, Germany, Italy, Portugal and the Netherlands. Belgium and Ireland are not on that list despite both being in the euro and having almost diametrically opposed answers to your question. My personal instincts are probably towards the liberal end – especially with regard to the side issue of visa liberalisation with third countries – but I think a middle way can be found, and in fact usually has been. (American readers may need to be aware that the word “liberal” in this paragraph has connotations of “right wing” not “left wing”.)
and then with a change of theme:
: children’s television – all in favour of it, myself; it can be very educational, and also an excellent babysitter. Having said that, I very much draw the line at the abomination of desolation and won’t have it in the house. Fimbles and Balamory seem to be particular favourites right now, and I don’t have a problem with either.
Going back to my own childhood, we were a strictly BBC household, Blue Peter twice a week, etc etc. Apart from the bizarre Eastern European children’s dramas with the same actor dubbing all the voices in English – presumably it was cheap TV and helped with détente, but seemed pretty pointless then and I suspect would seem even more so now.
: Winnie the Pooh – generally in favour, though I’ve never become obsessed by it. I was very amused by Neil Gaiman’s observations on A.A. Milne a while back. I take no firm stance on the great Disney vs Classic Pooh debate; the original Milne does have a certain pleasing unity of style, especially with the Shepard drawings, but the Disney songs are better (though my aversion to Milne’s verse is not as great as Dorothy Parker, who famously wrote “…And it is that word ‘hummy,’ my darlings, that marks the first place in The House at Pooh Corner at which Tonstant Weader fwowed up.”)
: SF television – any all time favourites? – Oh yes. I’ve had to go and consult a list to refresh my memory.
Those where I’d call myself a serious fan: Doctor Who. Blake’s Seven. Buffy. The Clangers. H2G2. Red Dwarf.
Those where I’ve enjoyed what I’ve seen and would watch an episode I randomly switched on through to the end: Angel. Star Trek (particularly TNG). Third Rock From The Sun. Babylon Five. Lois and Clark.
However I’m not a big fan of the X-Files. As a series it never quite seemed to make up its mind where it was coming from, and by the time the ghosts stole Christmas I thought it had seriously jumped the shark.
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