4pm 21.07.2011 debate. The Murdoch Effect. Just desserts or Just a Blip?

Recent events in the UK have jeopardised Murdoch’s bid to control satellite TV. Relationships that have come to light between media, politicians and police have caused many questions to be asked. Click here to join us 4pm (UK time) July 21st.

In this month’s Thinking Tank we consider

  • Are these cosy arrangements inevitable or should we fight to expose them?
  • Does this decision signify a new era of transparency or is it just a one off?

Previous Thinking Tanks have often cited the media as the cause of the problem.

  • Is this a moment of truth for their role in our lives?
  • Or are they right when they blame consumers who buy the scandal and horror stories?

Don’t miss out. Have your say in this debate and let’s make the news for ourselves.

Click here to join us 4pm (UK time) July 21st.

H1N1: Mountain or Molehill? Health debate 10.09.09

The first surprise in last month’s Thinking Tank was that 80% of you feel that swine flu is “no big deal”. This, despite the fact that 60% had friends and family who had contracted the disease (presumably with no serious consequences).

The discussion took a philosophical turn with much reflection on swine flu:

As a symptom of society

  • Yes, the resilience of the human race is encouraging. We will find new energy solutions, we will cope with changing family structures etc We always have…

As a message to improve the way we run our world

  • that’s a benefit of the whole event, reminds us that we’re all human, all basically in the same boat and should find solutions for all
  • slows down the rat race we are in for a while
  • We can have our mobile phones and home entertainment, but at the end of the day we are still all codependent. So when some thing goes wrong for one group it still affects us

And as a way to identify lifestyle risks

  • When we choose to exploit (pigs, land, food distribution) we don’t get away with it. We may seem to in the short term, but sooner or later it catches up with us. We need to think bigger and wider
  • maybe drives us apart – “I would help you but if I touch you I might get your germs

There was quite some scepticism about the real danger of the disease but an acknowledgement that there were some useful lessons to be learnt

  • pandemics sell papers
  • prepares all systems for a real alert, like a test-case

Some actions

Encourage sustainable farming:

  • give negative tax on organic produce
  • Increase transport costs and incentivise local consumption of local food

Manage the media:

  • Next time: try to control the media hype a bit. Because if people have had this experience twice, they will not believe a warning the third time anymore, and not respond to measurements.

Join the debate

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