Articles by Andrew Dilks

Via Beyond the Mainstream: You’d be forgiven for knowing very little about the unrest in Ukraine – the violence, the rioting on the streets, the armed protesters storming government buildings amidst plumes of thick black smoke rising…



Via orwellwasright: What is it about music that moves us in so many different ways? The rhythm begins and we slide onto the dancefloor, gyrating to the beats; a guitar strikes a…


Via orwellwasright: After over a century, mainstream scientists finally got around to acknowledging something anyone with pets or has watched nature documentaries has known all along – animals are conscious beings. A…


It’s hard not to look at the contemporary art market and see it as superficial and transitory – much of it comes across as the self-indulgent product of egotism; self-conscious attempts at…





Via orwellwasright. These days, describing the big banks as criminal syndicates extorting billions from the public is hardly sticking one’s head above the parapet: the foreclosures scandal, in which GMAC, Bank of…



Via orwellwasright: Someone recently asked: “Should the oppressive content of monotheistic religions be respected and left alone or challenged and questioned?” It’s a loaded question which, needless to say, provoked a lively…


Via orwellwasright: When Stephen Hawking announced he was boycotting Israel in protest of their occupation of Palestinian land the ensuing furore was nothing if not predictable. After a barrage of appeals from…






Via orwellwasright: It’s well known that many of the great breakthroughs in science seem to occur both independently and near-simultaneously: Isaac Newton, Gottfried Leibniz and the development of calculus; Nikola Tesla, Guglielmo…





Via orwellwasright:

I’ve never really looked into feminism until recently. I’m aware of the fundamental principles feminists adhere to – the liberation of women from an oppressive patriarchal society and the somewhat problematic expression “equality for women” (which seems something of an oxymoron to me, since surely equality should apply to everyone) – but, having never come across feminism beyond an awareness of its existence as an ideology, and personally knowing no women who call themselves feminists, it’s been something of an “unknown” to me.


WARNING: Video features the slaughter and consumption of animals.


If you were to visit China in the 21st century, you may well stumble across one of the popular speed cooking competitions, where frenetically paced chefs transform live animals into animated culinary oddities: snakes are decapitated then chopped up into inch-long segments, which squirm on the plate several feet away from their freshly-severed heads; Ying Yang fish, their sides deep-fried and coated in sweet and sour sauce are devoured as they stare up, still breathing (if the fish isn’t breathing, naturally the chef is disqualified).



Via orwellwasright.

Sometimes you watch something with a premise so implausible, so outrageous it has to be true. Some things remind you of the reality of the human condition: our willingness to accept and live lies; the ease with which we can be deceived and manipulated even when everything points to a con. It is hard to say whether this psychological trait is a product of gullibility and stupidity. Perhaps it is neither – perhaps it says more about our readiness to accept things at face value based on the assumption that people are basically decent and wouldn’t tell such obvious lies. More than a few people have found out the hard way the naïveté of this outlook, as the documentaries The Imposter and Catfish and the film based on a true story Compliance clearly show.

The Imposter is a textbook example of such a premise that, were it a work of fiction, you’d probably switch it off for being too far-fetched. Three years after the disappearance of 13 year old Texan Nicholas, he is found alive half way around the world in Spain. He tells a story of kidnap and torture and is returned to his family in the States, who appear to be oblivious to the increasing number of glaring inconsistencies with the son who disappeared and the teenager before them sporting stubble, a different appearance and a European accent. Their unquestioning acceptance of this rather obvious imposter is as notable as the audacity of the con itself.