THE BIG BANG THEORY is not just big business, it’s fast becoming big show business. In fact the theory is already growing old and there can be little surprise that it is being increasingly challenged before we lose interest again. The latest contender in the debate could be called the Not Big Bang theory.
But is the debate scientific, philosophical, theological, or simply nihilist? Most of the protagonists seem unclear as to where they stand; indeed they often don’t seem to be aware that there are well defined boundaries inside which other debaters stand. Many nowadays go so far as to deny even those historically acceptable limitations of competence assumed to exist for different intellectual disciplines. Theologians were never thereby excluded from the study of chemistry, or physicists from reading up on Aristotle’s metaphysics. The point is that if they know what chemistry actually is and what it is not and stick to that, and recognise what is philosophy and abide by its tenets of, say, logic then confusion is avoided.
CAMPBELL MURDOCH takes a closer look at some post-budget posturings from the Whitehall Village and discusses a strange evasion; not so much missing an elephant in the room as ignoring the towering tsunami of debt already upon us…
George Osborne rose to deliver the last budget of this parliament. He left some questions unanswered. For example: Is George really the emergent saviour of Britain’s fear hobbled and chronically ailing economy? Is his record at the Treasury a signal that at last our desperately fragile finances are moving onto a more solid footing? Are our financiers, captains of industry, and bankers looking unusually confident and purposeful. Are we Brits drawing ourselves up to full height. I mean, to be blunt, are British factory managers recruiting workers again. Are the weary dole queues dwindling? Is Britain working?
Edmund Burke in his time was known to very few Englishmen. He was practically anonymous. Those who debated with him or read his trenchant commentaries upon the political follies and perversions of power were a tiny minority, but a discerning and influential fragment for all that.
Such is the task of Newshawk; to attract, inform and encourage politically literate men and women. People like that can be found in any country in any century. Without them “things fall apart. The centre cannot hold … “ to borrow from W. B. Yates’s The Second Coming.
There is always the hope that another Burke will mount his forum in our strange time. That kindly yet acerbic 18th century intellectual remains an exemplar for civilised humanity at any period. He stands for optimism in the face of discouragement and even despair. There have been many other such torch bearers, Henry Fielding, Alexander Pope, Hazlitt, Edison, Steele, and, of course, Dr. Samuel Johnson. Why not another, and why not a commentator attracted and enthused by our own honest endeavours?