Seventy years ago in October something extraordinary took place in Europe. Standing in solidarity with their fellow Danes, the people of Denmark organized a large scale rescue of the Danish Jewish community, bringing the overwhelming majority to the safety of neutral Sweden and thus preventing their deportation by the Nazis to extermination camps...
Financial freedom is not a Pollyanna'ish vision of a lifestyle bereft of funds, nor is it the idea that one can easily generate sufficient passive income to fund a desired lifestyle without having to do any actual work. It is the idea that you can live without financial fear, without debt feeding your sleep with nightmare.
We inhabit an odd country. A country happy to embrace people who strive for freedom and democracy abroad, even if they employ violent methods as well as peaceful ones. Britain has gleefully supported the Arab spring, the protests in Iran, Pussy Riot in Russia and detained Ukrainian ex-Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko.
Democracy is not a product. It is not a slickly-oiled advertising campaign. And it certainly does not have the advantages of combat with precise objectives and unquestioned orders. It is messy, hugely bureaucratic, mind-numbingly slow, and the only way we know to ensure that most people can mostly be free most of the time.
For the last year throughout the Middle East (and beyond) debate has raged as to whether topless protests constitute a valid form of protest and whether actions like this do more harm than good, by reinforcing rather than weakening conservative forces. Let's me be very clear about this. These actions are a legitimate form of protest.
It is a rather trite observation to state that the term 'terrorism' has become eminently politicised, used much more readily and easily to refer to violence by certain types of political dissidents, such as those whose violence targets the majority, than to refer, as it was originally devised, to states, or groups targeting minorities.
The reactions and tributes to Margaret Thatcher's death have illustrated the way in which modern conservatives have emptied the words 'freedom' and 'liberty' of all meaning and import. If (wo)man is judged by the company (s)he keeps, then Thatcher must be judged a champion of despotism and dictatorship, not of freedom or liberty.