Welcome to the written world of RDN. I am a complicated conservative, and a bit hippy and arty round the edges. I am currently working on poems, a memoir and a one-man show. Over all that is an increasing interest in the idea of spirituality. More »

Latest posts

Poem: Thoughts on a full stop

Posted by RDN under RDN's poems on 15 November 2016. No comments.

This isn’t about me, at least not in particular, and it isn’t gloomy, I hope. I fear it offers advice, which – it might be remembered – comes from a man with little courage and no pretensions to wisdom. More »

Poem: Beech Wood near Henley

Posted by RDN under RDN's poems on 15 November 2016. No comments.

My wife and I house-, chicken-, and dog-sit near Henley. This part of the Chilterns is far deeper countryside than I had ever expected. More »

Poem: Suicide Boy, 1872

Posted by RDN under RDN's poems on 15 November 2016. No comments.

I came across this news story from a local paper about a suicide-by-train  and wanted to mark it in some way. I feel oddly scrupulous about opining too much, or seeming to assume any understanding of the events it describes. More »

Chris Martin on Trump (Or: Fascism, liberalism and karma)

Posted by RDN under Handling protest / Mind & body / Politics & campaigns on 13 November 2016. No comments.

Chris Martin of Cold Play was spot-on when he burst on to Graham Norton’s set and described the karmic moment represented by Donald Trump’s success in being elected President of the United States. Mr Martin said, in terms, that Trump expressed the feelings of millions of people, and that doing so is a refreshing and crucial part of democracy. Dead right. More »

Notes on politics for artsy-liberals

Posted by RDN under Politics & campaigns on 18 July 2016. No comments.

I have posted four linked posts on what bright, educated, nice, liberal-minded and especially young voters ought to do instead of feeling disquiet about Brexit, the disaffected white working class, and the Tories. A brief guide to these brief notes follows… More »

#1 How the centre-left can thrive

Posted by RDN under Politics & campaigns on 17 July 2016. No comments.

In a nutshell: Things look quite, but deceptively, rosy for the Conservatives just now. But against all the odds, the centre-left maintains a strong vote and could – if it made the right moves, and probably because of the support of young arsty-liberals – become the power in the land which Tony Blair always dreamed it might be. Here’s how. More »

#3 Artsy liberals, pls rethink the left

Posted by RDN under Politics & campaigns on 17 July 2016. No comments.

In a nutshell: the artsy, right-on liberal ought to consider voting Tory. As an alternative he or she could have the role of transforming the Labour party, or helping to form a new centre-left grouping.  More »

#2 Tories aren’t nasty but Labour are negative

Posted by RDN under Politics & campaigns on 17 July 2016. No comments.

In a  nutshell: nice liberals need to rethink their loathing of the Tories.

The EU referendum, much more than any other campaign, has shown us that substantial swathes of more rather than less educated opinion fear the Tories and the working class about equally. They do so to the point of thinking that there is a vicious, idiot-right, unwashed, illiterate, White Van virtual mob which the Tories must pander to. Can we please reframe this nonsense? More »

#4 Labour, LibDem or Tory, join up, join up!

Posted by RDN under Politics & campaigns on 16 July 2016. No comments.

I am not the ideal person to enjoin the under-40s to join a political party, whichever one they sort-of fancy. I haven’t ever joined the Conservatives though for at least 30 years I have known it was the right thing to do. Still, here goes…. More »

“Mob-minorities”, democracy and Parliament

Posted by RDN under Handling protest / Politics & campaigns on 10 July 2016. One comment.

The British have been learning a lot about the different sorts of votes and voting that go on in a democracy. The oddest thing that has happened is the emergence into power of a small number of political activists. Both Conservative and Labour political parties – are, just now, at the mercy of their quite peculiar members. So are the vast majority of voters and politicians. More »

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