Posts Tagged ‘James Mills’

The glorious game has become an inglorious free-market free for all

14/04/2011, 01:30:44 PM

by James Mills

“‘Tis a glorious game, deny it who can, that tries the pluck of an Englishman.” Is the chorus annually sang at the start of the Shrovetide football game, a precursor to the modern day version of the ‘glorious game’, still played every year in Derbyshire on Shrove Tuesday, which demonstrates the key community ties that link the origins of our national game.

Similarly, many of the modern day football clubs originated from community based teams that grew into the social sinews of their local areas. Although many of them nowadays have ballooned into monolithic globally recognisable brands, they are also national treasures as well as assets that employ thousands and inspire millions. Most important of all in a globalised world they remind us of the most important thing of all, locality.

On Monday the banking commission laid out plans to prevent another banking collapse by protecting retail banking from investment banking, which a few years ago exposed some of the fallacies of free-market economics. On the same day, Arsenal, known as the ‘the bank of England club’, was added to the growing list of foreign owned clubs in the Premier League. Could you imagine the streets of Paris, Munich, Milan, Madrid or Barcelona staying as quiet as the streets of London are, if this was their club? (more…)

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The toff takeover of British pop – it has to stop.

01/02/2011, 03:30:31 PM

by James Mills

The great delta bluesman, Bo Diddley, in response to a plummy-voiced English interviewer who asked him why he, a poor uneducated man, had had the audacity to make his own electric guitar and amp, replied: “the man who invented the wheel didn’t have a PhD in engineering”.

Today, many of the graduates who make the music in our country could probably qualify to do a PHD. Or as a recent survey by Word magazine found, 60 percent of current pop acts went to private schools compared to just one percent 20 years ago. This sometimes becomes unmistakable, for example around half of the 2009 Mercury music prize nominees were privately educated. Something which is very different to the 1990s Brit pop I grew up listening to, or the provincial working class sounds of bands like the Smiths. (more…)

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