Articles

John is a regular writer and blogger on global governance, current affairs and international politics, and has been featured on featured on the Huffington Post, openDemocracy, and The Good Men Project.

Read his articles below.

Brexit’s Causes Are Global - So Are the Solutions

30 June 2016

History teaches us that whenever there’s a widespread feeling of impotence, voters’ knives come out. History seems to have been ignored, and if we’re to properly respond to these issues we must start with some deeper questions. By going for Brexit, have we Brits fired our anger at the right target, or have we perhaps mis-aimed and shot ourselves in the foot? In which case, what is the right target?...

Read on the Huffington Post

These Days, All Nations Are Tax Havens

12 April 2016

The term “tax haven” suggests that low or no-tax countries are the exception. It conjures up the image of a handful of exotic small island states like the Cayman Islands. But today, just about all nations are tax havens. To the extent that they all seek to keep their national tax regimes ‘internationally competitive’ - that is, relatively attractive to international investors and multinational corporations, which of course includes criminals and tax evaders - all nations are tax havens to some degree...

Read on the Huffington Post

Collective Action Is Dead, Long Live Collective Action!

11 March 2016

In a little over a month, the world’s leaders will assemble in New York to sign a global agreement on tackling climate change. The agreement - a somewhatsurprising result of marathon talks at the climate change conference in Paris last year - goes beyond what so many of us expected to happen, and many marched in the streets for. It makes clear the commitment of the world’s nations to reducing carbon emissions to a level that might avoid catastrophic change. So we’ve solved climate change, right?...

Read on the Huffington Post

Green vs. Competitive: The Stalemate Continues

7 January 2016

In the closing moments of 2015 an 'historic' deal was brokered in Paris which not only set about limiting greenhouse gas emissions but also set about changing the fundamental ways in which we do business...

Read on the Huffington Post

France, Greece, and Now Spain: A Renaissance of the Left?

9 June 2015

With Podemos, Spain's left-wing anti-austerity movement, making dramatic gains in the local and regional elections, a discernible renaissance of Left-wing parties across Europe seems to be under way. France was first to break the centre-right, business-friendly mould when Francois Hollande was elected President in 2012. Greece then followed...

Read on the Huffington Post

The Dilemma for Labour: Authenticity or Electability?

22 May 2015

Now the shock result of the general election is dissipating, the identity crisis for the losing parties is settling in. Most of the analysis focuses on Labour - 'Where did they go wrong?' being the question asked and answered with exhaustive alacrity, if sadly little insight...

Read on the Huffington Post

Designing Global Cooperation So It's In the National Self-Interest

5 January 2015

What does it take to secure a meaningful international agreement on tackling climate change? In a year that saw the US and China make historic (but as-yet untested) pronouncements on reducing their carbon emissions, and the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change's meeting in Lima lay groundwork for a multilateral...

Read on the Huffington Post

The World Economic Forum's Competitiveness Contradiction

23 September 2014

The release of the World Economic Forum's 2014-15 Global Competitiveness Report has brought swathes of articles from the global media, as politicians, business people and commentators clamour to rejoice or recriminate over the rise or fall of their nation's ranking amongst the world's most competitive countries...

Read on the Huffington Post

Local and Global – Why are they Partners?

September 2014

Local climates are suffering more extreme weather due to global warming, local economies come under pressure because of global financial flows, local cultures often feel invaded by mass migration as a result of global income inequalities. These days, ‘global’ affects ‘local’ in very direct ways...

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Russell Brand Isn't Responsible for the EU Election Result, We Are

27 May 2014

Two things are very apparent following the European Elections - very few people in the UK voted (fewer than in the last election), and those who did abandoned the usual suspects to put their support behind isolationist parties like UKIP.

As we've come to expect in modern politics, the regrets and recriminations from media and politicians have come thick and fast in the last few days. Who's to blame for the low turnout? Should Nick Clegg step down? Is UKIP's success just a protest vote?

Read on Huffington Post

When Voting Loses Its Meaning, the Far-Right Triumphs

27 May 2014

The "earthquake" promised by Britain's UK Independence Party, France's Front National, and other populist parties across Europe finally arrived with the results of the European elections. But the real story behind the rise of these parties is neither an over-bearing European Union nor rampant immigration, but that governments around the world have failed to cooperate to reign in the global forces that make austerity, immigration and unemployment inevitable.

Read on Huffington Post

Even With the Ballot Box, We're ALL Boxed In

25 March 2014

John Mills, owner of TV shopping channel JML and one of the Labour Party's biggest donors, laments how similar Labour's economic policies are to the Conservative party's; how 'boxed in' the Labour leader, David Miliband, has become. Mills' lament echoes much of the rest of society which, seeing little difference between the main political parties, has been deserting the ballot box in droves.

Read on Huffington Post

Fracking: Are Environmentalists Missing the Point?

27 January 2014

With Prime Minister, David Cameron, extolling the virtues of fracking at the World Economic Forum meeting in Davos, it seems environmentalists still haven't understood what they're up against. For the problem isn't fracking, but something broader, more global, and far more pervasive.

Read on Huffington Post

Hollande: Why Those Who 'Play Away' Always Get Found Out

16 January 2014

It's hardly surprising French President François Hollande's love trysts would eventually be found out. But even more inevitable was the early demise of his love affair with a Left-leaning agenda. For those who believe national leaders still have any significant choice in their policies are living in the past; still wedded to the illusion that we live in democratic societies, free to choose which agenda - right or left - to bed down with.

Read on Huffington Post

The failure of international summitry

5 December 2013

These days, international summits to solve climate change and other global problems have become symbols of both hope and failure: hope that our leaders will take substantive action, but knowledge that these summits too often produce little more than hot air. Aware of the global challenges we face, we can’t understand why they don’t act. So what’s wrong with international summits? And what can we do about it?

Read on openDemocracy

Why Kofi Annan Is Wrong About National Self-Interest and Climate Change

3 December 2013

Following the disappointing Warsaw climate talks last month, former UN Secretary General Kofi Annan has admonished governments to "put aside narrow national interests in order to ensure that the pledges made at the 2009 Copenhagen conference -- to limit global warming to 2 degrees Celsius, or 3.6 degrees Fahrenheit, compared to pre-industrial levels -- are met". But is national self-interest really the barrier we think it is?

Read on Huffington Post

Russell Brand: New Revolutionary?

28 October 2013

It's true that popular political causes need powerful expression. And there's no doubt Russell Brand struck a chord when he was interviewed recently by Jeremy Paxman. Paxman readily acknowledged that there are many, myself included, who agree with Brand's views on global justice, the environment, and on the hollowness of our so-called democratic system. But the question Brand seemed unable to answer was HOW to put real power behind those views; how to convert them into powerful, practical political action?

Read on Huffington Post

What Does It Mean to Be a Leader?

01 October 2013

What does it mean to be a leader? Is it authority and power alone? Is it the ability to front a large multinational or hold the fates of employees in our hands? Or does our vision of meaningful leadership extend beyond simply being at the top?

Read on Huffington Post

Why I Don’t Want to Be a Mighty Man

21 August 2013

The world needs Mighty Men. And why not? In the ultra-competitive, dog eat dog world of public and business life it takes a special kind of invulnerability to achieve success. Leave your emotions behind and muzzle your sense of compromise—only the mightiest of macho gets the bone...

Read on The Good Men Project

Ukip: Why Globalisation Benefits Right-Wing Parties

16 May 2013

Why all the fuss about Europe when Ukip's rise isn't because of an over-bearing Europe, but because of globalisation? No one seems to have noticed that Ukip is not an isolated phenomenon. Right-wing, isolationist political parties are on the rise throughout Europe and elsewhere...

Read on Huffington Post

Book Review: 'Divided Nations' by Ian Goldin

14 May 2013

This is a great little book that tells you everything you need to know about global governance and why it's failing. Existing global institutions such as the United Nations may have served the post-WW2 world relatively well, but they're manifestly failing to meet today's challenges: "The future...," Ian Goldin notes, "will be unlike the past. We face a new set of challenges...

Read on Huffington Post

The Right Mourn Thatcher; The Left, Any Sense of Direction

17 April 2013

"Divisive" is the word that perhaps most accurately characterises reflections on the recent passing of Baroness Thatcher. But paradoxically, as David Cameron pointed out today, the day of Mrs. Thatcher's funeral, "we are all Thatcherites now". That is, politicians of all colours now broadly agree about...

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Weltschmerz: Why Global Governance Is the Key to the World's Happiness

18 March 2013

It's often said that opposites define each other. If there were no night, what would day be? What would it even mean? And so it is with happiness. One might say we only really live and fully experience sheer joy against the backdrop of what it means to feel depressed....

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Why Thinking Too Small Increases Your Food Bill

8 January 2013

Albert Einstein famously said "We won't solve present problems with the same thinking that created them", so reminding us that it's the inadequate way we think about our problems that always explains our inability to solve them.

The same goes for rising food costs resulting from the effects of...

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Is Starbucks' Voluntary Tax Payment Extra-Hot Double Espresso or Just Luke-Warm Filter Coffee?

12 December 2012

The coffee chain is voluntarily paying £20m to the UK taxman - an action that has been celebrated as a victory over the multi-nationals, promising to have a ripple effect on other tax dodgers. But will it?

The only reason Starbucks is paying up is because it's a highly...

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Swing Voters, Mr President? UK has the Answer

2 November 2012

It's ironic no mention of climate change was made in the recent U.S. presidential TV debates given the east coast just got hammered by Hurricane Sandy-- just the kind of extreme storm climate scientists have been warning could become more intense as climate warming evaporates more water into...

Read on Huffington Post