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Patriots pay tax

Last year my friend and fellow Lutonian Andy Flanagan hatched the #PatriotsPayTax campaign with the team at Christians on the Left. This week they’ve launched a campaign video and a petition calling for a dedicated business unit within HMRC, Britain’s tax authority. The department is currently under-resourced, making it impossible to effectively chase up corporations […]

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The citizens’ income: Means to an end

Interest in the citizens income (or basic income) seems to be cyclical. It’s been discussed a few times in the past, got quite a long way in some instances, and then disappeared again. A few years ago there was very little about it on the internet, and it almost felt like a lost idea. That’s […]

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Two ways to engage your church in climate action

Over the last few years there has been a growing engagement with climate change in church circles, including the Pope’s intervention and the church getting involved in divestment. 2016 has started strongly too, with two initiatives looking to mobilise UK churches in climate action. The first is Eco Church, which is an award scheme for […]

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Spiritual activism, by Alastair McIntosh and Matt Carmichael

What can spirituality contribute to activism? That’s the central question of Spiritual Activism, the new book by Alastair McIntosh and Matt Carmichael. It’s a question that will immediately resonate with some and alienate others, but the deeper you get into the book, the more obvious it becomes that this isn’t a niche concern. “To be […]

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The Islamic Declaration on Climate Change

Over the last few months we’ve had the Lambeth Declaration committing the church of England to action on climate change, and then Pope Francis’ encyclical on the subject. This week sees a similar commitment from the Muslim world, in the form of the Islamic Declaration on Global Climate Change. It’s been issued by an international […]

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On green living as a virtue

Last week I was reading The Earth will teach you by Kevin Durrant, a little book on ecology and theology. One little section that I found useful was a discussion of ‘consequentialist’ and ‘virtue’ ethics. A consequentialist approach to ethical living “involves performing good actions because we can see or imagine the beneficial consequences those […]

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Climate Change vs the Pope

A few weeks ago I wrote about the Catholic bishops’ intervention in the climate change debate. It turns out that they may just be the fore-runners of a big shift in Catholic teaching.  Next year, Pope Francis is expected to move decisively on climate change. He is due to address the United Nations on the […]

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Catholic bishops call for radical action on climate

This week a group of Catholic bishops issued a statement in support of the climate talks in Lima. It’s a really well worded statement to world leaders, and also to the Catholic church. It recognises the benefits of technology and development, comes from a place of compassion for the poor, and it’s ambitious in its […]

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E F Schumacher’s A Guide for the Perplexed

  E F Schumacher was an influential thinker of the last century, a pioneer of the early environmental movement and alternative economics. He founded the development charity Practical Action, inspired the New Economics Foundation, and turned his esoteric mind to all kinds of topics, from education to renewable energy. When he is quoted, which is […]

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Is envy a good thing?

Last week Boris Johnson presented the third annual Margaret Thatcher Lecture, a speech that’s got him a fair amount of attention. Johnson attracts attention, it’s fair to say, but this time it wasn’t the hair or the jokes, or a stunt gone wrong. For a change, it was the Mayor of London’s politics that made the […]

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