About me and this site

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I'm John August and this is my blog. Obviously, whether you find it worth reading is up to you. But why do I hope you will find it worth reading ? I try to work through the issues impartially, for all my political biases, and to look at aspects few other people see. I often think "they're not getting at what is really crucial", and if my view of what's crucial matches yours, you should then find it interesting.

What's an example of this sort of permutational analysis ? Check out my commentary on Chomsky, which engages with his ideas, rather than dismissing him as the devil incarnate or worshipping him as a saint, as you frequently get around the web.

What sort of things do I hope to cover ?

 

  • Economics
  • Science
  • Politics & Political Debate
  • Religion
  • Issues and Rationality, Humanism, Atheism, Skepticism and "the movement"
  • A bit about my own life experiences

 

What's my background ?

  • President of the NSW Humanist Society
  • Past candidate for the Secular Party ( though I'm not currently a member )
  • A contributor to the 2SER and 2RSR community radio stations
  • Convenor of the Sydney Shove, a politics and economics discussion group
  • A tutor in science and economics courses at the Workers' Educational Association

 

My articles tend to have a lot of "on the one hand this, on the other hand that" sort of comment. Some people may find that a bit frustrating. But I know from my own experience that it can be a refreshing breath of fresh air to read something which is trying to be "balanced" after reading so much material that is polemic and biased one way or another. And perhaps you'll feel the same way.

Too often, you see people just "talking past each other". To me, an important part of the picture is a theory of wrong, where you don't just talk about how you're right, but also why others are wrong - that is, without claiming a straw man, or accusing them of being mentally deficient in some way. Why I may not always meet this ideal, wow you sure see it lacking in contemporary debate.

What I offer an ability to look at all sides of the issue - more impartially than most commentators - at the same time as I have my own views, and make the effort to put them forward in a careful and considered fashion

You'll also notice a Donate button. This is not a donation to a worthy cause as such, but is a donation to me, if you like what you see and am willing to support me doing more of it. Clearly, I'm not a professional journalist, I never really went down that path. But I have taken the development and expression of my ideas seriously, and while I'm not desperate for money, if you're able to provide some, it certainly validates the effort I'm making. This website is "creative commons" licensed. I walk the talk - not only do I believe in the commons and the new self published business models, but I'm doing that. Please think about making a contribution as a part of that model.

I'm not related to the other John August, the US screenwriter. I was blown away many years ago when I first saw my name on the credits of the "Charlie's Angels" movie. While I've not had any replies to the emails I've sent him, he was kind enough to indirectly reply to an article I wrote on getting rid of State Governments in Australia, something he found rather bewildering!