There’s Opportunity In Brexit

The UK has made its decision to leave the EU. Instead of moaning, wouldn’t it be better to embrace it positively? When the dust settles in the coming months, I think many of the Remain people will be glad we left the EU.

Why? Because we can now grasp the opportunity to open up to the whole world and shake off the shackles of the EU permanently. Lets face it, who would want to belong to a club struggling with economic weakness, debt problems, large-scale migration and growing geopolitical instability?

The people finally won over the Establishment. By the Establishment, I mean: the elite, the centers of power, the leading politicians, judges and law makers, aristocrats, the privileged ruling class, the rich and powerful, best educated in the society. But these people are NOT necessarily the ones that make the best decisions!

This Establishment and its self-serving political elites are the people who, for years, have ignored the anxieties and aspirations of the electorate.

The Establishment has been out of touch with the people and they have had ENOUGH. Millions of people in the UK don’t embrace the liberal views of the elite. They don’t enthuse about diversity and it’s their right to object. Their values and opinions have been ignored for years and that has promoted frustration and discord in the population.

The people, were and are, fed up with being called, “racist’, just because they, were and are, concerned about large numbers of migrants breaking up the infrastructure of their country.

Cameron and his cronies have persistently represented the interests of Europe in Britain rather than standing up for Britain in Europe.

Now, we have the opportunity to make our own laws, set our own taxes, make our own trade deals and control our borders. In other words, to control our destiny, because you don’t have a country if you can’t control your destiny!


So, by voting for Brexit, the people have defied the pleading of the Establishment to stay in the EU. They, the elite, could not bear the idea that there might be a better way of doing things.

As far as the young people of the nation, who feel this decision is to build a wall and pull up the drawbridge, I don’t think so, just the opposite. It will open up this country to the rest of the world, which is a great opportunity and it will be a benefit to the young people. It could be a very prosperous future it they work toward it.


I always felt that Cameron’s Project Fear was a shameful deceit and a pulling down of this country. This infuriated the people.

I feel business will engage with Brexit and it will work with a minimum of disruption.

It’s a fact that the 28 member EU was useless at negotiating free-trade deals with the rest of the world. If the EU is to survive, it must make drastic reforms or die. And I don’t think the EU is capable of REAL reform.


This could be the beginning of a period of growth and prosperity and higher living standards now that we are OUT of the EU. There will be prospects of increased exports to areas in the world where we didn’t do much before (Mid-East, Far-East and North America).

With freedom from the Brussels bureaucracy there are great opportunities for the UK to seize the day.

There is no need to be frightened, Britain will not just survive, but it will THRIVE.

It might be a rocky road at first, but with the freedom to be a self-governing, outward-looking society, the skies are bright.


Lessons From Shakespeare

Since I am a writer in my retirement, I am starting to study Shakespeare, which I never did in my youth. I am finding many lessons in the lines of his writings. They are woven in the fabric of his plays. His words contain a great amount of good advice and wisdom.

Here are some that have stayed in my mind:

“We know what we are but know not what we may be.”

This means to me, that we are certain of who we are in the present but not in the future. We don’t realize what we are capable of.


“The web of our life is of a mingled yarn, good and ill together.”

This probably means our life is full of positive and negative experiences and they are interconnected. Life is full of ups and downs.

It also could mean the unraveling of the threads of our life as we grow old.


“What is past is prologue.”

A prologue is an intro or preface. So the quote means your past has set the scene for the present.


“I wasted time and now doth time waste me.”

We all waste time. When we are young, time appears to be unlimited. But as the years go by, the finite nature of our life reveals itself. So the message is: Live each day to the fullest.


“Give every man thy ear but few thy voice.”

This means to practice listening more and less speaking. The world is full of talkers but listening is a virtue.


“Our doubts are traitors and make us lose the good we oft might win by fearing to attempt.”

We all have self-doubts but when you wallow in them, you prevent yourself from achieving your goals.


“A fool thinks himself to be wise, but a wise man knows himself to be a fool.”

There is wisdom in knowing that you don’t know everything. The wise man realizes there is a vast amount to understand and he is aware that he knows little.


Yes, Shakespeare is full of lessons.

“Words, words, give me the words and I will write wonderful stories.”

I made that one up myself!


What are some of the quotes that are meaningful to you?

You Must Choose!

Recently, I watched Mike Leigh’s film, Naked. It was an excellent demonstration of Sartre’s philosophy of living an authentic existence versus living in bad faith. Also, it illuminated our ability to make right or wrong choices.

Are we, as individuals, able to choose? Who, or what, is in control of you?

Who is in charge? You must decide that you do have a choice, you do have free will, if you fear this decision you will lose any free will that you had!

To begin, I think we need to define the two terms:

Authentic Living—one must take responsibility for the actions one chooses. One must not lean on preset rules and objective norms.

Living in Bad Faith—failing to recognize the many choices that are available. Bad faith is the habit people have of deceiving themselves into thinking that they do NOT have the freedom of choice. They fear the consequences of making a choice. So they fear choice, which is a choice in itself.

Naked is a raw movie, where people are stripped of their protective layer of civility and compassion. The three male characters refuse to face facts and make good choices. With pressure from society’s rules and norms, they adopt false values and disown their freedom. They don’t take responsibility for their actions.

The story is how these male characters interact with the women in the tale.

There is Johnny, the sociopath, Jeremy, the violent class conscious person and Brian, the night-watchman, who is a voyeur. They all live lives full of bad faith. They are all misogynists.

Johnny is a person with a personality disorder which manifests itself in antisocial attitudes and behaviors. He never tries to get himself out of being an educated derelict. He is naked in the sense that he has nothing of material value and he has lost his identity and security.

Jeremy believes his high social class gives him the right to be dominate over others. He is violent toward women and he takes but doesn’t give. He believes he is very masculine, which is his essential role. His personality is expressed through his massive consumption of objects, cars and luxuries.

Brian is a security guard, he guards the building at night for the daytime people. To him, he guards nothing. He has no sense of identity. He watches other people with no interaction with them. He feels he has no freedom of choice and denies any responsibility in his world.

The male characters in Naked, are all caught in bad faith, they deny their freedom of choice or try to avoid it.

In conclusion, we must choose to act and take responsibility for those actions. We must make sense of our lives. This is living authentically. We cannot feel that we are victims of fate, or mysterious forces within us, or of heredity, or pressure from society, for all this is to be living in bad faith.

The end result of your existence here on earth will be the total of the choices you made while you were here.

World Pain and Suffering–Why?

One of the problems concerning those who believe in an all powerful, good God, is reconciling that belief with the existence of so much pain and suffering in the world. The problem is known as the Problem of Evil.

We’ve all heard it before:

The theist says, “God exists.”

The atheist says, “God does not exist.”

The agnostic says, “I’m on the fence, undecided so I suspend judgment.”

As far as the vast amount of pain and suffering in the world—some of the thinking is:

If God exists and he is all powerful and all knowing, then he would get rid of all unnecessary pain and suffering in the world.

But, there is unnecessary pain and suffering in the world. So, does that mean God does NOT exist?

I watched a film recently that dealt with this subject. It was called, “The Seventh Seal”. The story goes:

In the 14th century, in Sweden, when the Black Death was sweeping the continent. People wanted to know why God was inflicting on them so much pain and suffering.

A knight who returned from the Crusades has a game of chess with Death in hope of getting some answers to why God puts up with all this pain.

The knight tells Death he can’t grasp God with his senses. He calls out to Him but there is silence like no one is there!

Death answers: “Perhaps no one IS there!”

We humans have an inclination to rely on our senses:

“Seeing is believing.” But you can’t see God.

So, how do the theists counter the argument—why does God allow pain and suffering in the world?

The defense is: pain and suffering are necessary for the production of GOOD.

GOOD requires the existence of BAD. You couldn’t have compassion or courage if someone wasn’t suffering or threatened with harm. So, to get GOOD you have to have BAD. Do you agree?

The knight, in the Seventh Seal, seems to think that the enormous amount of pain God allows in the world turns religion into a farce.

Another defense that the theist uses is that suffering is necessary to be a CONTRAST to good, so we can see GOOD as GOOD!

It’s like we don’t appreciate health as good until we get sick.

But others would say they don’t need pain to appreciate health.

So, why do we have this suffering in the world? Or is there no God?

Another of the many philosophical questions to mull over.

On a lighter note: Philosophy is common sense in a dress suit!

A Leaderless and Unrecognisable Europe


Migrants are coming to Europe from many countries: Syria, Afghanistan, Iraq, Iran, Pakistan, Libya, Nigeria, Somalia, Guinea, Senegal, Sudan and others.

What to do? One scenario to stabilize the Middle East and Africa would take an army of ½ million men!

This is unlikely because there is no will for that in the West.

So, what do we do? Do we wait for war to break out within Europe because of over-population? Do we put a blockade of warships down the entire southern coast of Europe and force the migrant boats to go back?

It’s not just people coming from war-torn countries, many are coming from places where there is no war just poverty and sickness. They simply seek a better life!

Human rights law makes it almost impossible to return them to their countries.

These people have a great motivation to move to Europe. They see countries of wealth and security which is missing from their origins.

In the end this mass migration will destroy Europe’s stability.

Some people reading this article will ask: “Where is your compassion for millions of suffering people?”

The reply would be: “When should the compassion stop?”

After all our infrastructures collapse? Do we want Europe to be changed forever?

The Third World is coming to Europe and if it continues it will change society beyond recognition!

Maybe, the young people of tomorrow will be content to live in a world of transformation. But if it leads to war or social unrest, contentment will be short-lived!

Also, where are the leaders? They don’t seem to acknowledge the upheaval.

We are living in a “leaderless world”. No single country or alliance of countries seems to be capable of leading in a global world.

Lots of problems but the leaders have no solutions!

Are we sleepwalking toward Apocalypse?

Can A Robot Have A Mind?

The question popped into my mind after watching two films, “Artificial Intelligence” and “Bicentennial Man”.

Recently computers have been developed capable of performing tasks as good as humans, maybe better. What came to mind was the computer “Deep Blue” that defeated the chess champion, Garry Kasparov.

The film A.I. put forward a robot, David, a child, with the capacity to “love” that would bring him close to being human. It also shows what would happen when humans became dependent on robots. The humans developed a deep-seated hatred of them. The robot, “David” displays his analytic ability to figure out how to get his “mother’s” love back.

In “Bicentennial Man”, Andrew, the robot, starts out as a “slave” for the family, but as time goes on he wants more. He wants the freedom and equality of a human. The story explores many issues of what makes a human: Humanity, prejudice, intellectual freedom and love.

These two films are science-fiction but with the continuing research and development of A.I., could some disturbing scenarios become reality? In these movies it seemed to me that the robots were being wronged.

Many questions arise when thinking about the development of A. I. such as:

Can a robot become a moral person? In “Bicentennial Man”, Andrew was taught the humanities, which supposedly made him a moral robot. But can we design morality, good and bad, right and wrong, into a robot?

What distinguishes a robot from a human? The three main differences are:

Humans have emotions and feelings, robots don’t.

Humans are organic, flesh and bone, robots are made of metal, chips and wire.

Humans think, robots are programmed.

What will the world be like if and when robots surpass their human makers in intelligence and how will humans respond?

There would be a turn around in social structure: The robots would treat the humans the way that humans have treated some humans and animals for years, with disdain and prejudice. The worst scenario would be that the robots would want to get rid of the humans!

Maybe we should proceed with caution with the research into A.I. and seriously think about what role we would give a robot, with a mind, in society.

I will leave you with this:

Any man who pits his intelligence against a robot and loses, has it coming!


This article was posted by David Wise author of “Web of Guilt”, “24 Traumatic Hours, Twice”, “The Becoming” and “Life Story Terror”.

All available on Amazon in ebook and paperback.


The Magic of Writing

I was sitting in my scriptorium (study), one late afternoon, gazing out the window, daydreaming. When there was a heavy knock on my front door. Startled out of my idea-catching mode, I went to the door, opened it, and there stood my old schoolmate, Tom. I ushered him into the scriptorium. I sat in my swivel chair and he plunked himself down on the settee.

“Long time, no see!”

“It’s been a fair few years, I guess.”

“It’s good to see you. Now, what’s on your mind, Tom?”

“Recently, I stumbled across your blog. I read your blog stories and I’ve also read your novels. I like your writing and I want to be a writer myself.”

“Thank you for the compliment. Do you want a drink?”

“No, thank you, I want to stay sober because I’m going to practice my writing later.”

“I find a glass or two of red wine helps me with my writing. Have you written anything lately?”

“Yes, I’ve tried my hand at a few short stories. My wife says they’re okay. But I question, can I write?” Tom looked confused.

“Well, my friend, there are a few measurements available to see if you can write.”

“Such as?” Tom said eagerly.

“Lets first take, “Technical Proficiency”, how well you understand the component elements of writing. Such as, dialogue, description, exposition, characterization, punctuation, grammar and narrative.”

“Oh boy, that’s a lot of elements.”

“That’s not all of them, also you have chronology, flashbacks, backstory, show or tell, tense and point of view.”

“You need to know all that?’ Tom looked worried.

“Of course, my friend, if you want to write well. Every element melds together flawlessly to create a powerful impression on the reader.”

“So, it’s like magic?”

“That’s right, the writer’s magic! You can get your reader excited, scared, angry and full of emotion. But they never see how you did the trick.”

“Anything else?”

“Yes, next comes “Structural Proficiency”, the more word count you have, the more demands on you as a writer. You have to understand pace, storyline, character arcs, suspense, conflict and twists.”

“What kind of writer are you, Dave?”

“Well Tom, I’m a blend of two types. I like to write chronologically sometimes and other times I prefer to write bits of the story separately, here there and everywhere. Just so I don’t lose the thread of the storyline.”

“Boy, this is interesting stuff, Dave,” said Tom, his eyes sparkling, “Tell me more.”

“A writer sometimes takes a strong experience in the present and it awakens a memory from his past, maybe childhood, from which he proceeds to write about a wish, or a daydream, which then finds fulfillment in his story.”

“So, what are the problems that a writer has starting out like me?”

“The problems are personality problems. The writer starts a story but loses heart and confidence, gets stuck and is blocked. Sometimes he writes good, sometimes bad. It’s frustrating! In other words, there are problems of confidence and self-respect. Then there are the demons of the subconscious, where a lot of our ideas come from.”

“Lots of problems then?”

“Yes, but you can work hard and get rid of the habits of thought that impede your progress. You must strengthen the right side of your brain, which handles expressive and creative tasks.”

“Any final words before I leave?”

“Yes, Tom, but they are on the light side. I asked a guy, the other day, what he did for a living.

“I’m a brain surgeon, what do you do?”

“I’m a writer,” I said.

“Oh, that’s what I think I’ll do when I retire,” said the surgeon, matter-of-factly.

“That’s interesting,” I said, “When I retire I want to be a brain surgeon!”



This article was posted by David Wise author of “Web of Guilt”, “24 Traumatic Hours, Twice”, and “The Becoming”.

All available on Amazon in ebook and paperback.


How Do You Live?

The question in this article’s title came to mind after I read, Tolstoy’s “The Death of Ivan Ilych and watched the film, “Ikiru”. Both stories have a common theme of a man buried in bureaucracy, who has a terminal illness. He realizes he hasn’t lived at all! They both, through facing death, figured out their lives contained no meaning for them.

One of the quotes in “Ikiru” was; “Men are such fools, they only realize life’s beauty when they are faced with death.”

It makes you think: It’s man’s duty to enjoy life. Most of us, in our day-to-day routine, have artificial lives marked by shallow relationships, self-interest and materialism. This leaves us barren of meaning in our lives.

When the two protagonists face death it changes the way they see the world. Death forces them to give their life meaning that is their own.

If you look over your shoulder the Grim Reaper is right behind you. So, while you have life, enjoy it.

So much depression and neuroses happen in a person’s life because they feel life hasn’t any real significance. You and I live in the here and now. What will you do with the time that lies ahead of you? This time is unshaped and full of uncertainty. When you stand at this present point in life maybe you will take a completely different direction to the one which has made you who you are.

So, How Do You Live? You need to find something that is important to you. Some activity that you can throw yourself into, so you connect with the world in a way that you feel “things matter”.

Things happen in life (illness, lost of a loved one, etc.), but you can still find meaning in life if your attitude is positive.

I, personally, find meaning through writing. My writing ignites a spark in me so I am aware of the fact that I am alive and to make the most of it. There is so much to be written, it can keep you busy for a lifetime. So much to be explored through the written word. I have the freedom to write ANYTHING, but of course, it won’t be EVERYTHING!

That thought allows me to choose what I write about and those choices illuminate the meanings in my life. I write about what is meaningful to me.

Writing, to me, is what makes my life, in retirement, worthwhile.

That’s How I Live!


This article was posted by David Wise author of “Web of Guilt”, “24 Traumatic Hours, Twice”, and “The Becoming”.

All available on Amazon in ebook and paperback.

Right Or Wrong, That Is The Question

What constitutes a morally right action from a morally wrong action?

That question popped into my head after I watched the film, “Crimes and Misdemeanors”, with Woody Allen and Martin Landau.

I remembered there were two theories of moral philosophy, also known as ethics, one involving “consequences” and the other, “intentions”. So, what constitutes GOOD consequences and intentions, and BAD ones?

To add to the confusion, there is “moral relativism” which states there are NO moral facts. All moral evaluations are relative to the individual.

Plus, “moral objectivism” which states there ARE moral facts. The moral facts don’t depend on what anybody thinks.

In my mind, there are differences in people’s moral standards.

I wondered if the film could clear up some of these points. This movie has two stories and two protagonists. Judah Rosenthal, an eye doctor and pillar of the community, is one protagonist.

Cliff Stern, the second protagonist, is a film maker. His wife wants him to work on a documentary about her brother, a successful TV producer. While doing the film Cliff meets and falls in love with the documentary’s producer, Halley. In the end Cliff loses her to Lester, his wife’s brother. What links the two stories together is Ben, the rabbi, who is Cliff’s brother-law and Judah’s patient.

Now, Judah had a mistress, Delores, who threatened to spill the beans to Judah’s wife about the affair and some dodgy business dealings. Judah has his brother hire a hit man to kill Delores. In doing this, Judah is morally wrong, his action produced bad consequences and his intentions were suspect. He fell victim of moral egoism, his sole concern in making the decision was how it will affect him.


John Stuart Mill had a greatest happiness principle, which stated that the most important things in life are pleasure and freedom from pain.

So, according to this principle what has to be done to figure out what is the morally right decision?

List all the alternative actions the person has to choose from.

For each alternative figure out the total amount of happiness or unhappiness that would result from the decision.

The alternative with the greatest happiness is the morally right thing to do. Any alternative with less than maximum happiness is morally wrong.

Lets look at this with analyzing Judah’s decision to get a hit man to kill Delores.

What were his alternatives:

He could confess his infidelity to his wife. This would result in his wife’s unhappiness and his guilt. Maybe in the end would be forgiveness and adjustment.

He could decide to “do nothing”. Delores would be unhappy to continue living a lie. But everyone else would be happy if Judah could keep Delores quiet.

Or he could choose to hire the hit man, which he does. Delores suffers death and she has the right NOT to be killed. Judah suffers guilt, but his wife and family have the happiness of the status quo. Also, an innocent man was accused of the killing which wasn’t right.

In the last analysis Judah’s action was wrong because it produced the worst outcome than the other alternatives.

The end of the movie is chilling for a lot of people because there is no ultimate punishment for Judah, his guilt vanished in time and his life of wealth and privilege continued as if nothing happened.

So, why be moral in the first place?

Why do the right thing if we can do the wrong thing and get away with it?

Does conscience mean anything if everything (guilt,etc.) passes away with time?

In conclusion: We all face life decisions, moral choices, some big some small. We are defined by our choices. We hope we have the ability to keep trying to find joy and satisfaction from basic things, such as our family, our work and our passions.


This article was posted by David Wise author of “Web of Guilt”, “24 Traumatic Hours, Twice”, and “The Becoming”.

All available on Amazon in ebook and paperback.


Who Am I ?

The question of identity has always intrigued me. How to understand yourself and who and what are we as individuals.

After watching two films: “Being John Malkovich” and “Memento”, I became interested in the Psychological Continuity Theory of personal identity.

The theory states: what makes ME, me, are my psychological characteristics: personality, disposition, value system and worldview, all these change very slowly over time. Memory, also, achieves continuity.

In “Being John Malkovich”, the protagonist slips into Malkovich’s mind and sees the world through his eyes. But he doesn’t become him, or does he?

In “Memento”, the protagonist, Leonard, looses his short-term memory. Before the incident, the killing of his wife, Leonard is a bland law-abiding citizen, then he becomes a killer. Was this change the result of a changed personality or was it because circumstances changed and his personality adapted?

The film shown backwards in time disorientates the viewer. With memory loss does Leonard lose himself?

Many of Leonard’s “memories” were not genuine, they were distorted. For memory to be a link to psychological continuity it must be genuine.


Your personal identity in one sense can change. In my working life I was a time study, in my retirement I am a writer. So my idea of myself changed over time.


I often think: Am I the same person now as I was as a baby? My answer is NO, I am different. My DNA is the same, but that’s about it. I have changed physically and mentally through the years.

A better question would be: Am I the person NOW, who was here yesterday or a week ago? What evidence is there? Well, I rely on first-person memory: I remember doing something yesterday and it was done, so I am probably the same person I was yesterday.

How about the question: What am I?

I am a biological organism that is a collection of mental states and events. I am a bundle of all my perceptions; the world through my senses and the way I interpret what I am aware of.

Why am I concerned about my identity?

Because only I can be responsible for my actions and this gives me a reason to care about ME. I have a special, selfish interest in my own present and future. Identity matters to me practically. My identity is very important to me.


This post was written by David Wise, author of “Web of Guilt”, “24 Traumatic Hours, Twice”, and “The Becoming”.

All available on Amazon in ebook and paperback.