Monday, December 12, 2016

Cool heads and sharp minds

I like having friends with all sorts of opinions. It is good to stretch a bit to listen to what others think. It's even more impressive when somebody leaves a former opinion and changes their mind. A high-profile person who has done just that recently is Glasgow-born economic historian Niall Ferguson - recent Boston Globe article here.

Back in September he intriguingly suggested that the incoming President of the USA should appoint a 'Council of Historians', because history is the only example we can learn from, and understanding history and culture is very very important - article here. People in high office in Northern Ireland would do well to pay attention.

Ferguson was pro-Remain, an advisor to the Remain campaign, but has now changed his mind and is publicly announcing that on reflection he should have supported 'Brexit', the campaign to Leave the European Union. Here are some video clips from YouTube.

Denis Kearney was a new name to me but the parallels are fascinating; Kearney's great rival in Irish-American Californian politics was Frank Roney, someone who has featured on this blog previously. Niall Ferguson is a man worth listening to.