Penny For Our Thoughts?

by Mary Jackson (September 2010)


E
conomy grew "more than thought", reads a headline at the BBC. Coffers are filling while heads remain empty. But not at this website. Why is that?

New English Review has been accused of having "no discernible mission statement". I used to think that didn't matter. After all, it doesn't mean there is no mission statement; it just isn't discernible - low profile even. Instead of thinking outside the box, we think in it, giving not 110 per cent, but a mere 90%, getting it right not first time, but second or third time. Going forward is soon followed by going backwards, to a time when "deliver" referred to letters, twice a day in England not so long ago, or milk in glass bottles. Our ducks are not in a row, and we all sing from different hymn sheets.

Correction: Hugh is singing from the same hymn sheet, even if nobody else is.

Perhaps I was wrong. New English Review is on its uppers, flat broke and too polite to beg. Yet the Cordoba Initiative, which has a more than discernible mission statement, is thriving. Here is that mission statement:

Solving some of the most intractable conflicts in the world today requires innovative strategies for cross-cultural engagement. Cordoba Initiative tackles this mandate with forethought, expertise and the ability to leverage contacts in influential positions within the Muslim World and the West. Thinking outside the box about international and intercultural conflict resolution also means thinking introspectively about each side's place within its own historical narrative with a view to devising internally oriented solutions.

Compare and contrast: Cordoba Initiative and New English Review. Before you start on the morals, compare and contrast the language. And if you are in the small, dwindling proportion of the population that has both dollars and discernment, pounds and perspicacity, Euros and Eu-name-it, please give - and stop the rot.


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If you have enjoyed this article, and would like to read other articles by Mary Jackson, click here. 

Mary Jackson contributes regularly to The Iconoclast, our Community Blog. Click here to see all her contributions, on which comments are welcome.  


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