Last night saw the launch of the new monthly journal Standpoint and whilst I wasn't able to stay as long as I would have liked I did manage to grab myself a copy which I started reading on the train as I trundled off home. Some of the comments about the magazine that appeared on Conservative Home prior to the launch were quite negative I have to say, basically along the lines "oh great a neocon mag" or "dead tree press will never learn".
Well I hate to, shall we say, piss on their fire, but this is not just some neocon magazine that will fold. The first issue has some of the most superb quality writing going. Cogent arguments are put forward on all manner of subjects, and it is anything but a "let's invade Iran".
There is a masterful dissection of how the West has failed to acknowledge the seriousness of the rising power of the Kremlin and its oligarch style of capitalism under the title "Putin's New Evil Empire". It argues that the Kremlin has built its inlfulence not only on the West, but in the West as well. For me personally the article reminded me of something I wrote two years ago arguing that
Our foreign policy complacency has resulted in Russia being able to leverage more real power than they ever could on Western Europe. We should not be fooled by a bear in sheeps clothing.It's not just politics though, there is also an excellent piece on science by Michael Hanlon, the science editor for the Daily Mail which talks about the importance of the Large Hadron Collider to phsyics and humanity. I posted about the LHC in a deliberately alarmist way. The point that Hanlon makes in his piece is brilliant though.
Now, before anyone asks if I am on a retainer seeing as I am carrying adverts for the magazine as well, no I am not. but I am taking out a subscription to it because it is a really good read, and I can see it be highly successful across the country, especially in the University libraries where it will sit with other journals. Read some of the articles on their website if you don't believe me.