Nothing inspires forgiveness quite like revenge.
As it happened, all three of us turned out to be real writers--a coincidence almost too large to be termed mere coincidence in a society where literally tens of thousands (maybe hundreds of thousands) of college students aspire to the writer's trade and where bare hundreds actually break through.
Our weapons are the ironic mind against the literal: the open mind against the credulous; the courageous pursuit of truth against the fearful and abject forces who would set limits to investigation (and who stupidly claim that we already have all the truth we need). Perhaps above all, we affirm life over the cults of death and human sacrifice and are afraid, not of inevitable death, but rather of a human life that is cramped and distorted by the pathetic need to offer mindless adulation, or the dismal belief that the laws of nature respond to wailings and incantations.
I think what is happening is I think first of all there is confidence in the U.K. economy. We're in a German rather than a Greek position in international financial markets, which is very positive and keeps our debt service costs down, and we're also beginning to see real evidence of rebalancing.
We may differ on many things, but what we respect is freeinquiry, openmindedness, and the pursuit of ideas for their own sake.We do not hold our convictions dogmatically: the disagreement betweenProfessor Stephen Jay Gould and Professor Richard Dawkins,concerning punctuated evolution and the unfilled gaps in post-Darwinian theory, is quite wide as well as quite deep, but we shallresolve it by evidence and reasoning and not by mutual excommunication.