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28 Weeks Later…

It’s been around seven months since this blog was updated and aside from it being the perfect opportunity to crack such a witty little joke in the naming of this entry, I also wanted to make an attempt at reanimating this blog in more of a ‘personal’ capacity, whilst briefly updating you all on what I’ve been up to in the meantime.

Those of you who know me will be aware (to be fair I’ve made it increasingly difficult for you to avoid) that I launched a new website back in January of this year. Passing Nightmare was the culmination of an idea which had been festering away inside my brain for 12 months prior and something which I’d made a failed attempt at launching several months earlier.

As I became increasingly interested in politics, economics and the media I felt I needed somewhere to scribble down my ideas and thoughts on issues which were important to me, or where I had strong views. I also wanted to collaborate with other writers and spread the articles across social networking websites.

Six months later, the site has been relatively successful at meeting those original aims. It now contains around 20 original articles, many of which are quite considerable in length. Some of my favourites are listed below:

  • An Epidemic of Benefit Fraud? The Demonization of Welfare Recipients – This post talked about the levels of benefit and other fraud in the UK, and contrasted it with media coverage of ‘scroungers’.
  • Austerity Politics & Blaming Labour – In this article I spoke of the trend towards blaming Labour party spending for the fiscal deficit, whilst overlooking the massive problems caused by the banking crisis. It looked at austerity politics and discussed whether this could eventually cause more harm than good during a period of recovery.
  • A Future That Works – My first hand report from the Manchester NUS/TUC rally on the 28th January, during which I was temporarily contained by police. Several arrests were made on the day, although the media narrative of protester violence was severely overemphasised.
  • The Death Penalty Doctrine – This piece looked at the continuing emphasis on capital punishment as an appropriate form of punishment. It looked at the history of the methods and argued that the death penalty can never be fairly or accurately applied.
  • Why I Will Never ‘Love That Advert’ – My latest article argues that advertising damages our society in increasingly negative ways and that we shouldn’t sit back and accept the massive influence it has over the way we perceive ourselves, the way we treat others and the way we receive information about the world.

An early success for Passing Nightmare was achieved in January when the Guardian newspaper quoted my article on the levels of benefit fraud in the UK, and with the help of Twitter the post eventually went viral.

Various other websites, students, journalists and academics have cited or commented on the articles and it’s been deeply heartening to see some the responses I have been receiving so far. Its not always been easy fitting work on the site around my full-time job and my university degree, but its something I’m passionate about and I sincerely hope I can continue to put in as much effort during the upcoming months.

I’m planning to update this blog more frequently now as it begins to take a more personal slant on me and the various goings on in my life, so feel free to add me to your feeds and subscriptions. I shall try not to disappoint.

One Comment

  1. Wow, I never realised your website had done quite so well. I’m impressed. Congratulations Jonathan. I look forward to keeping up with this blog.

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