Kosmopolitan Unionist, Stoic.

Writing, mainly about politics, populists and propaganda.

What is the point of an About page?

Rhetorically, you might say, it is to give Ethos to a pages arguments. It answers, who is this person, and why should I listen to them?  

“Ethos is about establishing your authority to speak on the subject, logos is your logical argument for your point and pathos is your attempt to sway an audience emotionally.”


Well then, what do you need to know?

I am a Kosmopolitan Unionist, I currently live in Scotland, I read the Stoics but am clearly more of a wretch than a sage. I’ve been writing about politics, philosophy, and economics for far longer than I had any intention of doing so.

Having come from one divided community, and having moved to another that’s becoming more divided, I hate to see societies torn apart.

Through three referendums, and multiple elections I’ve seen social media play on human biases. As I want to make rational evidence-based decisions, but have a history in advertising I’ve been trying to counter propaganda,challenge hyperbole, uncover the truth.

Do I have Ethos?
  • If you believe that only people born in America should criticise Trump, then you will not believe I have Ethos.
  • If you believe that only people who lost European citizenship should complain about Brexit, you will not believe I have Ethos.
  • If you believe people who have studied marketing are too corrupt to analyse propaganda, you will not believe I have Ethos.
  • If you believe people not born in Scotland should not argue against Independence, you will not believe I have Ethos.
  • If you believe a tendency to make comparison and allusions to the Late Roman Republic can be unhelpful when trying to discuss politics with a modern audience, unfamiliar with classics, you’ve probably got a point… 

Kosmopolitan Unionism

Roughly 45% of my Scottish readers will have switched off at the term ‘Unionist’, but I don’t mean what they, probably, think.

When Diogenes the cynic was asked where he came from he replied

“I am a citizen of the world”(Kosmopolitan)

Diogenes of Sinope, who didn’t say he was from Sinope
Diogenes the Cynic – Diogenes Sitting in His Tub by Jean-Léon Gérôme (1860)

Kosmopolitanism, an idea developed by the Stoics into the attempt to build empathy with all humanity, and later connected to concepts of Global Citizenship. Diogenes was expressing it in a negative sense – that he held no particular loyalty to Sinope. The Stoics meant it in a more positive sense of empathy; that we owe allegiance to all people.

“Man is a political animal”


Aristotle said “Man is a political animal” , and it’s become one of his most famous quotes – but there is debate on what exactly he meant. While there have been various interpretations, I learnt it to understand he meant a man is of the city-state (polis) in the same way that a rabbit is a burrowing animal, a bird is a nesting animal, and as the bee is of the hive. 

Well, the Stoics argue that the Kosmos ( world) is as a Polis and that we have a duty to be politically active. So then:

“Man is a Kosmopolitical animal.”

Bingo Demagogue

Unionism – from Late Latin unionem (nominative unio) “oneness, unity, a uniting,” also in Latin meaning “a single pearl or onion,” from unus “one,” 

I don’t take it to strictly mean the political union of the Unites States over secessionists, or keeping Scotland in the UK on principle – It’s not even a strict calling for some sort of world government. 

I take Kosmopolitan unionism to be the antithesis of Nationalism. I think we should try to work to empathy with all humanity, rather than divide ourselves with invisible, imaginary, interim, arbitrary lines on maps.

We have a duty to be politically active, and not just in our own immediate polis, state or region. We have a responsibility to be rational. More unites us than divides us – but there is no mythological shared national identity we should adhere to, as with ‘Civic’ Nationalism. 

Easier said than practised, but an ideal to aspire to.

TL;DR all humans should be equal, and we only have one ‘onion’. If we want to solve the global problems on our wee blue dot, then we would be better off working together than divided. We should fight the tribal nature to feel affinity just with those of similar ethnicity, gender, religion, football-club or passport. 

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