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The Socratic Club - 4th September

It was great to catch up with our members for the Michaelmas term.

With so much going on in the world the sessions covered a recapitulation of world events as well as an overview of key Presentation skills: from eye contact, to enthusiasm, to tone of voice and engaging with the audience.

We looked at the Tory leadership race as it reaches a conclusion and the challenges that the new Prime Minister will face from Inflation to the War in Ukraine, to the Labour Party and the Cost of Living crisis.

The Junior Group was asked to vote on what is more important?

Vote 1:

Global Warming: 43%

The War in Ukraine: 29%

Energy Crisis & Inflation: 29%

This moved to an equally shared vote in Vote 2:

Global Warming: 33%

The War in Ukraine: 33%

Energy Crisis & Inflation: 33%

We were impressed with the points raised, from the linked nature of the problems, to the War contributing to both Global Warming and the Energy Crisis, to the impact on Wheat contracts and food supplies. Many felt Global Warming to be the long term problem, but the War and Inflation the more immediate threats.

It was an excellent debate.

In our Senior Group we also discussed Taiwan, but the group took a more political view to the problems facing the next PM, with Keir Starmer and the Labour Party figuring heavily:

Global Warming: 0%

The War in Ukraine: 33%

The Labour Party: 33%

Energy Crisis & Inflation: 33%

The arguments focussed on short term vs long term, noting that both Tory candidates had committed to net zero.

We discussed the short termism of Western Democracy and the crisis for Europe with the G7 trying to fix a level for the Gas price and Russia shutting down Nord Stream.

We ended with a philosophical debate on Individualism vs Collectivism.

From Hobbes to Marx we discussed some of the theory and ended with a brief debate on the merits and weaknesses of each.

It was great to see both proposition and opposition arguments being made using evidence and stories to support their points. Well done all!

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