Showing posts from August, 2020

Infectious Apocalypse- What video games can teach us about real life diseases

Jonathon Griffiths- Guest Writer So I have been playing a lot of Phoenix Point lately, a video game in which a virus drives people mad and turns them into fish monsters and similarly The Last of Us 2 (a game about a fungal infection driving people mad and turning them into mushroom monsters) which came out recntly(ish). Doesn’t matter, time isn’t real. Let’s talk about real world spooky parasites and an infection apocalypse. Having mentioned The Last of Us 2 it seems appropriate to start with what influenced that game’s parasite and the one of the two in this article you are most likely to have heard of, “ Ophiocordyceps unilateralis ”. This name actually represents many individual species which infect different ant species. Interestingly enough it seems that any one species has specialised such that it can only successfully affect one type of ant.  The normal cycle of infection goes as such: First thing is an ant picks up a spore from the ground, and then the spore has to work its way

Economic Recession, COVID-19 and Mental Health in Wales

Daniel Priestley- Writer After the events of the last six months, indicators suggest that Wales is on course for a sudden and unexpected economic recession. Every area of the economy has been affected including massive reductions in spending, working hours, GDP and a rise in unemployment (Forrest et al., 2020). The full extent of the crisis is yet to be understood but current policy research should focus on how best to mitigate the impact on the people of Wales. This article examines the effect of the 2008 economic recession on the mental health of the population and places them in the context of the Welsh Government’s current strategy on mental health.  The Economic Impact of COVID-19 On the 23rd of March 2020, Wales went into lockdown to prevent the spread of COVID-19. Schools, restaurants, camping sites, non-essential shops, bars, music venues, theatres, and workplaces across Wales were shut down and citizens were advised to stay home. 18% of workers in Wales are employed in sectors

Does Bhutan hold the key to happiness- and can we make a copy?

KF- Editor and Writer In the early 1970s the small Buddhist nation of Bhutan announced a concept that made most westernised countries nod along as parents supporting their child’s wish to be a princess with loving but ultimately condescending support. King Jigme Wangchuck, when asked by a reporter what the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) of Bhutan was, replied with the now famous line “Gross National Happiness (GNH) is more important than Gross Domestic Product (GDP)”. This was the next natural stage in Bhutan’s philosophy since the Legal Code of Bhutan 1629 had stated that “if the Government cannot create happiness for its people, then there is no purpose for the Government to exist.” Bhutan is a tiny Buddhist nation, sitting quietly between industrial giants China and India, it covers just 38,364 sq km and is considered a developing nation. With this in mind it’s not hard to see why the westernised world held serious reservations about Bhutan achieving something none of their own develo

The Philosophy of VAR

Morgan Wellington- Guest Writer Since its inception in the domestic game VAR (Video Assistant Referee) has been a controversial and highly discussed topic by pundits and players alike and has arguably become the most polarising issue among football fans since Brexit. And following in its footsteps, there has been much confusion as to what VAR actually means, leading to discussions about VAR being rife with misunderstanding and bold assumptions which may or may not hold up to scrutiny. This article will seek to establish a rudimentary account of VAR’s underlying philosophies and tease out some of the questions it raises that strike at the very heart of what football is, so as to provide a framework for more productive discussions in the future. There are a wide variety of arguments for and against VAR, and a problematic feature of these discussions is that, more often than not, the opposing sides differ in their understanding of what VAR is claiming to do, what VAR is capable of doing,