The Outline

Tom Whyman

Tom Whyman
Tom Whyman is a writer and philosopher from the UK.
Power Apr 01

The Australian scientist who got magnets stuck up his nose should inspire us all

There is nothing but time for creative pursuits.

Power Mar 26

Your neighbors are not the disease

It can be tempting to blame each other for the spread of a pandemic, but the real villains are not the idiots standing too close to each other in the park.

Power Mar 17

The British government is massively fucking up its coronavirus response

They only just realized their first plan to simply let people die had some issues.

Power Mar 10

Only an idiot would dismiss ad hominem arguments

The internet’s most maligned so-called logical fallacy is actually a pretty useful way to reason.

Power Mar 03

A fake man deserves Britain’s “civility in politics” award

Simon Hedges, while not a real person, has done more work for it than any other lout.

Power Feb 25

Why the media keeps handing over their wallets for inspection

Often it pays to be credulous.

Power Feb 18

Will we ever be free of Pete Buttigieg?

The myth of electability has forced him on us all, and he’s going to have to be stopped over and over again.

Power Feb 10

‘The Irishman’ looks like shit and that’s why it’s brilliant

The failure of its de-aging technology transforms what might’ve been a plodding, overlong film into a masterful meditation on memory and fate.

Power Feb 04

Are we all members of the Voluntary Human Extinction Movement?

The desire for humanity to go extinct seems crazy, but it may also be the dominant ideology of our time.

Power Jan 28

The “where’s my elephant?” theory of history

Isn’t that what we’re all asking in our own lives?

Power Jan 21

Roger Scruton helped make things worse

The British philosopher is being widely eulogized as a man of noble mind and generous heart. Hardly.

Power Jan 14

The crucial difference between Bernie Sanders and Jeremy Corbyn

Sanders, blessedly, is capable of being a bit of a dick.

Power Jan 07

“The Gang Fixes 10 Downing Street”

UK political advisor Dominic Cummings has a plan to reimagine the civil service, and it sounds strikingly familiar.

Power Dec 31

The 2010s are Jolyon Maugham, and we are all the fox he beat to death

Why would a once-respected lawyer tweet about beating an animal to death? The answer will not surprise you.

Power Dec 26

The Trevor Bastard Extended Universe is modern art

The very weird, very online project was wrongly targeted by Twitter because of people who didn't get the joke.

Power Dec 17

The UK chose barbarism. Now what?

Labour’s doomed campaign still leaves a passionate network of activists who want more for the country.

Power Dec 11

For the love of God, the UK needs to vote Labour


Power Dec 02

We should absolutely find out the Queen is dead from a guy named Gibbo

It’s the only thing that makes sense as Britain crumbles.

Power Nov 26

I’ll take “Reasons ‘Jeopardy!’ could never work in the UK” for $600

Smart British kids are meant to be taunted relentlessly, not given cash prizes.

Power Nov 19

Godparents, with or without God

Why the Christian tradition is important in a secular world.

Power Nov 12

You can’t do that on British television!

Why some countries have actual rules against say, using a broadcast network as the defacto propaganda arm of one political party.

Power Nov 05

The worship of billionaires has become our shittiest religion

Nobody should have a billion dollars, and those who do are something other than fully human.

Power Oct 29

Why British conservatives are making awful memes

On purpose this time.

Power Oct 22

Bruce Chatwin was the internet before the internet existed

The legacy of the late British writer and journalist shows us how the internet could be — a place where reality is not distorted but enriched by its users.

Power Oct 15

People keep trying to bring back phrenology

Perhaps their moderately sloped brows are driving them to this madness.

Power Oct 08

The cleverness of stupidity

Whether real or feigned, the political and media establishment are clearly benefitting from being very dense.

Power Oct 01

Trump is racist and other things you’re not allowed to say on the BBC

Despite what the network claims, it has never been impartial.

Power Sep 24

So you married a Hegelian

A defense of Reddit’s much-loathed philosophy guy, written by a very nice and normal philosophy guy.

Power Sep 17

Luxury is shit

The future of communism should not involve gold toilets for all.

Power Sep 10

It is perfectly moral to bring children into a shitty world

We will not defeat climate change by having less of a stake in the future.

Power Sep 03

Yaaas the literal Queen

Deepest apologies, but Britain’s withered avatar of unaccountable power and plunder is not a sassy bitch.

Power Aug 27

Much ado about Greta

Why does one Swedish teenager manage to drive so many pundits off the deep end?

Power Aug 20

We the undersigned would like philosophy to remain quite useless

A recent op-ed in the ‘New York Times’ argues, foolishly, that philosophy is in danger of becoming too political.

Power Aug 13

Can I be objective about the beauty of my son?

Traditional aesthetics cannot account for his sweet little face.

Power Aug 06

I thought I would feel hopeful in a crisis

But when my partner had an emergency C-section, I felt something else.

Power Jul 30

Happy birthday Habermas, your philosophy has failed us

How a spat on the occasion of the famous thinker's 90th birthday reveals the inadequacies of political philosophy.

Power Jul 25

Should we abolish the family?

A recent book makes the case for moving beyond biological bonds.

Power Jul 16

Everything happens so much

Our experience of calendar time has come unmoored. We may need to consider an alternative.

Power Jul 09

Nick Kyrgios as religious experience

He is the only tennis player capable of transcending the efficiency of the modern game to show us something more beautiful.

Power Jul 02

Can we abolish time?

An island in Norway wants to cut ties with the clock so residents are free to mow their lawns at 4 a.m.

Power Jun 25

We live in an age of Assholes

The worst people in the world get all the attention, but what can we do about it?

Power Jun 18

Does anyone want to hear a story???

Viral Twitter tales are often bullshit, but being made-up isn’t the worst thing about them.

Power Jun 11

Why every British person you know is talking about ‘Love Island’

The dating reality show is so beloved it’s impossible to avoid.

Power Jun 04

Many are having an extremely normal one

The world is so weird we simply struggle to describe it.

Power May 28

‘Detective Pikachu’ is the first film aimed at millennial parents

What is it telling us about ourselves?

Power May 21

Finally, the nostalgia industry has come for something I love

The ‘Final Fantasy VII’ remake threatens to turn me into one of those awful guys who complains about my childhood being ruined.

Power May 14

Anatomy of the Wife Guy

Not every guy with a wife is a wife guy, and not all wife guys have wives.

Power May 07

The aesthetic case for fake meat

Eating vegan meat substitutes is more than the ethical choice, it’s the delicious one.

May 02

Caster Semenya is what we want all athletes to be: incredibly talented

There is nothing particularly “natural” about sports. Let’s embrace it.

Power Apr 23

We are all trapped in one particular episode of ‘Peep Show’

Even a tragedy like the Notre Dame fire can’t distract us from our own petty bullshit.

Power Apr 16

Thinking about climate means becoming human for the first time

Part three of a three-part series on how philosophy contends with our possible annihilation.

Power Apr 09

How to think against the apocalypse

Part two in a three-part series on how philosophy contends with our possible annihilation.

Power Apr 03

Can we truly think about climate change at all?

Part one of a three-part series on how philosophy contends with our possible annihilation.

Power Mar 26

Give the Nobel Prize in Literature to Dril

He is our best modern poet. He will never log off.

Power Mar 19

We can never speak freely

At most, and with some effort, we can learn to speak well.

Power Mar 12

We are all babies having cheese thrown at us, constantly

Here’s another slice.

Power Mar 05

How do I raise a good son in a world that lets men be so bad?

I just found out my baby is a boy. What a nightmare.

Power Feb 26

Are politicians getting more bizarre?

Why we insist on being ruled by the least human-like human beings on the planet.

Culture Feb 18

Can you ever forgive me for being a member of society?

We all need recognition. But we also deserve a world that is worthy of our recognition.

Power Feb 12

I’ve gone full Apocalypse Dad

My instinct is to prepare for the worst, but maybe the real threat is everything staying precisely the same.

Power Feb 05

The myth of Ted Bundy as a charming guy

Why are we invested in thinking he was so handsome and normal-seeming?

Power Jan 29

The unnatural ethics of AI could be its undoing

Algorithms are so good at racism that it will hopefully become impossible to ignore.

Power Jan 22

How male privilege produces such hapless men

The internet abounds with tales of male incompetence. What’s up with all these morons?

Power Jan 15

Is it hopepunk to have a baby?

Maybe a very cozy-looking baby. If we read it ‘Harry Potter.’

Power Dec 13

Experience: I am in love with this personal essay series

Where else can you learn what it is like to be swallowed by a hippo?

Power Nov 29

If the Big Cow is a lie then to hell with the truth


Power Nov 20

How bad should we feel for burnt-out gifted kids?

Sure, being told you have potential can mess a person up, but don’t trace all your adult shortcomings back to grade school.

Power Oct 23

Why are rich people so weird?

From Business Insider lady to money diarists, the strangest humans on the planet keep telling us about their days.

Power Oct 08

Why everyone wants to speak to the manager

The political disposition behind the meme.

Power Sep 12

Stop blaming postmodernism for the rise of Trump

The president lies a lot. This has nothing to do with Derrida.