The Phileas Club 58 – This and That Tribe

On this episode we talk about:

  • Thalys train attack in France
  • The MERS Virus in Saudi Arabia
  • Immigration and refugees in Sweden
  • And more…

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More info on the show:

  • The hosts are Turki Alballaa (@turkialballa), Wendi Dunford (@wendidunford on Instagram) and Patrick Beja (@NotPatrick)
  • The theme is by Daniel Beja (@misterdanielb), his amazing royalty free music is at
  • Publishing is handled by Florent Berthelot (@aeden_)

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  1. I love love love the Phileas Club. I love the conversations, I love the way you each listen to each other respectfully, and learn from one another. I love the things I learn from the conversations. In this episode, in particular, I loved the ways that differences within a tribe showed the ways that tribes are all so similar. The issues face by Sweden wrt asylum seekers reminded me of the issues we have here (Australia): some for, some against, and the loudest voices are necessarily the majority. The question of science vs religion in Christianity and Islam are the same: some for, some against, the loudest voices are not necessarily the majority. It’s fantastic to hear a not-heated conversation about some of these issues, so helpful to be able to think about things without the intense emotions. Love. It. I wondered if you have among your many friends a practising (as distinct from a cultural) Christian? In any case, did I mention I love this podcast? Thank you so much!

    • Thank you! This is exactly what we try to do, so it’s absolutely heartwarming to hear that it’s working. 🙂
      And I guess i don’t have many practicing Christian friends here in France, but I’m sure some of my friends other countries are. I do have friends who are Christian and do believe in God though, even if they don’t go to church every Sunday; I’m not sure that counts… To be honest, it doesn’t matter to us all that much, as it isn’t part of how we define ourselves so much. I know the community-oriented view of society in the US makes the religious element a lot more important in how people view themselves; I guess here it’s just a much more… “passive” is the right word? a much more passive part of life.

      • I think that’s what I was going for with ‘cultural’ Christians, passive might be another way to express that. I just wondered if, when discussing the religious aspect of things, if that was another voice you could add into an already beautifully diverse mix. And if you can’t, that’s okay.

      • You know, it’s really interesting that I don’t really think of that as a factor in the makeup of the panel… I think it has to do with the fact that it’s not a very important matter in the way we interact here, as I was saying, but it’s something to think about for sure. I’ll keep it in mind, thanks!

  2. Thanks for the Phileas Club. It’s always interesting to hear different voices from vastly different parts of the world, and I’m looking forward to each new episode.

    Regarding the Scandinavian’s attitudes towards one another, there is an awesomic comic by Danish artist Humon, “Scandinavia and the World”:
    As a German, I can’t really vouch for her treatment of the Nordic countries, but her depiction of Germany is usually spot on. 🙂

    • Thanks Heiko! I think my wife might have shown me a comic from that series in the past… I’ll go check it out again! 🙂

  3. This was my first Phileas episode to take in and I loved it. I think you (the 3 of you) have something very good here. A couple of discussion items triggered some things for me. First, Wendy mentioned a crayfish festival. I had no idea Sweden loved crayfish! I’m from South Louisiana and we are the largest producers and consumers of crayfish in USA….if you ever find yourself hungary in Lafayette or New Orleans, you can’t go wrong asking for crayfish. Anyway, the second thing was cultural expressions, we have a saying that says a lot about the people of South Louisiana, it’s “Lâche pas la patate” which means “never give up”. /salut

  4. This was a good episode. Scott’s sister Wendi did a good job.

    Turki’s statement that Islam is more conducive to science is absurd especially in the modern sense. I missed those Muslim moon landings and bringing the internet to the world. Afghanistan who was ruled by an uber reactionary Islamic government was to quote Christopher Hitchens “The only country bombed out of a Stone Age”. I find it a far fetched to infer that because some people believe in creationism in the US that that means all of the religious people do and are anti-science.

    • I think the point was that Islam is not anti science as such, and that there were times when it was a beacon of science when Christianity was very much in the dark ages. If it wasn’t for the Muslim scholars of our middle ages, the wisdom of ancient Greece and Rome would probably have been lost…
      Also, I don’t think “Muslim moon landings” make a lot of sense; not more than “Christian moon landings”, which no one has ever heard of ever, would. The moon landings weren’t “Christian” or from any other religion, as far as I know.

  5. Gordon Bellah Jr says:

    I recently discovered this program and just finished East vs West. Brian did an excellent job representing US status, it seemed well balanced despite any reputation he might have as a “conservative”. I was sad to here Gorbachev so poorly esteemed in Russia but can understand why. I had believed that the economy was so unsustainable that he had the foresight to confront the issue instead of putting it off to deteriorate for a later leader. But I guess that’s not current news anymore. Thanks for your show.

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