December 2009

Frank Furedi Tuesday 1 December 2009 comments

Anything ‘sustainable’ is not worth having

Frank Furedi challenges the cult of sustainability and restraint that is growing in response to the economic recession.

Helen Searls Tuesday 1 December 2009 comments

Fighting for the right to mammograms

Why are American women, doctors and politicians outraged over proposals to limit painful and stressful breast screenings?

Valerie Hartwich Tuesday 1 December 2009 comments

‘Professors should not be police informants’

Valerie Hartwich spoke to the angry academics who are taking a stand against stringent new visa rules for foreigners wishing to study in Britain.

Nathalie Rothschild Wednesday 2 December 2009 comments

A place where nobody knows your name

As Britain’s dark, smoky, friendly pubs close down, the anti-pub - the JD Wetherspoon - is taking their place.

Tim Black Wednesday 2 December 2009 comments

The problem is not us. It’s you

John Bercow’s attack on Heat-reading, ‘under-informed’ voters shows that he doesn’t understand the crisis of politics.

Vicky Francis Wednesday 2 December 2009 comments

Dubai’s Sheikhy foundations

A freelance writer in Dubai says snobbery about its wacky buildings is a poor substitute for serious debate about its economy.

Brendan O’Neill Wednesday 2 December 2009 comments

A Sodom and Gomorrah for secular miserabilists

Dubai’s crisis has been cheered by Western observers, for whom the ‘ecocidal’ Gulf state is a symbol of everything rancid about modernity.

Neil Davenport Thursday 3 December 2009 comments

Whatever happened to the class struggle?

There are two things all progressives should demand in this era of recession: more freedom and more prosperity.

Rob Lyons Thursday 3 December 2009 comments

Why animal-free meat is a good idea

As scientists get closer to creating tasty, nutritious in vitro meat, let’s not turn this into another food scare.

Sean Collins Thursday 3 December 2009 comments

A bizarre declaration of war-and-withdrawal

In sending an invading force of 30,000 and admitting the war is unwinnable, Obama’s Afghan policy is as dangerously unhinged as Bush’s was.

Duleep Allirajah Friday 4 December 2009 comments

Arsenal: pretty, but no good in a fight

If Wenger’s men play football the ‘right way’, to cite all those footie pundits, then how come they keep losing big matches?

Tim Black Friday 4 December 2009 comments

A Disgraceful view of mankind

It has high artistic aspirations, but the movie version of Disgrace has a shallow view of both apartheid and humanity.

Dolan Cummings Friday 4 December 2009 comments

‘These rocks are here for me, waiting for the drill’

Free-marketeers idolise Ayn Rand because they far prefer her imaginary, heroic capitalists to the snivelling, mendacious capitalist class of today.

Brendan O’Neill Monday 7 December 2009 comments

Why Climategate won't stop climate-change alarmism

Those UEA scientists indulged in dodgy academic activity, but they did not invent the politics of global warming.

Andrew Orlowski Monday 7 December 2009 comments

Why the Climategate controversy matters…

The leaked emails suggest that Projection and Anecdote are the key planks of the science of global warming.

Frank Furedi Monday 7 December 2009 comments

Treating human beings as little more than carbon

As the Copenhagen summit starts, the rise of eco-Malthusianism shows the anti-human, future-fearing essence of climate-change alarmism.

Nathalie Rothschild Tuesday 8 December 2009 comments

Privacy is not a royal privilege

The queen has no right to stop the press from publishing paparazzi shots of her family or to create no-photo zones.

Tim Black Tuesday 8 December 2009 comments

This is not class war – it’s a schoolyard spat

New Labour’s childish toff-baiting owes more to a deterministic identity politics than to class conflict.

Mick Hume Tuesday 8 December 2009 comments

That’s enough w**k about bankers’ bonuses

A tax on bonuses will not alter the bigger problem of inflated City banks being expected to fill the hole where the economy should be.

Martyn Perks Wednesday 9 December 2009 comments

Why designers should take more risks

Michael Wolff, the designer who irritated Thatcher and helped rebrand Labour, talks about being creative during a recession.

Rob Johnston Wednesday 9 December 2009 comments

Smart meters? A dumb idea

A mini-computer that nags you about your energy use and allows suppliers to remote-control your freezer? No thanks.

Patrick Hayes Wednesday 9 December 2009 comments

If you’re 16, you’re a potential abuser

With 127,000 children added to the vetting database annually, one young volunteer explains why being 16 is not so sweet.

Tim Black Wednesday 9 December 2009 comments

We need honest debate, not a bureaucratic inquiry

We wouldn’t need another bloody inquiry into Iraq if there had been some serious moral and political discussion about the war.

Michele Ledda Thursday 10 December 2009 comments

Banning ‘dangerous’ poems in British schools

An examination board’s ban on Carol Ann Duffy’s ‘Education for Leisure’ is a stab in the back for liberal education.

Maurizio Morabito Thursday 10 December 2009 comments

Same fears, different name?

Maurizio Morabito uncovers a 1974 CIA report showing that the ‘scientific consensus’ then was that the world was cooling.

Rob Lyons Thursday 10 December 2009 comments

Turn the clock back to 1875? No thanks

The crazy, progress-stalling carbon cuts being proposed at Copenhagen just aren’t going to happen – and it’s a good thing too.

Hayley Watson Friday 11 December 2009 comments

How to Twitter a tragedy

SLIDESHOW: Truth-seeking, Viagra ads and bad-taste jokes all played their part in tweets about the Russian nightclub fire.

Rob Lyons Friday 11 December 2009 comments

The sad decline of David Attenborough

How can someone who once commissioned The Ascent of Man now churn out such human-hating parables?

David Bowden Friday 11 December 2009 comments

Sex, violence and
dwarf-tossing...

A punch-up between a semi-naked manager and his star striker is part and parcel of footballers’ Xmas parties.

Chris Snowdon Friday 11 December 2009 comments

The nanny state turns nasty

From smoking bans to sin taxes, Scotland has proved itself a willing victim for the nanny state’s angrier successor: the bully state

Brendan O’Neill Monday 14 December 2009 comments

Children’s literature as primal therapy

Where The Wild Things Are is the perfect kids’ story for our child-centred, adult-doubting, wisdom-lite times.

Wendy Kaminer Monday 14 December 2009 comments

America’s screwed-up attitude to expertise

While so-called experts pore over Tiger Woods’ sex life, candidates for high office play up their ordinariness.

Appleton and Panton Monday 14 December 2009 comments

Still absurd, insulting and authoritarian

Two key campaigners against Britain’s vetting database argue that Ed Balls’ ‘u-turn’ isn’t nearly enough: the vetting regime must be dismantled.

Brendan O’Neill Tuesday 15 December 2009 comments

‘We need a planetary one-child policy’

Malthusianism is so widespread that greens can now openly sing the praises of China’s population authoritarianism.

Patrick Hayes Tuesday 15 December 2009 comments

It’s the end of the world – again

Environmentalists claiming that the Copenhagen summit is ‘the last chance’ to save the planet sound like a broken record.

Frank Furedi Tuesday 15 December 2009 comments

Turning children into Orwellian eco-spies

Frank Furedi recalls being educated through fear in Stalinist Hungary, and is disturbed that the same tactics are now used by environmentalists.

Nathalie Rothschild Wednesday 16 December 2009 comments

Put down the coke or the rainforest gets it

Having lost the war on drugs, the UK police now want to wean young people off cocaine by flagging up its eco-impact.

Tim Black Wednesday 16 December 2009 comments

In defence of the striking trolley dollies

It’s a fitting end to the Year of Surreal Industrial Relations that it has taken BA cabin crew to stand up for workers.

Mick Hume Wednesday 16 December 2009 comments

Which fool ever thought the Iraq War was about WMD?

The most surprising thing about Tony Blair’s ‘revelation’ that he would have deposed Saddam regardless was that so many found it shocking.

James Howell Thursday 17 December 2009 comments

The victory of Greenthink on campus

James Howell thought university life would be filled with junk food, non-conformism and critical thinking. He was wrong.

Dominic Standish Thursday 17 December 2009 comments

Democracy takes a beating in Italy

Italian politicians are taking advantage of the attack on Silvio Berlusconi in Milan to clamp down on liberties.

David Bowden Thursday 17 December 2009 comments

Tiger, why didn’t you save the world?

At least the tabloids only expect Woods to spill the beans. The left bizarrely expects him to ‘challenge capitalism’.

Brendan O’Neill Thursday 17 December 2009 comments

What’s liberal about booing off Johnny Ball?

The jeering of a climate sceptic by supposedly liberal atheists confirms that questioning manmade climate change is the new blasphemy.

Duleep Allirajah Friday 18 December 2009 comments

Treat him as a golfer not as a role model

We should hammer Tiger Woods if he gets caught in a bunker, not for who he bunks up with in his private life.

Patrick West Friday 18 December 2009 comments

Cooped-up kids? Don’t blame it on the box

BBC Four’s Hop, Skip and Jump suggested that risk-aversion is a bigger problem for kids than TV and gangs.

Sean Collins Friday 18 December 2009 comments

The spectacular discovery no one is talking about

One month ago, NASA made one of the most important discoveries of our lifetimes: water on the moon. Why aren’t we more excited about it?

Dominic Lawson Monday 21 December 2009 comments

An insult to humanity

Given humankind’s ingenuity, we would have no trouble adapting to a possible rise in global temperatures.

Philip Hammond Monday 21 December 2009 comments

The search for green meaning

For our confused and cut-off leaders, Copenhagen offered a chance to magic up some historic momentum.

Frank Furedi Monday 21 December 2009 comments

This wasn’t realpolitik.
It was reality-politik

The idea that a PR, celebrity spectacle like Copenhagen could change the world is worse than naive – it’s ludicrous.

Jason Walsh Monday 21 December 2009 comments

Hiding from the court of public opinion

Challenging Ireland’s abortion ban in the European Court of Human Rights is a poor substitute for political debate.

Neil Addison Monday 21 December 2009 comments

Why this ruling should make us cross

The decision of the European Court of Human Rights to ban crucifixes in Italian schools sets a dangerous precedent.

Emily Hill Tuesday 22 December 2009 comments

All hail Frances Bean Cobain

How one celebrity offspring has managed to avoid the trap of trading off her parents' fame.

Neil Davenport Tuesday 22 December 2009 comments

Rage Against The Masses

The chart victory of the preposterous RATM suggests today’s yoof might be the uncoolest generation in history.

Tim Black Tuesday 22 December 2009 comments

A decade of unfreedom

Both our paper rights and our unwritten freedoms were the victims of political GBH in the Noughties.

Nathalie Rothschild Tuesday 22 December 2009 comments

Ten years of fear

From Y2K to the threat of a flu-induced End of Days, a variety of panics went global in the Noughties.

Rob Lyons Tuesday 22 December 2009 comments

Noughtie but nice

There was much to celebrate in this decade: IT and medical breakthroughs and the further erosion of poverty.

Dr Michael Fitzpatrick Tuesday 22 December 2009 comments

A pandemic of fantasy flu

This year’s swine flu panic crowned a decade in which the gap between public-health scaremongering and reality was vast.

Mick Hume Tuesday 22 December 2009 comments

The decade that politics forgot

…or perhaps more accurately, the Noughties was the decade when we forgot about politics.

James Heartfield Wednesday 30 December 2009 comments

Proud to be flesh!

A collection of articles from Mute - an arts/politics journal and website – provides some rich and rewarding insights into the political and cultural trends of the past five years.

Chris Gilligan Wednesday 30 December 2009 comments

The racism that dare not speak its name

By challenging the ‘xeno-racist’ immigration policy and practice of European states, Liz Fekete’s A Suitable Enemy makes a refreshing change from the sanctimony of official anti-racism and its tendency to bash the white working class.

Dan Travis Wednesday 30 December 2009 comments

The moodiness of a long-suffering tennis player

In spite of the headline-seeking, drug-taking confessions, Andre Agassi’s autobiography offers a fascinating insight into the inner life of a sporting great.

Michael Cook Wednesday 30 December 2009 comments

The Malthusians of Christmas past

The flint-hearted, prune-faced, carbon-obsessed bean-counters who want fewer people, especially fewer poor people, should reread A Christmas Carol.

Nathalie Rothschild Wednesday 30 December 2009 comments

The humbling of Philip Roth

With its angst-ridden, haughty prose and embarrassing sex scenes between a has-been actor and a lesbian, Philip Roth’s latest novel is a crime against his own oeuvre.

Rob Lyons Wednesday 30 December 2009 comments

A pictorial paean to England’s Second City

It’s long been derided as a super-dull city where the inhabitants have irritating accents, but Birmingham was the cradle of industry and has been a hotbed of free thought.

Jennie Bristow Wednesday 30 December 2009 comments

It’s not true that children never lie

A provocative new book argues that a combination of suspicion towards adults and officialdom’s belief that children always tell the truth is creating a minefield of abuse accusations in schools.

Brendan O’Neill Wednesday 30 December 2009 comments

Who killed EastEnders?

Garry Bushell’s 1,001 Reasons Why EastEnders is Pony is not only a rollicking read – it also shines a light on the metaphorical castration of working-class soap characters by BBC bigwigs who have never set foot in the EastEnd.

Sean Collins Wednesday 30 December 2009 comments

The inside story of America’s economic ‘firefighters’

Andrew Ross Sorkin entertainingly describes the dithering and panic at the heart of the US financial system as the 2008 banking crisis unfolded, but is too generous to those who allowed it to happen in the first place.

Mick Hume Wednesday 30 December 2009 comments

Why Marlowe is still the chief of detectives

Fifty years after Raymond Chandler died, we need his ‘shop-soiled’ Galahad Philip Marlowe as much as ever to put our mixed-up world to rights.