January 2011

Rob Lyons Tuesday 4 January 2011 comments

Lib-Cons: following New Labour’s diet

Andrew Lansley’s health vouchers scheme exposes the coalition’s view of the masses as unhealthy and a bit thick.

Tim Black Tuesday 4 January 2011 comments

Vince Cable: hoist by his own hype

Cable’s threat to topple the coalition government is in keeping with his cut-off, petit-bourgeois outlook.

Brendan O’Neill Tuesday 4 January 2011 comments

The icy grip of the politics of fear

The snow crisis of December 2010: what a striking snapshot of the chasm that separates the warming-obsessed elite from the rest of us.

Neil Davenport Wednesday 5 January 2011 comments

Kick ‘corporate skills’ out of the academy

When even English Lit students get marks for work experience, you know universities have been colonised by the market.

Nathalie Rothschild Wednesday 5 January 2011 comments

Doing the terrorists’ dirty work for them

Nathalie Rothschild reports from Sweden where lawmakers are exploiting people’s fears to curtail liberty.

Mick Hume Wednesday 5 January 2011 comments

Can the police solve a murder on Facebook?

The media circus surrounding the Joanna Yeates case reveals what can happen when a murder inquiry gets mixed up with a PR campaign.

Patrick Hayes Thursday 6 January 2011 comments

Real politics is not an online exercise

In trying to connect with the public via the web, the Lib-Cons have only exposed how utterly cut-off they are.

Tim Black Thursday 6 January 2011 comments

Australia: flooded by gloomy reporters

For all the disaster porn about a Biblical-style flood, Queenslanders have demonstrated real resilience.

Colin McInnes Thursday 6 January 2011 comments

How humankind was liberated from localism

The eco-worriers promoting a Mao-style return to local energy and food production overlook how destructive ‘local living’ has traditionally been.

Graham Barnfield Friday 7 January 2011 comments

A kind of Eat, Pray, Love for men

Danny Boyle’s 127 Hours combines gorno (that arm-hacking scene) with a tale of spiritual awakening aimed at blokes.

Patrick West Friday 7 January 2011 comments

The joy of wallowing in musical misery

Kicking off his new music column, Patrick West sticks up for the cathartic power of self-pitying songs.

David Bowden Friday 7 January 2011 comments

The mad overanalysis of Downton Abbey

The media need to calm down. People like this period drama because it’s Through the Keyhole with costumes.

Josie Appleton Friday 7 January 2011 comments

Now even clowns are spied on by the state

In modern-day Britain, a man in a comedy suit can’t even blow up balloons for children without first being okayed by the authorities.

Tim Black Monday 10 January 2011 comments

Bad drama is better than message-led drama

Yes, the EastEnders cot-death baby-swap plotline is crass, but we don’t need ‘expert groups’ vetting scripts.

Wendy Kaminer Monday 10 January 2011 comments

A dysfunctional moment in American history

Whatever comes of the blame game around the Arizona shooting, we need a more rational political discourse.

Sean Collins Monday 10 January 2011 comments

Falsely accusing the Tea Party of murder

Liberal commentators’ rush to blame the shooting of Gabrielle Giffords on heated political rhetoric exposes their censoriousness and intolerance.

Nathalie Rothschild Tuesday 11 January 2011 comments

Scrapping ‘libel tourism’ is not enough

Nick Clegg’s proposals are welcome. But to protect free speech we need to gag England’s libel laws completely.

Rob Lyons Tuesday 11 January 2011 comments

Produce more food not fewer people

It is not rising population levels that lead to food-price crises - it is economic underdevelopment.

Frank Furedi Tuesday 11 January 2011 comments

The EU vs Hungary: the clash of the censors

EU officials are only concerned about Hungary’s new media law because it is explicitly moralistic. Brussels prefers technocratic censorship.

Kevin Yuill Wednesday 12 January 2011 comments

The myth of an American ‘gun culture’

Why the constitutional enshrinement of guns as a check on tyranny really terrifies the liberal elite.

David Clements Wednesday 12 January 2011 comments

Abuse and neglect are not the norm

The main problems faced by social workers today are caused by society’s suspicion of the adult-child relationship.

Mick Hume Wednesday 12 January 2011 comments

It’s no surprise to see a police agent go green

The bizarre tale of PC Mark Kennedy reveals some unflattering home truths about both the British state and the eco-protest movement.

Alka Sehgal Cuthbert Thursday 13 January 2011 comments

Let teachers get on with teaching

Politicians need to understand that the sole role of a school ought to be to transmit knowledge to the young.

Ann Furedi Thursday 13 January 2011 comments

Let’s make it easier to take the abortion pill

BPAS’ chief executive explains why she is taking the UK Department of Health to court over early medical abortion.

Brendan O’Neill Thursday 13 January 2011 comments

The definitive guide to modern-day Malthusians

With the human population heading towards seven billion, spiked challenges the miserabilists who say this is a Very Bad Thing.

Duleep Allirajah Friday 14 January 2011 comments

Premature gloating just isn’t cricket

A message to the England cricket team: save the open-top bus parades for when you really achieve something.

David Bowden Friday 14 January 2011 comments

The simple wonder of childbirth

Channel 4’s sweet and soppy One Born Every Minute provides a joyous riposte to the procreation police.

Frank Furedi Friday 14 January 2011 comments

A therapeutic perversion of the ideal of tolerance

Making people feel good about their lifestyle choices is not what Enlightenment thinkers had in mind when they argued for moral autonomy.

Tim Black Monday 17 January 2011 comments

A war in search of a raison d'être.

The revelation that British troops are in Afghanistan simply to ‘keep busy’ exposes the surrealism of a disastrous war.

Patrick Hayes Monday 17 January 2011 comments

Less about saving lives than feeling superior

The UK-based attempt to abolish the death penalty in the US reeks of American Revolution-era condescension.

Mick Hume Monday 17 January 2011 comments

New Labour: the new Lib Dems?

Confusion over the meaning of Labour’s victory in Oldham confirms the need for some new signposts to the muddled UK political map.

Ben Pile Tuesday 18 January 2011 comments

A tedious dollop of eco‑propaganda

Unlike its earlier exhibits, the Science Museum’s new climate-change exhibition neither inspires nor educates.

Ken McLaughlin Tuesday 18 January 2011 comments

The therapist’s couch has replaced the pulpit

A new report on women’s mental health shows that religious groups now talk more about psychology than sinning.

Brendan O’Neill Tuesday 18 January 2011 comments

Tunisians don’t need advice from the Twittering classes

The inspiring uprising springs from people’s aspiration for real freedom, not from Western Wikileakers revealing ‘the truth’ to Africans.

Tim Black Wednesday 19 January 2011 comments

A legal assault on the power of the demos

The problem with the European Court of Human Rights is that it restricts our ability to hold the state to account.

Thierry Baudet Wednesday 19 January 2011 comments

The anti-democratic impulses of the ECHR

The European Court of Human Rights has become a ravening monster overriding the rights of individual states.

Josie Appleton Wednesday 19 January 2011 comments

Spain: the people’s war to stub out conformism

Pinning rebellious tracts to their doors and daring the police to arrest them: behold Spanish bar-owners’ ‘insubmission’ to the smoking ban.

Rob Lyons Thursday 20 January 2011 comments

Steve Jobs’ sickness is none of our business

Just because someone is in the public eye, that doesn’t mean we get to know everything about their private lives.

Nathalie Rothschild Thursday 20 January 2011 comments

The right to go berserk on air

The group campaigning for Rupert Murdoch to sack shrill ‘shock jock’ Glenn Beck is threatening free speech.

Jennie Bristow Thursday 20 January 2011 comments

An open letter to Nick Clegg

You say you want to move away from New Labour’s hectoring of parents. So why all the child-targeted ‘early interventionism’?

Frank Furedi Thursday 20 January 2011 comments

Defending moral autonomy against an army of nudgers

ESSAY: Frank Furedi slams the ‘choice architects’ who bypass public debate in their zealous effort to reshape our minds and bodies.

David Bowden Friday 21 January 2011 comments

British television’s superiority complex

The notion that ol’ Blighty is a hotbed of quality TV is as wrongheaded as the idea that Americans are all philistines.

Duleep Allirajah Friday 21 January 2011 comments

King Kenny has a heavy cross to bear

Dalglish’s return to Liverpool is just the latest in a series of Messianic - and mostly failed - second comings.

Sean Collins Friday 21 January 2011 comments

Who are the real ‘devils’ of the recession?

For all the blame heaped on immoral bankers, it was poor profitability in the productive industries that fed the Wall Street monster.

Rob Lyons Monday 24 January 2011 comments

Now, the therapist is the real king

The King’s Speech rewrites the story of George VI through the prism of today’s therapeutic, ‘damaged goods’ culture.

Tim Black Monday 24 January 2011 comments

Muslims vs ‘slags’: a
clash of civilisations?

The fevered row about Muslim men ‘street grooming’ white girls suggests the political class has taken leave of reality.

Brendan O’Neill Monday 24 January 2011 comments

The EU-surping of democracy in Ireland

Brendan O’Neill reports from Dublin on what has really rocked Irish politics: the elbowing aside of the public by Brussels bureaucrats.

Rob Lyons Tuesday 25 January 2011 comments

Why do greens keep mentioning the war?

We should all welcome The New Home Front: it reveals how nutty and mean-spirited environmentalists really are.

Tim Black Tuesday 25 January 2011 comments

Sometimes, journalists should be outside the law

The liberal media’s anti-Andy Coulson campaign is further empowering the state at the expense of press freedom.

Dr Michael Fitzpatrick Tuesday 25 January 2011 comments

The real lessons of the MMR debacle

It was a widespread mood of anxiety and hostility to reason that allowed an insubstantial figure like Andrew Wakefield to have such an impact.

Duleep Allirajah Wednesday 26 January 2011 comments

A victory for women’s rights? Do me a favour

The sacking of football pundit Andy Gray is a serious blow to the right to express opinions freely in private.

Brendan O’Neill Wednesday 26 January 2011 comments

The Palestine Papers: facts and fiction

Only those who unquestioningly embraced the propaganda of the ‘peace process’ could be shocked by these papers.

Daniel Ben-Ami Wednesday 26 January 2011 comments

Israel and Palestine: more divided than ever

Daniel Ben-Ami reports from the Holy Land on the key achievement of the so-called peace process: the intensified partitioning of Arabs and Jews.

David Bowden Thursday 27 January 2011 comments

10 O'Clock Live: the saviour of satire?

Channel 4’s new show is flawed, but occasionally manages to rise above the usual cynical fare that passes for topical comedy.

Neil Davenport Thursday 27 January 2011 comments

Let’s take a mature attitude to young boozers

Laura Hall, the tabloid’s favourite binge drinker, epitomises society’s incapacity to socialise young adults.

Nathalie Rothschild Thursday 27 January 2011 comments

Being bedded by a cop is not sexual assault

The female activists claiming that they were violated by undercover police are doing women’s lib no favours.

Jon Holbrook Thursday 27 January 2011 comments

The Human Rights Act: a crime against liberty

The current debate about control orders shows how human-rights legislation actually aids the state in its attacks on our freedom.

Johannes Richardt Friday 28 January 2011 comments

Basic income, low aspiration

The idea that the state should give everyone a basic income has seized the imagination of Germany’s middle class and politicians. Their enthusiasm is testament only to the poverty of their ambition.

Tara McCormack Friday 28 January 2011 comments

War is the answer. Now, what was the question?

As Bob Woodward’s inside account of the Obama administration shows, America’s top brass have no real idea what they are fighting for in Afghanistan and beyond.

Dolan Cummings Friday 28 January 2011 comments

A curious plea for a disinterested public

Dan Hind’s clarion call for a return of the spirit of the radical political tradition rooted in English republicanism is compromised by his suspicion towards private interests.

Rob Lyons Friday 28 January 2011 comments

It isn’t the sin of sloth that makes people fat

Gary Taubes’ fascinating new book cuts through the scaremongering about an ‘obesity epidemic’ and searches for more rational explanations as to why we’re getting larger.

Helene Guldberg Friday 28 January 2011 comments

The chasm that separates great apes from humans

Jon Cohen’s new book reminds us that, for all the claims that apes and human beings are ‘98.5 per cent the same’ in terms of genetics, there is still an unfathomable gap between us.

Tim Black Friday 28 January 2011 comments

‘To be free is not to be myself’

Hungarian philosopher Gáspár Miklos Tamás talks to the spiked review of books about how humanity lost the skill of abstract thinking and became mired in identity.

Nancy McDermott Friday 28 January 2011 comments

Who’s afraid of the ‘tiger mother’?

All the non-stop commentary on Amy Chua's new book overlooks one important fact: determined ‘tiger mums’ are a response to the fact that society itself no longer pushes children to succeed.

Mick Hume Friday 28 January 2011 comments

Brighton Rock: still peerless after all these years

A new film version moves Graham Greene’s gangster story from the 1930s to the Swinging Sixties. But Pinkie Brown, anti-hero of Greene’s dark masterwork, does not need ‘updating’.

Patrick Hayes Monday 31 January 2011 comments

Facebook does not make you mentally ill

Some experts now claim that social networking is turning us into a nation of nutters. It’s therapeutic drivel.

Angus Kennedy Monday 31 January 2011 comments

Playing politics with the Holocaust

Holocaust Memorial Day is an opportunity for all sorts of groups and institutions to dress up as morally virtuous.

Brendan O’Neill Monday 31 January 2011 comments

Victory to the Egyptian people!

Everybody seems to agree that Mubarak must go, but the confused character of the revolt means nobody knows what will come after him.