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Thursday 8 March 2001 March 2001
Kirk Leech
Dam campaigns
The Narmada dam in India has met with opposition from campaign groups. But as Kirk Leech reports from Gujarat, many of the locals welcome it.

Dr Mark Matfield
The case for animal experiments
Dr Mark Matfield of the Research Defence Society takes a cool look at some facts behind the rhetoric of antivivisection campaigners.

Brendan O’Neill
'Animal research is the only hope for people like me'
Despite hate mail and death threats Andrew Blake of Seriously Ill for Medical Research continues to fight in defence of animal research.

Josie Appleton
Animal extremism - the heart of the matter?
While the Labour government has launched its campaign against 'evil extremists', it has given more than tacit support to the underlying philosophy of animal rights.

Roger Scruton
On foxhunting
The value of hunting as a form of cull is of secondary importance to those who take part in it.

Stuart Derbyshire
A timeline of reaction
Opposition to animal research has a long history - and none of it is glorious.

Ann Furedi, Dr Ellie Lee
Defending abortion - in law and in practice
This spiked-paper tackles the hard arguments against abortion. It puts the case for late abortion and abortion for fetal abnormality, and refutes the claim that abortion is a threat to women's mental and physcial health.

Ann Furedi, Dr Ellie Lee
Abortion is a fact of life
Abortion is accepted by policymakers and by the public as an acceptable means of fertility regulation.

Ann Furedi, Dr Ellie Lee
The case for 'late' abortion
Currently, the interests of the fetus are allowed to take priority over those of the woman. In all abortion, including in the case of late abortion, the interests of the woman should be paramount.

Dr Michael Fitzpatrick
'Amnesty' for dead organs: morbid anatomy
The scandal over human organs retained by hospitals after autopsy illustrates a society whose narcissistic obsession with the living body is paralleled by a morbid preoccupation with dead bodies.

Ann Furedi, Dr Ellie Lee
Abortion for fetal abnormality
Abortion for fetal abnormality does not encourage discrimination. A woman who opts for this kind of abortion is not making a social or political statement about disabled people. She is making a statement about herself; what she feels she can cope with and what she wants.

Ann Furedi, Dr Ellie Lee
Is abortion a health risk?
There is no evidence that abortion poses a risk either to women's mental or physical health.

Phil Mullan
Going for grey
As politicians compete to bribe the grey voting bloc, they reveal the depth of their contempt for the elderly.

Alex Standish
The key to skills
It is education, not skills training, that prepares young people for work.

Frederick Cuthbert
Elevating corpses
The cult of the hospital consultant has been replaced by a cult of the body.

Brendan O’Neill
Me and my vote
Brendan O'Neill quizzes some of the great and the good on their voting intentions at the general election.

Andrew Calcutt
Party politics: it's only rock'n'roll
Expect the British general election to be more like a readers' poll for the New Musical Express than a political contest.

Toby Andrew
Let stem cell research begin
How the UK government squandered two years of potentially life-saving research.

Brendan O’Neill
Dixon of dot com
The Internet Watch Foundation says it 'supports free speech' - so what about the thousands of pages it removes from the web each year?

Stuart Waiton
NSPCC report: a picture of innocence?
The report on 'Child maltreatment in the UK' by a major UK children's charity shows that family life is not the abusive nightmare it is often presented to be. So why won't it challenge society's preoccupation with child abuse?

Joanna Williams
Computers and teachers: a lesson
When education is left to computers, the pupils lose out the most.

Sara Hinchliffe
Who sets the boundaries on sexual behaviour?
Rape has historically been seen as a crime of violence. Now, a UK government consultation proposes a focus on the issue of consent. But how can consent be defined?

Phil Mullan
Demystifying IT
Blinded to both the limitations and the real potential of IT, we risk squandering an opportunity of the century.

Virginia Hume
Food: Executive Relief, March 2001
Easy posh dinners for people who value their time. This feast from Franco Taruschio.

Helene Guldberg
Global warming: Mr Blair's hot air
If the UK prime minister is not scaremongering about global warming, why does he exceed even the worst-case scenario predicted by the IPCC?

Sandy Starr
Defending the indefensible online
The internet is a medium for words and pictures, not deeds. And words and pictures should be allowed free expression even where they appal us.

Mark Ryan
Speaking by formula
When did computers start progamming our language?

Dr Michael Fitzpatrick
ADHD: turning a problem into a disease
Before we drug hyperactive children, shouldn't we determine if they are actually ill?

Ann Oliver
Workplace appraisals: an appraisal
No marks for the dreaded self-assessment process.

Ted Huckapokie
Are you a homosocial?
What do you call a man who likes women in bed, but not in the bar?

Jennie Bristow
Chick Lit to Smith Lit
The worst thing that can happen to young female authors is that they are taken so damn seriously.

Brid Hehir
The rise and rise of CAM
Why have complementary and alternative medicine become so popular - even among doctors?

Munira Mirza
All the table's a stage
From TV chefs to DIY shows, UK lifestyle programmes have moved further and further away from the hobbies they are supposed to be talking about. Why?

Andrew Calcutt
Generation Txt: mixed messages
Why young people can't stop texting - and adults can't stop talking about it.

Tony Gilland
Greenfield cites
Pro-science crusader - or media luvvie? Professor Susan Greenfield talks about the difficulties of doing both.

Ann Furedi
Infectious laws
If it is a crime to transmit HIV to your partner, why not make it an offence to give them chalmydia - or flu?

Sandy Starr
Rebel without a brand
I tried to become a political consumer - and found it took either too much money, or too little consumption.

Helen Searls
An Englishwoman in Washington
'Despite the attention of the world's media, attempted murder in American schools is still extremely rare.'

Ray Crowley
Diary of a first-time non-voter
'I live in the main "younger voters" area of Birmingham - Studentsville - and I have yet to visit a student house whose residents take all their empties down to the bottle bank.'

Sandy Starr
Defending the indefensible online
The internet is a medium for words and pictures, not deeds. And words and pictures should be allowed free expression even where they appal us.

Friday 9 March 2001
Duleep Allirajah
Offside
'I have no nostalgia for the decaying, rain-swept open terraces of the past, but safe standing sounds worse.'

Dolan Cummings
TV UK, 9 March
'A Bradford City fan might be gripped by his team's encounter with Charlton Athletic, but most of us would rather watch The Antiques Roadshow.'

Monday 12 March 2001
Josie Appleton
National life is indefinitely postponed
How Britain, paralysed by fear, is closing itself down.

Tuesday 13 March 2001
Mick Hume
Why not a No Sermonising Day?
As UK No Smoking Day approaches, spiked calls for a No Sermonising Day instead.

Jennie Bristow
The smoking debate
'You don't want to take sides with either contestant in the battle between pro-smokers and the antis. You should just watch out for the referee.'

Brendan O’Neill
Passive smoke gets in their eyes
Second-hand smoke is assumed to be dangerous. But where is the hard evidence?

Dr Michael Fitzpatrick
Addiction addicts
The tendency to see addiction in everything from smoking to shopping is a morbid social symptom.

Patrick West
Craic good, cigarettes bad
Ireland's new anti-smoking zealotry: to quote Father Ted's Father Jack - 'Arse!'

Victor Rortvedt
Beyond California
A non-smoking American couldn't light up if he wanted to.

Dr Michael Fitzpatrick
Epidemiology uncovered
At the root of many contemporary health scares is the tendency to confuse sequence with consequence, and association with causation.

John Brignell
Power cables - what risk?
The current panic over power cables is typical of the contradictory nature of health scares. A risk is either small or it is significant. It cannot be both.

Thursday 15 March 2001
Mick Hume
Things fall apart
'We seem to have lost sight of any distinction between rational measures to cope with an animal disease, and the irrational attempt to put the countryside (if not the entire country) into quarantine.'

Brendan O’Neill
Me and my vote: Fay Weldon and Will Self
Authors Fay Weldon and Will Self think politics has become boring - boring enough to stop them voting?

Josie Appleton
Jet planes and blood clots
A large-scale research project into the assumed link between long-haul flights and deep-vein thrombosis has been announced. But the scare will no doubt continue - whatever the evidence says.

James Heartfield
Culture vultures
How can the UK government present the creative industries as a major money-spinner? Through some creative accounting.

Brendan O’Neill
We're all Irish now
The real O'Neill on St Patrick's Day: 'What is happening on 17 March: a multiethnic karaoke night?'

Josie Appleton
Marcos and his merrie men
Zapatistas: Why Western radicals love the guerrilla who fires off more emails than bullets.

spiked-geist
Minister: precautionary principle has 'got out of hand'
UK minister for the environment Michael Meacher today conceded that, in responding to the foot-and-mouth outbreak, 'the precautionary principle perhaps got out of hand because we did not understand all of the issues'.

Ray Crowley
Diary of a first-time non-voter
'Why not move members of the UK government and shadow cabinet into the brightly painted Big Brother house, and allow us to vote one of them out each week?'

Ann Furedi
Perverse perceptions
There is nothing 'sinister' or 'perverse' about the Gearon photographs at the London Saatchi Gallery. So why is it assumed that we will look at them in that way?

David Nolan
St Patrick's Day, USA
A Dubliner finds his Celtic roots in Washington, DC.

Friday 16 March 2001
Brendan O’Neill
Ireland cancels St Patrick's Day
As the rest of the world goes Celtic for St Patrick's Day, the Emerald Isle cancels celebrations through fear of foot-and-mouth.

Andrew Cox
Welsh wails
A Cardiff-dweller wonders why the Welsh take Anne Robinson so seriously.

Derek Allen
Football avec frontiers
UEFA says it wants to promote footballing harmony. So why is it colluding with passport officials, in branding international stars illegal immigrants?

Duleep Allirajah
Offside
'The crisis of refereeing authority is one of FIFA's own making. The more disciplinary powers referees have been given, the more their authority has been undermined.'

Dolan Cummings
TV UK, 16 March
On the absence of a St Patrick's Day theme night: 'After Friday's extravaganza of charitable tat on BBC1, a whole night of emerald effluent would be too much even for people who like that sort of thing.'

Tuesday 20 March 2001
Kenan Malik
Genes, culture and human freedom
What it is to be human.

Victor Rortvedt
Chocolat: kids' stuff from Miramax
As the race for the Oscars hots up, best picture nominee Chocolat is posing as the independent contender. But is there anything radical about this sickly sweet confection?

Daniel Ben-Ami
Taking stock of technology
How the fixation with technology companies has caused the rise of the world's stockmarkets - and now their fall.

Thursday 22 March 2001
David Dunn
The UK's non-science curriculum
How can values be taught in the school science curriculum, when science is value free?

Mick Hume
An outbreak of anti-election fever
'We are left with a raging national debate over when the general election should be, while the small matter of what that election is actually going to be about passes almost without comment.'

Ray Crowley
Diary of a first-time non-voter
'If politics is about who can create the most entertaining TV, politicians are on to a sure loser. Myleene, Kym, Danny and the rest have already won hands down.'

Josie Appleton
Macedonia: oh no, not NATO
The history of the Balkans over the past decade is a story of outside intervention igniting, intensifying and perpetuating local conflicts.

David Nolan
Abortion: a man's right to choose?
However tough it seems, the decision to have an abortion has to be the pregnant woman's and hers alone.

Josie Appleton
The media: watchdogs of democracy?
Journalists' debate: how can newspapers hold politicians to account, when nobody else does?

Friday 23 March 2001
Brendan O’Neill
Bloke on a rope
'According to the experts - those men in white coats who have replaced men of white cloth - a man's life is one long rollercoaster ride of disease, disorder and death.'

Dolan Cummings
TV UK, 23 March
'David Burke sees interactive TV as part of a sinister plot to "manipulate" viewers and turn us into zombies.'

Duleep Allirajah
Offside
'Trying to cajole Asians to participate in football smacks of cultural engineering.'

Monday 26 March 2001
Frank Furedi
Why consumer activists should pack their bags
It's not about individualism, it's not about power, and it's not about politics. Consumer politics is the opposite to everything it claims to be.

Jennie Bristow
Safe Spice
Who do they think they are?

Jennie Bristow
A spicy read?
Jennie Bristow reviews Geri Halliwell's If Only and Helen Fielding's The Edge of Reason.

Tuesday 27 March 2001
Jennie Bristow
Why the Popstars can't be popstars
'ITV's Popstars made the Spice Girls look like the most original thing since Dylan.'

Sandy Starr
Are you the one in four?
'UK politicians claim that "as many as one in five children who use internet chat rooms are approached by paedophiles". The evidence proves something quite different.'

Dr Michael Fitzpatrick
The Queniborough CJD cluster
The reported link between five cases of variant Creuzfeldt-Jakob disease and contaminated meat in a UK village is based on nothing - except bad science.

Wednesday 28 March 2001
Tony Gilland
Strictly for the birds
Tony Gilland questions the assumption that modern agriculture is threatening farmland birds.

Thursday 29 March 2001
Kirk Leech
On training in India
Cows, eggs and 'no spitting zones'.

Mick Hume
Modern life? It's the best yet
'Attach it to pretty much anything you (don't) like, from scientific research to supermarkets, and the prefix "modern" has become a boo-word, to be pronounced with a sneer.'

Brendan O’Neill
Intensive farming debates
Why is there such opposition to modern farming techniques?

Jennie Bristow
Supermarkets are - super
They stand accused of everything from killing the high street to fuelling the foot-and-mouth crisis. But what have supermarkets done to deserve it - other than providing a large variety of nice, cheap food?

Frank Furedi
Urban prejudices, rural myths
Why we should all stop romanticising the countryside.

Jan Bowman
Organic food: why?
Organic farming is no safer than modern agriculture, and it certainly couldn't feed the world. So why is it so popular - even among European governments?

Stuart Derbyshire
Animal research: a scientist's defence
Medical research is not concerned with the welfare of animals - and nor should it be.

Derek Allen
What rogue referees do well
Football is not just about acts of inspiration - moments of madness are equally important. Technologically literate referees will undermine both.

Helene Guldberg
The great ape debate
Comparing primates to humans makes apes of us all.

Ray Crowley
Diary of a first-time non-voter
'For anybody thinking of voting, the question of how you are going to get to the polling station should be number one on your list of woes.'

Friday 30 March 2001
Dolan Cummings
TV UK, 30 March
'I seem to have a knack of saying the wrong thing when I'm on TV - but then TV debates don't lend themselves to sophistication.'

Duleep Allirajah
Offside
'Stan Collymore, the self-confessed therapy case, had the post-Diana world at his feet. So where did it all go wrong?'

Helen Searls
An Englishwoman in Washington
'Campaign finance reform is popular because it provides a way for politicians to distance themselves from the nasty business of politics.'

Dr Michael Fitzpatrick
Why 'awareness' is bad for your health
'The result of greater public awareness of prostate cancer will be that large numbers of men will be subjected to investigations (and even treatment) that will be of no benefit to them.'


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