Consumerism is evil? Don’t buy it
BBC 2’s Shiny Shiny Bright New Hole In My Heart shows that moral messaging can get in the way of good TV drama.
The battle of Brick Lane
The hotly anticipated demo against the filming of Monica Ali’s novel in east London was in fact a ragbag collection of short-tempered middle-aged men.
Is Bush Blair’s poodle?
The Bush administration is heir to the ‘humanitarian warfare’ masterminded by arch-interventionist Tony Blair.
|Wednesday 2 August 2006|
Israel-Lebanon: the War for Recognition
This is not a traditional clash over territory or influence. It looks more like the continuation of the politics of identity by other means.
A proxy war of a different sort
Pro- and anti-Israel wings of the Western political class are exporting their own 'culture wars' to the Middle East.
|Thursday 3 August 2006|
Smack the show-pony
The feeble hate campaign against 'cheating winker' Cristiano Ronaldo ignores the real issue: England's World Cup squad was crap.
Down with ‘kooky capitalism’
Ben and Jerry's Summer Sundae was a fun day out, but did it have to come with a generous side order of green sanctimonious hectoring?
The prophets of pessimism
Why are doom-mongers like Michel Houellebecq, author of the nihilistic novel-turned-movie Atomised, considered to be so profound?
|Friday 4 August 2006|
Not exactly Central Perk
New York coffee shops might have predictable food and plastic décor, but their warmth and friendliness will be sadly missed.
My verdict on Britain’s libel laws
Read spiked editor Mick Hume's Notebook in The Times (London).
Maybe self-loving does make you blind
Today's narcissistic celebration of masturbation stems from a deep disdain for risk, passion and human relations.
|Monday 7 August 2006|
Beware the New Parochialism
The Blair-Schwarzenegger and Clinton-Livingstone love-ins on tackling climate change summed up the Lilliputian localism of today’s Green lobby.
Who’s happiest: Denmark or Vanuatu?
When two different countries can top two different happiness surveys in the same month, you know there’s something dodgy about happy stats.
Mini-motos: from fad to panic in record time
Why has the UK home secretary declared war on miniature motorbikes? Because it’s summer, the season for silly government initiatives.
|Tuesday 8 August 2006|
Surveying the next generation
Highlights from the spiked/Orange survey ‘Enlightening the Future 2024: Key Challenges for the Next Generation’.
A hairy moment for free speech
Tommy Sheridan’s libel win over the News of the World was no ‘victory’ for the working class. It was a victory for an archaic law over open debate.
Making Muslims into a race apart
In his TV show on British Muslims, Jon Snow was more anthropologist than journalist, trekking to an exotic land to meet apparently peculiar people.
|Wednesday 9 August 2006|
Making a mess of the Tate Modern extension
Herzog and de Meuron's 'pile of boxes' design for the art gallery's new wing shows that architecture is embracing chaos over order.
The UK government’s plan to monitor the number of black and Asian people employed by private companies is an affront to meritocracy, universalism and genuine equality.
|Thursday 10 August 2006|
The truth about ‘animal rights terrorism’
Statistics reveal that it consists of rare and mostly minor incidents carried out by a handful of losers. So why is everyone so obsessed with it?
|Friday 11 August 2006|
When did old-fashioned office politics become bullying?
Read spiked editor Mick Hume's Notebook in The Times (London).
From figure of fun to Montymania
First he was a clown, now he's a superstar: the reaction to Monty Panesar is another example of our manic-depressive relationship with England teams.
Getting off on global warming
A new report labels alarmist reporting about the environment as 'climate porn'. But it takes a missionary position on changing our lifestyles.
Losing the plot
After '10/8', we’re back stumbling around in an atmosphere of confusion, hysteria and cynicism – a familiar experience in the 'war on terror'.
|Monday 14 August 2006|
‘Waaah, it’s all Blair’s fault!’
Making simplistic links between British interventions abroad and alleged terror plots at home is NIMBYism dressed up in anti-war garb.
|Tuesday 15 August 2006|
Teach science for science’s sake
Replacing physics, chemistry and biology with lessons in 'scientific literacy' will make children more wary of science in general.
‘Nasty little breeders’ no more?
Channel 4's Pram-face showed that single mums are now viewed as victims rather than villains. Is that really any better?
An Orwellian occupation
Taking Doublespeak to a new level, the United Nations will send a 15,000-strong force to occupy Lebanon in the name of strengthening it.
|Wednesday 16 August 2006|
Terror: keeping the outrage in perspective
Islamic terrorism is real. But the notion of an Islamic terrorist threat to society is the product of our own insecure imaginations.
|Thursday 17 August 2006|
After 10/8: happy campers at Heathrow?
The delayed passengers put up in makeshift tents following last week’s terror alert are calm, but confused.
What will follow Fidel?
When Castro fell ill there was a fevered debate about what will happen to Cuba when he dies. In fact, much ‘transition’ has already occurred.
Filling a gap
Why some British teens seek a sense of purpose by spending 'gap years' among the world's poor and downtrodden.
|Friday 18 August 2006|
All quiet on the ‘Walthamstan’ front
Read spiked editor Mick Hume's Notebook in The Times.
Taxi for Beckham!
Gillette may still love him, but Becks is no longer 'the best a man can get' on the pitch.
The myth of a united Israel
In their theorising about Israel's war in Lebanon, Western commentators missed an important point: Israel is a fractured and divided society.
Starving kids’ TV of funds - and fun
Government pressure on broadcasters to restrict ads for junk food and promote 'healthy lifestyles' is causing a crisis of creativity in children's programming.
|Monday 21 August 2006|
Always look on the Shi’ite side of life
Religion is all the rage at the Edinburgh Festival this year. But is it all just self-satisfied liberals endlessly reprising The Life of Brian?
|Tuesday 22 August 2006|
The anti-4x4 ad that backfired
Why Greenpeace is red-faced over its short film showing a 4x4 driver being bullied and spat at by fellow workers.
A beastly proposal
The idea that vets should spy on their clients to make sure they aren’t sexually abusing their pets is based on a pretty degraded view of humanity.
Capital: ‘There’s nothing remotely like it’
Francis Wheen's 'biography' of Capital – part of the Books that Shook the World series – reminds us why Marx's classic is so unique.
|Wednesday 23 August 2006|
When did ‘hanging around’ become a social problem?
From the 'Barry Manilow Method' to the screeching Mosquito: bizarre ways the British authorities are trying to keep kids off the streets this summer.
|Thursday 24 August 2006|
From predictions about the death of sport to fears over Muslim alienation: the Pakistan cricket controversy has generated some crazy commentary.
Tribe wanted, reality check needed
Tribewanted.com aims to create a new model 'eco-community' on a Fijian island. It's actually just a time-share deal for thirtysomething narcissists.
Another million Eastern European immigrants? Let them in!
The UK government’s proposed restrictions on immigration from the new EU states are motivated by mean-spirited NIMBYism.
|Friday 25 August 2006|
Who’s afraid of Wal-Mart?
Lurking behind the 'populist' campaign against America's biggest retailer is elite disdain for the people who work and shop there.
Oh Palestine, let us mother you!
Why so many Westerners get an emotional kick from looking at pictures of injured Palestinian kids.
|Tuesday 29 August 2006|
What inspired you?
An overview of the new spiked/Pfizer survey of scientists aged 19 to 93, ranging from new talent to Nobel laureates, on what made them take up science.
|Wednesday 30 August 2006|
I Am Nobody’s Lunch
A song-and-dance show in Edinburgh about contemporary cynicism and mistrust? It might sound weird, but it works.
Getting to the root of ‘homegrown terrorism’
For all the talk of hotbeds of radicalism in Britain, these small, isolated sects are shaped by Western politics and self-loathing.
In Hawaii: insects before astronomy?
An astronomer reports from Mauna Kea, where the construction of star-gazing telescopes has been halted to protect a rare species of bug.
|Thursday 31 August 2006|
Give police snooping into football the elbow
Ben Thatcher’s forearm smash on a Portsmouth opponent might have been brutal, but we don’t need the long arm of the law getting involved.
The policy of disclaiming responsibility
From criticising risk-obsessives to mocking multiculturalism, why are government officials attacking their own most cherished ideas?
Down with the fertility police
Proposals that women who are too fat, too thin or over 40 should be denied IVF are draconian attempts to define what is a ‘good parent’.