This project should have set alarm bells ringing
Get as many Brits as possible to ring bells for the Olympic Games? Has the cultural establishment gone cuckoo?
Intrigue-mongering is the real scandal
Why are anti-Republicans more fascinated by Herman Cain's alleged sexual impropriety than his political ignorance?
The hypocrisy of Occupy Wall Street
By asserting a First Amendment ‘right to occupy’, the occupiers seem to want one rule for themselves and another for everyone else.
|Friday 2 December 2011|
A kitschy homage to Americana
America on a Plate took a refreshingly positive look at two of America’s most demonised totems: roads and food.
Football can’t be reduced to number-crunching
Moneyball shows how statistics helped to change baseball. But maths won’t deliver football silverware.
The IPCC exposed: political to its core
A new book demolishes the neutral, scientific façade of the UN’s climate change body and reveals its real, debate-ending purpose.
|Monday 5 December 2011|
It’s Jeremy Clarkson’s fans they really fear
Clarkson’s comments are considered dangerous because his audience is presumed to be a bunch of thicko automatons.
The rise and rise of intolerant tolerance
ESSAY: Scotland’s elite is trying to fashion a whole new identity built on anti-sectarianism.
Britain vs Iran: the politics of nostalgia
Who’s more deluded: Iranian students who think Britain’s still an imperial threat, or British ministers who fantasise that Iran is EVIL?
|Tuesday 6 December 2011|
Time for an injection of common sense
Groups opposed to modern agriculture are using scare stories to try to have antibiotics banned on farms.
When it comes to abortion, why wait?
Women who choose to terminate a pregnancy have a moral obligation to do it as early as possible.
Getting the rioters to do their dirty work
The Guardian’s study of the August riots is pure advocacy research, designed to harness the power of riotous menace to chattering-class causes.
|Wednesday 7 December 2011|
The long-running drive to give Brussels greater power over EU member states is anti-growth and anti-democratic.
The forgotten history of Pearl Harbor
ESSAY: Japan’s attack on the US 70 years ago was not a surprise, but rather the culmination of imperial rivalry.
Serious journalists ♥ slebs for censorship
Why those who normally abhor celebrity culture are cheering the likes of Hugh Grant and Steve Coogan against the celeb-obsessed tabloids.
|Thursday 8 December 2011|
Who’s in the ‘In Crowd’ these days?
The late US soul singer Dobie Gray provided the theme tune for uppity working-class kids in 1960s Britain.
Tobacco haters, kick your filthy habit
Boston’s ban on e-cigarettes shows what’s really driving the war on smoking: a weird desire to re-engineer our lifestyles.
The latest BS about the Big C
A new British report claiming that nearly half of cancers are caused by our lifestyles should come with a health warning of its own.
|Friday 9 December 2011|
A pig comes to Charlie Brooker’s rescue
If it wasn't for its piggish sex scene, The National Anthem would just be Martin Amis without the flair.
Socrates: the Arthur Scargill of world football
Like the miners fighting Thatcher, the Brazil team of the Eighties was defeated by its own outdated philosophy.
A fixation with inequality, a poverty of understanding
Bankrupt Britain could have been a fascinating snapshot of the UK if only its authors’ prejudices hadn’t got in the way.
|Monday 12 December 2011|
Breastfeeding: an enduring doctrine
ESSAY: When studies of infant feeding become ‘breast is best’ advocacy, it makes for bad research and bad policy.
The green agenda: a slippery slope to inaction
Why are 1,000 newts holding up plans to build SnOasis, the world’s first indoor winter-sports resort?
The European Union has cracked. Good.
You don’t have to be a fan of swivel-eyed Eurosceptic Tories to hope that Cameron’s veto signals a return of public politics.
|Tuesday 13 December 2011|
it’s not dead yet
Green thinkers are plain wrong to claim there are natural limits to how much we can expand our economies.
The truth about
Many of the anti-Murdoch stories of the past year have been based more on rumour than reality.
AIDS and the rise of
the behaviour police
After much self-congratulation amongst safe-sex crusaders on Worlds AIDS Day, Philip Alcabes says their scaremongering was far from a good thing.
|Wednesday 14 December 2011|
The delusions of the climate technocrats
The last people you should trust to save the world are the whiners and bureaucrats gathered in Durban.
Who’s afraid of ‘loose cannons’?
Republican frontrunner Newt Gingrich may be unguarded, but at least we know what he really stands for.
Exposed: the snobbery and intolerance of the EU elite
The chattering classes’ hysterical reaction to David Cameron’s veto of a revised Lisbon Treaty reveals the dark heart of pro-EU sentiment.
|Thursday 15 December 2011|
Benghazi: the battle for democracy resumes
The protests against the transitional government in Libya show the West can’t just hand down democracy from afar.
The SNP’s offensive against free speech
A draconian law passed in Scotland yesterday blurs the distinction between hurtful words and harmful deeds.
Europe united - in denial and myth-making
Almost everything we’ve been told about the ‘historic’ Euro-crisis summit is wrong. Here are five Euro-myths for starters.
|Friday 16 December 2011|
Another Earth: sci-fi mimics reality
Not only has NASA just found the Earth’s ‘twin’, this indie flick also reflects real-life attitudes to exploration of self and space.
England in 88, according to Meadows in 2011
The second follow-up to This is England looks back at the Eighties through the prism of clichés.
Why we all love nutters like ‘Mad Mario’ Balotelli
If there’s one thing that can bring rival football fans together, it’s a player or manager who’s bonkers.
Hitchens vs Hitchens: a clash of civilisations
Following the death of Christopher Hitchens, we republish Brendan O’Neill’s interview with him and his brother Peter from 10 years ago.
|Monday 19 December 2011|
Californian anti-serf dudes, get real
An Oakland start-up has received millions from Google to reduce our ‘slavery footprint’. Is this wise?
More flabby claims about obese children
The anti-obesity industry is now so massive that it has to keep inventing health crises to justify its existence.
Dear Santa, please get rid of the Euro
In the interests of democracy, fraternity and growth, Phil Mullan’s Christmas wish is for the speedy demise of the single European currency.
|Tuesday 20 December 2011|
Merry Christmas! Well, sort of.
America’s un-Christmassy cards show a national inability to share each other's rituals and beliefs with confidence.
The protesters who tried to steal Christmas
The Grinches at Occupy reveal what they really think of the masses they claim to represent: not a lot.
From revolutionary student to Byronic celebrity
Michael Fitzpatrick recalls his first meeting with Christopher Hitchens 40 years ago, when there was more to him than flashy posturing.
|Wednesday 21 December 2011|
Another Christmas, another ‘ethical gift’
Charities urge us to shop till Third World poverty drops, but ‘ethical consumption’ only makes Westerners feel good.
The rioters weren’t poor automatons
Those who have concluded that the August rioters were simply reacting to deprivation are deluding themselves.
Velvet Revolution: no script for a democratic uprising
Playwright-turned-president Vaclav Havel owed his status as anti-Communist rock star more to the West than to the Czech people.
|Thursday 22 December 2011|
Let’s celebrate the search for the ‘God particle’
The attempt to understand the fundamental laws of nature is a project that everyone - not just scientists - is a part of.
and screwed up
Two films about an alcoholic writer and troubled painter suggest we’re more interested in artists’ pain than their art.
On the road
movie - again
An Argentinian take on the well-trodden road-movie genre is hugely uneventful - but it is worth staying till the end.
The most important history lesson of 2011
From the Japanese tsunami to the economic crisis, many believe mankind is ‘dwarfed by phenomena beyond our control’. But we aren’t.
|Friday 23 December 2011|
A fixation with inequality, a poverty of understanding
Bankrupt Britain could have been a fascinating snapshot of the UK today if only its authors’ prejudices hadn’t got in the way.
How everyday life became
a mental-health issue
Historian Ian Dowbiggin talks to Jason Walsh about the long-term psychiatric assault on individual autonomy and its embrace by a state all too happy to concentrate on managing our emotional welfare.
Joan Didion’s blue nights of the soul
A heart-wrenching memoir about the loss of a daughter cuts through the contemporary clichés about ‘bonding’ and ‘attachment’ to get at the raw stuff of parenthood.
Saving medical practice from the tyranny of health
Dr Michael Fitzpatrick talks to James Le Fanu, the one-time scourge of those medical practitioners who blamed lifestyle or pollution for ill health, to find out if he really has made peace with the medical establishment.
Pop history: a poor substitute for real history
While society has become ever more estranged from the great events of the past, music has been on a lazy nostalgia trip of reunions, reissues, recycling and anniversaries.
Alan Partridge: an invitation to sneer
The autobiography of the fictional broadcaster and all-round master of naff is undoubtedly funny, but, like creator Steve Coogan’s recent pronouncements, it is fuelled by large doses of liberal snobbery.
A fresh-faced look at growing old
In Never Say Die, Susan Jacoby elbows aside old prejudices about ageing and the ‘illderly’ and asks instead how society can sensibly cope with having lots of older people.
Blaming all the president’s men
Journalist Ron Suskind's scintillating account of chaos and dissent in Obama's White House would be better if he had shaken off his teenage habit of blaming everything on Wall Street.
|Thursday 29 December 2011|
The cultural highs and lows of the year
spiked contributors offer their choices of the best and worst films, albums, plays and exhibitions of 2011.
Reasons to be fearful? Top 10 panics of 2011
It was a turbulent year across the world, yet petty fearmongers still grabbed their share of the headlines.
The worst 10 assaults on freedom
From bans on songs and leafleting to war against gossipy tabloids, 2011 was a bad year for free speech.
Making sense of a rollercoaster year
Whether we were cheering uprisings or challenging nuclear panic, spiked cut to the chase in 2011.
Bleak midwinter of the economy
Things went from bad to worse for capitalism, yet big questions about the crisis were frozen out of debate.
How protest became a prisoner of the media
Once, radicals used the media to try to spread their ideas. In 2011, the media class used radicals to spread its ideas.
The year when the word ‘progressive’ lost all its meaning
After the events of 2011, radical humanists will have to fight hard to reclaim the p-word.