The pro-bicycle brigade: riding over the facts
Cycling in cities ought to be fun, so why are the pro-bike lobby making it sound like a certain-death ride.
Heaney was bad at politics, but great at poetry
Heaney's politics may invite questioning, but his command of language will continue to inspire.
In praise of Famous Seamus, master of language
Few contemporary poets 'did English' with such clarity and simplicity as Heaney.
Stop gloating, Britain – you helped to destroy Syria
The idea that there will be ‘no British intervention in Syria’ is surreal. There already is, and it has proved lethal.
I’m 12 years old and even I can see PSHE is a waste of time
A 12-year-old school pupil on the monumental borefest that is personal, social and health education.
Time to slam the brakes on EU meddling
|Tuesday 3 September 2013|
Last orders for the British boozer
Going to a pub was a way for young people, pints in hand, to learn to behave like adults. No more.
A tax obsession with diminishing returns
Politicians fetishise tax avoidance because they have little clue how to generate wealth.
Debateophobia: a fear of free and frank discussion
Branding one's political opponents as 'phobic' is a sly and illiberal tactic.
Outsourcing moral values to the state
The illiberal bill that nobody loves
|Wednesday 4 September 2013|
It's true, Brits now love ze Germans
Forget Fawlty Towers, it seems the old enemy has become our best friend.
Three cheers for the Mickey MOOCs University?
Massive open online courses, like too many modern universities, can only offer qualifications, not education.
A pox on your ‘public interest’!
The ethics of journalism shouldn’t be dictated by the police, judges - or the Guardian.
Kings of Summer: stealing the throne from the summer blockbusters
This heartfelt and hilarious coming-of-age movie is the perfect remedy to a disappointing summer at the cinema.
School: the point is to learn, not earn
The proposal to value school subjects according to their contribution to people’s future incomes is breathtakingly philistine.
|Thursday 5 September 2013|
The feminists trolling the trolls
The claim of a link between trolling and domestic violence is itself a massive and fact-lite act of 'trolling'.
The fag-end of Irish politics
The idea of a 'tobacco-free Ireland' has little to do with health - it’s a desperate attempt to prop up the country's ailing political class.
Time’s up for this Ruddy technocracy
The Oz electorate should give the Labor Party the kicking it deserves.
Feeling spied on, Julian? You're not alone
|Friday 6 September 2013|
Gareth Bale: it's neoliberalism gone mad!
Spending £86million on one footballer may be bonkers, but it only testifies to the global popularity of football.
A portrait of the artist? Not so much…
Jumping for Joyce fails to get to grips with the great modernist author.
The film bores who can’t see Woody for the trees
A new ‘companion’ to Allen's movies confirms the sterility of film studies.
The CIA is trying to control the weather. Good.
Rebuilding our faith in human ingenuity
Rebuilding the World Trade Center is stirring stuff, but it shouldn’t take tragedy for us to celebrate our mighty skyscrapers.
First the state took their kids away, and then it silenced them
Labor: getting a kicking over carbon
|Monday 9 September 2013|
‘We must take students beyond their everyday lives’
Professor Michael Young on why knowledge must be put centre-stage in schools.
Keep the scourge of scientism out of schools
Why evidence-based teaching methods are a bad idea.
Classical music: where sex sells
Once the preserve of the unfortunate-looking, classical music is suddenly full of stunners.
Face Value: portraits of a dogged America
Bob Dylan revisits past muses in his exhibition of pastel portraits.
|Tuesday 10 September 2013|
Sex selection: what Britain’s abortion law really says
Abortion for reason of fetal sex is not actually illegal.
Cutting a pound of flesh from Shakespeare
Rewriting The Merchant of Venice to ‘tackle its anti-Semitism’ is a very foolish endeavour.
Lobbying for me, but not for thee
The hypocrisy of the liberal critics of the Lobbying Bill.
Club to Catwalk: How fancy dress became high fashion
Twitter hysteria: one direction to avoid
Understanding the Egyptian coup
Middle East commentator Karl Sharro talks to a group of young filmmakers about what happened to the Arab Spring.
|Wednesday 11 September 2013|
Mourning Chile’s coup, ignoring Egypt’s
The fortieth anniversary of the slaying of Allende has exposed some double standards among human-rights groups.
Terrorism: a homegrown fear
The enemy in the ‘war on terror’ was created by a lack of meaning or purpose in the West.
The trial of Michael Le Vell: Salem comes to Britain
This showtrial exposed how irrationally obsessed with ‘evil’ Britain has become.
I wish my teachers would stop micromanaging me
Help! My teachers have become zombies who feel the need to edit or reprimand every playground joke.
Macklemore - the white missionary come to clean up black music
Anti-stuff, pro-gay, old skool - the Seattle rapper clearly sees himself as the antidote to greedy, sexist hip hop.
|Thursday 12 September 2013|
Putting lads’ mags back on the shelves
This week, the Co-op removed lads’ mags from its shops. Russell McCarthy decided to put them back.
From Huhne to Rudd, they’re all mad about Murdoch
Every loser wants to blame the Murdoch press for their failings.
NHS: time to disestablish our ‘national religion’?
If England’s hospitals are as bad as Channel 4 News suggests, why is discussion of NHS reform still political kryptonite?
Blues parties: from outlaws to mainstream
|Friday 13 September 2013|
A bad play built on bad politics
Dennis Kelly’s new play The Ritual Slaughter of Gorge Mastromas is as shallow as the anti-capitalism which inspires it.
Wanna win the World Cup? Get on yer bike
England won’t win the Big One till its young players get first-team action regularly - and are hungry enough to go abroad to get it.
Why all the whining over Blurred Lines?
The hysteria over Robin Thicke’s hit shows PC has colonised every area of life.
A new school that has faith in pupils and teachers
|Monday 16 September 2013|
LS Lowry: a unique painter of modern life
High Speed 2: an impoverished debate
The one thing worse than the UK government’s case for HS2 is the case being made against it.
The dubious gift of human rights
The European Convention on Human Rights is 60 years old this month - but this is no cause for celebration.
The forgotten side to Hillsborough
The focus on what happened after Hillsborough obscures what made it possible in the first place.
You can’t be pro-choice only when you like the choice
Ann Furedi on the dangers of clamping down on ‘sex-selection abortions’.
|Tuesday 17 September 2013|
Boldly going where no manmade thing has gone before
Voyager 1 speaks to humanity’s unquenchable curiosity.
The Great Beauty: a triumph of decadence and depth
Birmingham: the big kids’ library
Modern public libraries are places to hang out and be distracted, not to explore the world of words.
Taking the ‘free’ out of free school meals
What could be a big help to parents is really about taking choices away from them.
|Wednesday 18 September 2013|
Let’s shine a light on these shady family courts
We urgently need to reform these Kafkaesque proceedings.
Leonard Cohen: age cannot wither him
As he enters his 80th year, seeing Cohen live is life-affirming.
|Thursday 19 September 2013|
The boy who starved to death in public
Daniel Pelka’s death raises troubling questions about the state of social solidarity.
R2P: how the West failed to justify intervention
The ‘responsibility to protect’ doctrine is a symbol of the West’s inability to define its post-Cold War role.
Ban the evil of horse riding now!
When will our legislators act to end this senseless equine-related carnage?
Apple: master of the ‘youniverse’
The new iPhones show that Apple still has its eye on the future - and its finger on the pulse of a self-absorbed society.
There’s nothing enlightened about burka-bashing
How sad that the West can only define itself in opposition to a piece of cloth.
Sounds Like London: from Windrush to Wiley
Lloyd Bradley’s new book offers a passionate history of black music in the capital.
If they gave prizes for snobbery…
Let’s be honest: who really cares about the Mercury Prize?
|Friday 20 September 2013|
Laughing at the lower orders
Much hyped gangster comedy Barking In Essex is a car crash of a show built on snobby satire.
Is that good cheating or bad cheating?
British football fans have long had a schizophrenic attitude to gamesmanship.
Germans don’t need to vote green to get green
Germany's Green Party is redundant, thanks to Angela Merkel's eco-conservatism.
The real clash is within civilisations
Twenty years on, Samuel Huntington’s seminal essay remains misunderstood.
InRealLife: a virtual disappointment
A new film is a missed opportunity to challenge the climate of anxiety about our use of the internet.
|Monday 23 September 2013|
Global warming and the chilling of politics
The aim of the IPCC is to freeze political debate.
The Western groups putting Libya in the dock
Why are human-rights organisations arguing that Saif Gaddafi can only receive a fair trial in The Hague?
Identity politics is killing college life
Learning becomes impossible when we split students into racial and gender camps.
Greenpeace: talking out of a polar bear’s arse
A recent Greenpeace protest only demonstrated that environmentalism is not a mass movement.
|Tuesday 24 September 2013|
Should we silence the Student Voice?
Constantly asking students about what should be taught corrodes the authority of lecturers - and knowledge.
When Labour planned to turn the army on the people
Why ‘the people's party’ discussed sending in troops during the banking crisis.
What is humanism? Part two
In the second part of his alternative lecture, Frank Furedi contrasts the robust humanist view of people with the modern obsession with vulnerability.
The Lightning Child: Euripides with a modern edge
This ‘remix’ of The Baccahe may sound like tripe, but in fact it’s an intellectual riot.
|Wednesday 25 September 2013|
‘Being a “socialist” now just means being a nice person’
Podcast: Tom Slater talks to Brendan O'Neill about the Labour conference.
Rush: two lives spent in the fast lane
The couldn’t-make-it-up rivalry between F1 heroes Niki Lauda and James Hunt makes for one of the most entertaining films of the year.
Fashion Beast: striking an awkward pose
Alan Moore’s latest graphic novel is an ill-fitting take on the fashion industry.
|Thursday 26 September 2013|
A ‘Little Englander’ and proud
Ignore the jibes of the pro-intervention crew: it's the Little Englanders and ‘isolationists’ who are the true internationalists.
The councils spitting out bad laws
Why is Waltham Forest fining people for little more than bad manners?
Mummy Merkel, please look after us
The victory of mumsy Merkel speaks to the infantilisation of European politics.
Who’s afraid of a Halloween costume?
The idea that the mentally ill are likely to be violent comes from the government far more than from stores selling fancy dress.
|Friday 27 September 2013|
The downfall of Di Canio
The ex-Sunderland manager may have been a ball-buster, but it was his refusal to honour the dressing-room code of silence that did for him.
How the West destroyed Iraq
The bloody mess created by the occupation of Iraq was built on the West's own weakness and incoherence.
Who are you calling an adolescent?
Tom Slater, 22, slams the extension of adolescence to 25.
Trans activists really need to lighten up
Transsexuals’ histrionic response to every slight only confirms how flimsy their identity is.
The futility of Bono bashing
Religion and Anarchy: stuck in the past
Steven Berkoff’s new production ignores the modern forms of anti-Semitism.
|Monday 30 September 2013|
Grand Theft Auto: best game ever?
A satirical, fun, bonkers masterclass of a videogame: a 12-year-old gives his verdict on GTA V (certificate 18).
In defence of privacy
Anyone who values freedom must resist the assault on private and family life.