Latest News Headlines UK

What would Christopher Hitchens do?

An hour devoted to Christopher Hitchens (13 April, 8pm), broadcast in the week of both Julian Assange’s arrest and the launch of Nigel Farage’s new party, made me wonder (for the millionth time) what Hitchens might say about this era of wannabe demagogues and rotters. The era of social ...

yesterday 12:56 open_in_new
Living your best life

In the title essay of her 1991 collection, Good Boys and Dead Girls, the American novelist Mary Gordon analyses a recurrent trope in American fiction – “the healthy male animal, the running boy”, the male hero whose poignant search for absolute self-determination is celebrated, despite ...

yesterday 11:53 open_in_new
Brace yourself for a Remain recession

Britain is staying in the EU until at least October – maybe forever. That spells economic disaster.

Brexit has been delayed. Whether we end up actually leaving at the end of October, as recently agreed, is anyone’s guess. It is hard to see how any Withdrawal Agreement will ever be ...

yesterday 10:56 open_in_new
The trade in stolen art

Art theft is thought to be the third-most-lucrative criminal enterprise in the world after drugs and arms dealing. And London is at the heart of it. Simon Wilson reports.

On some estimates, art theft is ranked the third-highest-grossing criminal enterprise globally (after drugs and arms ...

2019-04-20 19:05 open_in_new
“All the promise of Northern Ireland’s post-conflict generation”: a tribute to Lyra McKee

At the age of just 29, Lyra McKee was an accomplished and respected investigative journalist. Her reporting tackled the difficult subjects of post-conflict Northern Ireland with a sharp intelligence and concise, compelling writing. She forged a reputation for forensic interrogation of issues, ...

2019-04-19 15:41 open_in_new
“I look like Uncle Fester”: the second life of Shaun Ryder

You can’t help but wonder what it says about someone’s psyche when they tell a stranger, within seconds of meeting them, that they currently have no pubes. A month ago Shaun Ryder had his regular testosterone injections for his underactive thyroid, and for some reason all his hair fell ...

2019-04-19 15:41 open_in_new
Emerging markets bounce back

Last year emerging market stocks fell by nearly a quarter. But in 2019 it has been a different story. The benchmark MSCI Emerging Markets Index has gained 13%. Chalk it up to “a new liquidity environment”, say Will Denyer and Udith Sikand of Gavekal Research.

“Tighter US dollar ...

2019-04-19 13:41 open_in_new
The People’s Vote shows you should fight for what you believe, not what seems possible

I pity the A-level politics student who, years from now, will be required to explain under exam conditions how Brexit came off the rails. Still, I reckon they could squeeze a few marks out of the dementia tax fiasco. If the Tories hadn’t botched their manifesto launch in 2017, we probably ...

2019-04-19 08:20 open_in_new
Hay, tamarind and a walk in the woods: how to identify truly great chocolate

Columbus may not have “discovered” the Americas, but capturing a Mayan trading canoe full of cocoa beans in 1502 nearly made him the first European to try chocolate – if only he hadn’t mistaken its cargo for almonds. Even later colonists, who recognised the value of cocoa to indigenous ...

2019-04-19 08:20 open_in_new
The agony and the ecstasy of the Mueller report

The Mueller report is finally in the public eye – or at least, most of it is – and it has turned Twitter into a parody of Talmudic scholarship. Journalists, academics, trolls and everyone else spent the day trading references to it, chapter and verse. At just under 450 pages, the report is ...

2019-04-19 03:05 open_in_new
Five ways Trump’s attorney-general misled the public about the Mueller Report

The way in which Attorney General William Barr – a Trump appointee who has previously criticised Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation into Russian election interference – publicly characterised the report’s findings differs markedly from the actual content of the report, ...

2019-04-18 21:50 open_in_new
The science behind the human urge to tell stories

Although it has been more than 60 years since Ernst Gombrich delivered his Mellon lectures on art and illusion – the title of his subsequent bestselling book – the application of empirical thinking to works of culture or creativity is still considered a minority interest, even a kind of ...

2019-04-18 18:41 open_in_new
How the Irish border was made and maintained

Diarmaid Ferriter’s book examines the factors responsible for the creation and maintenance of Ireland’s border and does so in succinct and engaging style. Step back and admire the first sentence: “The island of Ireland was partitioned in 1920, partly due to a combination of British ...

2019-04-18 18:41 open_in_new
Poly Styrene's voice went through me like a stiletto – and she woke me up

I’m in the Rough Trade shop, surrounded by racks of vinyl and posters of alternative bands. Tessa Pollitt from the Slits is DJ-ing. Loud, apocalyptic, dread-heavy reggae thunders through the sound system. Over there is a young woman who looks a lot like Poly Styrene.

This isn’t ...

2019-04-18 18:41 open_in_new
England’s new enclosures: why questions of land ownership are entering the political mainstream

In a famous sitting of the House of Lords, Charles Wood, a former Chancellor of the Exchequer, decried the “statements made in certain newspapers, and at some public meetings, respecting the wonderfully small number of landed proprietors in this country”.

The year was 1872, but ...

2019-04-18 18:41 open_in_new
Jews and the money myth

I don’t recall ever meeting a monied Jew when I was growing up in Manchester. We certainly didn’t know any. A few comfortable ones, maybe – but the rest of us worked hard to make ends meet, some improving as the country itself became more prosperous, others just getting by. The two big ...

2019-04-18 18:41 open_in_new
Terry Hall Q&A: “I'm happy to have reached 60. It's really no different to 20”

Terry Hall was born in 1959 in Coventry. Having left school by the age of 15, he became an active member of the Coventry music scene. He is best known as the lead singer of the Specials. What’s your earliest memory?

When I was six or seven I spent the day playing in a quarry ...

2019-04-18 18:41 open_in_new
Labour has dominated Wales for a century. But Plaid Cymru’s new leader has his rivals worried

When Adam Price was first elected as Plaid Cymru’s MP for Carmarthen East and Dinefwr in 2001, he made his name as one of the toughest critics of Tony Blair in the House of Commons. In 2002, he accused the then prime minister of undue proximity to the steel magnate and Labour donor Lakshmi ...

2019-04-18 17:38 open_in_new
In Sudan, President Bashir is gone – but the shadow of his government remains

It has been almost a week since Omar al Bashir was deposed. Despite euphoria, Sudan’s political situation still hangs in the balance. It's difficult to encapsulate or trace how this moment finally crystallised, but there was both a long and short lead up to the April revolution.

The ...

2019-04-18 17:38 open_in_new
What we’re looking out for in the redacted Mueller Report

The Justice Department has announced that the Attorney General William Barr will release a redacted version of Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s report into Russian election interference on Thursday. It’s still very unclear how much of the report we’ll actually get to read, or frankly, ...

2019-04-18 17:38 open_in_new
Labour MPs to urge Corbyn to drop second referendum demand

Labour MPs opposed to a second referendum are canvassing support from colleagues in a bid to convince Jeremy Corbyn to agree a Brexit deal with the government without a new poll attached, the New Statesman has learned.

In a sign of continuing divisions within the PLP, Stephen Kinnock ...

2019-04-18 17:38 open_in_new