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New Statesman

Melrose’s purchase of GKN demonstrates capitalism’s fundamental failing

So it is done. Teenager Melrose’s £8bn has bought it 260 years of British engineering excellence once they convinced GKN shareholders their short term ‘buy, improve, sell’ approach would add more value to their investment than the existing management. The perfectly rational and well ...

yesterday 19:32 open_in_new
Inside the lives of the 78 people who died homeless this winter

In early March, the snow lay thick over the windows of Hamid Farahi’s car, obscuring the jumble of blankets, books and bags within. An entire life crammed into the passenger seat of a Peugeot 206.

Amongst the clutter was a prized possession – a letter from the office of Stephen ...

yesterday 19:32 open_in_new
Crumbling Britain: thousands like my elderly aunt suffer as the public realm decays

My mother’s eldest sister has lived in the same modest house in Potter Street, on the edges of Harlow, in Essex, for more than 50 years. Auntie Connie, as I call her, will celebrate her 90th birthday in May and is very much the family matriarch. She is lucid and moral and has a deep sense of ...

yesterday 17:26 open_in_new
Labour should recognise that the best Brexit deal is no Brexit

We stand on the threshold of an exciting week in British politics. It could prove the one that history comes to mark as the beginning of the end of Theresa May as Prime Minister, her hard Tory Brexit and, with them, the Conservative government itself.

May was badly damaged in the ...

yesterday 16:23 open_in_new
The selection of Mandy Richards exposes a longterm problem with how Labour vets candidates

How on earth did Labour select Mandy Richards, a woman who spread conspiracy theories about the assassination of Jo Cox and the Manchester terrorist attack, as its prospective parliamentary candidate in Worcester, a key marginal seat?

That’s the question being asked of the party ...

yesterday 15:20 open_in_new
The Windrush scandal has shown the left how to make the case for immigration

The Windrush scandal has achieved the rare feat of uniting the Labour Party and the Daily Mail in outrage. Indeed, regardless of their stance on immigration, seemingly all now agree that the Home Office’s harassment of long-standing residents was shameful.

There is more than a ...

yesterday 14:17 open_in_new
When I met Shaggy I was star-struck – but with Kylie, I’m in awe

At about 19.26 last Monday evening, on the piazza outside the BBC, I thought I momentarily glimpsed what separates the very famous musician from the musical icon. And it was Kylie Minogue who taught me.

I was presenting The One Show, alongside Alex Jones, on BBC One. Kylie was our ...

yesterday 13:14 open_in_new
Can parliament force a government U-turn on the UK’s customs union membership?

Nice precarious hold on power you’ve got there, Prime Minister. Shame if something happened to it.

Downing Street is insisting that there will not be U-turn on the United Kingdom’s membership of any kind of customs union with the European Union after we leave, as they face a ...

yesterday 11:08 open_in_new
Why do politicians keep making podcasts?

“Rage is the opposite of reason. Discuss!”, Nick Clegg declares jauntily at the start of the first episode of his new podcast, Anger Management. The former Lib Dem leader and deputy prime minister can now be heard on the internet airwaves fortnightly, grilling guests about what he calls ...

yesterday 11:08 open_in_new
The view from Assad’s palace

In all my visits to Damascus I wonder about the view from the presidential palace. It stares down at the city, a series of low-rise buildings about 30 years old. Does Bashar al-Assad have a big window that lets him see right across his capital? What the view from the palace says about the ...

yesterday 11:08 open_in_new
The humanist left must challenge the rise of cyborg socialism

Undiagnosed by the mainstream media and much of the academic community, a major intellectual renewal is underway across the left. It is energetic and tech-savvy, building platforms such as Novara Media. It maintains a radical, rich heritage within the European left, embraces bold ideas, and is ...

yesterday 10:05 open_in_new
It’s OK to celebrate St George’s Day – if you accept Englishness is not exclusively white

St George is making a comeback. He may be obscure, semi-mythological (at least), and most certainly not English, but celebrations of St George’s Day seem to be breaking out in more and more communities. Under Jeremy Corbyn, the Labour party – not known for its focus on England – is ...

yesterday 10:05 open_in_new
Crumbling Britain: thousands like my aunt, 90, forced to take four buses to see a doctor

My mother’s eldest sister has lived in the same modest house in Potter Street, on the edges of Harlow, in Essex, for more than 50 years. Auntie Connie, as I call her, will celebrate her 90th birthday in May and is very much the family matriarch. She is lucid and moral and has a deep sense of ...

yesterday 10:05 open_in_new
Carolyn Harris elected first deputy leader of Welsh Labour

Carolyn Harris, the MP for Swansea East, has been elected as the first deputy leader of Welsh Labour, narrowly defeating Julie Morgan, the Assembly member for Cardiff North and former MP for the Westminster constituency of the same name.

Harris narrowly prevailed with 51.5 per cent of ...

yesterday 09:02 open_in_new
Daniel Alarcón’s new short story collection explores themes of displacement with a surreal eye

Daniel Alarcón was born in Lima. Peru, in 1977, and raised in the United States from the age of three. Part of a new generation of internationally acclaimed writers of Latin American origin (which includes Valeria Luiselli, Alejandro Zambra, Samanta Schweblin and Andrés Neuman among others), ...

2018-04-22 18:14 open_in_new
Hip-hop’s unhappy families: rappers’ tales of brotherhood and betrayal

The best pop music is a combination of individualism and unity. The Beatles, for example, earned lasting success as the sum of four very distinct parts. Few genres manage this as successfully as hip-hop, where bands such as NWA and New York’s A$AP Mob have released group albums and solo ...

2018-04-22 15:05 open_in_new
Prostate cancer research has had a £75m welcome boost. Now let’s treat another killer of men

The opening months of 2018 have seen a flurry of activity in men’s health. In February, figures were published showing that the number of male patients dying annually from prostate cancer – around 12,000 – has overtaken female deaths from breast cancer for the first time. Whether ...

2018-04-22 15:05 open_in_new
Americanisms are not a “corruption”: the false superiority of British English

Having lived in New York for over a year, I’m almost bored of being complimented on my British accent. I imagine people who are extraordinarily attractive might develop a similar nonchalance towards being admired by strangers: it’s nice, but it can also be a minor inconvenience to be ...

2018-04-22 12:59 open_in_new
Trump’s “mission accomplished” boasts confirm the West has no serious strategy for Syria

On 4 April, three days before the latest chemical weapons attack in eastern Ghouta, the presidents of Iran, Turkey and Russia convened in Ankara for a tripartite summit to discuss the future of Syria. The meeting took place a year to the day after Bashar al-Assad’s Syrian regime dropped ...

2018-04-22 10:53 open_in_new
Carwyn Jones to quit as First Minister of Wales

Carwyn Jones has announced that he will stand down as Wales' First Minister in the autumn.

The surprise announcement by the Bridgend AM came at the Welsh Labour party conference in Llandudno, during which he said his exit would give his family, his party, and the country "a fresh ...

2018-04-21 18:05 open_in_new
Classical vintage: tracing the origins of today’s wines to their Roman roots

At the end of February, just before the snow fell and covered Rome with a thick white blanket that had priests merrily throwing snowballs under the colonnades of the Vatican, I was trudging through the Forum looking at the remains of the ancient city. We reached the Elagabalium, the temple ...

2018-04-21 18:05 open_in_new