The magazine Red Pepper have mocked up an image of Jeremy Corbyn in the style of Shepard Fairey's famous 'Hope' poster

Coffee Shots: Jeremy Corbyn, the ‘British Obama’

Ahead of the election, Ed Miliband’s senior advisor David Axelrod was asked if the Labour politician had as much potential… Continue reading

Guardian journalist enjoys wild night on David Cameron’s private jet

David Plane

With the newspapers frequently filled with tales of former public schoolboys misbehaving abroad, Mr S was unsurprised to hear reports that a… Continue reading

Andy Burnham (finally) wins an endorsement


Although Andy Burnham started out as the frontrunner in the Labour leadership race, according to the latest polls he is… Continue reading

The SNP are masters at playing Heads I Win, Tails You Lose

SNP Launch Their Manifesto In Edinburgh

All political parties have their cultish moments but some are more cultish than others. That doesn’t mean all their supporters… Continue reading

Trade unionists are putting themselves on the path to obscurity


Jeremy Corbyn is the trade unions’ favourite candidate for Labour leader. From the more militant folks at Unite to the… Continue reading

The Spectator at war: Debating compulsory service

Cleaning the Commons. Image: Getty

From ‘News of the Week‘, The Spectator, 31 July 1915: The debate on compulsory service in the Commons on Wednesday… Continue reading

Podcast: the Osborne supremacy and why Labour’s grassroots don’t matter


George Osborne reigns supreme over Westminster — how did he end up with all this power? On this week’s View… Continue reading

Poor boys are losing the university battle of the sexes


Something worrying is happening to university access. It’s not what opponents of higher tuition fees predicted, which is that the… Continue reading

Watch: Nigel Farage on why Ukip is still relevant


Nigel Farage emerged from his summer break today to kickstart his party’s No campaign. The Ukip leader hit out at… Continue reading

Andy Burnham: I don’t like biscuits

Shadow Health Secretary Andy Burnham poses for a photograph prior to delivering a State Of The Leadership Race speech at the Royal Armouries Museum on July 28, 2015 in Leeds, England.

The Labour leadership candidates have been canvassing the yummy mummies on Mumsnet and today it was Andy Burnham’s turn. Steerpike was shocked… Continue reading

Karen Danczuk comes to Lord Sewel’s aid: ‘Why are we to judge?’


Yesterday Lembit Opik spoke out in defence of Lord Sewel after the Sun on Sunday published photos of the Labour peer… Continue reading

Another union backs Corbyn as the antidote to a Blairite ‘virus’


Jeremy Corbyn is stormin’ his way through the trade unions affiliated to the Labour party. The Communication Workers’ Union has… Continue reading

George Osborne hires Economist journalist to chair Council of Economic Advisers

Richard Davies of the Economist is set to join the Treasury. Photo: BBC World News.

George Osborne has recruited Richard Davies, The Economist’s economics editor, to replace Rupert Harrison as chair of the Council of Economic Advisers,… Continue reading

Conspiracies, hookers and bombs – welcome to the Odessa Film Festival

Chernobyl's radar station, Duga-3, is the star of Chad Gracia's documentary 'The Russian Woodpecker' about what really happened in Chernobyl in 1986. Photo: Sundance

Odessa, the pearl of the Black Sea, is one of the most charming port cities you can imagine, the centre… Continue reading

Is David Aaronovitch taking the piss out of himself?

Image: Getty

This job is getting harder and harder, because it is no longer possible to parody or satirise the blithe stupidity… Continue reading

Nigel Farage: I wouldn’t describe migrant groups as ‘swarms’

Cross Party Support At Homes For Britain Rally

Nigel Farage briefly grabbed the moral high ground on the Calais migrant crisis this morning. He told the Today programme, rather… Continue reading

The Spectator at war: Time for change

Wartime Politicians

From ‘The Problem of Public Assistance’, The Spectator, 31 July 1915: In one respect big reforms are actually easier in… Continue reading

While Labour panics, the Lib Dems are keeping their cool

Gordon Brown Meets With Vietnamese Prime Minister

After May’s general election, both Labour and the Lib Dems needed a new leader, but the contrast between their leadership… Continue reading

John McTernan: if Corbyn wins the Labour leadership, he should be deposed immediately

John McTernan (L), Director of Political Operatiosn, Prime Minister Tony Blair and author Ian Rankin (R) sit on a train from Barrhead to Kilmarnock, on April 26, 2007 in Scotland.

John McTernan is a Blairite who is not afraid to speak his mind. On this week’s View from 22 podcast,… Continue reading

Unison backs Jeremy Corbyn for Labour leader

Jeremy Corbyn poses for a portrait on July 16, 2015 in London, England

The momentum just keeps building behind Jeremy Corbyn’s campaign for Labour leader. This afternoon, Unison has announced it is backing… Continue reading

Coffee Shots: Nigel Farage caught in the ladies’ loos


Although Ukip is said to have a ‘women problem’ thanks to low ratings from females in comparison to other parties, their… Continue reading

In our global village, we have recreated the intolerance of village life


Poor Walter Palmer – I bet he wished he’d stayed home in Minneapolis and left Cecil the Lion alone, because… Continue reading

Join the revolution to save cricket!

ECB president Giles Clarke and chairman Colin Graves (Photo: Gareth Copley/Getty)

While Aggers, Blowers, Tuffers and the Test Match Special team entertain us from Edgbaston this week, a different sort of cricket commentary is being broadcast live from a sports bar in… Continue reading

Labour stays oddly quiet on the Calais migrant crisis


The second, less well-attended stop for the outrage bus today after Cecil the lion is the situation in Calais. One… Continue reading

Lembit Öpik comes to Lord Sewel’s defence: ‘He can help to clean up Parliament’

Lord Sewel in the House of Lords. From BBC Parliament recording.

Yesterday Lord Sewel stepped down from the Lords after the Sun on Sunday published photos of the former deputy speaker snorting… Continue reading

Nick Clegg turns down Lib Dem job as new spokesmen announced

New Liberal Democrat Party Leader Tim Farron gives a speech as he becomes the new leader of the party at Islington Assembly Hall on July 16, 2015 in London, England.

The Lib Dems have announced their 22 strong ‘spokesperson team’ — or what other parties would call its frontbench. During… Continue reading

Ivan Massow: Was Section 28 the reason the Tories did not pick me for mayor?


Over the weekend, CCHQ selected the four Tory candidates for London mayor who will proceed to an open primary in September.… Continue reading

There’s only one person who can save the Queen’s corgis


The Queen, we learnt earlier this month, has decided not to take on any more corgi pups as, at the… Continue reading

George Osborne: Britain must work with France to build a trade relationship with the EU

George Osborne and French Economy Minister Emmanuel Macron (L) listen to explanations during a visit of the French start-ups incubator and accelerator TheFamily in Paris on July 27, 2015.

George Osborne has revealed the aim of Britain’s EU renegotiation: to move our relationship back towards a trading partnership. The… Continue reading

The Spectator at war: The new standard

Toffs And Toughs

From ‘The New Standard‘, The Spectator, 31 July 1915: Where food and service are concerned we believe there are a… Continue reading

Jeremy Corbyn 20pts ahead in leaked poll — while Cooper heads into second place

Yvette Cooper (R) listens to Jeremy Corbyn during a Labour Party leadership hustings event in Warrington, north west England on July 25, 2015.

Jeremy Corbyn is still on track to be the next Labour leader, according to leaked private polling. Tomorrow’s Daily Mirror… Continue reading

Jeremy Corbyn won’t destroy Labour. But he might yet destroy the country

If you’ve never tried LSD, a Corbyn government would be a fairly decent simulacrum of the drug

Imagine, for a moment, the following scenario. In 2017 Britain votes narrowly to remain within the European Union, despite the… Continue reading

What if Jeremy Corbyn wins?

Jeremy Corbyn poses for a portrait on July 16, 2015 in London, England

A Jeremy Corbyn victory was once a hilarious joke but now it seems possible, even likely according to some. If… Continue reading

Labour: Derek Hatton’s membership application has been rejected


Last night Derek Hatton claimed that he has successfully rejoined the Labour Party 29 years after they expelled him. Hatton — who… Continue reading

What is it with the far-left and violence?

Owen Jones (Photo: Dan Dennison/Getty)

Thanks to Guido Fawkes, I learn that the left-wing author Owen Jones has just appeared at the Sinn Fein summer school… Continue reading



Paul Mason's Postcapitalism is proof that the left is out of ideas

Paul Mason, Economics Editor of the BBC'

The left is always eager to be told that capitalism’s final crisis is upon us – and it is always disappointed

Lesbos: the tourist island where half Greece's migrants land


On a Greek beach, watching migrants’ dinghies arrive from Turkey

Charities are the last bastion of corporate greed


Charities’ fundraising practices are out of control

The Republicans are ready to win – once they’ve dumped Donald Trump

Donald Trump Holds Campaign Rally And Picnic In Iowa

Once the Republicans end their embarrassing summer romance, they’re surprisingly well placed to beat Hillary Clinton

The graveyard where old Glasgow lives on

Look homeward, angel: Glasgow Necropolis

A wet walk in a Glaswegian graveyard might not be your idea of fun, but then you might not have spent the past two hours in the Glasgow Science Centre.… Read more

You can do anything (but you shouldn’t): the brave new world of internet morality


Going online does not make you invisible – as the adulterers who used the hacked site Ashley Madison are discovering


(Photo: Getty)

Whoever wins the Labour leadership, Blairism is at death’s door

The exhausted Labour leadership contest takes a bucket-and-spade holiday next week, with all four candidates agreeing to an uneasy truce… Read more

Charles Moore’s Notes: If peers aren’t to be elected, they should be impossible to get rid of

The fishing port of Honfleur

Obviously when one attends what the papers call ‘cocaine-fuelled orgies’, one expects to find several members of the peerage present,… Read more

Jeremy Corbyn won’t destroy Labour. But he might yet destroy the country


Imagine, for a moment, the following scenario. In 2016 Britain votes narrowly to remain within the European Union, despite the… Read more

‘Not to worry, just a gang killing’: the mantra of the metropolitan middle classes


Another stabbing in my new neighbourhood, not with an axe or with a samurai sword this time, but a machete.… Read more


The refrigerator takes centre stage at a 1920s luncheon party

Cooling is as important to civilisation as making fire — only much harder

Modern civilisation depends on refrigeration — but we have been trying to manufacture cold for at least 4,000 years, says Michael Bywater

We all love butterflies — so why are we wiping them out?

The Clouded Yellow, especially vulnerable to cold, wet weather, is rare in Britain and usually confined to the South Downs and south coast

Last month, at Edinburgh School of Art, I was interested to come across a… Read more

A novel to cure fear of missing out


Who’d be young? Not 25-year-old Tamsin, if her behaviour is anything to go by.… Read more

The gangs of LA are caught in an unending bloody vendetta

A shopping centre is engulfed in flames during the Los Angeles riots, 1992 (Photo: Getty)

Ryan Gattis’s novel All Involved is set in South Central Los Angeles in 1992,… Read more

China’s repressive policy towards its Islamic fringe has badly backfired

Riots occur in Uighur, the muslim capital of Xinjiang (Photo: Getty)

In October 2013, a jeep ploughed through a crowd of pedestrians on the edge… Read more

Camp carnival: Roy Strong’s 80th birthday pageant

Illusions of grandeur: Roy Strong as a Stuart king (Charles I, after Sir Anthony Van Dyck)

For his 75th birthday, Sir Roy Strong gave himself a personal trainer. For his… Read more

Green djinns and a green boy: the best summer reading for children

This year Alice in Wonderland celebrates its 150th anniversary (Photo: Getty

It’s the 150th anniversary of Alice in Wonderland — cue an explosion of editions… Read more

The story of Sikkim’s last king and queen reads like a fairy tale gone wrong

Rabdentse, near Pelling, the ruined former capital of Sikkim, with Mount Kanchenjunga in the distance

Sikkim was a Himalayan kingdom a third of the size of Wales squeezed between… Read more


Fringe rubbish: Company Non Nova’s ‘L’Apres-Midi d’un Foehn’, a highlight of 2013

Why are symphony orchestras expected to survive indefinitely?

After countless hours of secret discussion the successor to Simon Rattle was announced as Krill Petrenko (Photo: Getty)

Watching the Berlin Philharmonic going into conclave to choose a successor to Simon Rattle — after countless hours of secret… Read more

Whole worlds are conjured up in a few strokes: Watercolour at the Fitzwilliam Museum reviewed

Turner's 'Shakespeare Cliff, Dover' (c.1825)

I learnt to splash about in watercolour at my grandmother’s knee. Or rather, sitting beside her crouched over a pad… Read more

You can feel as if you’re in a colony of rabbits: Matthew Bourne’s Car Man reviewed

The Car Man (Photo: Bill Cooper)

Hot, languorous, sizzling… I was thinking what an ideal show Matthew Bourne’s noir comedy is to watch on a summer’s… Read more

Startling and sublime - even the candles got a round of applause: Glyndebourne’s Saul reviewed

An abundance of spectacle: Iestyn Davies as David, with Sophie Bevan as Michal

Caius Gabriel Cibber’s statues of ‘Melancholy’ and ‘Raving Madness’, their eyes staring blindly into the void, petrified in torment, once… Read more

Bohemian conformity can be just as suffocating as any other type: BBC1’s Life in Squares reviewed

Life in Squares, BBC2

On all those comic lists of the world’s shortest books (Great Italian War Heroes, My Hunt for the Real Killers,… Read more

Turn this play into a film and it’ll win Oscars – Hollywood can’t resist a posh Brit battling disability

Shakespeare's Richard II (Photo: Johan Persson)

God, what a title. The Gathered Leaves. It sounds like a tremulous weepie about grief and endurance with a closing… Read more

Fashion tips - and replacement hips - from a nonagenarian style icon: Iris reviewed

You can’t keep your eyes off Iris

Iris is a documentary portrait of Iris Apfel, the nonagenarian New York fashion icon. Nope, me neither, but that’s irrelevant,… Read more


"After you" (Photo: Getty)

Manners matter, even at an orgy

We all agree that a world without manners would make this a pretty grim place to live. Offensive informality is… Read more

My glimpse into the brotherhood of bouncers


After Trev had mugged the mugger in the toilet we moved quickly on to another club. The Double O is… Read more

I don’t do WhatsApp, and that’s final

(Photo: Getty)

‘No, I do not do WhatsApp.’ That’s pretty much all I ever seem to say to people nowadays. They ask… Read more

My role in saving The Spectator


I was wondering what to write about this week when I suddenly realised that exactly 40 years ago this Saturday… Read more



Imagine going to a golf tournament and finding yourself competing against Rory McIlroy; or a tennis match and facing Roger… Read more