We're almost at the end of 2013, so here's our extended special of The View from 22 podcast. We're delighted to bring together the best of The Spectator's family and friends to discuss their highlights of this year and predictions for 2014. This is what they had to say:
Nigel Farage on what Ukip will do next year:
'I haven't entered this as part of a popularity contest. I'm in this to shake the whole thing up. Ukip now has the ability to realign British politics'
Rory Sutherland on the evolution of technology :
'The next great advances will be in psychology. All the technology in the world is no use at all unless it is along the grain of human nature. I think we've made a lot of mistakes there so far.'
Michael Fallon on scrapping the 'green crap':
'We've looked at all the green levies on your bill and produced savings of nearly £50 for next year. We're going to make sure that in future, where there are extra taxes the government puts on top, these are fair, proportionate and they are aimed at helping those most in need.'
Tristram Hunt on Ed Miliband's shift towards socialism:
'I take a different view on Ed's conference speech. It was decried as Marxist but I've long argued it was more Smithian; more Scottish enlightenment, Adam Smith territory. This was about making markets work properly for the consumer and attacking Mercantilism'
Nick Cohen on protecting freedom of speech in Britain:
'I've very pessimistic about it. There's a kind of culture war in Britain, both sides have no limits. It's war in which fundamental principles get trashed. The left is quite happy to see the mass arrests of journalists and wants tabloids closed down...the right is just the same with the BBC.'
Damian Thompson on our relationship with the church:
'I think religion will play an ever diminishing role in public, in Britain, in Europe and in America.'
Jesse Norman on the Tories' prospects next year:
'The facts are conservative and are becoming more conservative. Therefore, the question lies beyond the facts. The real issue is whether you have a tune you can whistle. The Conservative party needs to have something people can become emotionally excited about.'
Janan Ganesh on whether 2013 was the year of Chancellor's recovery:
'You have to remember how low Osborne had sunk by the middle of 2012. Because of the return of growth this year and his ability to strike a few blows on Labour, he has more or less completely convalesced.'
Douglas Murray on the disastrous vote on intervening in Syria:
'The Commons saved the day...it's a very unwise thing to use British or American forces as some kind of stick to occasionally do something insignificant.'
Mark Mason on why you should listen to The Jeremy Vine Show:
'He's become the housewife and nutters' favourite. It's my favourite listening at lunchtime because he and his callers are getting madder and madder...you can't make these people up, but they're out there!'
Isabel Hardman on who to watch in Westminster:
'Conservative backbenchers who are wary of Cameron but don't hate him. He's not their ideal leader, they don't quite trust him and if they don't waver, that's really good sign. There are however big tests in 2014.'
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The View from 22 podcast