Barometer

Six rivals for the name Isis

30 August 2014 9:00 am

Not in their name The BBC decided to start calling the Islamic terror group Isis by the acronym IS instead.…

Who cleans skyscrapers?

23 August 2014 9:00 am

Tough at the top The clocks on Big Ben were cleaned by abseiling window-cleaners. Some other big cleaning/painting jobs: —…

Lord Gowrie, Mark Simmonds: who had more right to complain?

16 August 2014 9:00 am

Ministerial needs Home Office minister Mark Simmonds resigned, complaining he couldn’t afford to live in London on his junior minister’s…

Hold on to your umbrella, Mr Putin: what the Russians lose without British trade

2 August 2014 9:00 am

Off the shelf How do we boycott Putin? Some things we traded with Russia, by value, between March and May…

Which party has the most MPs’ children in Parliament?

26 July 2014 9:00 am

Commons inheritance Emily Benn, granddaughter of Tony and niece of Hilary, has won the right to stand for Labour in…

What Germans are worst at

19 July 2014 9:00 am

What Germans do worst Some things Germans aren’t very good at: — Making reliable car engines. According to a survey by Warranty Direct…

So are public-sector workers really underpaid?

12 July 2014 9:00 am

Public benefit Public sector unions held a strike over pay. How well are public-sector workers paid compared with their counterparts…

The public sector's daftest prizes

5 July 2014 9:00 am

All must have prizes Paul Pugh, the £104,000-a-year chief executive of the Passport Office, was nominated for ‘leader of the…

Greenpeace's jetsetter isn't the only environmentalist who loves to fly

28 June 2014 9:00 am

Green wings It was revealed that Pascal Husting, Greenpeace’s international programme director, commutes 250 miles by air from his home…

The bits of Magna Carta that David Cameron won’t want taught in schools

21 June 2014 8:00 am

The not-so-great charter David Cameron wants every child to be taught about Magna Carta. Some bits he might want to…

If you thought this World Cup was weird, take a look at Brazil 1950

14 June 2014 8:00 am

Old world Brazil has struggled to get ready for the World Cup, even though it hosted it before, in 1950.…

Is it normal for monarchs to abdicate? Yes!

7 June 2014 9:00 am

Game of thrones The Spanish king, Juan Carlos, announced that he is to abdicate in favour of his son, Prince…

If Alex Salmond is cutting bureaucracy, why does he have so many quangos?

31 May 2014 9:00 am

Escape committees An LSE/Institute for Government report estimated the cost of Scottish independence at £2.7 billion, a sum arrived at…

A Romanian neighbour? Most people wouldn’t even notice

24 May 2014 9:00 am

Parliamentary privilege Some facts and figures about the European Parliament, according to the parliament: — The parliament annually costs €3.10…

Four stories the EU would like the right to have forgotten

17 May 2014 9:00 am

Memory holes The EU wants to introduce a law which would force Google to delete from its searches old information…

When judges go to jail

10 May 2014 9:00 am

Judges in jail Barrister and part-time judge Constance Briscoe was jailed for 16 months for perverting the course of justice…

Are pigeons braver than dogs?

3 May 2014 9:00 am

Animal spirit A labrador blown up with her handler while sniffing for bombs in Afghanistan in 2008 became the 64th…

Runaway runners and other other sporting refugees

19 April 2014 9:00 am

Done a runner Mami Konneh Lahun, a 24-year-old athlete from Sierra Leone, went missing after finishing as the 20th-placed woman…

The rise and fall of the Red Road flats

12 April 2014 9:00 am

Flat pack Some facts about Glasgow’s Red Road Flats, built in 1968, which are to be demolished as part of…

The not-so-great escapes

29 March 2014 9:00 am

Escapology This week marked the 70th anniversary of the Great Escape, when 76 Allied servicemen tunnelled out of Stalag Luft…

MH370 isn't the only flight that's still missing

22 March 2014 9:00 am

Plane vanished Some other planes, besides Flight MH370, which have disappeared without trace: — A Boeing 727 cargo plane that…

Do wars always start in years ending ‘14’?

15 March 2014 9:00 am

Years of war Imaginative souls have tried to compared the situation in Ukraine with that which preceded the first world…

Where to open your brothel: an international comparison

8 March 2014 9:00 am

The best places to open a brothel The Commons all-party group on prostitution has called for a Scandinavian-style law where…

A looter's guide to presidential palaces

1 March 2014 9:00 am

Palace coups The people of Ukraine enjoyed a peek inside President Yanukovych’s palace, complete with petting zoo and collection of…

Barometer: The kamikaze pilot who retired after three missions

15 February 2014 9:00 am

A kamikaze pilot at 80 The Japanese city of Minami-Kyushu was attacked for wanting to add the letters of 1,036…