This recession is a global ‘mancession’, says Matthew Lynn, with male-dominated industries collapsing and women getting a greater share of new jobs. But if work is turning into a female domain, what are we going to do with all the redundant men?Remember the feminist slogans of the 1970s? Phrases such as ‘A woman needs a man like a fish needs a bicycle’ and ‘Adam and Even’ sounded comic at the time.
As the Coalition forces prepare to pull out, other Brits commit to real ‘nation-building’ — educating the next generation. Mary Wakefield reports from rural AfghanistanSnow melts in the Hindu Kush, trickles through the foothills, sluices across flood plains scattered with pink anemones then runs noisily through Worsaj district down to the village of Qanduz, where it is drowned out by the sound of children shouting, ‘I love you!’ They’re either side of a dirt track, the children, throwing glitter, clapping, waving plastic flowers.
Iain Duncan Smith comes striding into his office with the look of a man who still can’t quite believe his luck. Even the very un-Conservative artwork on the walls of his office can’t dampen his spirits. He explains that it was the choice of his predecessor (‘what was her name? Ed Balls’s wife…’). Yvette Cooper’s choice of paintings, it seems, is not long for this world. ‘I’ll have to get some pictures of battle scenes,’ he says — looking at his aides with a mischievous grin.
Philip Delves Broughton says that Barack Obama has not dealt well with the crisis in the Gulf of Mexico — and his party will pay at the congressional elections in NovemberI suppose £260 million isn’t all that much in the scheme of things. Not when you are used to dealing in billions and trillions. Yet at the very moment when the entire Western world is hitching in its belt, slashing public spending and preaching austerity, work is to begin on the most extensive renovations at the White House in 60 years.
I became a monarchist in the late afternoon of 19 November 2009; a dark and chilly day, damp brown leaves blowing balefully along the gutters, the smell in the air of a hard winter to come. This ended more than 30 years of what I considered principled soft-leftish republicanism; the notion that however practically effective and traditional the royal family might be — all those tourist dollars, plus a sense of national continuity — it was still sort of wrong.
Theo Hobson attends Grace, an alternative Christian service in west London, and finds it arty, irreverent, postmodern — and full of people seeking a new way to worshipI went to church last weekend. Sort of. It was a Saturday evening service run by a group of laypeople in an Anglican church in Ealing. It’s a monthly event called Grace. What sort of people attend? Quite trendy ones. People who are a bit too trendy for normal church.