Gus Carter

Gus Carter

Gus Carter is The Spectator’s deputy features editor.

The paradox of a novelty doughnut

There are moments when you realise the world is a more complicated place than you had previously thought. I had such moment earlier this week when I saw a new doughnut at a concession stand in Hammersmith station: a Krispy Kreme x Pretty Little Thing doughnut. Sure, you could probably get one in a town

Survival plan: is Rishi ready for the rebels?

34 min listen

This week: Survival plan: is Rishi ready for the rebels? Ever since his election, Rishi Sunak has been preparing for this weekend – where the most likely scenario is that dire local election results are slow-released, leaving him at a moment of maximum vulnerability. He has his defences ready against his regicidal party, says Katy

The Xi files: how China spies

38 min listen

This week: The Xi files: China’s global spy network. A Tory parliamentary aide and an academic were arrested this week for allegedly passing ‘prejudicial information’ to China. In his cover piece Nigel Inkster, MI6’s former director of operations and intelligence, explains the nature of this global spy network: hacking, bribery, manhunts for targets and more.

The dangers of political prosecution

31 min listen

This week: the usual targets First: Trump is on trial again – and America is bored rather than scandalised. This is his 91st criminal charge and his supporters see this as politicised prosecution. As an American, Kate Andrews has seen how the law can be used as a political weapon – so why, she asks,

The Starmer supremacy

40 min listen

On the podcast this week: what could achieving a large majority at the next election mean for Labour; how much should parents worry about picky eating; and why are humans fascinated with the apocalypse?  First up: The Starmer supremacy. If the polls are correct, Labour could be on to a record landslide at the next

War on words: is Scotland ready for its new hate crime law?

51 min listen

On the podcast: Scotland’s new hate crime law; the man who could be France’s next PM; and why do directors meddle with Shakespeare?  First up: Scotland is smothering free speech. Scotland is getting a new, modern blasphemy code in the form of the Hate Crime and Public Order (Scotland) Act, which takes effect from 1

Why can police sue for being asked to do their jobs?

I can’t imagine being confronted with the body of someone who has jumped to their death: limbs splayed in ways that shouldn’t be possible, clothes shredded by velocity and tarmac, the bloodied remains of a face. The idea is appalling. So I have every sympathy for the police officers who saw just that at the

Trump II: Back with a Vengeance

47 min listen

On the podcast: what would Trump’s second term look like?  Vengeance is a lifelong theme of Donald Trump’s, writes Freddy Gray in this week’s cover story – and this year’s presidential election could provide his most delectable payback of all. Meanwhile, Kate Andrews writes that Nikki Haley’s campaign is over – and with it went

Why don’t my local police work nights?

Every few weeks, I leave my front door to find a car missing its side window and a pile of glass on the pavement. One morning there were four windowless cars, all in a row; someone had already been out with duct tape and some bin bags in an attempt to keep the rain from

The weirdness of our new migrant god

Funny to think what our taxes go on. I wouldn’t have had ‘the invention of a deity’ on my 2024 government expenditure bingo card, but here we are. The National Maritime Museum, which last year received £20 million from the Department for Culture, Media and Sport, has unveiled a statue of a ‘god-like protector of

Hong Kong’s fading Britishness

Not much of Hong Kong still feels British. There is the odd tube stop – Admiralty, Kennedy Town, Prince Edward – but that’s about it. On the car ride from the airport, I chatted to the driver as we passed under half-built concrete arches covered in green construction cloth. He told me the authorities were

Scattering my father’s ashes in Santiago de Compostela

We are in the holy city of Santiago de Compostela to scatter our father’s ashes. He and my youngest sister had planned to walk the Camino, which finishes here at the resting place of Saint James, to mark the start of her adulthood and the beginning of his retirement. Instead, my two sisters have been

The Greggs delusion

Everything about Greggs is fake. You can smell it as you walk down any British high street. There’s an astringency, a hint that what lingers in those ovens is more than butter, flour, eggs and salt – that their food has been adulterated with something unnatural. What you’re smelling is an approximation of pastry, an

The joy of colleague-cancelling headphones 

I’m writing this with headphones in, sitting at my desk on Old Queen Street. Please don’t tell Debrett’s. Apparently listening to headphones in the office is a huge faux pas, akin to cutting camembert with a fish knife. The company’s etiquette adviser, Liz Wyse, told the Times: ‘If you work in an open-plan office where

The joy of cheese rolling

It’s unnerving being surrounded by a crowd in the woods. You can hear people but only glimpse their limbs or faces through the leaves. It triggers something primordial, similar to the feeling of being watched. Ideally, someone with a big strimmer would have given Cooper’s Hill a good going over before the cheese rolling. But

Niru Ratnam, Gus Carter and Graeme Thomson

20 min listen

This week: Niru Ratnam argues that teachers are putting principles before children (00:59), Gus Carter discusses the curious business of fertility (08:14), and Graeme Thomson reviews Beyonce at Murrayfield Stadium (14:24).  Produced and presented by Oscar Edmondson. 

Ukraine’s next move

39 min listen

This week: In his cover piece, journalist Mark Galeotti asks whether Putin can be outsmarted by Zelensky’s counter-offensive. He is joined by The Spectator’s own Svitlana Morenets to discuss Ukraine’s next move. (01:08) Also this week:  Journalist David Goodhart writes a moving tribute to his friend Jeremy Clarke, The Spectator’s much-missed Low Life columnist who sadly passed away earlier

The curious business of fertility

I’ve always wanted children. Friends sometimes tease me about my broodiness, apparently uncommon among single 29-year-old men. But unless I’ve accidentally knocked someone up in the past few months, I’m going to be an older parent than mine were by the time they had me. I suppose that’s normal. The average age at which couples

Britain is stuck in a fertility trap

Pope Francis wants you to have sex. Or at least he wants Italians to have more sex. The country, he says, is facing a ‘Titanic struggle’ against demographic doom. Last year, the population dropped by 179,000 people – and Italy is projected to lose another five million by 2050.  What’s happening in Italy is, to a