Mary Ann Sieghart

Mary Ann Sieghart has been writing about politics since the mid-1980s. After stints at the FT and Today newspaper, she joined The Economist in 1986 as Political Correspondent. In 1988, she moved to become Assistant Editor of The Times, where she spent 19 years, editing the Comment and Arts pages and writing political leaders and columns. She has presented TV programmes such as The Brains Trust and The World This Week and radio programmes such as Profile, The Week in Westminster and Newshour. As well as her Independent column, she also sits on the Council of Tate Modern, is an equity partner in The Browser website and chairs the Social Market Foundation think tank.

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Mary Ann Sieghart: How far right are we going?

If Cameron isn't careful, he will find that Miliband has painted a more coherent picture of the causes of the riots

Mary Ann Sieghart: We must be tough on rioters, but even tougher on the causes of riots

If a conservative is a liberal who's just been mugged, then almost all English city-dwellers are going to feel a lot more right wing now. For we didn't just witness the riots, we felt actively targeted and acutely vulnerable. Many readers will have much worse stories to tell, but a member of my family had his house looted by thugs who beat his door down, a friend was mugged and kicked in the head by a bunch of 20 hoodies, and my daughter – home alone – had to barricade herself into the house as rioters and riot police fought in our local high street.

Mary Ann Sieghart: Why economics and politics don't mix

Walk through the mahogany halls of the historic Hotel Sacher in Vienna, as I did on Saturday, and you can turn into a little salon whose walls are covered in sepia photos of the more celebrated of the Sacher's guests. Tucked away at the bottom is one Rudolf Sieghart, my great-grandfather: bald, stiff-backed, with a resplendent moustache. More notorious than famous by the time he died, he ended up as the Sir Fred Goodwin of his day.

Mary Ann Sieghart: It's economics versus politics

The economics demand as much austerity as can be achieved. But politically that is extremely unpopular

Mary Ann Sieghart: How austerity is changing us

Instead of seeking gratification by going shopping, we are achieving it by finding new ways of saving money

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