Matthew Norman

Press Awards Columnist of the Year 2008, the political commentator Matthew Norman also writes The Independent’s media diary.

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The Labour Party is heading for defeat

Why Labour is going to pay the “British Nate Silver” almost as handsomely as Ukip did

General elections are now won far less by ideas than by algorithms

Nigel Farage has urged supporters to buy Mike Read's Ukip Calypso song and push it up to the No 1 spot

Mike Read’s Ukip calypso is mesmerisingly atrocious — but it's not racist

If it seems a peculiar musical form for a pre-2014 election campaign anthem, well, isn’t that the central point about Ukip?

Sol Campbell near his home in Chelsea

Sol Campbell's transfer to the Tories could be what the Conservatives need to defend millionaires from the dreaded ‘mansion tax’

Campbell is following a venerable tradition of sporting heroes turned politicians

The Prime Minister insisted he wanted the debates to happen, but he argued that it was unfair to include Nigel Farage at the expense of the Green Party

Sorry Dave — TV debates might be scary but so is being Prime Minister, so just get on with it

However wounding the encounters might be, Cameron will only make things worse if he tries to avoid them

Alan Johnson is set for a frontline role in the next general election

Alan Johnson’s lack of leadership ambition is inexcusable

There is nothing charming about a gifted, hugely popular politican preferring the sidelines

Former England batsman Kevin Pietersen

Keane and Pietersen reveal the ego-fuelled fight for truth in sport

Neither are able to understand a simple lesson — a genius will get away with being a seething cauldron of egomania only for as long as the genius endures

Jeremy Clarkson has been escorted out of Argentina along with the rest of the Top Gear cast and crew after angering locals with a Falklands War number plate

Divorce for Freud and Murdoch, a brush with death for Clarkson – what kind of curse has befallen the Chipping Norton set?

Do you believe in coincidence? I wouldn’t ordinarily begin with a metaphysical inquiry, but after an utterly calamitous weekend for the Chipping Norton Set there seems no escaping it.

Norovirus the food poisoning bug that causes violent stomach flu

A flu pandemic could decide next year’s election

If anything is to break the four-party politics deadlock, it could well be the NHS.

Mark Reckless, a Tory MP, has announced he is defecting to Ukip

Could Brooks Newmark and Mark Reckless have timed things any better?

Ed Miliband can breathe easier than he deserves to this week

Chuka Umunna was elected MP for Streatham in 2010

Could flirty Chuka Umunna be worth a punt for Labour’s top job?

We might finally be warming to the man known as “the British Obama”

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Isis hostage crisis: The prisoner swap has only one purpose for the militants - recognition its Islamic State exists and that foreign nations acknowledge its power

Isis hostage crisis

The prisoner swap has only one purpose for the militants - recognition its Islamic State exists and that foreign nations acknowledge its power, says Robert Fisk
Missing salvage expert who found $50m of sunken treasure before disappearing, tracked down at last

The runaway buccaneers and the ship full of gold

Salvage expert Tommy Thompson found sunken treasure worth millions. Then he vanished... until now
Homeless Veterans appeal: ‘If you’re hard on the world you are hard on yourself’

Homeless Veterans appeal: ‘If you’re hard on the world you are hard on yourself’

Maverick artist Grayson Perry backs our campaign
Assisted Dying Bill: I want to be able to decide about my own death - I want to have control of my life

Assisted Dying Bill: 'I want control of my life'

This week the Assisted Dying Bill is debated in the Lords. Virginia Ironside, who has already made plans for her own self-deliverance, argues that it's time we allowed people a humane, compassionate death
Move over, kale - cabbage is the new rising star

Cabbage is king again

Sophie Morris banishes thoughts of soggy school dinners and turns over a new leaf
11 best winter skin treats

Give your moisturiser a helping hand: 11 best winter skin treats

Get an extra boost of nourishment from one of these hard-working products
Paul Scholes column: The more Jose Mourinho attempts to influence match officials, the more they are likely to ignore him

Paul Scholes column

The more Jose Mourinho attempts to influence match officials, the more they are likely to ignore him
Frank Warren column: No cigar, but pots of money: here come the Cubans

Frank Warren's Ringside

No cigar, but pots of money: here come the Cubans
Isis hostage crisis: Militant group stands strong as its numerous enemies fail to find a common plan to defeat it

Isis stands strong as its numerous enemies fail to find a common plan to defeat it

The jihadis are being squeezed militarily and economically, but there is no sign of an implosion, says Patrick Cockburn
Virtual reality thrusts viewers into the frontline of global events - and puts film-goers at the heart of the action

Virtual reality: Seeing is believing

Virtual reality thrusts viewers into the frontline of global events - and puts film-goers at the heart of the action
Homeless Veterans appeal: MP says Coalition ‘not doing enough’

Homeless Veterans appeal

MP says Coalition ‘not doing enough’ to help
Larry David, Steve Coogan and other comedians share stories of depression in new documentary

Comedians share stories of depression

The director of the new documentary, Kevin Pollak, tells Jessica Barrett how he got them to talk
Has The Archers lost the plot with it's spicy storylines?

Has The Archers lost the plot?

A growing number of listeners are voicing their discontent over the rural soap's spicy storylines; so loudly that even the BBC's director-general seems worried, says Simon Kelner
English Heritage adds 14 post-war office buildings to its protected lists

14 office buildings added to protected lists

Christopher Beanland explores the underrated appeal of these palaces of pen-pushing
Human skull discovery in Israel proves humans lived side-by-side with Neanderthals

Human skull discovery in Israel proves humans lived side-by-side with Neanderthals

Scientists unearthed the cranial fragments from Manot Cave in West Galilee