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Saturday, 26 January 2013

  • Editorial: A liberal gamble too far
    Sunday, 27 January 2013

    For most of those who indulge, betting and alcohol are a source of pleasure. For some, the intensity of the desire to escape poverty and unhappiness, either by winning lots of money or by drink-induced oblivion, is less cheerful, but not a matter of ...

  • We can help poorer countries by tackling tax evasion and avoidance
    Sunday, 27 January 2013

    By 2015, the UK will have reached 20 million pregnant women and children under the age of five with nutrition programmes and ensured another 4 million people have enough food throughout the year.But, with nearly a billion people around the world stil...

  • Political tinkering is the enemy of education
    Sunday, 27 January 2013

    The researchers at Bristol University began with this simple thought. Suppose you are choosing a school for your child from next September. The exam results which should really concern you are not this year's but the ones which will come in 2018 when...

  • If you want the truth during a war, don't ask a pundit
    Sunday, 27 January 2013

    The easiest way for television to improve coverage is to employ better-informed experts with some real claim to expertise. CNN has good correspondents, but I stopped watching it a few years ago because of the wretched quality of so many of their comm...

  • Shirker or striver? Most of us are neither
    Sunday, 27 January 2013

    The idea that anyone holding down paid employment must automatically regard themselves as a board director in embryo arrived in the UK in the years after the First World War. Its origins, most social historians would probably agree, lay in the gall...

  • Letters to the editor: Why not just listen to the music?
    Saturday, 26 January 2013

    The money behind climate denialThe views of the climate change denial lobby have always seemed to me to fly in the face of the overwhelming strength of the scientific evidence so far presented. But the persistence of their arguments has sometimes led...

  • Editorial: Mr Miliband can afford to be bolder on Europe
    Saturday, 26 January 2013

    As far as is possible in a fast-moving situation, Labour has a policy on Europe and referendums that is sensible and fairly principled. Yet the presentation of its position since Mr Cameron's speech has been shambolic. At Prime Minister's Questions,...

  • An open letter to Nick Clegg on the matter of his children possibly being educated privately
    Sunday, 27 January 2013

    Was this part of the Coalition agreement? That not only do you have to vote for all the Conservatives policies, but you have to send your kids to the same schools as them as well? Perhaps you think it is different for your family with you being a maj...

  • Adam Afriyie? Good luck to him. He'll need it
    Sunday, 27 January 2013

    Whether the impatient MP for Windsor has been planning to challenge David Cameron before the election, or preparing to run only if the PM fails to win a majority in 2015, slightly depends on whether you read The Sunday Times or Mail on Sunday yesterd...

  • Mary Berry goes all contrary with a simple recipe: take one part ignorance, add poison, and stir well
    Sunday, 27 January 2013

    But now, suddenly, we discover that the fragrant lady of the cakes has a bitter centre, some pretty poisonous views, all seemingly arrived at without the burdensome reading of serious texts or heeding of authoritative voices.Where to start?In a newsp...

  • What my generation can learn from the Holocaust
    Sunday, 27 January 2013

    It’s a spookily quiet place now, with trees growing from the tracks; difficult to imagine wailing children being dragged into overcrowded trains on a journey lasting days without food or water, on their way to be remorselessly, bureaucratically murde...

  • From Algeria, a lesson in how to bypass democracy
    Sunday, 27 January 2013

    Living in Switzerland, Mourad encouraged the Swiss to question Khaled Nezzar, one of the top generals who overthrew the Benjadid government in 1992, cancelled elections. A civil war with Islamists followed the coup, in which Algerian goons tortured a...

  • George Osborne is destined to be remembered as the most inept Chancellor in British history
    Sunday, 27 January 2013

    This may have satisfied his Eurosceptic MPs, but was disastrous in economic terms. Any foreign firm considering setting up business in Britain as a gateway to Europe will inevitably be having second thoughts. The speech was clearly bad for growth and...

  • A victim of man's methods - and, quite possibly, British badgers - the humble hedgehog is becoming an engdangered species. Here's what you can do
    Sunday, 27 January 2013

    There are various points in our life at which we notice we are getting older - first it's the necessity to wear glasses, then it's the fact that we can't remember where we've left our glasses, and then we reach the stage when we don't even know that ...

  • Barack Obama says goodbye to David Plouffe
    New York Times Sunday, 27 January 2013

    This morning's New York Times reports that Plouffe (pronounced Pluff) is leaving to spend more time with his kids and do more consultancy - what else?! - in the private sector, where presumably he'll be able to charge gazillions for insights into how...

  • IoS letters, emails & online postings (27 January 2013)
    Sunday, 27 January 2013

    I find it most disconcerting that modern wars are so often sold to the public as "the war against terror" when, under the surface, they are mostly pursuing commercial interests. In this way, corporate interests repeatedly "abuse" both the public and...

  • Every year on Holocaust Memorial Day, I'll light a candle. But why?
    Sunday, 27 January 2013

    We're Jewish, but non-practising. Just in it for the jokes, really. So I suppose we saw this as a chance to get to grips with the serious side of our culture.On a hot summer's day, we visited Auschwitz. As we passed under the iron "Arbeit macht frei"...

  • We need to help the next generation tackle problem gambling
    Sunday, 27 January 2013

    I have been working with problem gamblers since 2008 when I set up the National Problem Gambling Clinic, the first and only NHS clinic in the field. The demand for treatment has been overwhelming and we receive about 700 referrals a year, of which 1...

  • The Emperor's New Clothes: Footballers
    Sunday, 27 January 2013

    And, even if we avert our gaze and think only of the score lines, little comfort is available. The top division is now so warped by cash it is a contest open to only the three richest of its clubs; the rest no more likely to win it than a film extra...

  • Can't help with world peace: I've chipped a nail
    Sunday, 27 January 2013

    Then there was the survey about all the little things that are sent to try women. These included "an invisible snag on your fingernail" and "when the wind blows your hair into your lipgloss". They're so right. Certainly one of the things most likely...

  • Tom Hodgkinson: 'My inner bourgeois soul has re-emerged'
    Sunday, 27 January 2013

    Heating is very difficult to economise on, because you have absolutely no choice in the matter. Oil prices are fixed: we cannot shop around. That is not the case with food. Good habits of thrift mean that it is possible to eat well fairly cheaply. Th...

  • This ballboy was no Dickensian chimney sweep - just look at his car
    Saturday, 26 January 2013

    Now, there is nothing particularly perjorative about this, the name of an upper-echelon German car brand. However, that this is the make of car driven by 17-year-old Charlie Morgan (the aforementioned Welsh piñata) means things get a little darker. W...

  • Editorial: Keep politicians' children out of it
    Saturday, 26 January 2013

    For a politician, however, the choice is still more complicated. Going private is all too often interpreted as a vote of no confidence in state education. For a Labour politician, especially, this can be the kiss of death; if the decision itself does...

  • Editorial: We must not talk ourselves into a 'triple dip'
    Saturday, 26 January 2013

    The best gloss that can be placed on the figures – a 0.3 per cent contraction of the economy between October and December – is, first, that the extent of the contraction is less than might have been feared; second, that it followed a quarter of high...

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