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Sunday, September 29, 2013

'US/UK special relationship put to test'



You can listen to a Voice of Russia  ‘Agree of Disagree’  debate between me & Andrew Hardisty on the future of the US/UK alliance here.

Friday, September 20, 2013

Happy Birthday Jimmy Perry! The genius behind Dad's Army turns 90



This interview of mine with the great comedy writer Jimmy Perry, who is 90 today, is in the Daily Telegraph.

Is there anyone living in Britain today who has contributed more to our Gross National Happiness than Jimmy Perry? This is the man who not only created and co-wrote the nation’s best loved and most enduring comedy series, Dad’s Army, but who also, along with his writing partnerDavid Croft, gave us two other hugely popular shows, It Ain’t Half Hot Mum and Hi De Hi! as well as the witty Upstairs, Downstairs pastiche You Rang, M’Lord?

You can read the whole interview here.

I've also got another piece on the great Jimmy Perry in today's Daily Express.

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

The Intelligent Punter's Guide to the 2013/14 Champions League



This piece of mine appears over at The Week.

THE first group stages of the Champions League begin on Tuesday 17 September. There are eight groups each consisting of four teams and the top two in each group will go through to the last 16.
Last year the competition was full of surprises, with Bayern Munich beating Borussia Dortmund 2-1 in an all-German final, after the two Bundesliga teams had knocked out their better-fancied Spanish opponents, Real Madrid and Barcelona in the semis. Did we witness a power-shift in European football, or was it just a one-off? Which teams are the best bets in this year's competition?

You can read the whole guide here. Good luck with your selections!

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Why we need more MPs like George Galloway in Parliament



Discussing with Lembit Opik on why today's UK political elite is so bland, and why we need more MPs like George Galloway in Parliament,on the Stephen Nolan Show on BBC Radio5 Live, here. (item starts at 51 mins).
You can also hear me discussing whether we need more 'celebrities' like Jeremy Clarkson in Parliament on BBC Radio Tees here. (starts at 5 mins)

Friday, September 06, 2013

Mind the Gap! Syria shows us that the democratic deficit in the US and UK has never been bigger



Here's my new column for RT's OpEdge.

The issue of Syria has demonstrated the massive gap that has opened up between the elite and ordinary people in both the US and Britain.

Poll after poll after poll shows very large majorities against strikes on Syria. People are war-weary, and the last thing they want is for their countries to become embroiled in another Middle-East war.

One Congressman in the US tweeted earlier this week that he had asked 200 people if they supported strikes on Syria and only four said 'Yes'- that's just 2 percent. Another said that 99 percent of calls to his office were against military action.

Let's get one thing straight: the only people who are keen on war with Syria in the US and UK are the elites. Ordinary people on both sides of the Atlantic want absolutely nothing to do with it.

You can read the whole piece here.

Wednesday, September 04, 2013

The Great British Seaside Sell-Off


This piece of mine appears in The Guardian.

In 1979, the state met almost all of British holidaymakers' needs, from transport to hotels to the fun stuff. Then Thatcherism changed everything. Neil Clark looks back at how our summers used to be

Who doesn't like to be beside the seaside? Who doesn't love the first glimpse of sun sparkling on bright, blue-green waves, a salt tang in the air?" Around Britain's Seaside, published by the AA in 1979, described itself as an "exciting new publication", a "guide to the resorts of Britain from the larger and most popular to the smaller, hidden-away spots", including descriptions of "where to eat, places to see, what's on and where, plus town plans". I paid £1.50 for a secondhand copy a few years back and have never regretted the purchase. The book provides a window into a very different world: the last summer before Thatcherism kicked in and transformed everything – including the AA and the British seaside holiday.

You can read the whole piece here.