In the centuries since the English Civil War and the Putney Debates it has become customary that democracy is seen and promoted as the most desirable basis for governance, whether at state or local level. Rooted in the concept of human rights, democracy seeks active engagement of all qualifying citizens in selection of policies and […]
The recent A-level debacle, which hit students from disadvantaged areas hardest, has been presented as an unprecedented set of circumstances because of Covid-19. But a report just published shows that the gap in educational attainment in terms of class and ethnic background has been growing steadily since well before the pandemic, largely because of poverty. […]
When President Macron introduced lockdown in March, with barely 48 hours’ notice, the spring sun was hot, the boulevards of Paris overflowing. Many may have expected discord, the return of rioting gilets jaunes. But it was just a weekend of disobedience. And in the days and weeks that followed the message got across. In France, […]
Solar power has brought with it many benefits – though perhaps not the current flood of cheap high-quality heroin to our shores. Today, Afghan opium production has seen a sharp rise with the arrival of solar power and the ability to pump water from depths of 100m. Being able to irrigate barren deserts has turned […]
The events that have unfolded since the Brexit referendum on 23 June 2016 have left many of us – UK citizens who live in EU countries – in the soup. Followed by Pig’s Ear and Eton Mess. The aftertaste is vile.
‘The UK is a world-leader in preparing for and managing disease outbreaks and I have every confidence in our nation’s ability to respond to the threat of COVID-19,’ declared health secretary Matt Hancock on 4 March. Four months on, it seems clear that if we want a world-beating response to the virus, we should be […]
As a child, I remember the telephone in our house. It was a wooden box, screwed to the wall and big enough to hold a pair of shoes. The handset consisted of a corinthian column, a bakelite mouth flute at one end and a hearing piece at the other. To make a call, you lifted […]
The UK government has moved swiftly to offer a safe haven to millions of Hong Kong Chinese following Beijing’s introduction of a new security law. Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab has spoken of our ‘duty of care’ and boldly challenged China on this draconian legislation. Indeed, the UK is leading its allies in offering those with […]