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Joel Golby is a journalist who has written for – among others – Vice and the Guardian, where he has a regular column, the watcher, reviewing television. He has since translated his skill for wry observations and self-reflection into the new book Four Stars: A life reviewed which hilariously grapples with our fascination with opinions On the podcast…
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Freddy Gray is joined Alan Dershowitz, American lawyer and author of Get Trump: the threat to civil liberties, due process, and our constitutional rule of law. They discuss Trump’s ‘hush money’ trial, what it means for the election and what it tells us about the flaws in the American legal system.The Spectator
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On this week’s Spectator Out Loud: In light of the help Israel received, Svitlana Morenets issues a challenge to the West to help Ukraine (1:15); Mary Wakefield questions the slow response to the Ministry of Defence being daubed in paint (7:33); Max Jeffery discusses the aims and tactics of the group responsible for the protest, Youth Demand (13:25…
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Freddy speaks to the diplomat and author Dennis B Ross, who worked under presidents George H W Bush and Bill Clinton. He was a special advisor on the Persian Gulf. They discuss the escalation of tensions in the Middle East and the flak that Joe Biden has come under for his response. Can the US still claim to be able to shape events in the Middle Ea…
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This week: the usual targets First: Trump is on trial again – and America is bored rather than scandalised. This is his 91st criminal charge and his supporters see this as politicised prosecution. As an American, Kate Andrews has seen how the law can be used as a political weapon – so why, she asks, is Britain importing the same system? In less tha…
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On this week’s Book Club podcast I’m joined by Percival Everett, who has followed up his Booker-shortlisted The Trees with James, a novel that reimagines the story of The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn from the point of view of the fugitive slave Jim. Percival tells me what he learned from Mark Twain, how being funny doesn’t make him a comic noveli…
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It's now 18 months since Liz Truss left Downing Street. She has written a memoir, Ten Years to Save the West, which records her political career since first becoming a cabinet minister. In her first broadcast interview to promote the book, she tells Fraser Nelson about why she thinks the OBR and the Supreme Court should be abolished; how Donald Tru…
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When I recently came across a book review asking the question ‘was Marco Polo a "sexpat"?’, I knew I had to get its author on to, well, discuss this important question some more. The 13th century Venetian merchant Marco Polo’s account of China was one of the earliest and most popular travelogues written on the country. Polo spent years at the court…
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This week: Matthew Parris questions what's left to say about the Tories (00:57), Laurie Graham discusses her struggle to see a GP (07:35), Rachel Johnson makes the case against women only clubs (13:38), Laura Gascoigne tells us the truth about Caravaggio's last painting (19:21) and Angus Colwell reads his notes on wild garlic (28:58). Produced by O…
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This week, the Arizona Supreme Court reinstated a law from 1864 that bans nearly all abortions in the state. But where do Trump and Biden stand on abortion, and will it be a deciding factor in the 2024 election? Freddy's joined by Inez Stepman, Fellow at the Claremont Institute, and Daniel McCarthy, Editor of Modern Age Journal. Produced by Megan M…
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Laura Farris comes from something of a political dynasty, both her father and uncle were MPs. The former even represented the same Newbury seat that she currently holds. She studied PPE at Oxford before working as a researcher for Hilary Clinton but she eschewed a political career to work firstly as a journalist and then as a barrister. In 2019 she…
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This week: will Biden support Ukraine’s attacks on Russia? Owen Matthews writes the cover piece in light of the Zelensky drone offensive. Ukraine’s most successful strategy to date has been its ingenious use of homemade, long-range drones, which it has used to strike military targets as well as oil refineries and petrol storage facilities in Russia…
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Today Freddy is joined by Sarah Elliott, senior advisor for the US-UK special relationship unit at the Legatum Institute. They discuss Lord Cameron's visit to America this week and the news that speaker of the House of Representatives Mike Johnson snubbed a meeting with the foreign secretary. Is the special relationship still special?…
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In this week’s Book Club podcast my guest is Dorian Lynskey. In his new book Everything Must Go, Dorian looks at the way humans have imagined the end of the world from the Book of Revelations to the present day. He tells me how old fears find new forms, why Dr Strangelove divides critics, and why there’s always a few people who anticipate global an…
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On this week’s Spectator Out Loud: James Heale suggests that the London mayoral race could be closer than we think (1:02); Madeleine Teahan argues that babies with down’s syndrome have a right to be born (6:15); Tanya Gold reports from Jerusalem as Israel’s war enters its seventh month (12:32); and William Moore reveals what he has in common with K…
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Suspected Israeli air strikes were launched on targets in Syria this week and Israel's war in Gaza has entered its seventh month. Americano regular Jacob Heilbrunn joins Freddy to discuss what an escalating situation in the Middle East could mean for Joe Biden. What's the Democrats' strategy? And how could this impact the 2024 election? Produced by…
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On the podcast this week: what could achieving a large majority at the next election mean for Labour; how much should parents worry about picky eating; and why are humans fascinated with the apocalypse? First up: The Starmer supremacy. If the polls are correct, Labour could be on to a record landslide at the next general election. Any political lea…
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My guest on this week's Book Club podcast is the investigative reporter Annie Jacobsen, whose hair-raising new book Nuclear War: A Scenario imagines – minute by minute – what would unfold if the nuclear balloon went up. But rather than a work of fantasy, this is based on meticulously sourced reporting about the effects of nuclear weapons and the st…
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Over the last week the UK has been rocked by allegations that China was responsible for two cyber attacks in recent years – one on the Electoral Commission, where hackers successfully accessed the open register, which has the details of 40 million voters; and a set of attempts to access the emails of a number of China critics within parliament. So …
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This week: Sophie Winkleman tells us why she's fighting to ban smartphones for children (01:01), Svitlana Morenets details how Ukraine plans to revive its birthrate (05:52), Candida Crewe laments the blight that is UHT milk (12:41), and Ysenda Maxtone Graham mourns the loss of the St John's Voices choir (22:43).…
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Freddy is joined by evolutionary biologist and host of The DarkHorse Podcast Bret Weinstein. They discuss the Darien Gap, an area of Panama which has become a focal point for America's migrant crisis. Bret has spent some time investigating the area, what's going on?The Spectator
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Anne Jenkin was born in Essex to quite the political family, three of her grandparents were in the House of Lords, and two of them in the Commons as well. Her career in Westminster began in the 1970s and in 2005 she co-founded Women2Win with future Prime Minister Theresa May to encourage more women to get into politics and stand as Conservative can…
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This week: how forgiveness was forgotten, why the secular tide might be turning, and looking for romance at the British museum. Up first: The case of Frank Hester points to something deep going on in our culture, writes Douglas Murray in the magazine this week. ‘We have never had to deal with anything like this before. Any mistake can rear up in fr…
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In this week's Book Club podcast my guest is the Pulitzer prize winning novelist Viet Thanh Nguyen, whose new book is the memoir A Man of Two Faces. He tells me about the value of trauma to literature, learning about his history through Hollywood, falling asleep in class... and the rotten manners of Oliver Stone.…
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Gennaro Contaldo is an Italian chef, cookbook author and television presenter. He is also known as Jamie Oliver's mentor and Antonio Carluccio's travel partner on Two Greedy Italians. His latest cookbook Gennaro's Verdure – which celebrates seasonal vegetables – is out now. On the podcast he tells Liv and Lara about his upbringing on the Amalfi coa…
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Freddy Gray speaks to editor-at-large of the Wall Street Journal Gerry Baker about whether the media’s wrong reporting of Trump’s ‘bloodshed’ comments have played to his advantage; why America has lost trust in its institutions; and whether voters think the economy was better off under Trump.The Spectator
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This week: Richard Madeley reads his diary (01:06), Kate Andrews describes how Kate-gate gripped America (06:18), Lloyd Evans warns against meddling with Shakespeare (11:38), Sam McPhail details how Cruyff changed modern football (18:17), and Graeme Thomson reads his interview with Roxy Music's Phil Manzanera (25:23). Produced and presented by Osca…
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Freddy speaks to Rob Henderson, author of Troubled: A Memoir of Foster Care, Family, and Social Class, in which he coins the term 'luxury beliefs'. These are certain beliefs held by a section of the elite which confirm and elevate the status of those who hold them. As a consequence, they can cause harm to those lower down the social strata. Is Dona…
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On the podcast: Scotland’s new hate crime law; the man who could be France’s next PM; and why do directors meddle with Shakespeare? First up: Scotland is smothering free speech. Scotland is getting a new, modern blasphemy code in the form of the Hate Crime and Public Order (Scotland) Act, which takes effect from 1 April. The offence of ‘stirring up…
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My guest in this week's Book Club is Joel Morris, an award-winning comedy writer whose credits run from co-creating Philomena Cunk to writing gags for Viz and punching up the script for Paddington 2. In his new book Be Funny Or Die, he sets out to analyse how and why comedy works. He tells me why there are only three keys on the clown keyboard, wha…
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Freddy Gray talks to political science lecturer Damon Linker about the latest developments in the Biden and Trump campaigns. Why did Biden’s fiery State of the Union Address provide him no uptick in the polls? In what ways does Trump fatigue affect each candidate’s chances? And does Trump’s greater popularity with non-white low propensity voters sk…
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In the last episode, I discussed Chinese rural lives with Professor Scott Rozelle. One point he made which particularly stuck with me was the dying out of farming as an occuption – he'd said that most rural people under the age of 35 have never farmed a day in their lives. So that got me thinking, what do they do instead? In this episode I’ll be lo…
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On this week’s Spectator Out Loud: William Moore questions if the Church of England is about the apologise for Christianity (1:19); Sean Thomas recounts his experience taking ayahuasca in Colombia (8:13); Matt Ridley argues that private landowners make better conservationists (16:40); Lionel Shriver warns against pathological niceness in the debate…
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In this episode of Holy Smoke, I'm joined by The Spectator's features editor William Moore, who asks in this week's issue of the magazine whether the Church of England is 'apologising for Christianity'. A report by the Oversight Group, set up by the Church Commissioners to make reparations for African slavery, not only wants to see unimaginable sum…
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When it comes to retirement, working out how much you will need to set aside can seem like a monumental task. The average person has between 8 to 10 jobs over their lifetime. People are living longer – with the median retirement age at 65 and life expectancy at 80. What should people think about when planning for their pension? And what challenges …
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On the podcast this week: is Rishi ready for a Red Wall rebellion? Lee Anderson’s defection to Reform is an indication of the final collapse of the Tories’ 2019 electoral coalition and the new split in the right, writes Katy Balls in her cover story. For the first time in many years the Tories are polling below 25 per cent. Reform is at 15 per cent…
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Freddy Gray speaks to author Robert Bryce whose recent docuseries Power Politics & The Grid explores the growing vulnerabilities of America's electric grid. On the podcast they talk about Trump vs Biden energy policy; why Europe needs America's energy and what environmentalism could look like in 2024.…
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This week's Book Club podcast sees me speaking to the critic and novelist Lauren Oyler about her first collection of essays, No Judgment: On Being Critical. Lauren and I talked about the freedoms and affordances of the essay form; about how making and criticising art has been changed – and hasn't – by the advent of the digital age; why it's weird w…
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Alex Jackson is the founder of Sardine and currently head chef at Noble Rot, Soho. His cookbook Frontières: the food of France's borderlands is available now. On the podcast, he tells Lara and Liv why the smell of chip fat reminds him of home, how his interest in cooking was ignited during time spent at university France, and divulges his desert is…
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On this episode of Spectator Out Loud, Mary Wakefield has a solution to smartphone addition (00:28), Hannah Tomes reviews the latest production of King Lear (07:27) and Cosmo Landesman gets high (11:13).The Spectator
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On the podcast: what would Trump’s second term look like? Vengeance is a lifelong theme of Donald Trump’s, writes Freddy Gray in this week’s cover story – and this year’s presidential election could provide his most delectable payback of all. Meanwhile, Kate Andrews writes that Nikki Haley’s campaign is over – and with it went the hopes of the Neve…
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For this Super Tuesday discussion, Sarah Elliot – head of the Special Relationship Unit at the Legatum Institute joins Freddy Gray to chat about the predicted Trump-Biden victory; what Nikki Haley will do next and who could be Donald Trump's vice president.The Spectator
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My guest on this week's Book Club podcast is Peter Pomerantsev. Peter's new book How To Win An Information War: The Propagandist Who Outwitted Hitler tells the story of Sefton Delmer, the great genius of twentieth-century propaganda. Peter tells me about Delmer's remarkable life, compromised ethics, and the lessons he still has to offer us.…
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Too often our stories about China are dictated by the urban experience, probably because journalists inside and outside of China are often based in the big cities; Beijing specifically. Those who live in the cities also tend to be more educated, more privileged, and so able to dominate the global attention more. That’s why I’m particularly keen to …
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Freddy talks to political technologist Eric Wilson about the role technology and media will play in the 2024 US election. They cover the differences in strategy between the Democrats and the Republicans, why television is still the best medium for reaching voters, and the role of social media influencers. Produced by Natasha Feroze.…
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On this week’s Spectator Out Loud: Lukas Degutis reports from Riga, exploring Latvia’s policy of expelling Russian speakers (01:16); Ysenda Maxtone Graham explains why she believes applause has no place at a funeral (10:03); paying homage to Christopher Gunning, Richard Bratby argues that composers of ads, film soundtracks and TV theme tunes should…
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Thangam Debbonaire was born in Peterborough to an Indian father and English mother. She has been an MP since 2015 but before Parliament spent over 25 years working to end domestic violence. She served under Jeremy Corbyn as Shadow Minister for Arts and Heritage and has served in Keir Starmer’s Shadow Cabinet since his leadership as the Shadow Cultu…
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