The commentators 16-10-14
...on British politics
Our main political parties are so broken and so unable to fix themselves that you must either weep for them and all the good people in them, or you must hate them. Perhaps you can do both. The world has changed and they have been unable to. The world needs long-term solutions and proper arguments, and they offer us nothing but bickering and sticking plasters. Little sticking plasters for big wounds. The country needs reform and they act, in effect, to block it or to enact only those changes that have least impact on them.
- David Aaronovitch, The Times
There is a problem with how politics is organised, how it appears, and how it communicates itself. The answer is not more of the same. Things are changing across Europe. New parties will be born, old complacencies shaken off. We are in a period of transition where some peddle teenage dreams of revolution, while the political class collude to produce a situation of stasis. To suggest that meaningful political engagement should be more than a solitary act once every few years is hardly revolutionary, surely.
- Suzanne Moore, The Guardian
We must beware the threat of Ukip's ideology in an acceptable garb. We must call it out when we see, and we must present its counter-arguments: British political discourse needs voices prepared to speak out in favour of immigration and the EU, as well as the cosmopolitanism and multiculturalism that come with them. Nigel Farage is a tightropewalker; we must hope he falls.
- Timothy Kennett, The Independent
The Ukip triumph in Clacton has led to a meltdown in party discipline of a kind that I have never witnessed before – not even during the darkest days of the Maastricht rebellion against John Major. Conservative MPs are openly collaborating with Ukip, a political party that is set on their downfall and destruction.
- Peter Oborne, Daily Telegraph
In the past 20 years political and journalistic elites have advocated the euro, allowed uncontrolled immigration, poured money into an unreformed welfare state and tried to invade two countries on the cheap. On each occasion the masses have been sceptical — and on each occasion the masses have been right. Rather than being ignored, voters should be given more power.
- Tim Montgomerie, The Times
Thursday 25 September Judges for the Editorial Intelligence comment awards announced their shortlists today, with ten nominations for the FT, nine for the Times, five for the Guardian, four for the Independent - and two for SubScribe.
The Times and Sunday Times scored a clean sweep in nominations for the main award of commentariat of the year, which will be decided between David Aaronovitch, Camilla Cavendish, Daniel Finkelstein and last year's winner Caitlin Moran.
Guardian's Jay Rayner was shortlisted in the food writer category, but said that he did not wish to be considered as that award is sponsored by Tesco.
The awards will be presented on November 25. See the full shortlists here
The crime of rape is not about the level of violence inflicted, but about possession and subjugation.
That it may take place in a comfortable, rather than hostile, environment; that it may be the result of a failure of self-control rather than a deliberate act of aggression makes no difference to that central fact. The core offence is that of a man believing he has the right to do what he wishes with a woman, regardless of whether she objects.
And until that message gets through, there will always be men - and women - who think that there are different "degrees" of rape, with some more acceptable or understandable than others. The level of violence or the ordeal suffered by the victim may be reflected in the sentence, but the basic crime is still the same.
- Press review
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