Section: World

Page of 9

It’s a gas, gas, gas

Anna Girolami

Anaesthetists, on the whole, have a chip on their shoulder. We are the single largest hospital specialty in the NHS and, in our own view, we pretty much run the place. Try having surgery without an anaesthetist, or a baby or a critical illness or a chronic pain issue or an intravenous dialysis line or.. I could go on, but you get the point. In essence, we (yes we, I worked as an NHS anaesthetist for ten years) provide the physiological bedrock upon which all other specialties have to stand to perform their work.

Boris’s Culture War

Stephen Wilmot

Since last summer Boris Johnson has established himself as a committed culture warrior. With his union jacks, his imperial nostalgia, his right wing appointments to media bodies and his denunciations of radical protest, he is clearly imposing an authoritarian nationalist agenda on the country. In effect he is recruiting the machinery of the state to shift Britain’s cultural centre of gravity to the right.

A Union disunited?

James Lindsay

Although one seat short of a majority, the SNP performance at the recent Scottish Parliament election should not be underestimated nor its implications for the future of the UK. The hybrid list-constituency electoral system in Scotland was specifically designed to prevent Westminster-style one-party dominance and yet despite that the SNP came so very close.

Amen, Amen, it’s Eurovision time!

Bryan Manley-Green

Amen and Amen! For the first time in 65 contests, two songs with the same title might appear in this year’s Eurovision Song Contest final. That’s definitely a “might” as there’s every chance that Slovenia and Austria could get knocked out in their semi-finals on 18 and 20 May, hidden away on BBC4 before the […]

The day the music died

Ann C Holland

The stark change to the lives of the UK’s musicians and actors is heartbreaking. Prior to 31 December 2020, lockdown aside, a musician could jump onto Eurostar, pass speedily into France or Belgium and carry their instrument without paperwork, tariffs or red tape to their venue. Maybe for a week, maybe for a whole season. Post-Brexit, only 90 days is permissible.

The Death of Dalian Atkinson

Anna Girolami

Last year in Minneapolis, a black man was killed by a white US police officer. Two weeks ago, officer Derek Chauvin was convicted of the murder of George Floyd in a landmark court case that was reported around the world and hailed by the US president himself as a “giant step forward” against systemic racism […]

Just not cricket

Anna Girolami

Today is 4th May, we are deep into spring. This year’s county cricket season is three weeks’ old and Derbyshire is already languishing at the bottom of their group. Despite Covid-19, despite the Big Bash League, despite the razzamatazz of the Indian Premier League*, cricket remains the quintessential game of the English summer. The gentle […]

Climate denial taints Tory green credentials in Warwickshire County Council race

Simon Ferrigno

Tory-run Warwickshire County Council flaunts its green credentials. It even declared a climate emergency in 2019. However, a press release from a group of local organisations including Stratford Climate Action and local branches of Extinction Rebellion, Stratford Youth Strike 4 Climate and Warwickshire Climate Alliance, has drawn our attention to the climate sceptic position of Councillor Peter Butlin.

Vaccine Fog

Lindsay Neil

The vaccine environment is a complex mixture of commercial and political interests, investment in novel science and technologies, substantial commercial profit, collapsing national economies and geopolitical reputations in the context of the Covid-19 Pandemic. Thus creating ‘Vaccine Fog’.

Selling a Picasso for peanuts – Allestree Park golf course

Andrew Picken

Allestree Park golf course closed on January 1st 2021. As Derby slides listlessly towards the local elections on Thursday, questions are being raised over decisions taken by the city council about the course. It’s a site that is special to many people in the city, golfers or not, and especially so during Covid-19 when outdoor […]

Dux Mea Lux – the long shadow of Mussolini

Clark Renney

On April 28 76 years ago, a fallen national leader and his mistress were executed by partisans, having been captured the previous day attempting to flee their native Italy for the safety of neutral Switzerland as the Second World War in Europe approached its catastrophic end. The woman’s name was Claretta Petacci; and her lover, […]

A loss of opportunity

Simon Ferrigno

European Movement’s new report, ‘Stories of Brexit 2021‘, on the impact of Brexit in different fields makes grim reading. Amongst the wreckage, we caught up with teacher Anna Grainger from Warwickshire about the loss of eTwinning to learn more about this little known area of the Erasmus+ programme, and what losing it means for children. […]

Carrie Antoinette’s Dead Cat Diary

Central Bylines Team

Carrie Antoinette’s position at Conservative Campaign HQ (CCHQ) improved when, after eight weeks of cohabitation, she started having children. She became increasingly unpopular among the people, however, with the Liberal elite accusing her of being profligate and harbouring sympathies for England’s perceived enemies—particularly her Friends in Russia.

Reading the room: the European Super League fiasco

Richard Hall

The European Super League is no more. Like the famous Norwegian Blue parrot, it’s bereft of life, expired and ceased to be. I’d like to imagine those behind it were thinking of it as a welcome and imaginative idea that would raise morale after a year of Covid lockdown. Instead, they were hit with a […]

Seeing, believing and the slow march toward justice

Scott Weigle

Who could have predicted that Steve Jobs would initiate the modern civil rights movement around the world? For humans, it always takes seeing to truly believe. That was the case during the 1960s in America, when images of attack dogs and beatings were first broadcast to television audiences that could no longer ignore the shocking […]

It was made by men, and it could have been prevented by men

Clark Renney

An exhibition was held in 1983, in what was then West Germany, marking the ascension to power of the Nazis fifty years earlier; and I remember one of the event’s organisers being interviewed on television. He was asked why the exhibition was being staged, when so many modern Germans would rather leave their dark past […]

Yes, we have no bananas

Richard Hall

American presidents often like to use the first 100 days of their administrations to set the tone of their presidency. As we approach the 100th day of true Brexit (that is, the end of the so-called transition period, even if not all checks on imports are still being done), it seems reasonable to apply the […]

The Lost Opportunities List

Cliff Mitchell

Since 1 January 2021 the European Union has not stood still. It continues to offer new opportunities, funding and benefits to its citizens and businesses that we, in the UK, are now excluded from.

‘Extreme hoarders – Midland’s billionaires edition: part 1’

Joel Bates

In this first of two articles, we focus on four of the West Midland’s wealthiest billionaires. What is a billion? At this point, it is important to put a billion pounds into perspective. I do not want to give the impression that anyone who earns a high figure salary or does well for themselves doesn’t […]