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Nick Cohen rssNick Cohen

Nick Cohen is a columnist for the Observer and author of What’s Left and You Can’t Read This Book.

The attempt to censor the broadcast of a song from The Wizard of Oz has brought Britain low. (Photo by Patrick Riviere/Getty Images)

Vladimir Putin meets the Munchkins

16 April 2013 11:08

Late on Friday my editor at the Observer called and asked me to dash off a few words on what was wrong with the Mail and some Conservative MPs demanding… Continue reading

8 Comments
PM

Evidence-based politics: the case of the incredible shrinking Tory Party

9 April 2013 19:26

Here is something those who rely on political commentators will not have expected to see. The latest poll from TNS BMRB has the Tories down to just a quarter of… Continue reading

135 Comments
Lutfur Rahman at a demonstration in Tower Hamlets Image: PA

Lutfur Rahman: Not a ‘bully’, just ‘sly’ and ‘unappetising’

8 April 2013 17:22

For the record, I did not accuse Rahman of being a ‘bully,’ as he tells Spectator readers. I accused the Mayor of Tower Hamlets of being ‘sly’ and ‘unappetising’. His… Continue reading

29 Comments
Who knew that tweeting among friends could cause so much trouble?

Twitter: A playground for hysterics, prudes, fools and spies

4 April 2013 10:27

Another day, another story of the forces of order hounding an innocent citizen for making innocuous remarks on Twitter. This week’s target was Rob Marchant, a centrist Labour supporter, who… Continue reading

28 Comments

Leveson: Don’t be frightened by the state

26 March 2013 13:12

If David Cameron had any sense, he would stand up in the Commons and say “I am withdrawing the Royal Charter. The law officers have assured me that Lord Justice… Continue reading

23 Comments
Lord Leveson Publishes His Eagerly Awaited Report Into Press Standards

It’s not a press regulator, it’s a web regulator.

18 March 2013 20:31

Since the early 1990s, hundreds of millions of words have been produced about the Web. Enthusiasts have told us that it is the greatest communications revolution since Guttenberg invented movable… Continue reading

56 Comments
Image: Getty

The Sunday Times jails its source

11 March 2013 17:31

In a long piece in the last issue of the Sunday Times (£) Isabel Oakeshott, its political editor, wrote of her relationship with Vicky Pryce. She sobbed and sighed. She was… Continue reading

52 Comments
Image: Getty

Sexual abuse: Don’t toe the party line

25 February 2013 15:33

A scandal broke in the Socialist Workers Party a few weeks ago after a woman member claimed a Trotskyist tribune of the working class had taken time off from promoting… Continue reading

0 Comments
A picture taken on December 7, 2012, shows  snow clad grave of Russian lawyer Sergei Magnitsky with his portrait on the tomb. Picture: ANDREY SMIRNOV/AFP/Getty Images

Arraigning a corpse

19 February 2013 17:45

Part 1 “Russian Justice” A judge at Moscow’s Tverskoi District Court stopped the trial of Sergei Magnitsky (above) yesterday – but not because the defendant was dead. Magnitsky’s demise was… Continue reading

5 Comments
The new poison pen. Image: Getty

The Leather Case

16 February 2013 15:44

Last year I wrote an unpatriotic column for the Observer. I said that while American literary and journalistic frauds tended to be simple men, who lied and plagiarised to boast… Continue reading

21 Comments
BAHRAIN-POLITICS-UNREST

Lone voices against Terror

13 February 2013 20:19

I went to the Toynbee Hall, the meeting place for the radical East End, this week to listen to a debate many radicals would rather not hear. British Asian feminists… Continue reading

52 Comments
Image: Getty

Last call for Starbucks. Your flight is about to depart

27 January 2013 14:11

A friend of mine who has worked in the City all his life, and is by no means a leftist, can still explode with rage at the nom-doms and corporations, who… Continue reading

45 Comments
Image: Getty

David Cameron marries a Rothschild

25 January 2013 9:26

In the Jewish joke a matchmaker calls on a poor tailor living in a Tsarist shtetl in the middle of nowhere. He tells the old guy that he wants to… Continue reading

12 Comments
Lynne Featherstone believes that women ought to be more like Christina Hendricks of 'Mad Men' fame. Image: Getty.

Can’t we even throw out Lynne Featherstone?

22 January 2013 11:49

I gave a talk to the Hornsey and Wood Green Labour Party last night. If you don’t know the area, the constituency covers Highgate, Muswell Hill and Crouch End: leafy… Continue reading

35 Comments
Robbie Savage in his playing days. Image: Getty

The BBC: ‘It’s professional to cheat’

20 January 2013 15:15

In this morning’s Observer I write about the collapse of the old notions of honour and fair play in sport, banking, politics, journalism, the law and much else. As I… Continue reading

8 Comments
Matt Stone (l) and Trey Parker (r), the creators of Southpark, at a BAFTA gig in Los Angeles. Image: Getty

Scientologists trap us in the closet

12 January 2013 11:17

Whenever I give lectures on my book on censorship – Whaddya mean you haven’t read it? Buy it here at a recession-beating price – I discuss the great issues of… Continue reading

17 Comments
Cameron and Osborne, architects of the coalition of the complacent. Image: Getty

A coalition of the complacent

7 January 2013 14:21

I don’t like to think that I am rich. In theory, I know that in comparison to the vast majority of the world’s population, I am. But perhaps because of… Continue reading

40 Comments
Lord Denning couldn't bring himself not to believe that the police could lie. Now, it's a little easier to credit.

If they can frame a Chief Whip, they can frame anyone

20 December 2012 12:53

Lord Denning was perhaps the most beloved judge of the 20th century. He even inspired a Lord Denning Appreciation Society. But I and many others found something sinister behind his… Continue reading

113 Comments
(Photo by Bruno Vincent/Getty Images)

In praise of the bloody-minded Paul Chambers

19 December 2012 12:35

What freedoms we have in Britain have not come as a rule from revolutions and thunderous declarations of the rights of man. More often than not, our liberties have come… Continue reading

9 Comments
Might the battle between Hugh Grant and the press be rejoined? David Cameron fears it will.

Lord Justice Leveson and the baby killers

12 December 2012 11:13

I have worried about Hugh Grant’s understanding of power ever since he started bringing up baby. I first saw him reach for the innocent child at one of the party… Continue reading

13 Comments
Bashar Assad, back when he was a 'goodie', meeting President Khatami of Iran in 2001. Image: Getty.

Tyranny’s fellow travel writers (Part 3)

9 December 2012 19:21

Earlier this year I noted a piece by Michael Moynihan in Foreign Policy. He looked at how the authors of the Rough Guide and Lonely Planet guide books were producing… Continue reading

13 Comments

Theocrats, plutocrats, bureaucrats and other enemies of human freedom

18 November 2012 14:32

This is a video of a speech to Oxford Brookes University on freedom and its enemies based on my book on censorship You Can’t Read This Book.

5 Comments
The Adrian Smith case suggests that 'the Internet is proving that it is the friend of the censorious rather than a tool for emancipation.' Image: Getty

The internet is proving to be a tool of censorship, not emancipation

16 November 2012 14:07

The case of Adrian Smith, the Christian the Trafford Housing Trust demoted for politely expressing his opposition to gay marriage on Facebook, is one of the most disgraceful I have… Continue reading

21 Comments
The disgraced media report on the disgrace of the BBC being laid bare by a committee of disgraced MPs, and you pay for this absurd pantomime. It's enough to turn good, honest folk violent. Image: Getty

A black, bloody insurrection of the hard-working, over-taxed and unbenefited

13 November 2012 10:24

If you want to understand the mood of modern Britain, James Hawes’s novels of middle class fury are not a bad place to start. Hawes’s heroes are middle-aged men, whose… Continue reading

9 Comments
Freedom art round the back of Tate Modern. Image: Getty

My life as a connoisseur

4 November 2012 18:11

‘Passion for freedom‘ is now holding its fourth exhibition at the Unit 24 Gallery just behind Tate Modern. The show is a visible and occasionally dazzling manifestation of an often… Continue reading

16 Comments