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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.

Prime Minister David Cameron Makes A Speech Following Last Week's Rioting

The war against the young

24 June 2012 14:30

At the time of the student protests, I laid out in the Observer the demographic facts that push unscrupulous politicians into picking on the young. Their political vulnerability is the… Continue reading

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Diamond Jubilee - Buckingham Palace Concert

Jimmy’s “Scam”

19 June 2012 12:00

Satirists are like pop stars in two respects. They earn extraordinary amounts of money, and the public assumes that they are left wing. You do not need to be a… Continue reading

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Former Prime Minister Tony Blair Gives Evidence To The Leveson Inquiry

Why are the unions frightened?

18 June 2012 19:00

Labour has only ever won a general election from the autumn of 1974 onwards when its leader has been called &”Tony Blair”. Four other leaders tried, but they were not… Continue reading

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Why the Jubilee Coverage was so bad

6 June 2012 10:45

One of my objections to monarchy is that it is a vulgar institution that encourages verbosity, prurience, sycophancy and banality. I was not therefore surprised that the BBC’s jubilee coverage… Continue reading

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IMF Managing Director Christine Lagarde

A diplomatic racket

4 June 2012 18:45

In my Observer column on Sunday I mentioned in passing that in a crisis, elites have to be able to show that they are sharing the plight of the masses.… Continue reading

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Take the mickey back

27 May 2012 15:33

Our beliefs are like our families. Some we live with every day. Others are distant relations we rarely see but still think of as part of our clan in a… Continue reading

24 Comments

Don’t trust the West

24 May 2012 11:30

A few days ago, I attended the Oslo Freedom Forum, where dissidents and human rights campaigners gather to exchange ideas. I feared the mood was a little too optimistic, and… Continue reading

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Beware the ferret-faced heresy hunters

15 May 2012 10:51

I fell in with bad company while I was on a story in Oslo last week: American conservative journalists. I am glad to say confirmed the public’s stereotype of reporters… Continue reading

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‘It’s the newspapers I can’t stand’

30 April 2012 13:47

In Tom Stoppard’s Night and Day, Milne, an idealistic journalist, describes the limitations of newspapers, and then gives the best argument for press freedom I know of. ‘You don’t have… Continue reading

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Rupert Murdoch and the revival of the Labour Party

25 April 2012 16:36

Last year I wrote that the Leveson inquiry would suit Jeremy Hunt rather well. He had appointed Lord Justice Leveson, a judge with little previous experience of media law to… Continue reading

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Gunter Grass: the tin drum and the tin ear

9 April 2012 13:47

This morning’s editorial in Israel’s left-wing Haaretz newspaper noted a double standard that was also a bad joke. Israel’s Interior Minister’s had declared, ‘If Gunter Grass wants to continue to… Continue reading

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The tweet police

27 March 2012 12:32

Writing with the optimism of a high-Victorian liberal, John Stuart Mill said that the only legitimate restriction on freedom of speech was to stop the direct incitement to a crime.… Continue reading

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Will Osborne close the ‘Livingstone Loophole’?

20 March 2012 10:33

When I spoke to the tax justice campaigner Richard Murphy about Ken Livingstone’s tax avoidance, he said that the practice of individuals pretending that they were companies caused ‘a massive… Continue reading

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The spectre of militant secularism

19 March 2012 12:06

At the weekend, I was honoured to award the Secularist of the Year prize to Peter Tatchell on behalf of the National Secular Society. From the stage, I looked across… Continue reading

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Can we talk about this?

13 March 2012 15:00

Can actors at the National Theatre quote Christopher Hitchens’ destruction of Shirley Williams for her failure to defend freedom of speech against suicide murderers on Question Time, while all the… Continue reading

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Should Christians kill Mark Thompson?

27 February 2012 21:06

I’d rather they didn’t. But perhaps a campaign of clerical terror would make the BBC ‘respect’ Christianity. According to the Telegraph, the director general of the BBC said it handles… Continue reading

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The brass neck of Julian Assange

21 February 2012 17:09

On 1 March, the Old Vic theatre in London is hosting the première of Europe’s Last Dictator — a film documenting torture and state-sponsored murder and kidnap in Aleksandr Lukashenko’s… Continue reading

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Attack of the Militant Secularists

18 February 2012 15:40

If you want to hear a BBC discussion going hopelessly wrong, listen to the ‘debate’ between the Bishop of Lichfield, Jonathan Gledhill and Alan Beith on the Today programme this… Continue reading

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We are all journalists now

13 February 2012 17:46

As the cops round up journalists, Trevor Kavanagh’s protest in the Sun has aroused amazement and some scorn. ‘Witch-hunt has put us behind ex-Soviet states on Press freedom’ — ran… Continue reading

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Whatever happened to Human Rights?

12 February 2012 10:29

Human rights campaigners need to follow a self-denying ordinance if they are not to become enemies of the values they espouse. Like a civil servant or judge, they must leave… Continue reading

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Ed Miliband: Britain’s Greatest Leader of the Opposition

30 January 2012 12:46

Ed Miliband is a geek, a failure and a loser. All the press says so, so it must be true. Yet the apparent no-hoper retains the ability of the boy… Continue reading

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An Advertisement for Myself

28 January 2012 17:26

My You Can’t Read This Book: Censorship in an Age of Freedom is out this week. As the title says, it’s about freedom of speech, a subject that has come… Continue reading

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How freedom goes

22 January 2012 20:31

Joan Smith has a piece in the Independent about religious censorship of open debate in Britain, a supposedly free country. It is well written and argued, as Smith’s writing invariably… Continue reading

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See? Simple. Next!

18 January 2012 10:23

Ed Miliband is in the happiest position he has been for months. Both left and right are attacking him for stating the obvious. The unions or at least their leaders… Continue reading

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A left-wing writer conservatives should enjoy

11 January 2012 14:29

I have a review of Pity the Billionaire by Thomas Frank, one of the few left-wing writers I believe conservatives can read with pleasure. He is old fashioned, so old-fashioned indeed that… Continue reading

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