The Week: Of course language is essential to class. Take it from an Englishman.

Me in The Week Throughout history, food and the manners that surround it have always been important class markers. There’s a reason why the words for the stuff served at the table — beef, pork, mutton — bears no resemblance to the names of the animals they originate from — cow, pig, sheep. The latter are Old English while the former are French in origin, reflecting that language’s prestige status after the Norman Conquest and France’s cultural dominance in the Middle… Read on

Me, my voice, talking about me, and my book

I’m interviewed on a podcast on the Diversity Illusion. It’s with a new, regular podcast called Future Nations. I can’t stand the sound of my voice but it seems to have turned out okay. Listen and enjoy!

The real history that inspired Game of Thrones

The real history that inspired Game of Thrones

With season 7 starting next week, I’m featured in an article on the subject. “The show is all about the tragic sense of history and the wheel of fortune,” says West. “You can be happy with the world one day, and the next everything you hold dear is swept away. “Medieval people, who were especially at the mercy of political systems they had no control over, understood this better than we do.” The Realm, my kindle single on the… Read on

Young people check their privilege – and feel deeply disappointed

At the Spectator Political correctness is fashionable, a positional good, and it is understandable that high-status people should therefore compete to become more politically correct than rivals. This is one  possible explanation for the US campus ‘safe spaces’ movement, which is a well-trodden path among commentators, and unfortunately comes with the same problem that Political Correctness did in the late 80s and 90s; the people who endlessly complain about it become almost as tiresome as the people doing it…. Read on

Donald Trump is a gift for the progressive narrative

At the Spectator Coffee House What I can predict is that after Trump the triumph of the progressive narrative will be more complete than ever.  My grandchildren will be taught at school about the president’s ‘Muslim ban’ just as my children are told about Rosa Parks and Martin Luther King. People will recall the Naked Gun-like image of a Jewish and Muslim family hugging while protesting against the order. There will be a film about Iraqi-Americans stuck at JFK, and… Read on

If you can’t afford a home, why vote Tory?

At the Spectator Things are so bad that even Tokyo will soon have a larger proportion of homeowners than London; in fact the residents of Japan’s capital now have far larger homes than a generation ago, largely a product of densification in the capital. Japan, of course, has little in the way of immigration, and it has low fertility rates which will inevitably free up space in the future; Britain, in contrast, has historically unprecedented levels of migration… Read on

‘British Values’ won’t help in our fight against terrorism

At the Coffee House Another structural problem is that, as the Adam Smith Institute’s Sam Bowman pointed out over the weekend, these attacks are going to increase hostility to Muslims, which in turn will encourage radicalisation. Sam is a friend with whom I profoundly disagree on the subject of immigration, and he got a lot of flak for this, but the point is almost certainly true. According to one paper, among the big terror risks are the size… Read on

If political leaders can’t have conscience rights, who can?

I have an article on the Acton Institute website on freedom of conscience in Europe.

Labour is now the party of the middle class

At the Coffee House The polling data coming out of the election is very interesting; the Conservatives enjoyed a 17-point lead among people with no qualifications, while Labour had a 15-point advantage with graduates. This does not take into account age, since older people are far less likely to have a degree, but certainly this was ‘Labour’s highest middle class support since 1979, and the Conservatives’ best score among C2DEs since then’, as one analyst Read on

The future belongs to the Left

At the Coffee House When I was in my early 20s and quite conservative I assumed I was just an anomaly, someone who develops these traits earlier than normal, and conservatism was like baldness or impotence or the other bad things that get you in middle age; most of my friends and contemporaries would catch up at some point, because these things just develop at different speeds. Now in my late 30s I realise it’s worse than that and… Read on