The commentators 22-12-15
There is one imponderable that the Prime Minister needs to factor into his EU referendum calculations: football. From June 10, the European championships are being held in France; and England, Wales and Northern Ireland will all be represented. With such a big decision at stake it may seem frivolous to suggest that a sporting event could influence the outcome; but it has before
- Philip Johnston, Daily Telegraph
The soul and future of the Conservative party is a soul in torment. Within the party, and even in cabinet, there are many MPs who, like Liam Fox, itch for Out. Among others, Iain Duncan Smith, Sajid Javid, Michael Gove, Theresa May, Theresa Villiers and Boris Johnson are all potential Outers, to greater or lesser degrees. Everybody knows this, and yet nobody knows quite what that means. The Downing Street line on how they will be expected to behave is far from clear
- Hugo Rifkind, The Times
Labour is not a singular moral project. It is just a political party born of sectional vested interests we call trade unions. It is not made up exclusively of heroes. It is run by the public sector upper-middle class for a working class that it increasingly struggles to understand. And it has no special claim on the truth, just impulses that veer from the noble to the myopic. Once the party gets over itself and accepts the Conservatives on the same footing, it might start to drain the culture of moral presumption that gives rise to abusive letters and threats of deselection from hysterical activists. Until then it will continue to fry in the fat of its own sanctimony, and deserve to
- Janan Ganesh, Financial Times
This is the bleakest midwinter of Labour’s misfortunes. Those emotionally invested in the hope of a future Labour government have never faced such dark days. Ahead lie years of a hegemonic Conservative era, free to do what they like in pursuit of driving the state below the size of anything attempted by Margaret Thatcher
- Polly Toynbee, The Guardian
And so we have a repeat of the Elveden situation where foot soldiers were left to carry the can while the generals who called the shots went free...
Ten Mirror group journalists, including half a dozen former editors, deputy editors and a current high-ranking executive, were "cleared" by the DPP yesterday.
Several of them swore under oath at Leveson that hacking never happened at their papers. Some may have done nothing wrong. Others may have orchestrated wholescale criminal activity. We may never know. And that isn't right. The innocent will forever be tainted, while the guilty go unpunished.
Editor's blog: A nagging sense of injustice
Comment Awards, 2015
Teenage ebola diarist honoured
Tuesday 24 November, 2015
A 13-year-old girl whose diary of life during the ebola epidemic in Sierra Leone made the Observer splash became the youngest winner at the EI Comment Awards in London today.
Bintu Sannoh was named young commentariat of the year for this piece about the crisis and two further articles about the stigma and poverty and hunger that came in the wake of the disease. Six months later she was able to return to school - but she writes about how everything had changed, with only a third of pupils having survived.
Janan Ganesh emerged the sole double winner of the morning as the Financial Times took pride of place at the ceremony at the RIBA headquarters. He won the top accolade of commentariat of the year, having earlier been named political commentator of 2015.
His paper won the award for the best comment pages, Gillian Tett was business commentator and Michael Skapinker won the new prize for business ethics commentary.
The Times also claimed a clutch of prizes: David Aaronovitch was honoured for comment piece of the year for this article after the Charlie Hebdo massacre, Jenni Russell won the new diversity award, Hugo Rifkind was arts and culture commentator and Sathnam Sanghera media commentator (in succession to SubScribe).
Other winners included Simon Jenkins, Gary Younge and Cory Doctorow of the Guardian, Allister Heath of the Telegraph, Channel 4, and the science writer Philip Ball.
The chairman's award went to Andrew Rawnsley, of the Observer, while the Sun punctured the domination of the broadsheets (even if few of them are physically broadsheets these days) by winning the eiDigest special award for its leader column.
SubScribe was honoured and surprised to find a place on the individual blogger shortlist, but delighted to see the award go to Matthew Scott, whose excellent Barrister Blogger can be seen here
You can see all the winners here and the full shortlists here.
Comment archive, 2015
Labour and Syria
Russia in Syria
Strategic defence review
Britain and Europe
Sinai jet crash
Lords v Commons
Xi Jinping visit
Xi Jinping's visit
Virginia TV shootings
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