Is Isis the ICF of Islam?

Why do I disagree with right-of-centre commentators on social issues when I tend to agree with them on economics? Perhaps it’s to do with applying our experiences to any given view, which is certainly the case when it comes to the rise of Islamically-inspired terrorism and, critically, its attraction for adolescent Muslim males brought-up in Europe’s inner cities. Not that I have any experience of …

Thoughts on my father

Dad died on Sunday. I’m still waiting for the emotions to kick in, although I’m mainly concerned for my mother who’d spent three years visiting him daily – watching the decline of a once-proud man. A good day was one where she’d managed to feed him, or where they’d been a flicker of recognition at her arrival. On bad days …

Is Brand the “psycho” in claret and blue?

I’ve always been rather proud of West Ham’s higher-than-average celebrity following. All the more so because, unlike – say – Chelsea or Manchester United (or even Liverpool), West Ham isn’t a cup-winning club attracting famous supporters for that reason. Rather, it’s a local football club that happens to be located in an area generating lots of high-achievers. All those celebrity …

The Sweeney proves it: things ain’t wot they were (thank God)

With my family out of London all of August, I can find myself scratching around for entertainment mid-week. This usually involves nothing more imaginative than surfing through the second-division TV channels for something vaguely interesting. I have low expectations of this endeavor, although this changed when I happened upon my favourite childhood TV series: The Sweeney. Of course, this gloriously-unreconstructed …