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Headspace by Prospect Magazine

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Headspace #18—Web of control

Not so long ago the web was on the quirky edges of life, but today it is at its heart. John Naughton started out as an enthusiast, but today he joins Tom Clark to explain why it has fallen prey to corporate capture and bred a new surveillance capitalism. James Ball explains how social media has been used to brainwash voters. Meanwhile, Samira Shackle comes back from a trip to Mosul, the Iraqi city until recently under IS control, and explains how blameless citizens there are today paying...

Duration: 00:33:18

Headspace #17—The globalisation lie

Not long ago, Tony Blair and Bill Clinton said there was no more point in arguing with globalisation than the weather: it was an unstoppable wind of change. No longer. It has spun into reverse. Dani Rodrik joins Tom Clark and explains why good economics always made hyper-globalisation a dubious proposition. Meanwhile, Keynes biographer Robert Skidelsky reappraises the record of one thoughtful globaliser: Gordon Brown. And feminist Lynne Segal takes on another sell from the economics...

Duration: 00:37:04


Britain’s business leaders are increasingly jittery about a “cliff edge” Brexit. But is leaving Europe necessarily a threat for UK PLC, rather than an opportunity? Economists Adam Posen and Diane Coyle join Tom Clark, and give the low-down both, on the scale of the coming shock as they see it, and the pre-existing frailty of the low-productivity British economy. Meanwhile, Andrew Dickson has taken a trip to Bilbao and asks whether culture is the key to restarting an economy.

Duration: 00:32:17

Headspace #15—The state of the nation

Dutchman Joris Luyendijk imagined he was moving in with European cousins when he arrived in London; six years later he was cheering on Brexit. He tells Tom Clark how he learned to loathe England. At least Britain can laugh at itself—Sameer Rahim has been talking to our greatest living satirist, Armando Iannucci. All nations are defined by the stories they tell about themselves, and Daniella Peled reviews the work of the new Palestinian Museum in putting twists in the tale of a people...

Duration: 00:30:48

BONUS: How To Fix... Social Care

Prospect has a new podcast series starting this week, called How To Fix... - and we'd like to share it with our Headspace listeners. In the first episode, Steve Bloomfield was joined by Andrew Dilnot, Liz Kendall and Daniel Drepper to discuss social care—what's wrong with it, and how we could make it better. You can subscribe now to hear future episodes at: Show notes Here’s Andrew Dilnot’s report on Funding of Care and Support....

Duration: 00:28:03

Headspace #14: The character thing

Just how much difference — or not — do the quirks of an individual make to the tide of history? In this month’s episode we welcome historian-turned-Cabinet minister Andrew Adonis, who claims every election is won by the more talented leader. We hear from Wittgenstein's biographer, Ray Monk, who argues that one of the greatest philosophical minds of the lot—Gottlob Frege—lived in a husk of a man. Finally, the globe-trotting journalist, Wendell Steavenson, who followed a refugee family from...

Duration: 00:34:53

Headspace #13: Crowns and Culture Wars

This month Tom Clark and guests chew over three simmering—or potential—culture wars. Immigration is often said to divide the "metropolitan elite" from "the masses", but Steve Bloomfield says that Canada proves that, done the right way, immigration can be popular. Jessica Abrahams fills us in on what's good, what's bad and what's complacent in fourth-wave feminism. And the Sun's Emily Andrews fills us in on how insiders fear that the change of the guards at Buckingham Palace that will bring...

Duration: 00:34:57

Headspace #12: Experts on trial

Alison Wolf, Paul Ormerod and Adam Tooze join Prospect Editor Tom Clark to discuss whether it’s a good thing that so many people go to university; why trust in experts has fallen so low; and how, 10 years on from the banking crisis, a new system of regulation has been quietly introduced under-the-radar. But how sustainable is it?

Duration: 00:34:55

Headspace #11: Game, set and match to the malcontents

The malconents have, once again, wrought revenge on the know-it-alls, landing Britain with a hung parliament instead of the predicted Conservative landslide. Steve Richards sees election 2017 as one more instance of the worldwide trend for outsiders causing an upset at the expense of an establishment which has lost all legitimacy since the economic crisis of a decade ago. Rachel Sylvester says the campaign performed an X-ray on Theresa May’s political soul, and revealed a brittle character...

Duration: 00:31:48

#10: Prospect Big Election Debate 2017

Nick Cohen, Matthew Parris and Meg Russell (Constitution Unit) join Tom Clark and a live audience to discuss where Theresa May’s surprise ballot will leave the government, the opposition and a divided country.

Duration: 01:13:35

Headspace #7: The end for Labour?

Ross McKibbin, Nicholas Timmins and Lucky Wadham join Tom Clark to discuss the condition of Labour and its greatest creation, the NHS, as well as Marine Le Pen's run at the French Presidency.

Duration: 00:29:11

Headspace #6: Grave new world

“Debate globalisation?” Tony Blair said a dozen years ago, “You might as well debate whether autumn should follow summer." Well, we’re debating it now all right, and economist George Magnus fears that it's set to spin into reverse—very possibly sinking us into a global trade war. Some unhappy dwellers on Planet Trump fear that real war could soon be on the agenda as well. Spies are better placed than most of us to assess the risks, and a host of them have been coming out of the shadows to...

Duration: 00:34:23

Headspace #5—democracy under attack

Power to the people! As an ideal democracy has long reigned unchallenged, but could it fall out of fashion after the convulsions of Brexit and Trump? Certainly, Vladimir Putin's cyberwars raise new questions about its integrity. Journalist Luke Harding, who was expelled from Russia in 2011, explains how the Kremlin's campaign of democratic disruption abroad exports tricks long in use in its elections at home. He also relays his first-hand experience of Putin's spies, who left sex manuals...

Duration: 00:30:49

Headspace #1: Utopia

In the first episode of this new monthly series, Prospect editor Tom Clark is joined by three contributors to discuss the ideas gracing the October edition of the magazine. We hear from Joanne Paul on what Thomas More's "Utopia" can tell us about politics some 500 years after it was first published. Rachel Holmes applauds the rise of women to positions of political power—but are they radical enough? Plus, former Conservative minister David Willetts tells us why Thatcher's industrial policy...

Duration: 00:28:15