Alastair's Blog

Filter blog posts:  Show all | Articles only | Videos only RSS feed

Time for Labour to regain initiative on the politics of the economy amid Osborne’s failures and flailings

Posted on 1 December 2014 | 12:12pm

Alan Johnson is my next interviewee for GQ, out later this week. Yesterday the magazine’s spin doctors (they’re everywhere you know) put out a few selected quotes and some of the papers have focused on Alan saying Ed Miliband had asked him if he fancied a return to the front bench. Answer, no, though he […]

Politics has so much to learn from business and sport in the art of winning

Posted on 21 November 2014 | 2:11pm

It is always a nice moment when the publisher sends through the final, final version of the cover of a planned new book. It is especially nice when the designer has taken an idea given by the author – I wanted all the names in my WINNERS book inside an Olympic Gold Medal – and […]

What Cameron should say (and won’t) when he loses the Rochester by-election

Posted on 18 November 2014 | 10:11am

‘Mr Cameron did not cause the rise of UKIP, and he can’t stop it.’ In an otherwise very intelligent analysis of the Prime Minister’s problems, the FT’s Janan Ganesh is wrong in the first part of that sentence. Mr Cameron did cause the rise of UKIP, when he offered an In-Out referendum. Until then, they […]

Is ‘spin’ dead in the era of social media?

Posted on 13 November 2014 | 10:11am

Here is the text of a speech I gave this morning to the Festival Of Marketing in London. There was also a good q and a, some of which might be on twitter hashtag #FoM14 Ok. So a while back I am flying into Gatwick from Croatia. I’m the first off the plane. I get […]

Cameron, Clegg, Hunt, how can someone wait six months for mental healthcare if suicide is the other option?

Posted on 24 October 2014 | 11:10am

Earlier this week, as I blogged at the time, I was on the panel of a BBC3 FreeSpeech mental health special. It was fantastic to see and hear so many young people prepared to be open about their mental health conditions. But it was also infuriating and upsetting to hear how many felt they could not […]

Huge thanks to the BBC3 audience of mentally ill youngsters for re-igniting my passion

Posted on 22 October 2014 | 6:10am

Oh my Lord, it is more than a month since I posted a blog, the morning after the Scottish independence referendum. That has to be the longest – yes, it definitely is the longest – I have ever gone without sticking a few thoughts down here. Lots of reasons. Been working overseas a fair bit. Also […]

Whatever the final result, the whole of UK politics has to wake up to some powerful lessons of Scotland

Posted on 18 September 2014 | 9:09pm

Whether it is YES or NO, one thing is certain – UK politics has changed forever as a result of this referendum. I will rephrase that – if UK politics does not change, does not wake up to some of the lessons of recent weeks and months, it means it has a death wish. The first […]

Phone a friend with a vote – and urge a NO vote for the sake of Scotland and the UK

Posted on 16 September 2014 | 9:09am

  Here is a piece on the separation referendum I have written for the Telegraph. I have it on the authority of Alex Salmond no less that I am Scottish. He told me so – indeed he insisted on it after I suggested he didn’t really see south of the border Scots like me as […]

May Robin Williams’ tragic end herald the start of new attitudes to depression

Posted on 12 August 2014 | 1:08pm

Though an inquest might provide some of the answers to questions people are asking today, the truth is that none of us will ever know, even if he left a note, what was going through Robin Williams’ mind in the final moments of his enriched and enriching life. No two people are the same. No two people’s depressions […]

If Lineker can speak out against booze and gambling in sport, so can politicians. And they should

Posted on 4 August 2014 | 4:08am

So he goes from the World Cup in Rio to the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow, and next stop the Edinburgh TV Festival for Gary Lineker. Busy man. Lineker is my latest GQ interviewee, the magazine out this week, and some of the media have picked up this morning on very strong comments he made about […]