Angus Colwell

Angus Colwell

Angus Colwell is an assistant online editor at The Spectator.

The TikTok stars taking on the Tories

‘Sorry to be breaking into your usual politics-free feed,’ chirrups Rishi Sunak in his first-ever TikTok video. He is awkward, understandably. TikTok is enemy territory for the Tories. What most users learn about the Conservatives is usually damning, from left and right. ‘I think the Tory party deserves to die,’ says Jess Gill, who with

Slavoj Zizek, Angus Colwell, Svitlana Morenets, Cindy Yu, and Philip Hensher

32 min listen

On this week’s Spectator Out Loud: Philosopher Slavoj Zizek takes us through his diary including his Britney Spears Theory of Action (1:08); Angus Colwell reports from the front line of the pro-Palestinian student protests (8:09); Svitlana Morenets provides an update on what’s going on in Georgia, where tensions between pro-EU and pro-Russian factions are heading to

Drama students: how universities raised a generation of activists

39 min listen

This week: On Monday, tents sprung up at Oxford and Cambridge as part of a global, pro-Palestinian student protest which began at Columbia University. In his cover piece, Yascha Mounk, a professor at Johns Hopkins University, explains how universities in both the US and the UK have misguidedly harboured and actively encouraged absurdist activism on

City folk go wild for wild garlic

For a certain type of Barbour-clad middle-aged man, the best time of year is late summer, and the arrival of the grouse season. But if you’re in your twenties and living in Hackney, you’re more likely to get excited for spring and the arrival of wild garlic. Foraging has become a fashionable activity for twentysomethings.

Thank goodness pubs shut at 11

A group of four stagger out of a pub in Britain at around 11.20 on a Thursday night. The search begins for somewhere to have one more drink without a £20 entry fee. Men on doors say no by shaking their heads. Pubs show their appetite for more visitors by turning their lights up a

The lazy corpspeak of the Foreign Office establishment

Mark Sedwill is a serious man. He has a master’s in economics from Oxford. He worked in Cairo, Nicosia, Baghdad and Islamabad over several decades as a diplomat. He was a UN weapons inspector, Her Majesty’s Ambassador to Afghanistan and served as the Nato senior civilian representative there. He became cabinet secretary in 2018 after

Abolish the food hall

I remember going to Westfield Shepherd’s Bush to visit my first food hall, still a relatively new concept for British diners. They’re big rooms filled with shared seating and different kitchen stalls, serving everything from Thai to burgers, wontons to bratwurst. You can have a burrito and your friend can have a pizza. Oh, how I loved

Lionel Shriver, Angus Colwell and Toby Young

32 min listen

On this week’s episode, Lionel Shriver asks if Donald Trump can get a fair trial in America (00:39), Angus Colwell speaks to the Gen-Zers who would fight for Britain (08:25), Matthew Parris makes the case for assisted dying (13:15), Toby Young tells the story of the time he almost died on his gap year (20:43),

How the Tories gave up on liberty

43 min listen

On the podcast: have the Tories given up on liberty? Kate Andrews writes the cover story for The Spectator this week. She argues that after the government announced plans to ban disposable vapes and smoking for those born after 2009, the Tories can no longer call themselves the party of freedom. Kate is joined by conservative peer

Your country needs you, Gen Z

Gen Z doesn’t look like it wants to fight for Britain, but last week, General Sir Patrick Sanders, the Chief of the General Staff, said we might have to. He suggested that people my age should be prepared to join a ‘civilian army’ in case we go to war with Russia. But could we handle

AI won’t be humanity’s ‘co-pilot’

One of the world’s most powerful men was trapped in a central London basement this morning. Satya Nadella, the CEO of Microsoft, had come down to the lower ground floor of Chatham House to talk to the former chief mandarin of the Foreign Office about artificial intelligence. He had precisely 40 minutes, our host said,

Britain and US launch airstrikes against Houthis

The US and the UK have launched airstrikes against Houthi rebels in Yemen whose continued attacks are disrupting trade in the Red Sea. Rishi Sunak convened his cabinet on Thursday night to discuss what action would be taken. Strikes were reported in Yemen’s capital, Sanaa, and the Houthi stronghold port of Hudaydah. Downing Street said

Is the West at war in the Red Sea?

Britain and the US are getting ever more drawn in to the conflict in the Red Sea, as Iran-backed Houthis fire missiles at commercial ships. The USS Carney has downed 14 attack drones launched from Houthi-controlled territory and the Royal Navy destroyer HMS Diamond is also there shooting down missiles.  The Houthis are firing from

‘Rizz’, ‘vibes’, and what we lose with Very Online language

Welcome to our language: ‘rizz’. Here’s the OED definition: colloquial noun, ‘defined as ‘style, charm or attractiveness; the ability to attract a romantic or sexual partner’. It was announced on Monday as the Dictionary’s word of the year, and it’s been amusing to see some commentators talk about it like they’d heard it before. Rizz

‘I was astounded’: Gary Marcus on the Sam Altman saga

This morning, OpenAI – the firm behind ChatGPT – rehired its chief executive, Sam Altman, after it fired him on Friday. Altman is the most prominent ambassador for the world of artificial intelligence, and was set to join Microsoft after leaving the company. After his sacking, more than 95 per cent of OpenAI’s employees demanded

Svitlana Morenets, Sean Thomas and Angus Colwell

21 min listen

This week, Svitlana Morenets says Ukraine’s counteroffensive is not living up to the hype (00:59), Sean Thomas says he likes travelling to crappy towns (10:27), and Angus Colwell defends London’s rickshaw drivers (17:38).  Presented and produced by Max Jeffery.

In defence of Rickshaws

London rickshaws, or pedicabs, are always described as a scourge. They’re too bright and they’re too loud, the charge sheet reads: they block up the road and rip people off. Last week, the government announced in the King’s Speech that Transport for London will be given powers to license them. Drivers will have their fares

Inside the Armistice Day protests

The Metropolitan Police today staged their largest-ever operation with two marches – the pro-Palestinian march and a smaller counter-protest – taking place in London. The latter, centred on Westminster, provided most of the arrests. The main route of the pro-Palestine march (which started in Park Lane and was moving towards the US Embassy in Vauxhall)