89 | The End of the Party?

The Conservative Party now has barely 70,000 members, most of them aged over 60. Meanwhile Labour has over half a million, many of them young.  What does this mean for the future of British politics?  Can a party survive without members?  Can Labour negotiate the divisions within its ranks?  And what room is there for a new party of the centre?  With Helen Thompson and Chris Bickerton.

88 | James Meek on the NHS

David talks to journalist and novelist James Meek about his epic new study of the NHS in crisis.  They discuss the ideas behind a generation of NHS reforms, the meaning of efficiency and the challenge of caring for an ageing population.  What does the future hold - Japanese-style robotics or explosive politics and intergenerational strife?  Read the essay in the current edition of the LRB - https://bit.ly/2IpapQv
 

87 | Facebook vs the World

With the help of John Naughton and Jennifer Cobbe we unpick the Cambridge Analytica story and get to the heart of the matter: what is Facebook doing to us and can anything make it stop?  We talk about the business of surveillance capitalism and the difference between a scandal and a crisis.  Plus how working in tech is like working on the Manhattan Project and how Cambridge Analytica is like the Australian cricket team.
 

86 | Bridget Kendall on Russia

As the world wonders what Vladimir Putin is up to, we ask Bridget Kendall, former BBC correspondent in Moscow.  We talk about what really happened in Salisbury, what the masterplan is and whether Putin is succeeding in his goal of splitting the West.  Plus we catch up on the latest comings and goings in Washington and ask whether Corbyn's stance on Putin is doing the Labour Party lasting harm.  With Aaron Rapport and Helen Thompson.

85 | George Monbiot

We talk to George about some of the biggest questions of all: how to make politics better, how to effect meaningful change, how to save the planet.  Who is going to make the real difference?  Plus we ask whether he's been discombobulated by having Michael Gove as Environment Secretary.  Short answer: yes!  Recorded as part of the Imagine 2027 project https://imagine2027.org.uk

84 | ​Italy, Germany and the Future of Europe

ermany finally has a government, while Italy has none.  We try  to make sense of the latest twists in European politics, including the extraordinary results of the Italian elections.  Why is social democracy is such trouble everywhere?  Can Merkel's grand coalition survive?  What
is Italy for anyway?  With Chris Clark, Helen Thompson and Chris Bickerton.