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Economists overwhelmingly reject Brexit in boost for Cameron
Poll shows 88% of 600 experts fear long-term fall in GDP if UK leaves single market, and 82% are alarmed over impact on household incomeNine out of 10 of the country’s top economists working across academia, the City, industry, small businesses and the public sector believe the British economy will be harmed by Brexit, according to the biggest survey of its kind ever conducted. Related: Ukip’s use of Great Escape theme tune grates with composer’s sons Continue reading...
(Sat, 28 May 2016 19:30:13 GMT)

Lightning strikes kill one and injure dozens across Europe
Man dies in Poland, several hurt at children’s party in Paris and 35 in German village as freak thunderstorms hit EuropeOne man has died and scores of people been injured, including children, as lightning strikes hit several parts of Europe, including a park in Paris and a football pitch in Germany.A bolt of lightning killed a man hiking in mountains in south-west Poland on Saturday. Storm lightning injured three others in the same region, and a 61-year-old man drowned in flash flooding. Continue reading...
(Sat, 28 May 2016 21:22:25 GMT)

Jeremy Corbyn ‘failed to reply’ to Israeli Labour on fears of antisemitism
Labour MPs say leader’s attitude to invitation to Jerusalem is ‘flat-footed and lackadaisical’Jeremy Corbyn faced fresh criticism over his handling of antisemitism allegations after Labour’s sister party in Israel said it had had no reply to a letter its leader sent to him a month ago expressing dismay and inviting him to Jerusalem to see the Yad Vashem Holocaust museum.Labour MPs said they were shocked that no response had apparently been sent and added that it was further evidence of the party leadership’s slow and inadequate response to the crisis. Continue reading...
(Sat, 28 May 2016 22:12:00 GMT)

Real Madrid win Champions League on penalties against Atlético
It was another epic encounter between these old rivals, featuring some of the best and worst traits of Spanish football, and when everything was done Cristiano Ronaldo’s top was off, his muscles were flexed and the European Cup was back in the hands of the club that likes to think of this trophy as their own possession. Related: Real Madrid twist the knife again to give Atlético the cruellest of nights Continue reading...
(Sat, 28 May 2016 21:38:18 GMT)

All scientific papers to be free by 2020 under EU proposals
Results of research supported by public and public-private funds set to be made freely available to allAll publicly funded scientific papers published in Europe could be made free to access by 2020, under a “life-changing” reform ordered by the European Union’s science chief, Carlos Moedas.The Competitiveness Council, a gathering of ministers of science, innovation, trade and industry, agreed on the target following a two-day meeting in Brussels last week. Continue reading...
(Sat, 28 May 2016 15:43:23 GMT)

Failure to report signs of child abuse ‘should be made a criminal offence’
Survivor charities are calling for the threat of legal action to make schools, care homes and hospitals more vigilant in protecting young peopleTeachers and doctors will face criminal sanctions if they fail to report concerns that children are being abused, under controversial proposals to be discussed in a government consultation.The clamour for changes to the UK’s child protection law has been growing since the Jimmy Savile scandal, which exposed how the DJ abused hundreds of young victims at institutions across the country. It emerged that, despite the fact that many people had concerns about Savile’s behaviour, very few raised them with the authorities. Continue reading...
(Sat, 28 May 2016 20:56:09 GMT)

UK weapons sales to oppressive regimes top £3bn a year
Big increase since 2014 in quantity of missiles and bombs sold to countries on Foreign Office’s list of human rights violatorsThe UK is selling record quantities of arms – including missiles, bombs and grenades – to countries listed by the Foreign Office as having dubious human rights records. Several have been accused of war crimes or suppressing popular protest.More than £3bn of British-made weaponry was licensed for export last year to 21 of the Foreign Office’s 30 “human rights priority countries” – those identified by the government as being where “the worst, or greatest number of, human rights violations take place”, or “where we judge that the UK can make a real difference”. Listed countries that last year bought British arms and military equipment include: Continue reading...
(Sat, 28 May 2016 20:00:14 GMT)

Stig Broeckx in coma after crash involving motorbikes at Tour of Belgium
• Stage three of race cancelled after Belgian rider’s crash• Antoine Demoitie died after being hit by a motorbike in MarchThe Belgian cyclist Stig Broeckx is in a coma after a crash involving two race motorbikes during the Tour of Belgium. Related: Antoine Demoitié's death should be a wake-up call for cycling's crowded races Continue reading...
(Sat, 28 May 2016 22:43:54 GMT)

Isis may face Falluja bloodbath, but new offensive shows power to spread terror
Islamic State is up against a struggle to retain two key strongholds. But a major push by its forces in Syria shows defeat is a long way offIslamic State is under pressure in two strongholds, the Iraqi town of Falluja and the countryside around its self-declared capital, Raqqa. But a fresh assault in north Syria and threats to strike in the western world during Ramadan are a reminder that efforts to dismantle the group are likely to take years.The US said late on Friday it had killed the top Isis commander in Falluja in airstrikes that also hit around 70 other fighters, and an Iraqi militia commander said the final assault would come within “days, not weeks” amid grim reports of civilians starving to death. Penned in by a siege, with food and medicines running short, Isis has trapped tens of thousands of civilians in the city as human shields, a handful of families who escaped in recent days told aid organisations and journalists. They have risked their lives to flee past Isis controls or through minefields, convinced that the fighting to come would be even more dangerous for ordinary Iraqis trapped inside their homes. Continue reading...
(Sat, 28 May 2016 22:17:52 GMT)

Black man is washed whiter in China’s racist detergent advert
Laundry product firm denies racial slur in commercial that has outraged the worldThe company behind a Chinese advert for detergent that has been dubbed the most racist ever has defended the bizarre content, saying any discrimination is in the eye of the viewer.In the advert a pouch of Qiaobi cleaning liquid is forced into the man’s mouth and he is then bundled into a washing machine by a smiling woman. After a cycle of muffled screams, she opens the lid and a grinning Asian man climbs out. He winks at the viewer before the slogan flashes up on screen: Change begins with Qiaobi. Continue reading...
(Sat, 28 May 2016 17:04:12 GMT)

Poor polls, scandal, a cussed rival … how it’s all going wrong for Hillary Clinton
She was expected to be the clear frontrunner for the presidency. But after a terrible week, Hillary Clinton is still trading blows with Bernie Sanders as the Donald Trump menace growsThe week that Donald Trump finally sealed the Republican presidential nomination ought to have been a triumphant one for Hillary Clinton. With a final few delegates nudging him past the official finishing line on Thursday, here at last was the candidate that Democrats always dreamed of running against: unpopular, undisciplined and ostensibly unelectable in November’s general election.Yet in the Alice in Wonderland world of American politics in 2016, nothing is what it seems. Clinton supporters would instead have to stomach six impossible things before the week was out. Continue reading...
(Sat, 28 May 2016 23:05:18 GMT)

Rebel Wilson: Australia’s scene stealer takes centre stage | Observer profile
The cheeky comic actor is best known for her audacious cameos in the films Pitch Perfect and Bridesmaids. But, as her forthcoming role in Guys and Dolls suggests, she is also equipped for theatreIn the 1970s, it was all about Olivia Newton-John, with her sweatband and iridescent Lycra. Then came Kylie Minogue, cute in dungarees. Britain, it seems, has a habit of clutching petite, bubbly, blond Australian entertainers to its collective heart. But the current Aussie favourite is quite a different proposition.Rebel Wilson is naughty, witty and brash, and definitely not petite. At 36, the comic actor from Sydney, who made her name with supporting roles in Bridesmaids and Pitch Perfect, has quickly become a larger-than-life feature of the comedy firmament. As a carefully calibrated, living and breathing national stereotype, Wilson is proving as difficult to ignore as Barry Humphries/Dame Edna Everage and Crocodile Dundee himself, Paul Hogan, once were. Continue reading...
(Sat, 28 May 2016 23:05:18 GMT)

The celebrity privacy case that exposes hypocrisy of Silicon Valley power brokers
Tech companies talk about the free flow of information but their owners use their wealth to block any intrusion into their personal livesOurs is a world where a handful of technology companies – along with a considerably higher number of their billionaire owners – are heading towards power that will border on the absolute, uncontested not just by politics but also by the media of any kind.Two seemingly unrelated recent news stories make it quite clear. First, a report from Moody’s Investors Service suggests that just five US tech firms – Apple, Microsoft, Google, Cisco and Oracle – hold $504bn (£345bn) in spare cash, a third of total reserves by all US corporations (excluding financial companies). It is the first time that all of the top five spots have gone to companies in the tech sector. Continue reading...
(Sat, 28 May 2016 20:50:38 GMT)

The establishment has had its day: hence the rise of Trump and Boris | Ian Leslie
Now even rightwing politicians are raging against the machine – because it has so little power leftIn a recent, laudatory newspaper profile of Boris Johnson, the Leave campaign’s leading spokesman was described as fighting “the forces of the establishment”. The newspaper which saw fit to describe the old Etonian MP and former mayor of London this way was that nest of chippy radicals, the Daily Telegraph.These days, even the establishment is anti-establishment. Two weeks ago, Iain Duncan Smith – Conservative MP, former lieutenant in the British army, until recently a cabinet minister – also complained about the establishment, in the course of an address to the members of a private club in Belgravia. Continue reading...
(Sat, 28 May 2016 23:03:17 GMT)

Sam Mendes won’t direct next James Bond film: ‘It’s time for somebody else’
Former theatre director who oversaw Skyfall and Spectre said he ‘loved every second of it’ but that he was ready to move on from the franchiseSam Mendes, the acclaimed director of Skyfall and Spectre, said on Saturday he will not direct the next James Bond film. Related: It's Bond, Jane Bond: Gillian Anderson throws hat into the ring to be next 007 Continue reading...
(Sat, 28 May 2016 20:28:43 GMT)

Magician Richard Jones wins Britain's Got Talent
The army bandsman became the first illusionist to win the talent show, picking up the £250,000 prize and a slot at the Royal Variety Performance Magician Richard Jones, the first illusionist to win Britain’s Got Talent, has described his win as “unbelievable”.The army bandsman of the Household Cavalry was the bookmakers’ favourite to take the crown. He will perform on stage at the Royal Variety Performance and take home the £250,000 prize. Continue reading...
(Sat, 28 May 2016 22:30:32 GMT)

Magnum's new breed of photographers – in pictures
From portraits of young Iranians to poverty in California, a new exhibition at Magnum in London showcases the work of six photographers who have recently joined the ranks of the prestigious photo agency. It continues until 29 July at Magnum Print Room, 63 Gee Street, London EC1‘Poverty is often looked at in isolation, but it is an American problem’ – Matt Black’s photographs of America’s poor Continue reading...
(Sat, 28 May 2016 22:30:17 GMT)

Not your average pop stars, but Reggie N Bollie’s Afrobeats is the sound of summer
The runners-up of last year’s X Factor, now celebrating a top 10 single, tell how their humble beginnings have shaped their successReginald Ainooson and Ishmael Hamid are not your average pop stars.Ainooson, 29, used to be a night receptionist at the Premier Inn in Farnborough and was once training to be an accountant. Hamid, 31, lives in the quiet Cambridgeshire town of St Neots with his wife, stepson aged six, and nine-month-old daughter. They make unlikely divas. You can’t imagine them throwing TVs out of hotel windows or demanding bowls of blue M&Ms. Continue reading...
(Sat, 28 May 2016 23:05:18 GMT)

Back to the Costas: terror fear sees travel industry return to its roots
After a litany of deadly attacks, the package holiday market has collapsed in Egypt and Tunisia – but familiar resorts in the western Med are booming againThe string of terror attacks in Europe and further afield since last summer has sent reverberations through the travel industry, but Thomas Cook, arguably Britain’s best known tour operator, has felt the effects more than most.Its chief executive, Peter Fankhauser, has warned the industry is suffering the worst disruption in his 30-year career. Continue reading...
(Sat, 28 May 2016 15:00:07 GMT)

The Nice Guys: 'You take these tarnished angels and then you let them loose'
How Russell Crowe, Ryan Gosling and director Shane Black are bringing back the buddy movie Related: The Nice Guys review: Crowe and Gosling are abysmal PIs in a high hit-rate action comedy A lot of people liked Shane Black’s 2005 directorial debut, the self-referential neo-noir romp Kiss Kiss Bang Bang, but Russell Crowe wasn’t one of them. “I think it’s too aware of itself,” he says. “It feels like there’s an in-joke going on in that movie, and I don’t connect to that. It’s not funny for me if the guy thinks he’s being funny.” Continue reading...
(Sat, 28 May 2016 08:00:29 GMT)

Hadley Freeman: single women, bag that man now!
Modern women, much of the media narrative goes, are screwed when it comes to Catching A Man. Feminism’s all well and good, but you can’t argue with biologyA fun game to kick off the weekend, ladies! Guess which year the following quotations about your dating prospects are from:1 “As bad as things may be for a single 38-year-old woman now, it’s going to be a bloodbath when today’s single, twentysomething women turn 38.” Continue reading...
(Sat, 28 May 2016 08:00:29 GMT)

What I’m really thinking: the political adviser
I’m in constant terror at the thought of what you may say or do I’m only here to help get you elected. But why you? Yes, I know, you won the party’s nomination, but did they realise that, despite your firm handshake and boyish charm, you know as much about corporate tax policy as I know about astrophysics? That you can’t name the president of France?Well, Mr Charisma, you need to understand this much: I know our party platform line by line; I wrote some of it. It is comprehensive, coherent and progressive, and carefully designed to seize control of Mr Middle-Class North American Voter’s hand and guide his pencil into the little circle beside your name. The only thing that stands between our platform and that lovely “X” is… you. Continue reading...
(Sat, 28 May 2016 07:59:29 GMT)

Eddie Izzard: ‘The greatest love of my life? My mother'
The comedian, actor and writer on his 27 marathons in 27 days and his most treasured possessionBorn in South Yemen, Izzard, 54, began his career as a standup at the Comedy Store in London in 1987; he later also took up acting. He has appeared in the film Valkyrie and the TV series Hannibal; his latest role is in the crime drama, Powers, which is on Spike. He is touring Force Majeure, his comedy show in three languages. In March, he completed 27 marathons in 27 days in South Africa as a tribute to Nelson Mandela. He lives in London.When were you happiest?Living in Bangor, County Down, because my mum was still alive. She died when I was six. Continue reading...
(Sat, 28 May 2016 08:30:29 GMT)

Are gendered toys harming childhood development?
Research has found that dividing children’s toys based on gender can have lasting developmental implicationsMany parents are tired of the pink and blue divide in the toy aisles. Just last month, the White House held a conference on gender stereotypes in toys and media, with many toy manufacturers and experts attending. After feedback, Target announced in 2015 that it would get rid of signs labeling toys for boys or for girls. A UK campaign called Let Toys Be Toys seeks to get retailers to stop categorizing toys and books for one gender only.Developmental psychologists and sociologists are happy to finally see pushback from parents. Researchers have worried about the impact of having toys that were so segregated by gender for some time, says Lisa Dinella, associate professor at Monmouth University and Principal Investigator of the Gender Development Laboratory. Continue reading...
(Sat, 28 May 2016 14:00:06 GMT)

Since my wife’s death, I realise I no longer give a toss
Parked outside a bank, Adam Golightly realises his worldview has shiftedIt’s time to pretend that the world isn’t totally shit by returning to work, and I’m worried. Since Helen’s funeral, I’ve been digging out a routine for Millie and Matt from the rubble of a domestic happiness all but flattened by their mother’s death. It’s not my employers who are the problem – they have been great. Nor is it because I think everyone will be watching me – very few colleagues know that she is dead. From Helen’s bedside, I’d lobbied human resources for the news of her death to be kept quiet.Ivan, who works in HR, got the plot quickly. “We’ll tell only the senior team to explain your absence. There will be no general awareness of your situation. You do realise, though, that this means people will be insensitive to the rawness of it all for you. You’ll need a thick skin,” he added. Fair warning, but a rhino hide seems a reasonable trade-off for being spared the awkwardness of “I’m so sorry …” exchanges and to avoid seeing the fear in people’s eyes that I might blub like a baby. Continue reading...
(Sat, 28 May 2016 05:30:26 GMT)

Caravaggio and the art of dieting
The luscious banquets painted by the Renaissance master were held up as a good example of healthy eating this week by the National Obesity Forum – but were they really that nutritious?The Caravaggio diet is spread out at an inn in The Supper at Emmaus, painted in 1601 by the man himself. But does it have much in common with the jolly pre-modern gourmandising recommended this week by David Haslam of the National Obesity Forum? Claiming that low-fat diets are counter-productive, Haslam mused: “I often contrast a Caravaggio still-life masterpiece, giving ideal positive images of healthy food – pheasant, meat, fish, wine, cocoa, fruit and vegetables, with maybe a slice of bread – with the negative image of a traditional ‘diet’ … and wonder where the world went wrong.”He is clearly familiar with Dan Brown’s law, which says that if you are going to namecheck an artist, you should make sure it’s a name everyone has heard of. The secret society conspiracy theories in Brown’s bestseller The Da Vinci Code had previously been attached to the French artist Nicolas Poussin, but Brown must have rightly realised that no one would buy a novel called The Poussin Code. Few even look at Poussin’s paintings in the National Gallery. I suspect the paintings Haslam is thinking of are really 17th-century Dutch still-life pictures with their hearty north European hunks of high- fat cheese, frothing ale glasses and bulging pies. But the “Willem Claeszoon Heda diet” doesn’t sound nearly so good. Continue reading...
(Sat, 28 May 2016 07:00:27 GMT)

Off to Cleethorpes, for sea, sand and style
Like many British seaside towns, the Lincolnshire resort is witnessing a revival, swapping its kiss-me-quick image for stylish bars and boutiquesThe lightbulb moment that took Brett Smith back to his seaside home town after an 11-year absence happened close to where we are both sitting. On a break from his Manchester-based job in commercial recruitment, he set off one morning for a run along Cleethorpes’ Blue Flag beach – a beach so clean he says it’s as if “somebody’s gone out and hoovered the carpet”. Braced by the refreshing sea air and early sunshine, he made a decision: “It’s time to come home.”Smith sits proudly in People Bar and Kitchen (20 Cambridge Street), the restaurant that was the product of his beach epiphany. Housed in a terraced former dairy, it has a cosy ski-chalet feel and is the sort of gem any city would be pleased to have, let alone a small seaside resort on the Lincolnshire coast. People Bar specialises in antipasti and sharing platters made from locally sourced ingredients, with wines and craft beers to wash them down. Its draught lager, Batemans Prohibition, could for some time be found nowhere else in the UK. Marston’s Shipyard pale ale on the tap next to it had a similar exclusivity until JD Wetherspoon took it on. “You win some, you lose some,” says Smith. “I can’t fight a Wetherspoon yet, but we’ll see what happens.” Continue reading...
(Sat, 28 May 2016 08:00:29 GMT)

Something borrowed: the rise of the identikit wedding
From barn to beach to boho – there are only 10 kinds of wedding happening this summerI got engaged recently, for my sins, and though I am naturally overwhelmed with joy to be marrying a man who adds Tabasco to any delicately flavoured dish I cook while complaining about how many books I own, it does also mean that I have been sucked into the terrifying, pastel-hued vortex that is the world of the online wedding blog. For those unacquainted with this particular genre of lifestyle porn, believe me when I say: here be monsters, and those monsters are after your hard-earned cash.Don’t get me wrong: I’ve got nothing against a good wedding. I find such public declarations of commitment and the way they bring friends and families together deeply moving. But I can’t help but be alarmed that not only does the average British wedding cost a preposterous £20,500, but almost all of them seem to be indistinguishable (or at least the heterosexual ones do; gay couples have largely escaped this fate, through not being so doggedly devoted to centuries’ worth of rigid gender norms). Continue reading...
(Sat, 28 May 2016 07:00:27 GMT)

Hidden beauty spots in the Lake District and Yorkshire Dales
Wonderful, secluded places are still to be found in the well-trodden Lakes and Dales, as we reveals in an excerpt from the Wild Guide to the area Continue reading...
(Sat, 28 May 2016 06:00:26 GMT)

Start the day with a bang: Yotam Ottolenghi’s big weekend breakfast recipes
There’s no escaping the fact that a serious breakfast is more work than a bowl of cereal or a slice of toast, but every now and then, it pays to have a real blow-outThis is the second of two columns on serious breakfasts and, as I said last week, the recipes are unapologetic about the effort needed to get them on the table. But we can keep alive the myth of the lazy weekend breakfast, so long as we’re organised. Much of the chopping and cooking can be done ahead: the turnip cake, for instance, can be made up to the point before it gets sliced, while the fritter batter and the fruit for the granola can be made and kept in the fridge overnight. In fact, I can pretty much hear Easy Like Sunday Morning playing already. Continue reading...
(Sat, 28 May 2016 08:00:29 GMT)

Left without internet for six months (and I’m in the shade of the BT Tower)
After BT failed to install broadband when she moved in, a first-time buyer in central London says more than 100 emails have got her nowhereIt is one of central London’s most striking landmarks and dominates the skyline over Sheila Coombes’s flat in Fitzrovia. But for her, the very sight of the BT Tower – a mere three-minute walk away – adds insult to injury over what she describes as appalling treatment by the telecommunications giant.Nearly six months since moving into a new-build apartment in her first property purchase through shared ownership, Coombes (not her real name) still has no BT internet access. Continue reading...
(Sat, 28 May 2016 06:00:26 GMT)

Tim Dowling: ‘Here are your dignity shorts,’ the nurse says. ‘I’ll leave you to pop those on’
When conversation turns to the spirit realm, I normally feel excluded, because I have nothing to contribute. Not any more. Not after a recent trip to the hospitalI am sitting in my office, reading an information sheet titled Understanding Flexible Sigmoidoscopy. Although I’ve read it twice already, I keep skipping sections that I think won’t appeal to me. I’ve still managed to grasp its underlying message, which is: “You haven’t had a camera up your arse until you’ve had our camera up your arse.”A week later, I find myself in a hospital examination room. A nurse explains the entire procedure in a manner that leaves me unable to skip the bits that don’t appeal to me. Continue reading...
(Sat, 28 May 2016 05:00:25 GMT)

Expensive and worthless: the whole of life insurance plans sold to millions
Many people are facing huge hikes in premiums, and discovering that the controversial policies sold as investments are anything butSince the late 1980s Kusumben Amin, now 82, has scrimped and saved to build a nest egg for her two daughters. But after handing over £35,000 to a reputable insurance firm over a period of 29 years, she has now discovered it is worth a paltry £1,227.Although Amin, who speaks little English and reads none, thought she had taken out a savings policy, what she had been sold was a complex life insurance policy only of use to the very rich. But Amin is far from rich. Her total income is the state pension plus another £191 from her deceased husband’s pension. The insurance firm Phoenix Life has been taking £247.83 a month for the policy, leaving Amin almost on the breadline. In March she showed her daughters a letter from Phoenix. They were horrified. It asked Amin to pay even more – up to £458.85 a month, equal to more than half her total income. Continue reading...
(Sat, 28 May 2016 06:00:26 GMT)

Moeen Ali and Chris Woakes give England total control against Sri Lanka
• England 498-9dec; Sri Lanka 91-8• Moeen Ali hits 155no and passes 1,000 Test runsA strong West Midlands means a strong England. This does not trip off the tongue quite so readily as the Yorkshire definition of a prosperous international cricket team but, on an increasingly sunny Durham day, two noble Birmingham-born cricketers shaped the outcome of this Test match.In the first half of the day Moeen Ali sped to his second Test century and his highest score (155no), which allowed Alastair Cook to declare England’s innings closed on 498 for nine. Continue reading...
(Sat, 28 May 2016 18:12:21 GMT)

Mohamed Diamé guides Hull to Premier League past Sheffield Wednesday
A golden goal for a team in gold: thus did Mohamed Diamé send Hull City back to the Premier League with a strike worth millions deep into this pulsating play-off final that ended with a deserved winner and the swaths of blue and white from south Yorkshire mulling over what might have been. Related: Hull City v Sheffield Wednesday: Championship play-off final – as it happened Continue reading...
(Sat, 28 May 2016 17:54:06 GMT)

Novak Djokovic casts Aljaz Bedene’s French Open into darkness
• World No1 wins 6-2, 6-3, 6-3 in rapidly fading light• Jo-Wilfried Tsonga forced to retire during match with Ernests GulbisWhen Novak Djokovic walked on to Court Philippe Chatrier in passable sunlight at 7.15pm, he looked at the brooding sky as if it were one of two enemies that might cause him grief. The other was someone he admires and respects and ultimately would humble in straight sets: Aljaz Bedene of Welwyn Garden City.So, at the end of a tough week, he brought his minor concern to a conclusion in just over two hours, winning 6-2, 6-3, 6-3 in near total darkness. But there is light ahead: unless an earthquake rips through Paris, he will play nobody higher than No13 in the world in the semi-finals, before entertaining Andy Murray; the defending champion, Stan Wawrinka; or perhaps Kei Nishikori in the final on Sunday week. Continue reading...
(Sat, 28 May 2016 19:45:20 GMT)

Rebecca Adlington: GB swimmers will not be put off by Zika virus at Rio 2016
• Little chance of 26-strong team reconsidering decision to travel, she says• ‘They’ve been told it’s all under control. All the athletes have decided to go’Rebecca Adlington, the four-times Olympic medallist, says Britain’s swimmers will not be put off by the Zika virus as they prepare for the Rio Olympics, despite growing concern over its potential impact.More than 100 experts wrote to the World Health Organisation on Friday to call for the Rio Games to be postponed or moved in light of the threat from the disease, a request that was rejected. Adlington, who shot to fame by winning two gold medals in Beijing and then two bronzes four years later in London, said there was little chance of Britain’s 26 swimmers reconsidering their decision to travel. Continue reading...
(Sat, 28 May 2016 21:00:15 GMT)

Eddie Jones demands mental intensity from England as Australia tour looms
England’s head coach says his side must cope without structure as he sets about creating an environment similar to that under Clive WoodwardEddie Jones has in his long career never been accused of being diplomatic but since taking over as England’s head coach at the end of last year he has adopted a national tradition: his upper lip has largely been stiff, apart from the odd twitch, but that is set to change in the coming months as his side switches from European skirmishes to battles against the might of the southern hemisphere.Asked if Saturday’s Premiership final between Saracens and Exeter, which preceded Sunday’s international against Wales at Twickenham, was a duel between the two clubs in the league who best reflected his ambition for England to become an all-weather side, conditioned to play any style of rugby reflexively, Jones fixed the questioner with an incredulous look before replying: “You are joking, aren’t you? I cannot answer that question, seriously, otherwise I will get into a hell of a lot of trouble. You are not getting me down that track. The England squad players in the final had to play as their clubs asked them: in some positions it is significantly different to what we ask.” Continue reading...
(Sat, 28 May 2016 21:00:15 GMT)

Vincenzo Nibali stands on verge of Giro d’Italia win after late challenge
• Italian steals race lead from Esteban Chaves after thrilling penultimate day• Estonia’s Rein Taaramae breaks away to secure stage win on summit finishVincenzo Nibali attacked on the final major climb of the Giro d’Italia and grabbed the pink jersey from Esteban Chaves, virtually clinching his fourth Grand Tour victory, capping a dramatic two days in the 99th edition of the Italian stage race. Related: Stig Broeckx taken to hospital after crash involving motorbike at Tour of Belgium Continue reading...
(Sat, 28 May 2016 17:41:21 GMT)

Saracens Premiership champions after Alex Goode ends Exeter fightback
• Premiership final: Saracens 28-20 ExeterThey thought it was all over at half-time. Saracens led 23-6 having taken the initiative from the start and, in their sure, inimitable way, applied pressure, physical and mental, until a side competing in their first major final appeared to crack. Only one side, Wasps in 2004, had won the Premiership final having been behind at the interval but Exeter, who when the play-offs were introduced were well adrift of the top flight, revel in adversity and a showpiece that had been played in black and white burst into glorious technicolour.Exeter finished with salvaged pride, but cursing the weak footprint they left in the opening half: they missed regulation tackles in conceding soft tries in the 33rd and 37th minutes. The more overwhelming disappointment, however, was that by then a team renowned for its resolve and resourcefulness had not fired an attacking shot – overcome by the opposition more than the occasion. Continue reading...
(Sat, 28 May 2016 16:05:01 GMT)

Mamadou Sakho handed Euro 2016 lifeline after Uefa doping ban expires
• France and Liverpool defender’s 30-day ban has expired• Uefa investigating if fat-burner is even a banned substanceThe Liverpool defender Mamadou Sakho has been handed a potential lifeline for Euro 2016 in his native France after Uefa chose not to extend his suspension from football after a positive drugs test.The France international was provisionally banned for 30 days on 28 April after being notified by European football’s governing body of a doping offence relating to a test taken after March’s Europa League quarter-final against Manchester United at Old Trafford. Continue reading...
(Sat, 28 May 2016 13:48:02 GMT)

Jamie Delgado open to coaching Andy Murray on full-time basis
• 39-year-old believes world No2 can improve and challenge Novak Djokovic• Murray without full-time coach after working with Mauresmo and LendlJamie Delgado is so deeply sewn into the fabric of British tennis he can remember playing a teenaged Andy Murray in Scotland.Now, at 39, he would gladly take on the full-time job of guiding the rest of the Scot’s sometimes turbulent, never dull career – if he were asked to do so. Continue reading...
(Sat, 28 May 2016 21:00:15 GMT)

Monaco F1 qualifying: Daniel Ricciardo beats Rosberg and Hamilton to pole
• Red Bull driver claims first career pole ahead of Mercedes’s Nico Rosberg• Lewis Hamilton third fastest after trouble while Max Verstappen crashes in Q1Daniel Ricciardo set a Monaco lap record to claim his first pole for Sunday’s grand prix. It was Red Bull’s first pole since the Brazilian Grand Prix of 2013, and their first here since 2012. But there was more frustration for Lewis Hamilton, who had problems with his car and was beaten back into third place by his Mercedes team-mate Nico Rosberg.Meanwhile, Red Bull’s other driver, the great F1 prodigy Max Verstappen, returned to earth with a bump when he crashed out in the first stint of qualifying. Formula One is just too unpredictable. Continue reading...
(Sat, 28 May 2016 13:36:18 GMT)

Rider killed during motorbike race on Isle of Man
Dean Martin, 58, kiled in collision that left other competitor and two race officials in hospital, in warm-up to TT event A motorcyclist died and a fellow rider and a course marshal were flown to hospital after a crash at the pre-TT races on the Isle of Man. Organisers Southern 100 Racing said Dean Martin, 58, was killed in the collision on the Billown course during the 850cc Classic practice session on Friday evening. Continue reading...
(Sat, 28 May 2016 13:10:57 GMT)

José Mourinho more of a risk for Manchester United than three years ago | Paul Wilson
Appointment is presented as a win-win at Old Trafford but the new manager left Chelsea with a few more blots on his reputationManagerial rethinks never used to be such seismic events and perhaps it is regrettable that the personalities on the sidelines now tend to overshadow the contributions of those on the pitch, but José Mourinho colliding with Manchester United was never going to take place quietly or off‑camera.All incoming leaders at Old Trafford rightly feel the job is one of the biggest the game has to offer and Mourinho was not merely pressing the supporters’ buttons when he spoke of mystique, romance and the special honour of becoming United’s manager. Continue reading...
(Sat, 28 May 2016 10:57:21 GMT)

Tottenham Hotspur will play next season’s Champions League matches at Wembley Stadium
• Spurs to stage big European nights at national stadium• FA says London club could play all games there in 2017-18 seasonTottenham Hotspur will play next season’s Champions League matches at Wembley Stadium. The Premier League club has reached an agreement with the Football Association for the 2016-17 campaign with an option to hire the national stadium for the entire 2017-18 season.The FA’s chief executive, Martin Glenn, said on wembleystadium.com: “Having Tottenham at Wembley for big European nights next season is a welcome opportunity for us to further the stadium’s position as a world-class venue. As well as helping the club and its fans, it will benefit London and English football in general with our commitment to reinvesting all profits back into the game. Continue reading...
(Sat, 28 May 2016 08:24:24 GMT)

England and Wales’ Twickenham clash a good idea, whatever the weather
It might not seem the most natural time for these two rivals to face off, but there is plenty for Eddie Jones’ and Warren Gatland’s teams to play forIt is still probably a good idea in the minds of the coaches. And presumably they will be telling their players that if they, the privileged to be wearing the shirt, don’t think it’s a good idea, then their careers are definitely not going to be extended much beyond this afternoon. So, in all in all, England-Wales can’t be such a bad idea.It is, after all, a series decider, what with the teams level on one victory apiece over the course of the season. Wales won in the World Cup at Twickenham and England won there in the Six Nations on their way to the grand slam. What’s wrong with acclimatising the sides to the notion of a showdown? They’ll both be off to the southern hemisphere soon enough for three-match series, and what wouldn’t they both give to be in contention after two Tests? One-all with one to play; get used to the feeling – think big, England and Wales. Continue reading...
(Sat, 28 May 2016 12:00:04 GMT)

England’s Roy Hodgson: ‘Marcus Rashford did well but I wasn’t surprised’
• Manchester United’s 18-year-old scored early in 2-1 win over Australia• ‘He’s done his chances of coming in the final 23 no harm,’ says HodgsonRoy Hodgson acknowledged that Marcus Rashford had done his hopes of being a member of England’s squad for the European Championship in France a power of good after the 18-year-old Manchester United striker scored on his international debut on Friday night.“I am pleased with him,” said England’s coach, who saw Rashford’s third-minute volley set England on the way to a 2-1 win against Australia in Sunderland. “He’s done his chances of coming in the final 23 no harm. But he wouldn’t have been in the 26 if I didn’t think he had a chance. I guess it [the debut goal] will chop a few trees down tomorrow. I thought Marcus did well – but I wasn’t nervous about him or surprised how well he played.” Continue reading...
(Fri, 27 May 2016 22:44:57 GMT)

Wigan’s Will Grigg included in Northern Ireland’s final Euro 2016 squad
• Michael O’Neill names 23-man squad for France 2016• Grigg rewarded for firing Wigan to League One titleWill Grigg’s place in Northern Ireland’s 23-man Euro 2016 squad has been confirmed, but Liam Boyce, Billy McKay, Daniel Lafferty, Michael Smith and Ben Reeves have all been left out by the manager Michael O’Neill.The announcement for the country’s first finals squad in 30 years was made at the Titanic Belfast museum on Saturday lunchtime, though the unlucky quintet were informed of their fate earlier this week and missed Friday’s 3-0 victory over Belarus despite being named in the 28-player group for that game. Continue reading...
(Sat, 28 May 2016 11:47:19 GMT)

Gareth Bale: ‘Before I came to Madrid maybe I would have hidden’
Welshman ready to prove he is still one of world’s best on return to San Siro for Champions League final against Atlético MadridSo to San Siro. When Gareth Bale walks on to the pitch on Saturday there will be something familiar about it all. Another European Cup final against Atlético Madrid for Real Madrid and back where it all began for him. For the first time Bale returns to the stadium where he scored that hat-trick against Internazionale: the prelude to another meeting in which the destruction of the defender was so complete that not only did White Hart Lane call a taxi for Maicon but he would have happily taken it, too. The prelude for an entire career, in fact.That, certainly, is how Bale sees it. Something shifted at San Siro; something started, too. “We lost in Milan,” the Welshman says, easing into a chair in the small room where he takes Spanish lessons at Real Madrid’s Valdebebas headquarters, “but it felt like we won and that game was the reason I wanted to play in the Champions League. It was the game that gave me the confidence to know I could play against the best. To score a hat-trick against the reigning European champions … my confidence grew, belief. And I haven’t looked back from there, really.” Continue reading...
(Fri, 27 May 2016 22:46:00 GMT)

The gifs that keep on giving: Rafa Nadal, Serena Williams, a ball boy and a dog
Featuring an almighty balls up, some fast feet from a tennis player, young love, a pair of very high feet and some heartwarming scenes from White Hart Lane Continue reading...
(Sat, 28 May 2016 08:45:00 GMT)

Brentford’s Alan Judge warned by FA over anti-doping breach
• Asthma sufferer had high levels of salbutamol in his system• Republic of Ireland midfielder currently recovering from broken legThe Brentford midfielder Alan Judge has been warned by the Football Association after breaching its anti-doping regulations. The Republic of Ireland international suffers from asthma and was found with high levels of salbutamol in his system following a match in August. He has been warned as to his future conduct, issued with a reprimand and will be target tested for the next two years. Related: Uefa to hold hearing into Mamadou Sakho’s failed drug test for Liverpool Continue reading...
(Sat, 28 May 2016 10:47:44 GMT)

Exeter and Rob Baxter’s pitchfork rebels have eyes on Premiership prize
Chiefs’ coach and his father talk of club’s beginnings and explain why this team are fired up to take the fight to Saracens in Twickenham finalFor the definitive pre-final verdict the place to call is the Baxter family farm on the outskirts of Exeter. “The sky’s the limit as long as you keep your feet on the ground,” cautions the 71-year-old John, father of Rob, as he prepares to join the West Country exodus up to Twickenham for Saturday’s Aviva Premiership final against Saracens. Baxter Sr, like his son, is not the type to count any Devon chickens before they hatch into fully fledged English champions.Almost everyone else in the region, however, is going Chiefs bonkers. Every train seat to London is booked out, any spare coaches or mini-buses have been commandeered. For anyone with a rural background it is a pilgrimage to savour, perhaps the most evocative since Somerset brought scrumpy and haystack chic to one-day Lord’s cricket finals in the late 70s and early 80s. Continue reading...
(Fri, 27 May 2016 21:00:15 GMT)

Cleveland Cavaliers stroll past Toronto Raptors and into NBA finals
Cavs win Game 6 113-87 to take Eastern Conference finals 4-2LeBron James and Co will face either Thunder or WarriorsThe NBA’s perpetual underdogs finally saw the best season in franchise history come to an end on Friday night, as the Toronto Raptors fell to the Cleveland Cavaliers 113-87 in Game 6 of the Eastern Conference finals. With the win, the Cavaliers reached their second consecutive NBA finals. Related: Golden State Warriors strike back with crucial Game 5 win over Oklahoma City Continue reading...
(Sat, 28 May 2016 03:16:08 GMT)

Hull’s Steve Bruce: if we go up it will be for our owner … he’s having a tough time at the minute
Manager will weigh up his future after Saturday’s Championship play-off final against Sheffield Wednesday, which Assem Allam will watch from a hospital bedThe room’s single, overhead light is of such low wattage that reading small print becomes a strain and the gloom feels slightly oppressive. “Can’t we make it a bit brighter?” inquires Steve Bruce, his sunny Geordie humour and Algarve tan suddenly out of step with the surrounds. Related: How Sheffield Wednesday returned from wilderness to stand on brink of big time Continue reading...
(Fri, 27 May 2016 21:30:16 GMT)

Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi: on the trail of the world's most wanted man – video
Martin Chulov visits Sinjar province in Iraq on the trail of Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, the self-styled caliph of Islamic State. On the Kurdish frontline with Isis-held territory he hears from local peshmurga commanders on Baghdadi’s movements and the problems they face targeting himWho is Isis leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi? – video Inside the hunt for Isis leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi Continue reading...
(Fri, 27 May 2016 06:24:32 GMT)

What are legal highs? - video explainer
Legal highs have been taken off the shelves and put on the controlled substances list. Typically referred to as spice, the drugs described as being more powerful and addictive than crack or heroin, has taken a heavy toll on many who thought it would be a legal substitute for cannabis. Addicts on the streets of Manchester talk about the drug and its ban Continue reading...
(Fri, 27 May 2016 18:44:00 GMT)

The Dardenne brothers: 'Attacks on Obama to democratise healthcare are pathetic' – video interview
Jean-Paul and Luc Dardenne, the Belgian siblings who have twice won the Palme d’Or, speak in Cannes about their new film. The Unknown Girl is the story of a young female doctor trying to discover the identity – and the killer – of a woman found dead outside her medical practice. They discuss why they are drawn to stories of female empowerment and gender equality and how they think the film might be received in countries such as the US, where the fight for universal healthcare continues.• The Unknown Girl premiered at Cannes and will be released later this year Continue reading...
(Fri, 27 May 2016 09:56:17 GMT)

Fear, money and racism: what’s our problem with diversity on screen? – video
The lack of diversity in film and television dominated the debate during awards season. But away from the Oscars, the UK picture is also bleak: the film Bafta acting nominees have been almost exclusively white for two years running. Leah Green looks beyond the headlines to see why diversity remains such a problem in the UK film and TV industries Continue reading...
(Thu, 26 May 2016 06:56:04 GMT)

Why is France being racked by strikes and protests over its labour bill? – video
French unions are protesting against President Hollande’s proposed reforms to labour protection laws. As tens of thousands take to the streets across the country, there are fuel shortages and proposals to expand strikes to the rail network and nuclear industry. France is set to host the Euro 2016 finals in June, and neither strikers nor the government seem inclined to back down Continue reading...
(Thu, 26 May 2016 17:12:06 GMT)

What do liberals get wrong about guns? – video
The Guardian’s Lois Beckett went to Louisville, Kentucky, where the National Rifle Association’s annual convention was taking place, and asked gun owners: what do liberals get wrong about guns, and how can we make America a safer place to live?Lois Beckett was in Louisville for the NRA convention. The NRA refused to issue Guardian US with accreditation for its convention, so she was covering the event from outside Continue reading...
(Wed, 25 May 2016 11:00:38 GMT)

Joel Edgerton and Ruth Negga on Loving, interracial marriage and gay rights – video interview
At the Cannes film festival, Joel Edgerton and Ruth Negga, the stars of Jeff Nichols’s Loving, a biopic of Richard and Mildred Loving, a white man and a black woman who were arrested in Virginia in 1958 for marrying, talk to Nigel M Smith. They tell how their case echoes through to the legilisation of gay marriage in modern America. Nichols explains why he wasn’t keen on making the couple’s story a traditional court room drama Continue reading...
(Thu, 26 May 2016 09:23:09 GMT)

Do you know your endangered species? – video
The World Wildlife Foundation surveyed 2000 UK adults about their knowledge of endangered species. Roughly a third didn’t know giant pandas and snow leopards are under threat, while a fifth thought cows and grey squirrels are. One in four thought the dodo and brachiosaurus still exist!Do you know your wild species at risk? – in pictures Continue reading...
(Wed, 25 May 2016 14:46:11 GMT)

The hidden risks of climbing Mount Everest – video
Three climbers have died on Mount Everest in the past week, all succumbing to altitude sickness after reaching the summit. The increasing number of deaths on the world’s tallest mountain is raising fresh fears about overcrowding and the ethics of commercial mountaineering on Everest Continue reading...
(Wed, 25 May 2016 13:51:01 GMT)

Women, face it: marriage can never be feminist – video
The institution of marriage has curtailed women’s freedom for centuries, says Julie Bindel. So why are so many feminists trying to reclaim the tradition as a subversive act? If you want to get married, she says, just get on with it - but please don’t pretend that being a feminist changes its meaning Continue reading...
(Wed, 25 May 2016 06:00:32 GMT)

Alan Rickman: 'The Royal Court is where I found out who the hell I was' – video
The Royal Court in London is celebrating its 60th birthday with 60 short films in which actors, directors and playwrights celebrate the theatre. In this video, filmed in 2015, Alan Rickman remembers first visiting the Court in the 1960s as a teenager and then starring in an acclaimed Irish version of The Seagull there in the 1980s. He also talks about taking Rachel Corrie’s parents to the Sloane Square theatre to see the play based on their daughter’s diaries and emails, edited by Rickman and Katharine Viner Alan Rickman obituaryThe Royal Court at 60: look back in wonder Watch more Royal Court short films Continue reading...
(Wed, 25 May 2016 11:00:38 GMT)

Has anyone kept their faith in Christianity? | Barbara Ellen
A new report reveals that even people raised in church are losing their religionA new report says that those who identify as having “no religion” (“Nones”) outnumber Christians in England and Wales. While Christians (Anglicans, Catholics and others) made up 43.8% of the population, the Nones represented 48.5%, almost double the 25% describing themselves this way in the 2011 census.While obviously there are also other religions, the report (“Contemporary Catholicism in England and Wales” by Stephen Bullivant, due to be launched in the House of Commons next week) focuses on the rising indifference towards Christianity, and the failure of the churches to retain people who were brought up as Christians – a switch also reflected in statistics from Scotland and, to a lesser extent, Northern Ireland. Continue reading...
(Sat, 28 May 2016 23:05:18 GMT)

There’s nothing a Brexiter loves more than a good conspiracy
Rather than engaging in genuine debate, Vote Leave assumes the Remain camp is lying or plottingIn the immortal words of Clint Eastwood, “You’ve gotta ask yourself one question: ‘Do I feel lucky’?” If the British feel lucky we will trust Boris Johnson and Nigel Farage. We will agree with them that the economists warning of recession, the trade unionists warning of an attack on workers’ rights, and the Nato allies warning of threats to the unity of the west are wrong. All wrong.What am I saying – “wrong”? The Brexiters can never concede that a bearer of unwelcome arguments is debating in good faith. They are not just wrong. Wrong is too weak a word. They are lying. They are corrupt. No critic, however outwardly pure, is free of a sickly compulsion to deceive us. Continue reading...
(Sat, 28 May 2016 23:05:18 GMT)

In telling their life stories, we seek to restore dignity to society’s ‘ghosts’ | Nicci Gerrard
More than a million people have dementia in the UK. We can give them a new voice, writes Orwell prize winnerWhen people are in the last stages of dementia, we who love them (we whom they have loved) may bend over them, trying to find in the sounds they are making some words, sentences, a form of communication and a kind of meaning. Even a syllable is precious now. It is a bit like a parent straining to hear language emerging from their baby’s babble of sound – but with a baby this emergent language marks the beginning of the great formation of the self, and is full of hope and possibility.With the person who lives – and who dies – with dementia, the language that connects us to others is disappearing, the self is being broken up. An entire world is being un-made. We come to darkness, silence, the radical slowing of death: dementia’s long goodbye. Continue reading...
(Sat, 28 May 2016 23:03:17 GMT)

What you need to teach at LSE? A role in Maleficent | Catherine Bennett
The university’s appointment of Angelina Jolie reveals much about the marketisation of higher educationThough it may take a while to establish her long-term contribution to the reputational recovery of the LSE, following its embrace of the Gaddafis , the awarding of a professorship to the actor and humanitarian envoy Angelina Jolie has already helped distract from that university’s ranking in the latest league table. So much so that the makers of these lists may want to consider adding a celebrity variable to valuations such as student satisfaction and job prospects.What percentage of the university’s teaching staff has appeared in a top-grossing film, such as Professor Jolie Pitt’s Malificent? Rates high for gowns? How many undergraduates are forced to endure three years of toil without meeting someone who has been up – at least – for a Bafta? Recalculated on that basis, the LSE comes top of all the universities in the world, with Oxford in second place, the credit for that going entirely to one college, Lady Margaret Hall. It recently awarded visiting fellowships to, among others, Emma Watson, Benedict Cumberbatch and Neil Tennant, of the Pet Shop Boys, promising “fascinating interactions”. Continue reading...
(Sat, 28 May 2016 23:05:17 GMT)

Shocking? No, just true to the fiery spirit of Brecht | Vanessa Thorpe
Of course there is swearing in the National’s production of The Threepenny Opera. The play is an attack on bourgeois valuesEver wanted to stand up in front of a vast crowd of genteel, cultured people – perhaps the packed auditorium of the Olivier at the National Theatre on London’s South Bank? – and call out a series of expletives? Such was the opportunity given last week to members of the cast of the venue’s new production of The Threepenny Opera.Its talented stars – including Rory Kinnear, Haydn Gwynne and Sharon Small – had the chance, courtesy of a freshly abrasive translation from Brecht’s German by Simon Stephens, to use an assortment of what the prim might describe as “playground expletives” throughout the evening, while the grim story of Macheath, the rapist and serial killer, unfolded. Continue reading...
(Sat, 28 May 2016 23:05:18 GMT)

David Cameron's referendum nightmare
Chris Riddell on alooming crisis for the prime minister Continue reading...
(Sat, 28 May 2016 23:05:18 GMT)

Harriet, what were you thinking? | Victoria Coren Mitchell
It seems Labour’s scourge of Page 3 is a Kim Kardashian fan. I’m all at sea now…So Kim Kardashian has got this bum. That much I understand.I have actually seen Kim Kardashian’s bum. I don’t think I’m alone in that. It was quite interesting to look at. All bums are quite interesting to look at, because, in the general run of things, people keep them hidden. It’s like seeing someone’s bank statement. (Especially mine, which is all papery and red.) Continue reading...
(Sat, 28 May 2016 23:03:17 GMT)

France’s chaos stems from its failure to adapt to globalisation | Natalie Nougayrède
A showdown is taking place on the streets. President Hollande must stick firmly to his plans for long overdue reformDemonstrating is in the French political DNA. It’s almost as if, for each generation, pouring out on to the streets is part of growing up. There is a collective ritual to this – we have a national penchant for cathartic moments. Historians point to a revolutionary narrative harking back to 1789. But if you are looking for some of the romanticism of May 1968 in the latest unrest, don’t hold your breath. Related: Riot police crack down on Paris protests against labour reforms Continue reading...
(Fri, 27 May 2016 18:50:24 GMT)

A plea to Hillary’s Democrat critics: don’t hand the White House to Trump | Jonathan Freedland
Hostility to Clinton on the Sanders side is so deep that they are in danger of letting the Republican winMaybe it’s a mistake to worry too much about Susan Sarandon. But her recent musings on the US election make me anxious. Not because I think she has huge influence – if celebrity endorsements swung elections, we’d all be reading Neil Kinnock: The Downing Street Years – but because I fret that others might think like her. And if enough do, we need to brace ourselves for President Donald Trump. Related: Debra Messing and Susan Sarandon end Twitter fight over Hillary Clinton Continue reading...
(Sat, 28 May 2016 06:00:26 GMT)

The daily scare tactics beggar belief – they’re not working
The Europe debate is an unsavoury mixture of vicious rhetoric and petty squabbles – and it’s time to grow up One of the best expressions of sheer frustration that’s stuck with me over the years came from the comedian Tony Hancock, who in moments of extreme disquiet repeated the words oh dear, oh dear, oh dear. Now the mere mention of the dreaded referendum and those words are what spring to mind. Oh dear indeed. Related: The Guardian view on the Leave campaign: show some respect for truth | Editorial Continue reading...
(Fri, 27 May 2016 22:36:50 GMT)

Peter Thiel’s mission to destroy Gawker isn’t ‘philanthropy’. It’s a chilling taste of things to come | Marina Hyde
The PayPal mogul has been waging a secret war against the site that outed him. So who’ll be the next angry billionaire to go after a media outlet they despise?What will the death of Citizen Thiel look like? I picture the tech billionaire lying in seclusion, still beyond the reach of the politicians and military chiefs who had long effectively functioned as his junior personnel, perhaps on one of the post-law, floating sea-steading platforms he’s been dreaming of building. Let’s call this one Xanadu. I don’t know if he’s actually dying as we used to understand the term – maybe he’s just uploading into the cloud. Related: Billionaire's revenge: Facebook investor Peter Thiel’s nine-year Gawker grudge Continue reading...
(Fri, 27 May 2016 18:57:30 GMT)

Student loans: the next big mis-selling scandal?
A change to loan conditions, made after it’s taken out? A mortgage company can’t legally do that to borrowers, but it seems the government canMany graduates have been shocked this week to see just how their debt is escalating, with interest charged at up to 3.9%. That’s more than the typical rate on a first-time buyer mortgage. Have they been mis-sold a dodgy loan?University of Nottingham graduate Simon Crowther’s post on Facebook went viral this week, after he revealed how much interest is being added to his debt. He’s part of the first wave of graduates to have left university after paying £9,000-a-year fees. His total debt, a year after leaving college, jumped to £41,976 by the end of March, with the interest racking up by as much as £180 a month. Crowther claims he was mis-sold the loan and “cheated by a government who encouraged many of us to undertake higher education, despite trebling the cost of attending university”. Continue reading...
(Sat, 28 May 2016 05:59:26 GMT)

Secret Teacher: I was treated like a naughty pupil for not wearing a tie
An insignificant choice of workwear led to diktats and thinly veiled threats. Schools might teach liberty but they don’t practise itMore from the Secret TeacherDuring my schooldays I was forever being told to tuck in my shirt. It bothered me – I couldn’t see the relationship between my shirt and my ability to learn. One day, when my history teacher barked his familiar request to “tuck that shirt in”, I asked why.I was all but dragged to the deputy headteacher’s office and it was there I first heard about the “hidden curriculum”. Continue reading...
(Sat, 28 May 2016 06:00:26 GMT)

The glasses in the gallery aren’t just art – they’re a work of genius | Jonathan Jones
In an age when the difference between art and not-art is slight and subtle, Kevin Nguyen and TJ Khayatan have created a transformative masterpieceIt is a strangely touching image of vulnerability. Nothing speaks more of the weakness of the human body than the aids with which we try to remedy its failings. This is why in placing a pair of spectacles on an art gallery floor – just centimetres from the blankness of a white wall and facing outward as if looking at the feet of gallery-goers, beckoning them to kneel, crouch, and interact, or at least take a photo - the artistic duo Kevin Nguyen and TJ Khayatan have created a modern masterpiece. Related: Pair of glasses left on US gallery floor mistaken for art Continue reading...
(Fri, 27 May 2016 15:02:32 GMT)

Telling women to avoid pregnancy is not a solution for HIV and the Zika virus | Susana Fried
To the development community on International Day of Action for Women’s Health: don’t curtail our rights by legitimising conservative religious ideologiesIt is widely recognised that, if the transformations outlined in the sustainable development goals (SDGs) are to be achieved, respecting, protecting and fulfilling the human rights of women and girls – including their sexual and reproductive rights – will be essential. Continue reading...
(Sat, 28 May 2016 08:00:29 GMT)

ExxonMobil is in its climate change bunker and won’t let reality in
Still stonewalling, the oil giant banned the Guardian from its AGM this week. But even its shareholders are starting to hear the gale-force winds blowing outsideWhen one of the world’s largest pension funds tells the biggest oil company on the planet that it faces an existential threat, there are stormy times ahead. The Guardian wanted to give you the latest weather report from inside ExxonMobil’s annual general meeting in Dallas on Wednesday, but the newspaper’s reporter was banned. Related: Hypersensitive Exxon bans Guardian from AGM Continue reading...
(Fri, 27 May 2016 11:36:18 GMT)

Why is the EU debate such a turn-off for younger voters? | Rhiannon Lucy Cosslett, Uday Maudgil, Heidi Street, Nicholas Preston, Emily Clark
Last night the BBC hosted an EU referendum debate aimed at addressing the concerns of under-30s. Did it succeed? Continue reading...
(Fri, 27 May 2016 12:39:58 GMT)

Should I burn my diaries? They’d make my children cringe …
When I die, they will inherit a lot of clutter unless I take a deep breath and get rid of it firstI’ve been feeling rather cheerfully morbid lately (if such a thing is possible), perhaps because so many high-profile figures have been dropping dead at not far off my age, which is 60. I’ve been briskly contemplating what it’s going to be like for my children after I’ve gone and what it is I should leave them.I mean this in a largely material sense. What will be left to them psychologically, I can never know, and neither can they. It may be one form of damage or other, it may be something to bolster, support and inspire them. More probably it will be a mix of both, but, either way, I doubt there is very much I can do about it now. Continue reading...
(Fri, 27 May 2016 12:30:04 GMT)

A gay superhero? Yes please! Just not Captain America
Shock tactics would send a message about studios’ willingness to catch up with society – but there are better candidates than Steve RogersWould it make all that much difference if Captain America were gay? A gay Iron Man, now, given Tony Stark’s penchant for making lewd comments in the Marvel movies, would have made for a spikier shift in dynamics. A gay Hulk might have been read as homophobia, particularly if alter ego Bruce Banner remained straight. A gay Black Widow would have fed into stereotypes about physically adept women.But a gay Captain America? Would anyone even notice? Continue reading...
(Fri, 27 May 2016 10:57:23 GMT)

The Guardian view on disappearing Christianity: suppose it’s gone for ever? | Editorial
Christianity is moving to the margins of English public life. This could change the country profoundlyIs the end of western Christianity in sight? The most recent British Social Attitudes data shows that “No religion” is now by far the largest single identificationin England and Wales. It is very nearly half the adult population, and more that twice the proportion who self-identify as Anglican; it is four times the Catholic population, and more than five times the total identifying with non-Christian faiths. The same pattern is seen all across Europe and increasingly in the US too, where the first chair for the study of atheism has just been endowed in Florida.The study also shows that Christianity is extremely bad at either making converts or retaining cradle believers. The two big denominations, the Catholics and the Church of England, lose at least 10 members for every one they convert. The figure for Catholics would almost certainly be worse were it not for immigration from Eastern Europe and South East Asia. It is only the smallest and most self-consciously sectarian forms of Christianity that manage to retain believers, in part no doubt because they feel cut off from the society around them. Continue reading...
(Fri, 27 May 2016 17:22:19 GMT)

George Osborne, get your privatising hands off the Land Registry | John Healey
If you’re a homeowner, your personal data on the most valuable asset you’re ever likely to buy – your home – will be sold off to the highest bidderHas there ever been a less popular privatisation? On Thursday, before the consultation on George Osborne’s latest attempt to privatise the Land Registry had even closed, critics were queuing up to tell the government that its badly judged plans could have catastrophic consequences. Related: Why do the Tories want to hide who owns our country’s land? | Charles Arthur Continue reading...
(Fri, 27 May 2016 13:54:50 GMT)

Andy Burnham presses George Osborne over Manchester '£1bn black hole'
Labour contender for mayor says northern powerhouse initiative could change region’s fortunes or go down as ‘elaborate con’Andy Burnham, who wants to be Labour’s Manchester mayoral candidate, has called on George Osborne to take action over what he called a £1bn black hole in the northern powerhouse initiative.Analysis of public services finances across Greater Manchester has found that a £1bn shortfall would emerge over the course of this parliament. Central government grants to the region’s 10 councils will fall by £836m between 2015 and 2020, and Manchester city council is set to lose £163m by 2019/20, according to Burnham. Continue reading...
(Sat, 28 May 2016 16:34:34 GMT)

Varoufakis, McDonnell and Lucas make 'radical' case for remaining in EU
Ex-Greek finance minister joins shadow chancellor and Green MP to make leftwing case for staying in EUThe shadow chancellor, John McDonnell, is joining forces with the former Greek finance minister Yanis Varoufakis to make the “radical” case for the UK to remain in the European Union, after both sides of the referendum campaign were criticised for making misleading and overly negative arguments. Related: Brexit is an empire-era trick. Only the radical case for Europe makes sense | Yanis Varoufakis Continue reading...
(Sat, 28 May 2016 13:11:52 GMT)

National Obesity Forum faces backlash over ‘dangerous’ diet advice
Members of campaign group to disown controversial guidelines to eat fats and cut down on carbohydratesBritain’s leading anti-obesity campaign group is in turmoil after its controversial new dietary advice provoked serious infighting and threats by leading doctors to shun it over its “misleading” views.Privately, the National Obesity Forum (NOF) is in disarray over recommendations last week that people should eat more fat, reduce carbohydrates and stop counting calories. Continue reading...
(Sat, 28 May 2016 20:30:14 GMT)

HMRC fails in attempt to recoup £50m from Chelsea Barracks sale
Appeal court rejects application by HM Revenue & Customs to collect up to £50m in stamp duty after sale of barracks to QatarThe tax office has failed in its attempt to reclaim as much as £50m in stamp duty from the near-£1bn sale of the Chelsea Barracks to Qatar.Judges at the court of appeal ruled that HM Revenue & Customs had pursued the wrong party following the sale of the central London site in 2007. Continue reading...
(Sat, 28 May 2016 10:29:52 GMT)

Water birds shot dead at Hampshire village pond
Police say air rifle used to kill two young geese, three ducks and a moorhen in Hartley WintneySeveral ducks, geese and a moorhen have been shot dead at a village pond. An air rifle was used to kill the birds in Hartley Wintney, Hampshire, between Monday evening and Tuesday afternoon. A Hampshire police spokesman said: “During this time period, an unknown number of people have used an air rifle or something similar to shoot dead the majority of birds at the pond. Continue reading...
(Sat, 28 May 2016 09:31:47 GMT)

NHS 'turning away children referred for mental health help'
Reseach finds 28% of children referred for support in England – including some who had attempted suicide – received no helpThe government’s investment in children’s mental health services has come under fire after it emerged that more than a quarter of young people referred for support in England last year were sent away without help, including some who had attempted suicide.A review of mental health services by the children’s commissioner discovered 13% of youngsters with life-threatening conditions were not allowed specialist treatment, according to the BBC. Even those with the most serious illnesses who secured treatment faced lengthy delays, with an average waiting time of 110 days, the Times said. Continue reading...
(Sat, 28 May 2016 09:27:21 GMT)

Tony Blair: Corbyn government would be a dangerous experiment
Former prime minister says he worries about populist politicians such as Labour leader in harshest comments yetTony Blair has said it would be a “very dangerous experiment” if Jeremy Corbyn or a populist politician like him were to form a government.In an interview with the BBC, the former Labour prime minister said populist politicians, whether on the left like Corbyn or on the right, were worrying and he spent a lot of time thinking about how people in the centre should respond. Continue reading...
(Sat, 28 May 2016 09:35:04 GMT)

Older drivers should carry on until 75 before renewing licence, says review
The Older Drivers Task Force says current ruling can lead to depression among over-70s and a great burden on care systemOlder motorists should be able to carry on driving until they are 75 before renewing their licence, an official review is reportedly expected to conclude.The Older Drivers Task Force, established in 2014 to support people later in life to drive safely, will recommend to the government in July that the current mandatory renewal age of 70 is raised. Continue reading...
(Fri, 27 May 2016 22:36:48 GMT)

David Cameron: Boris Johnson still a contender for next PM
Despite split on EU, Cameron stands by comments he made last year namechecking Johnson as potential successorDavid Cameron has said Boris Johnson remains one of the main contenders to succeed him as prime minister when he steps down.Asked about comments he made last year, before the pair took opposing sides in the EU referendum campaign, Cameron said: “I wouldn’t withdraw any of the things I’ve said – the Conservative party is lucky to have big, substantial figures within it.” Continue reading...
(Fri, 27 May 2016 21:30:16 GMT)

Legal high ban predicted to exacerbate crisis on streets
Users warn withdrawal from drugs may lead to violence while experts say black-market dealers will cause greater harmThe outlawing of legal highs risks create a new crisis on the streets, experts and users have warned.Many users of the drugs, novel psychoactive substances (NPSs), are young and homeless and they say that withdrawing makes them feel violent and out of control. Continue reading...
(Fri, 27 May 2016 18:43:16 GMT)

Ed Miliband warns Britain could leave EU if young people don't vote
Former Labour leader warns against complacency and admits remain campaign has been too Tory and too maleEd Miliband says his own experience of losing the 2015 general election shows the polls can be wrong and that there is a serious risk of Britain voting to leave the EU. Speaking to the Guardian, he warned against complacency and said that it was essential to get young people to turn out in force if the remain camp was to win the vote. He said the remain campaign had been “too Tory and too male” and that it was important for the Labour case for Britain remaining in the EU to be heard more vocally in the final weeks of the campaign. Continue reading...
(Fri, 27 May 2016 23:01:18 GMT)

Pauline Cafferkey misconduct inquiry condemned by Ebola volunteer
Health worker who flew from Sierra Leone with nurse says investigation is wrong in face of Public Health England failingsA health worker who travelled from Ebola-hit Sierra Leone with Pauline Cafferkey has strongly criticised Public Health England for referring her to a misconduct inquiry even though she had been given the green light to travel on from Heathrow to Glasgow by its own staff.Cafferkey and two other nurses remain at risk of being struck off by the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) more than a year after the investigation into the events at Heathrow in December 2014 was launched. Continue reading...
(Fri, 27 May 2016 17:57:33 GMT)

House prices compared with earnings 'close to pre-financial crisis levels'
Consultancy says average UK house price is 6.1 times average salary, barely lower than the 6.4 they were at all-time peak House prices as a multiple of average earnings are “within a whisker” of record levels set before the financial crisis, a City consultancy has warned.The average UK house price is now 6.1 times average earnings, close to the peak of 6.4 it hit before the downturn, Fathom Consulting said. A rise in interest rates from their current low of 0.5% would lead to a correction, it said, although a return to “normal” rates was some way off. Continue reading...
(Fri, 27 May 2016 16:04:50 GMT)

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