Category Archives: Playing politics

  1. The politics of pay

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    January 26, 2014 by Adam Smith

    Can you remember your first payslip? I remember picking up mine from the windowless accounts office in the Grimsby branch of WHSmith, where I was working as a temp on the six Saturdays before Christmas. I was 16 years old, and it felt super to earn £3.50 an hour putting books and newspapers through the till over a six-hour shift. Just a couple of years earlier, my elder sister had earnt £2.50 an hour for nine hours every Sunday for staffing a local newsagent without a proper break.

  2. Scientists on Question Time? Boring!


    November 18, 2013 by Adam Smith

    The thousands of people who’ve signed a petition asking BBC producers to use more scientists on Question Time are barking up the wrong tree.

    I don’t doubt for a second that the petitioners have good intentions. I don’t doubt they believe that political debate can be improved if relevant scientists and researchers are present—I believe that too. But the campaign, led by the incisive blogger Martin Robbins, is missing the point if it thinks that QT would be improved by the presence of a scientist. Even to argue for “proper representation” of scientists on QT is a bit wacky.

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