As the Guardian’s US correspondent, Gary Younge documented America’s social and economic challenges, the role of race in the country’s politics, and the deadly consequences of US gun laws. Now the Guardian’s editor-at-large, Gary took an unusual approach to covering the 2016 presidential election, reporting from one small town in Indiana, called Muncie, nicknamed ‘Middletown, America’. In this week’s podcast, Ayeisha Thomas-Smith asks Gary about Middletown today. Can it help explain a US election result that few people predicted? And do we have ‘Middletowns’ in the UK that can help us understand our own political upheaval?
The collapse and liquidation of the building firm Carillion – a company responsible for numerous government projects – has ignited a row over Britain’s system of outsourcing public services. Many are now calling for such procurement contracts to be taken back into state hands. Kate Andrews, News Editor at the Institute of Economic Affairs, and Head of Education Dr Steve Davies, sat down to discuss the question of outsourcing, and whether public services are best delivered ‘in-house’ by government, or through the private sector.
Political commentator Alex Clark discusses Merkels's new coalition and what her concessions might mean, what is likely to happen in Italy after their inconclusive election and the EU's reaction to Theresa May's latest Brexit speech.
Graham Spooner, investment research analyst at The Share Centre, looks at recent news from Smurfit Kappa, Rolls Royce and Restaurant Group and looks ahead to numbers from Clarkson, Morrison's, Prudential and Berkeley.
Steve Caplin, Share Radio's Technology Editor, looks at Amazon Echo's Alexa apparently mocking its users by laughing at them, iphones spontaneously calling emergency services, the Chinese woman whose toddler managfed to lock her iphone for 47 years (25m minutes) and the 4G network destined for the moon.
James Cameron-Wilson reviews new films Red Sparrow, Game Night and Kobiety Mafii and discusses the effect of the adverse weather on the UK box office as well as the extraordinary continuing success of musical The Greatest Showman. He also looks back at the recent Oscars ceremony, admitting that his predictions were not perfect - he got ONE category wrong!
Helal Miah from The Share Centre explained the background to this week’s biggest story: Comcast’s takeover bid for Sky. He also looked at updates from Associated British Foods, which owns Primark and Twinings Tea, as well as ITV and advertising giant, WPP. Looking ahead, Helal focused on expected updates from online takeaway firm, Just Eat, and Rolls Royce.
Professor Tim Evans of Middlesex University explains why the left/right divide is becoming less and less important. Voters’ primary concern is no longer tax, spending and the size of the public sector. Instead votes are now split around ‘internationalism’ which means attitudes to immigration, trade and the like. Tim also looks at whether the UK needs to spend more money on ‘digital defence’ as well as the decline of the traditional British establishment.
James Cameron Wilson reviews ‘I, Tonya’, the new movie about the former Olympic skater, Tonya Harding. James is very positive about the film and thinks that Margot Robbie deserves the Best Actress gong at next week’s Oscars. But he fears the award will go elsewhere. James also looks at the continuing success of ‘The Greatest Showman’ with its soundtrack hitting No 1 in the music charts. Finally, James looks at the new DVD release of ‘The Party’ Kristin Scott Thomas and Emily Mortimer.
Steve Caplin examines Samsung's idea for combining a phone with a drone, robot cucumber pickers, a new form of light discovered by American physicists, edible QR codes and the app that helps you think you're in a cafe.