A note on blogging – why I write

The Oxford Bread Knife story pootles on, given fresh wind each day by some hot take or other in the op-eds. There has been a lot of reaction on social media, and many people have taken the time to contact me to explain, in varying degrees of politeness, why they do or do not agree with…

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Convicting the dead shows that we misunderstand the purpose of our criminal courts

Monday’s column for the i newspaper, for those interested, can be found here: “Convicting the dead shows that we misunderstand the purpose of our criminal courts” https://inews.co.uk/opinion/convicting-dead-shows-misunderstand-purpose-criminal-courts/ And while we’re at it, a couple of other recent pieces for iNews that I forgot to link to: “Both sides are wrong in the Marine A controversy” https://inews.co.uk/opinion/sides-wrong-marine-controversy/  “At…

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Thank You

Some of you may have seen that, in defiance of all common sense and decency, I was today named Independent Blogger of the Year at the Editorial Intelligence Comment Awards 2016. While entirely out of keeping with the general tone of cynical nihilism that pervades these posts, I would like to sincerely thank not only…

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Why we need legal aid for the worst people in society

Recently, I’ve noticed an increase in the number of people getting cross about legal aid. I don’t know whether this can be causally linked to the backing tracks expertly laid down by our new Lord Chancellor, adopting the smooth jazzy beats of her pre-predecessor Chris Grayling to create a steady percussive “legal-aid-bad, legal-aid-bad” filtering through…

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What else was Byron Burger supposed to do?

So, here’s an unpopular opinion to release into the world: I don’t see what Byron is supposed to have done wrong. The gourmet burger chain – previously thrust into the media spotlight as George Osborne’s late-night indulgence of choice – has enjoyed 24 hours of social media’s most vitriolic virtue signalling after 35 of its migrant workers were…

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The new Justice Secretary – does it matter that she’s not a lawyer?

So, as anticipated, our new Prime Minister has favoured punishing disloyalty over rewarding competence and sent Mr Gove and his ambitious, compassionate prison reforms to the naughty back benches. This morning has brought a transfer-deadline-day-style frenzy to Legal Twitter, anticipation and trepidation converging as rumours and supposition threw up name after name as possible new Secretary…

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What would happen to Brock Turner in an English criminal court?

On 18 January 2015, Brock Allen Turner committed a series of serious sexual assaults against an unconscious woman on an American university campus. Two graduate students at Stanford University saw the 20-year old Turner lying on top of the motionless victim behind a dumpster. Her underwear and bra had been partially removed, and Turner was…

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