Podcast Ep. 162: Wet-Arse Podcast

This week we discuss the new (old) leader of the Liberal Democrats, the new (old) prejudice against video games, and the new (old) outrage against the female sex drive in popular culture.

Joining us is Jimmy’s mature attitude to sex.

Continue reading →

Progressives for Nazi history

It’s a standard complaint in the progressive critique of Britain’s collective memory that we are fixated on the Second World War. Schoolchildren know this already; anyone else can step into a bookshop – mask on face – and head to the history section, which covers little else.

This year’s statue toppling was a particularly visual reminder of our contested history, but many of the same arguments were aired during a squabble over the history curriculum in 2013. Michael Gove, then education secretary, had outlined a British-centric timeline of world events, but later recanted under protest.

Continue reading →

Video games are worth your time

Like many young men during faced with months at home with only a girlfriend and regular shipments of craft beer for company, I returned to video games during lockdown. Our Nintendo Switch became among the most-used objects in the flat, while my dormant Steam account was re-awoken.

I never exactly left video games, but when I became a journalist I had less time for them (indeed, less time for everything). What had been a daily habit became an occasional pastime, as less important but more financially pressing matters took over.

My return to gaming has coincided with an outbreak of anti-gaming sentiment. This time it is not the anti-violence, anti-sex agenda of Jack Thompson, but – in keeping with our times – concerns about whether video games could be confining young men to their mum’s basements.

Continue reading →

Defending the schooling racket

It feels as though the government’s decision to reverse its grading policy for the A-level exams in England was inevitable. Then again, many things look inevitable once they’ve happened.

It probably didn’t help that the moderation of grades annoyed so many people. Columnists across the spectrum decried it. Stories of tearful students having “had their futures destroyed” abounded. It was so jolly unfair, everyone agreed.

And, well, I have to laugh.

Continue reading →

Comedy should punch up and down

The story is at this point cliched. A comedian makes an offensive joke. The clip circulates online months since its telling. Outraged viewers barrage the offender with vitriol as noxious as the original gag. A sponsor loudly disassociates itself. We move on to the next outrage.

Such an intro could have been written anytime in the last five years. There is a political movement afoot that believes that comedy and other art forms should only be be used to campaign against injustice and improve society. Comedians, in there view, should never ‘punch down’ against weaker groups. I believe these people are wrong.

Continue reading →