Cruel Britannia

Cruel Britannia:Reports on the Sinister and the Preposterous

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Nick Cohen has been a consistently sharp and witty scourge of Tony Blair and his bandwagon babes, whether he is tearing into Labour's plans for the prison system or the government's dealings with the money traders, as shown in these writings.

While the rest of the media lounge in the warm glow of New Labour’s rosy dawn, one journalist in Britain has been a consistently sharp and witty scourge of Tony Blair and his bandwagon babes. Step forward Nick Cohen, denizen of the Observer newspaper’s celebrated ‘Hold on a Minute’ column and a writer who has regularly identified Labour’s Third Way as the mid-point between truth and lies, decency and hypocrisy, honesty and corruption. Whether he is tearing into Labour’s plans to privatize the prison system and introduce curfews for teenagers, or detailing the government’s cozying up to Rupert Murdoch and the hot money traders in the City, Cohen maintains a peerless grasp on the power that flows from fusing invective with scrupulous investigation. Even Downing Street Policy Advisor Andrew Adonis was forced to concede that ‘no one is better at getting under the Government’s skin’. A coruscating barrage of dispatches from his sniper’s post, Cruel Britannia celebrates Cohen’s lonely stand. It will revivify the disillusioned who anticipated something better from Labour’s ascent and fortify those on the left who expected little and received precisely that.


  • A superb journalist ... some of the most compelling writing to be published during the age of Blair.

    Roy HattersleyGuardian
  • Cohen is a spin doctor’s nightmare, wittily exposing all that is callous, hypocritical and vapid in the new politics ... [he] is one journalist who will never be bought, although the Conservatives could use his skills.

    Financial Times
  • Cohen is his own man, not always consistent or right or coherent, but unspinnable and unignorable, a Cassandra at the court of a king whose control freakery might yet be his undoing.

    Scotland on Sunday