News & Politics
The Week

The Week V. 1249

The Week covers the Best of the British and Foreign Media. With its non partisan reporting, The Week gives the reader an insight into all the the news, people, arts, drama, property, books and how the international media has reported it. This concise guide allows the reader to be up to date and have a wealth of knowledge to allow them to discuss all these key topics with their friends and peers.

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51 Issues

in this issue

9 min.
the main stories… …and how they were covered

What happened Brexit in the balance Officials engaged in frantic last-minute talks this week in an effort to seal a Brexit deal ahead of the crucial EU summit that began on Thursday. Hopes of such an agreement had run high since a successful meeting between Boris Johnson and his Irish counterpart Leo Varadkar at the end of last week, but negotiations were hanging in the balance asThe Week went to press. British and EU officials were working on a compromise under which Northern Ireland would remain legally part of the UK customs area – and thus eligible to benefit from trade deals negotiated by the UK – while being de facto inside the EU customs territory. But it seemed unlikely they’d be able to nail down the details and address the concerns…

2 min.

Controversy of the week A speech or a manifesto? “Peeved. That’s the word I’d use to describe the Queen at the State Opening of Parliament,” said Henry Deedes in the Daily Mail. As the 93-year-old monarch took up her traditional position on her “gold-glistered throne” in the House of Lords on Monday to deliver her 65th Queen’s Speech, there was a “weariness” to the regal glare that suggested she was “not entirely happy” to be there. Reopening Parliament after its longest session since the English Civil War, she “rattled through” her Government’s legislative agenda for the year ahead in “a mere ten minutes” – announcing 26 proposed bills spanning health, education, defence, technology, transport and crime, as well as a law to enact any deal Britain makes with the EU. Among the…

1 min.
spirit of the age

Among the 203 entries added to the Oxford English Dictionary this week are four new versions of “something”: summink, sumfin, sumthin, and sumptin. They are not classed as slang, but rather as regional or non-standard variants. Other additions include “promposal” (an invitation to be someone’s date at a school prom), “whatevs” (whatever), and “omnishambles” – the term popularised by the BBC political satire The Thick of It, defined as “a situation that has been comprehensively mismanaged”. One in four people in the UK make five or fewer phone calls a month, and 6% say they made none at all between January and March, according to a new report by the telecoms industry regulator Ofcom.…

1 min.
good week for:

Electric cars, with new research showing that the most efficient battery-powered models can now drive up to 33 miles for £1, three times further than an efficient combustion-engine car can travel on £1’s worth of petrol or diesel. The high street, following the opening of a 25,000sq ft HMV Megastore, stocking 105,000 LPs and CDs, in Birmingham. Located close to the city centre, HMV Vault has a performance space and a vast stock of films on DVD and Blu-ray. Margaret Atwood and Bernardine Evaristo, who became the first joint winners of the Booker Prize in almost 30 years, for their respective books The Testaments and Girl, Woman, Other. The jury had agreed unanimously both should win, and when told it was against the rules they staged a sit-in to persuade the organisers. J.M.W.…

1 min.
bad week for:

Islington Conservatives, who issued an apology for posting a tweet calling for people with mental health problems to be “neutered”. It was atypo: they had meant to write “nurtured”. Trump’s border wall, after achild of eight managed to scale a replica of the supposedly unclimbable structure in little more than a minute. The US president had described his proposed 18ft wall as “virtually impenetrable”, and boasted that 20 world-class climbers had told them they’d find it difficult. The replica was built by a retired engineer, who wanted to test the claim.…

1 min.
indyref2 on the cards?

Nicola Sturgeon urged Scotland to “reclaim its independence” in her speech to the SNP conference in Aberdeen this week, and said she intends to hold a second referendum on the subject next year. The First Minister said recent events had shown that Westminster was “broken”, and that she would be demanding that the UK Government transfer the necessary powers for IndyRef2 by the end of the year. However, a day earlier Boris Johnson had used the Queen’s Speech to reaffirm his belief in the Union – and Sturgeon did not outline what she would do if the UK Government refused. Her deputy, Keith Brown, said the SNP “would not accept a veto”, but stressed that the referendum had to be legal.…