Rock & Roll Politics with Steve Richards

Rock & Roll Politics with Steve Richards

Based on his live one-man show Rock & Roll Politics, the broadcaster and author Steve Richards takes a twice-weekly behind the scenes tour of UK politics and the media that shapes the way we view the epic political dramas. The future is ridiculously unpredictable and the past is so easy to misread. Subscribe to your weekly guide through seismic times.

Episodes

April 16, 2024 53 mins
In his last term as Prime Minister, Harold Wilson was seen as old, paranoid and ineffective… yet now we discover he was lively enough to be having an affair. This suggests the caricature might be wrong. What if Wilson was livelier politically too? And what if we choose to see other leaders as stereotypes which do not present anything like the full picture?  Support Rock & Roll Politics on Patreon for early episodes, exclusive merch...
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The journalist and author Will Hutton has written an important new book on the eve of what’s likely to be a Labour government. The title is stark: This Time No Mistakes. But what mistakes were made? What are the lessons of the past? What are his hopes and fears for a Keir Starmer government? This Time No Mistakes is published on April 11th. Buy it through our affiliate bookshop and you’ll help fund Rock & Roll Politics by earning u...
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A rare chance to hear a live show… this one recorded in the main concert hall at Kings Place, London. On the agenda: How do the dramas around the current government compare with other ‘fin de siecle’ administrations? How does Keir Starmer compare with Harold Wilson and Tony Blair when they were on the edge of power? Plus unreliable predictions… Question Time… and much more. Support the podcast Patreon for bonus editions, special me...
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Nigel Lawson once said a party that wins the battle of ideas wins the election... Rachel Reeves has started to engage in this battle of ideas during her Mais Lecture. Labour are way ahead in the polls, so is this a battle they can win? Support Rock & Roll Politics on Patreon for bonus podcasts, special events and much more. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit podcastchoices.com/adchoices
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March 19, 2024 54 mins
With polls suggesting a slaughter at the election will Tory MPs seek to replace Sunak … and should they? Tickets for the next Rock n Roll Politics Live: Kings Place on  26th March 2024  Support Rock & Roll Politics on Patreon and get exclusive benefits including bonus episodes and exclusive merchandise only available to subscribers. Buy Steve’s book Turning Points: Crisis and Change in Modern Britain, from 1945 to Truss through our...
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We are obsessed by the character of leaders, even if context, ideas and external circumstances can determine the fate of a government as much as character. Keir Starmer has been unusually hard to pin down, which is why I was keen to speak to Tom Baldwin. Although he has done many interviews to promote his new book on the Labour leader, I sensed there was more to explore – and we do. Plus, reflections on the challenge for Labour aft...
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The nightmare in Gaza triggers chaos in the Commons, a victory for George Galloway and apocalyptic warnings from Rishi Sunak… and yet there’s broad agreement in the UK about the need for a ceasefire. Meanwhile on most domestic issues where there should be an intense political battle, there seems to be a passive consensus. Rock & Roll Politics is live at the Ropetackle Arts Centre in Shoreham on Weds March 13. Steve is speaking at t...
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February 27, 2024 44 mins
Amidst the delusional craziness of Liz Truss’s interventions, she raises one valid question: Does too much power lie in unelected institutions? Since 1979 a huge amount of power has been handed over by elected politicians, and only Truss explores the implications as she sees them. Time for the Rock & Roll Politics co-operative to step in and save an important question from the fleeting Prime Minister. Rock & Roll Politics is live a...
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In Tom Baldwin's new biography of Keir Starmer, Angela Rayner describes the Labour leader as “the least political person I know in politics”. What does she mean? Is she right about Starmer? And what are the implications? Rock & Roll Politics is live in March: The Ropetackle, Shoreham, Wed Mar 13th: https://ropetacklecentre.co.uk/events/steve-richards-rock-n-roll-politics-2/ Kings Place, London, March 26th: https://www.kingsplace.co...
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Labour is way ahead in the polls and has dropped its most radical policy, the £28 billion green recovery plan. But in opposition, in the build up to the 1979 and 2010 elections, the Conservatives put forward radical right wing programmes – and won from opposition. They did not retreat. Why is Labour more cautious and less confident? Rock N Roll Politics is live at Kings Place on March 26th with a brand new show. Tickets here: http...
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Starmer and Reeves have got in a mess over their pledge to borrow £28 billion for a green recovery programme. The proposal has been marked by defensive ‘retreats’ when it would enable UK to compete with the US and EU and bring good news to every voter. Why has this happened, and what can be done about it? Plus, points from the Rock N Roll Co-operative on the return of the Northern Ireland Assembly, Lord Frosty Frost and more Back t...
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January 30, 2024 47 mins
Attempted coups against PMs and leaders are becoming increasingly familiar. Will the current plot against Sunak succeed?  Support Rock N Roll Politics on Patreon to get bonus editions, merchandise and more.   Rock N Roll Politics is live with a brand new show at Kings Place on March 26th. Get in-person or streaming tickets here Learn more about your ad choices. Visit podcastchoices.com/adchoices
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It’s become a cliché that Keir Starmer's pitch lacks the clarity and sense of purpose that marked New Labour's victory in 1997. But Blair’s over-mythologised win was a lot lighter on specifics than we tend to remember, says Steve Richards. Support Rock & Roll Politics on Patreon and get exclusive benefits including bonus episodes and exclusive merchandise only available to subscribers: https://www.patreon.com/RockNRollPolitics Buy...
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January 16, 2024 55 mins
Last week Steve Richards asked what the deeper lessons were from the Post Office scandal. The responses from the Rock N Roll Politics Co-operative suggests it merely reflects a much wider problem. How do we even begin to fix Britain? Or to be more precise; how does a future Labour government fix it?  Plus important notices on exclusive new content for Patreons, live events and brilliant questions. Support Rock & Roll Politics on Pa...
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The indifference of ministers in the coalition government to the Post Office scandal is becoming a big story. But the indifference was not accidental, it was a deliberate act and part of a wider culture that is still pervasive: The state should step back and give 'operational independence' to non-elected figures. Steve Richards assesses how when things go wrong, as they often do in this culture, ministers become responsible, and wh...
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January 3, 2024 24 mins
A bonus New Year episode for all in the Rock N Roll Politics Co-operative: With Keir Starmer following a Blairite pre-election strategy, Steve Richards thinks Rishi Sunak has only one route to reduce Labour's lead. But will he fail to take it?  Support Rock & Roll Politics on Patreon and get exclusive benefits including bonus episodes and exclusive merchandise only available to subscribers: https://www.patreon.com/RockNRollPolitics...
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It was a packed house at Kings Place this December for a live Rock N Roll Politics: The Festive Special. As a special Christmas gift from Steve Richards we have the live recording for those in the Rock N Roll Politics Co-operative who couldn't be there, and for those who could. Support Rock & Roll Politics on Patreon and get exclusive benefits including bonus episodes and exclusive merchandise only available to subscribers: https:/...
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A small but emblematic announcement highlights why public services are so poor in the UK; the government has scrapped plans for an app to make booking train tickets easier.  Steve Richards explores why public services are not structured for the benefit of the public. All this plus brilliant listener questions and notices for the Rock & Roll Politics co-operative and a Happy Christmas to you all!  Support Rock & Roll Politics on Pat...
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NHS waiting lists spiralling out of control. A crisis in social care. Station boards full of cancelled trains. Creaking schools. But somehow, Rishi Sunak's future depends on flying a single plane full of migrants to Rwanda. How do we get a more grown-up politics in the UK? Plus your brilliant questions, notices from the Rock & Roll Politics co-operative, and much more. Support Rock & Roll Politics on Patreon and get exclusive benef...
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December 7, 2023 29 mins
After the resignation of Robert Jenrick, plus Suella Braverman's opposition to his new Rwanda legislation, can Rishi Sunak govern any more? If not, will he call an early election next year? Steve Richards assesses another Westminster drama with a special bonus podcast. Support Rock & Roll Politics on Patreon and get exclusive benefits including bonus episodes and exclusive merchandise only available to subscribers: https://www.patr...
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