John Ashmore, CapX

John Ashmore



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  • CapX

Recent articles by John:

The CapX Podcast: Christopher Snowdon on why Nanny doesn't know best

From sin taxes to plain packaging, smoking bans to warnings about the perils of office cake, the reach of Britain’s nanny state has never felt more pervasive or pedantic. Just this week the public health panjandrums came up with a new wheeze – proposing reducing the calorie content of certain naughty foods by 10% in […] → Read More

John Longworth on how to make Brexit work for Britain

This week’s podcast guest. John Longworth, is a real titan of UK PLC. As a scientist, business, entrepreneur and advocate for the interests of British business, there aren’t many who have John’s breadth or depth of experience – something he’s bringing to bear now as chairman of the Independent Business Network, which represents our often […] → Read More

The CapX Podcast: Samuel Hughes on solving the housing puzzle

. CapX regulars know all too well the parlous state of British housing. We don’t build enough, what we do build is often shoddy and angrily opposed by local people, and both rents and mortgages are increasingly out of the reach of even those on middling income. There is no single silver bullet, no snapping […] → Read More

Does it matter whether or not Rishi Sunak uses an NHS GP?

Does Rishi Sunak use a private GP? I suspect many will share my instinctive eye-rolling at the genre of question posed by the BBC’s Laura Kuennsberg yesterday. Yes, we all love Our NHS and all that, but why shouldn’t the Prime Minister of one of the world’s wealthiest countries avail himself of private healthcare if […] → Read More

CapX authors choose their Books of 2022

If ever a year needed some literary distractions, it was 2022. Our contributors have served up a feast of recommendations, from dense histories and serious political analyses to more whimsical offerings, there’s something for everyone in CapX’s Books of 2022.Robert Colvile Since he agreed to fly over for our annual conference, it seems rude not […] → Read More

The CapX Podcast: Educating England

Wherever you look workers are going on strike and our schools are no exception – even though Jeremy Hunt managed to find an extra few billion behind the Treasury couch for education at his recent Autumn Statement. So what’s going on here, why are union leaders still balloting, and what’s the state of English schools […] → Read More

The CapX Podcast: Census sensibilities

What kind of country is Britain today? That might be a rather broad question, but thanks to the recently published census, we can have a stab at answering it – at least for England and Wales. For this week’s topical podcast we kick off with deep dive into those findings, what they say about Britain’s […] → Read More

Tyler Cowen on talent, economic optimism – and where to find a decent curry

Our guest this week is one of a kind.. A truly polymathic personality, there’s not much Tyler Cowen doesn’t have a well informed view on, from the merits of Bradford curry houses to the future of cryptocurrencies and the fate of Trussonomics. That breadth of interest is evident from his prolific writing on his Marginal […] → Read More

The CapX Podcast: Oliver Wiseman on America's 'red ripple'

We’re turning our gaze Stateside this week where the mid-term Congressional elections promised a red wave and delivered, well, something more like a ripple. It was a pretty bad night for Donald Trump, a pretty good one for Joe Biden and a fascinating tee-up for the presidential race in a couple of years’ time. To […] → Read More

The CapX Podcast: Ian Acheson on police, prisons and protecting the border

Law and order has shot up the political agenda in the last year or so, with the chaos in the Channel, damning reports into the culture of the Met Police and chaos in the prison system. Just this week we’ve seen the firebombing of a migrant centre in Dover and uproar over the treatment of […] → Read More

The CapX Podcast: Iuliia Mendel on working for Zelensky and Ukraine's fight for survival

Volodymyr Zelensky became a a global icon almost overnight following the Russian invasion of Ukraine in February of this year. The force of his leadership and defiance in the face of overwhelming Russian force offered hope in his country’s darkest hour. For our guest this week, Zelensky’s heroic defiance came as no great surprise. Iuliia […] → Read More

If we're looking for bad policies to ditch, the triple-lock should be on the block

One of the few things Liz Truss didn’t u-turn on in the dying days of her premiership was the triple-lock for the state pension. That’s a pity, as it’s one of the measures we could most do with jettisoning. Before my inbox fills with missives from outraged senior citizens, I’m not saying that the elderly […] → Read More

The CapX Podcast: Bonds, Bailey and Bonking for Britain

We aren’t in the habit of quoting Lenin on CapX, but his observation that there are ‘decades when nothing happens and weeks when decades happen’ has felt pretty apposite recently. So there’s plenty to discuss in our latest topical podcast: from chaos in the gilt markets to the Government’s growing list of u-turns. We also […] → Read More

The CapX Podcast: Richard Reeves on why modern men are struggling

When we think of the fight for gender equality, more often than not it’s framed in terms of the unequal, often violent, treatment suffered by women and girls. In many, many places, that is very much still the case – but in the West the ‘battle of the sexes’ is not as clear cut as it […] → Read More

The CapX Podcast: Julian Jessop on a tough week for 'Trussonomics'

There’s no doubt it’s been tough week for proponents of so-called ‘Trussonomics’, with the Government’s Growth Plan taking pelters from all sides and the Bank of England stepping in to calm down the gilt markets. But does that mean the game is up for supply-side reformers? Our guest this week, Julian Jessop, has been in […] → Read More

The CapX Podcast: Brad DeLong on Slouching Towards Utopia

In a world of relentless, high-velocity news, sometimes it pays to take a step back and look at the big picture. Our guest this week, the US economist Brad DeLong, does that with some aplomb in his new book ‘Slouching Towards Utopia’, a sweeping survey of economic development from the late 19th century to the […] → Read More

The CapX Podcast: Robert Colvile and Henry Hill on how water works

Water, water everywhere…this week’s news has been dominated by rows over the privatised utilities. From polluting water companies to ‘greedy’ energy bosses, it’s open season on anyone who dares turn a (highly regulated) profit while providing an essential public service. Recent water and high energy prices have also turned a spotlight on a chronic failure […] → Read More

The CapX Podcast: Are you a Booster or a Doomster?

. Are you a booster or a doomster? A recent article by the economist and CapX regular Sam Bowman suggests this is the divide in UK economic policy. For the Boosters, not only is growth paramount, but there’s plenty we can do through better domestic policy to improve things, both right now and for future generations. Doomsters, […] → Read More

The CapX Podcast: Madeline Grant on the age of 'vibes politics'

This week we were delighted to welcome one of the stars of the centre-right media landscape, Madeline Grant. After starting out in thinktank world at the Institute of Economic Affairs, Madeline has since forged a path in journalism as a comment editor, columnist and latterly sketch-writer at the Daily Telegraph. There was plenty for us […] → Read More

Rishi's green belt-tightening is no solution to the housing crisis

In my last couple of pieces I’ve complained that the candidates haven’t said enough about arguably our biggest public policy failure, the planning system. After reading the latest press release from Rishi Sunak’s team, I’m starting to wish they had carried on saying nothing. Sunak will, he has today announced, ‘guarantee that the green belt […] → Read More