cover art for Is Labour finally a government in waiting?

The New Statesman Podcast

Is Labour finally a government in waiting?

Anoosh Chakelian, Freddie Hayward and Rachel Wearmouth report from the Labour Party conference in Liverpool.

They discuss the remarkably upbeat mood among the party faithful, the headline policy announcements so far, and the alternative vision for the economy set out by the shadow chancellor, Rachel Reeves, as the pound continues to plummet after Liz Truss’s tax-cutting frenzy.

Then in You Ask Us, they answer a listener’s question on the prospects of the party abandoning the first-past-the-post electoral system, after polls show a majority of the British public are in favour of change.

If you have a question for You Ask Us, email

Podcast listeners can subscribe to the New Statesman for just £1 a week for 12 weeks using our special offer. Just visit

More episodes

View all episodes

  • The philosopher and the crypto king: Sam Bankman-Fried and the effective altruism delusion | Audio Long Read

    At the time of writing, the crypto billionaire Sam Bankman-Fried is due to stand trial on 3 October 2023. He stands accused of fraud and money-laundering on an epic scale through his currency exchange FTX. Did he gamble with other people’s money in a bid to do the maximum good? In this week’s long read, the New Statesman’s associate editor Sophie McBain examines the relationship between Bankman-Fried and the Oxford-based effective altruism (EA) movement. The billionaire was a close associate and supporter of William MacAskill, the Scottish moral philosopher who many consider EA’s leader. It was MacAskill who had persuaded him – and many other young graduates – to earn more, in order to give more. But how much money was enough – and what should they spend it on? Was EA just “a dumb game we woke Westerners play”, as Bankman-Fried told one journalist? In conversations with EA members past and present, McBain hears how the movement was altered by its enormous wealth. As the trial of its biggest sponsor approaches, will effective altruism survive – or be swallowed by its more cynical Silicon Valley devotees? Written and read by Sophie McBain. This article originally appeared in the 22-28 September 2023 edition of the New Statesman; you can read the text version here. If you enjoyed listening to this episode, you might also like Big Tech and the quest for eternal youth, by Jenny Kleeman.
  • You Ask Us: How might a Labour government manage a Trump government?

    With both the UK and US elections coming into view, the team consider what's happening with Labour's foreign policy agenda and how the relationship between a Labour government and a Trump government could play out. And another question from a listener casts a look back to the appointment of Jeremy Hunt as Chancellor. Had Sunak not been required to keep Hunt in place in the aftermath of Truss, who might he have chosen to be Chancellor? Would Sunak's preferred brand of economics differ from what Hunt is providing?Anoosh Chakelian, Rachel Wearmouth, and Freddie Hayward, answer listener questions.Submit a question for You Ask Us: the app:iOS: to the New Statesman from £1 per week: up to our daily politics email:
  • Rishi Sunak and his environmental straw men

    This Wednesday Rishi Sunak gave a speech rolling back on the government’s Net Zero pledges, pushing back the ban on the sale of new petrol and diesel cars from 2030 to 2035, scrapping plans to force landlords to upgrade the energy efficiency of their homes, watering down the gas boiler phaseout (aiming for 80% rather than 100% by 2035), and ruling out plans for a seemingly unbeknownst meat tax.Anoosh Chakelian is joined by Andrew Marr and Freddie Hayward to discuss where these plans have come from, what they mean for the Conservatives and Labour, and how they will divide public opinion.Submit a question for You Ask Us: the app:iOS: to the New Statesman from £1 per week: up to our daily politics email:
  • Trussonomics isn't dead

    Liz Truss thought she had two years to save the economy, but her mini-budget caused it all to blow up in less than two months. We're now a year on from her chaotic 49 day premiership, but there are groups of economists and politicians who think her free-market growth strategy was right and it's only a matter of time before it makes a comeback.Read The Trussites are plotting their comeback: the New Statesman app:iOS: to the New Statesman from £1 per week: up to our weekly Saturday Read email
  • How Chile (almost) democratised Big Tech | Audio Long Read

    Fifty years after Salvador Allende was ousted, might his greatest legacy be his battle with the emerging tech giants?On 1 August 1973, a seemingly mundane diplomatic summit took place in Lima, Peru. But there was nothing mundane about its revolutionary agenda. The attendees – diplomats from Bolivia, Chile, Colombia, Ecuador and Peru – aspired to create a more just technological world order, one that might have prevented the future dominance of Silicon Valley. As the Chilean foreign minister lamented even then: “500 multinational corporations control 90 per cent of the world’s productive technology”. Could a new international institution - a tech equivalent of the IMF - ensure that developing countries had access to all the benefits of technological progress? Six weeks later, Salvador Allende’s government was toppled, paving the way for General Augusto Pinochet’s dictatorship of Chile. In this week’s audio long read, the author and podcaster Evgeny Morozov considers Allende’s legacy. Often viewed as a tragic but hapless figure, his government in fact oversaw a number of radical and utopian initiatives - many of them to do with technology. Might Chile under Allende have evolved into the South Korea or Taiwan of South America?Read by Catharine Hughes and written by Evgeny Morozov, who hosts The Santiago Boys: the Tech World that Might Have Been podcast series. This article was originally published on on 9 September 2023; you can read the text version here. If you enjoyed listening to this episode, you might also enjoy Would climate change have been worse without capitalism?Download the New Statesman app:iOS: to the New Statesman from £1 per week: up to our weekly Saturday Read email
  • You Ask Us: Why are so many councils going bust?

    Since being recently surpassed by India, Britain has the world's sixth largest economy. But, one listener asks, how do we square this position with the reality of our crumbling services? And on the subject of government funding, another listener asks: will Birmingham City Council's financial crisis will make Labour more weary of devolving power to local authorities?Anoosh Chakelian, Rachel Wearmouth, and Freddie Hayward, answer listener questions.Read more from Anoosh on Thurrock Council's bankruptcy and the West Country's disappearing bus routesSubmit a question for You Ask Us: the app:iOS: to the New Statesman from £1 per week: up to our daily politics email:
  • Angela Rayner can’t let the unions down now

    The deputy labour leader and “trade union favourite” delivered a speech full of promises at the TUC. Now she has to deliver.Reaffirming Labour’s commitment to the New Deal for Working people, Rayner shored up support among the unions as Labour approaches the next election. But, as Rachel Wearmouth tells Anoosh Chakelian and Freddie Hayward, Rayner’s “one of us” status could spell problems for a future Labour government if they fall short.Submit a question for You Ask Us: the app:iOS: to the New Statesman from £1 per week: up to our daily politics email:
  • Spotlight on Policy: Legacy tech & the move to sustainable computing | Sponsored by Google ChromeOS

    The UK is one of the largest producers of household electronic waste in the world. In 2022 we threw away nearly 24 kilos of things like plugs, mobile phones and computer hardware per person.   The volume of e-waste produced world-wide is predicted to increase from more than 61 million metric tons this year to nearly 75 million in 2030 – and the vast majority of this will go into landfill.   In this special episode, Becky Slack from the New Statesman's Spotlight team meets Michael Wyatt, director of Google ChromeOS EMEA, and Justin Sutton-Parker, CEO of research group Px3, to discuss what businesses and other organisations can do to play their part in reducing the scourge of e-waste, and more broadly how IT can drive sustainability.  --This episode is sponsored by Google ChromeOS. Trial ChromeOS Flex for yourself on an old PC or Mac for free. Download ChromeOS Flex onto a USB via the ChromeOS website.--The New Statesman Spotlight team reports on policy for those who shape it and the businesses it affects. Read their policy reporting at
  • Britain's great tax delusion

    Rishi Sunak earned almost £5m in the past three years, yet this was only taxed at a rate of 22%. Britain's tax system is broken, focusing on income rather than wealth, and it seems like no one plans on doing anything about this. Shadow chancellor Rachel Reeves has explicitly stated that should Labour come into power, a wealth tax will not be introduced. In this episode, staff writer Harry Lambert sets out how Labour could raise £28billion by adopting a wealth tax, and how this could help narrow the gap between Asset Britain and Austerity Britain.Read Britain’s great tax con here: the New Statesman app:iOS: to the New Statesman from £1 per week: up to our weekly Saturday Read email