Why Sepp Blatter is a genius

Fifa boss understood very early that there’s a new world order in which westerners don’t matter much

Art and the billionaire heirs

‘HNWI artists have time to hone their talent — not like us plebs’

How to tackle structural racism

‘A non-white person in the west typically attends an inferior school, gets hassled by police, and dies poor’

Stop these WW2 comparisons

‘Memories of the war have shaped our responses to everything from the Viet Cong to today’s jihadis’

Health: how to avoid lazy thinking

‘People prefer to blame disease on factors beyond their control: their genes or their mobile phones or radiation’

What candidates aren’t talking about

‘A female American president is a historic prospect. However, most voters seem unbothered’

Welcome to the Londonsphere

‘The trains that carry occasional Londoners will themselves act as de facto offices’

Will TV football fans soon be priced out?

‘The stadium-goers are merely rich enough, near enough to the ground and free enough from family duties to attend games’

A very cosmopolitan spy

‘Philby and Burgess couldn’t cope. Philby wallowed in drink; Burgess died of it. But for Blake, Moscow wasn’t exile. He embraced it as his fate’

How westerners became PRs for terror

‘Dead whites in Paris are bigger news than dead Muslims in Syria or Gaza. Our overreaction makes the terrorists’ point for them’

Why the west loves a kleptocrat

‘Angolan oligarchs inhabit the global luxury economy of British public schools, Swiss asset managers, Hermès stores’

How to make people listen

‘Anyone with anything to sell needs a story . . . but the first thing to grasp is that the person you’re trying to persuade is bored with you already’

The art of name-dropping

Today, neither birth nor stuff conveys status any more. So the quickest way to convey status has become, unfortunately, conversation

In defence of the liberal media

‘The implication is that we don’t believe the liberal stuff ourselves. Well, I actually think the things I write are true. At least give me credit for sincerity’

How tourists took over the world

By 2030, there will be 1.8 billion international tourist arrivals, up from 940 million in 2010

A postscript to the end of Britain’s empire

The UK has begun recruiting its rulers abroad, chiefly in former white colonies, writes Simon Kuper

What happened to the lost World Cup?

Oliver found the original base ‘unnoticed and unlogged, hidden away on a shelf in Fifa’s vast archives

Why is France so misunderstood?

‘Many foreigners feel that they understand France, and disagree with it. Hence the phenomenon that the French call “le French bashing”’

Can Parisians all get along?

‘Fanatics such as the Kouachis insist they have a single identity: Muslim only. Most people are more complicated’

My Paris after the attacks

London has done well since its Islamist attack. So should my adopted city


Simon KuperSimon Kuper joined the Financial Times in 1994. He ended up writing the daily currencies column and was driven out by tedium in 1998. He returned in 2002 as a sports columnist and has been there ever since, occasionally allowed out of his sports box to write about books, the Netherlands or other subjects.

Simon was born in Uganda and grew up in London, the Netherlands, the US, Sweden and Jamaica. He studied at Oxford, Harvard and the Technische Universität of West Berlin. His first book, Football Against the Enemy (1994), set him on a path of writing about sport with an anthropologist’s eye. His column in the FT tries to place sport and sportsmen within a country, a time, a society, while also being about sport itself.

E-mail simon.kuper@ft.com

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