14 MARCH 1981

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From profligacy to probity?

The Spectator

Sir Geoffrey Howe's third budget does nothing in particular. The question is whether it does it very well, well enough, or badly, and it is not really possible to give an...

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Political commentary

The Spectator

The undeflected Chancellor Ferdinand Mount A few minutes before the Chancellor got up, Mrs Thatcher delivered a charming tribute to Professor Friedrich von Hayek. She was a...

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In the City

The Spectator

The need for tax reform Tony Rudd Geoffrey Howe's budget is a gloomy affair. The TUC, the CBI, even the Stock Exchange are united in disappointment. But it Was unreal to...

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The Spectator

On Wednesday morning I opened the Daily Mirror and came across the following statement: 'With regard to our report of references in Crossman's Diaries to the famous Bevan libel...

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Another voice

The Spectator

Marching orders Auberon Waugh At last, it seems the Government is going to grasp the nettle of electoral reform. Many People may not be aware that this historic development is...

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Reagan's imperial longings

The Spectator

Nicholas von Hoffman Washington, The battleship New Jersey, built anno domini 1943, tethered all these many years to a crumbling dock in the impurities of the blackish green...

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The carnival spirit

The Spectator

Richard West Venice The gondoliers are on strike, but they do not object to letting the tourists get in the boat to pose for photographs. Venice is busier than I remember it;...

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The flight from paradise

The Spectator

Bohdan Nahaylo Last month, in a surprise move, the Soviet Union freed a courageous man whose name had become a symbol for Jews throughout the world. After 11 years of...

One hundred years ago

The Spectator

Mr Fawcett made an interesting statement on Thursday night as to the growing popularity of the new postal orders. The number of postal orders now issued for is. was at the rate...

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Who's afraid of civil servants?

The Spectator

Peter Paterson A television programme I was involved with recently was trying to depict the main areas of labour trouble facing the Government. Huge photographs were brought...

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A new manifesto

The Spectator

Jo Grimond Can we afford Conservative governments? I am afraid we cannot; not so much because of their extravagance as because of failure to make use of the time bought at our...

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When Balogh was wrong

The Spectator

Tun Congdon The last two years of British economic Policy have purportedly been an experiment in free markets and sound money. If the newspaper editorials are to be believed,...

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The Spectator

The great TV afflatus Paul Johnson At a recent love-in with independent TV producers, Jeremy Isaacs, Chief Executive of Channel Four, exulted: 'At a time when, across the...

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The Spectator

The Crossman libel Sir: Can I add a footnote to the story of the Cr nssman-Bevan-phillips libel action against the Spectator? Five or six years afterwards I met the property...

The battle for genius

The Spectator

Sir: If Evelyn Waugh had died almost unknown, and some well-wishers had produced some views of his on politics and Mr Michael Wharton had written a review in the Spectator (7...

Mexican invasion

The Spectator

Sir: Richard West is surely wrong when he says that the US Marines have never occupied Mexico City, 'only the outskirts of the country' (7 March). In 1847, an American army...

Pricking bubbles

The Spectator

Sir: As a long-standing reader of the Spectator, the only occasions on which I can recall being moved to write to the Editor have arisen upon reading some attack or other on...

Another Cutler?

The Spectator

Alexander Chancellor's 'Notebook' (14 February) says that I have a tendency `to make ex cathedra pronouncements on questions of morals'. I have no such tendency or wish: who is...

Great villains

The Spectator

Sir: Oh, poor Iago: 'the greatest villain in English literature'! The next time Mr Waugh is flinching under 'Who steals my purse, steals trash' and so on (21 February) — or...

The hairy Ainu

The Spectator

Sir: In view of the failure of your correspi, dents to predict the outcomes of recent elections in countries so accessible to English-speakers as India and the United States of...

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The Spectator

The gifts of weakness Philip Magnus Harold Nicolson: Volume I, 1886-1929 James Lees-Milne (Chatto and Windus, pp. 448, E15) Harold Nicolson was born in 1886 into a patrician...

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Gothic pose

The Spectator

A.N. Wilson Bellefleur Joyce Carol Oates (Cape, pp. 558 £7.50) Cult figures cry out to be derided, particul arly when they are fervent sprinklers of the incense at their own...

Rocky Eden

The Spectator

James Hughes-Onslow Tracks Robyn Davidson (Cape, pp. 256, £5.95) When Thomas Cook presented Robyn Davidson with £1,500 in travellers' cheques last month, their first travel...

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Silent father

The Spectator

Anthony Storr Joseph Conrad: Times Remembered John Conrad (Cambridge University Press, pp. 218, f1 , 0.50). Conrad is so odd and interesting a literary figure that any...

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The Spectator

Stephen Koss 01.,11••• Joseph Chamberlain Richard Jay (Oxford University Press pp.383, £16.95) One by one, the political giants of the Victorian age have been emerging from...

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Ads and art

The Spectator

Wilfred De' Ath Thirty Seconds Michael J. Arlen (Faber with Farrer, Strauss & Giroux pp. 211, £5.50) One can easily imagine the sense of suppressed excitement, euphoria even,...

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The Spectator

C. S. Lewis — Chronicles of Narnia Bel Mooney Dedicating The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe to his God-daughter, C.S. Lewis wrote'. . . some day you will be old enough to...

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The Spectator

. . . toil and trouble Peter Jenkins The Crucible (Comedy The Greatest Little Whorehouse in Texas (Theatre Royal, Drury Lane) Arthur Miller's reputation as a superior...


The Spectator

Barbaric Bryan Robertson The opening night last week of Balle t Rambert's season at Sadler's Wells (until 21 March) included the first performance of Richard Alston's new...

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The Spectator

Look and learn John McEwen Drawing shows are always enticing, espe'cially when historical reappraisals. No other medium confronts us so immediately with the skill and...

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The Spectator

Reel life Peter Ackroyd Ordinary People ('A', selected cinemas) It depends, of course, on what you mean by ordinary. The sight of Mary Tyler Moore weeping on a golf course, or...


The Spectator

Mindgames Richard Ingrams As readers may by now have discovered, I am not, unlike Mr Humphrey Burton, a tremendous opera fan. But the BBC music department continues to bombard...

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High life

The Spectator

Oh no! Taki New York Reading my low life' colleague's remarks about how expensive it is to live badly these days, I remembered what Oscar Wilde had to say about money: 'It is...

Low life

The Spectator

Drink up Jeffrey Bernard Forget the incredible whale and the beauti' ful peregrine falcon for a minute and join with me in reflecting on the plight of Ye t another endangered...