18 APRIL 1998

Page 6


The Spectator

Right to roam A n agreement was signed on Good Friday at the multi-party talks on Northern Ireland held at Stormont under the chair- manship of Senator George Mitchell. Pres-...

Page 7

SPECTAT THE OR The Spectator, 56 Doughty Street, London WC1N 2LL

The Spectator

Telephone: 0171-405 1706; Telex 27124; Fax 0171-242 0603 OLD LABOUR CLASSES The chalkface agitators, however, were mistaken in attacking the Education Secre- tary. The...

Page 8


The Spectator

Mr Blair was rough on Mr Ahern (and while Unionists were there) BRUCE ANDERSON O ccasionally, one is glad to be wrong. In this column last week, I wrote about the imminent...

Page 9


The Spectator

ANDREW NEIL ew York has become such a byword for law and order under the 'tough love' of Mayor Giuliani that even the trees are feel- ing safer. One young man was fined $1,000...

Page 10


The Spectator

Celebrating ten years of a medical breakthrough FRANK JOHNSON I s it possible that, today, a Jewish moth- er's proudest reference would not be to 'my son, the doctor', but 'my...

Page 11


The Spectator

Anthony Daniels says we should look abroad to understand our inner cities' problems - and their solution THERE could be no better training for life in the British inner city...

Page 13


The Spectator

Mark Steyn tries to make sense of America's new anti-tobacco regulations New Hampshire I WAS having breakfast in Fairlee, on the Vermont side of the Connecticut River, when a...

Page 15


The Spectator

Peter Hitchens explores the true extent of the Education Secretary's class ties WHAT would David Blunkett's image be, if it were not for the howling hecklers of the National...

Page 17


The Spectator

The Church of England, Victoria Combe discloses, has resorted to hiring an ordained version of Peter Mandelson TRAYS of Belgian chocolates on doilies appeared at the last big...

Page 18


The Spectator

To mark the 30th anniversary of the war museum at Cu Chi WE DROVE for about an hour and a half out of the straggling south-east Asian sprawl which is Saigon, and which — since...

Page 20


The Spectator

Tom Sutcliffe offers the fullest account so far of how London's two great opera houses reached their present pass LONDON'S opera buffs used to consider themselves reasonably...


The Spectator

Michael Heath

Page 24

Mind your language

The Spectator

THE patronage of Mrs Malaprop, it seems, ranges far beyond the word- processor (or mangle) of Mr Alastair Campbell, the barely civil servant of Downing Street. The words upon...

Page 25


The Spectator

Oh, to be in downland Wiltshire, now that April's there PAUL JOHNSON h, to be in England, now that April's there!' wrote Browning. Yes, but which England? There are so many....

Page 26

A bad bargain

The Spectator

Sir: It was fascinating to learn that Lord Irvine, whose most famous act as Lord Chancellor has been to spend £59,000 of taxpayers' money on wallpaper, is to spend £60,000 p.a....

Credit where it's not due

The Spectator

Sir: Attracting false attributions is evidently one of Professor Milton Friedman's many talents. He did not coin the maxim, 'There is no such thing as a free lunch', which is...

Couch potatoes

The Spectator

Sir: This week we learned that the average American now spends a cumulative 11 years of his lifespan of 72 years watching television. Similar figures apply in the Unit- ed...

A Shropshire lad

The Spectator

Sir: In `Mind your language' of 4 April, Dot Wordsworth speculated on the Shropshire meaning of the word `dowl' or 'doul'. My mother was born in 1898 in a cottage in south...

LETTERS Myths about Kenya

The Spectator

Sir: Rupert Wright missed an opportunity when he wrote the article about Lord Delamere (`The Kennedys of Kenya', 11 April). Readers might have been interested to known that the...

Page 27


The Spectator

A slippery but electric eel David Hughes LAWRENCE DURRELL by Ian MacNiven Faber, f25, pp. 801 A lunch with Lawrence Durrell used to last seven hours and seven bottles. We then...


The Spectator

ANNOUNCEMENT We regret some UK subscribers may have received their copies late last week. This was due to a combination of the bank holiday postal arrangements and the floods...

Page 30

The Macmillan generation

The Spectator

Michael Portillo A LITTLE BIT OFF THE TOP: A BIOGRAPHY OF S. S. HAMMERSLEY by Barbara Jill Poloniecka The Book Guild, £15, pp. 192 F or a few months during the war, my mother...

Page 31

Diagnosing our endemic disease

The Spectator

Michael Howard WHY WARS HAPPEN by Jeremy Black Reaktion Books, £19.99, pp. 272 WAR AND THE WORLD: MILITARY POWER AND THE FATE OF CONTINENTS, 1450-2000 by Jeremy Black Yale,...

Page 32

The flavour of the year

The Spectator

William Rees-Mogg A THREAD OF YEARS by John Lukacs Yale, £19.95, pp. 481 O ccasionally one is given a book to review which one likes too well. That is always rather difficult...

Page 33

Getting back to non-basics

The Spectator

Vicki Woods CHRISTIAN DIOR: THE MAN WHO MADE THE WORLD LOOK NEW by Marie-France Pochna Aurum, £18.95, pp. 314 S omebody had to make the world look new. For seven years, the...

Page 34

A mere peep through the curtain

The Spectator

Oleg Gordievsky THE CROWN JEWELS: THE BRITISH SECRETS AT THE HEART OF THE KGB FILES by Nigel West and Oleg Tsarev HarperCollins, £19.99, pp. 366 W ith at least 15 books to his...

Page 35

An armchair critic

The Spectator

Sheridan Morley ENCHANTED EVENINGS: THE BROADWAY MUSICAL FROM SHOW BOAT TO SONDHEIM by Geoffrey Block OUP, £25, pp. 410 W ith Show Boat, the Broadway musical which launched the...

Page 36

The special charm of failure

The Spectator

Jonathan Sumption HOSTAGE TO FORTUNE: THE TROUBLED LIFE OF FRANCIS BACON, 1561-1626 by Lisa Jardine and Alan Stewart Gollancz, £25, pp. 637 H istory is kind to learned men,...

Page 37

Right under their noses

The Spectator

Jonathan Keates THE VICTORIAN UNDERWORLD by Donald Thomas John Murray, £25, pp. 346 T he recent reduction of Dickens's Our Mutual Friend, that 'loose, baggy monster' as Henry...

Page 38


The Spectator

Musical myth making Peter Phillips on the dangers of uncritical adulation of great composers P osthumous reputations are fickle things, often out of all reasonable control,...

Page 39

Exhibitions 1

The Spectator

Picasso (Palazzo Grassi, Venice, till 28 June) Artistic chameleon Robin Simon F or me, this exhibition came as a pro- found relief. I have had the gravest doubts about...

Page 40

Exhibitions 2

The Spectator

China syndrome Martin Gayford T. see the art of the East, at the moment it is a good idea to fly west. At the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York, there is, until 3 June,...

Page 41


The Spectator

II Trittico (English National Opera, Coliseum) Puccini: be patient Michael Tanner H opes were high for this new produc- tion of what is routinely called Puccini's neglected...

Page 42

Don't forget the humanities

The Spectator

Isabel Carlisle on the National Endowment for Science, Technology and the Arts T he National Lottery Bill goes into standing committee in the House of Com- mons next week. It...

Page 43


The Spectator

Amiable ramble Mark Steyn aybe it's time Clint Eastwood did a musical. As it is, the album of Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil is so much better than the film. Millions...

Page 44


The Spectator

Il faut cultiver . . . Ursula Buchan W hen a person is tired of Chelsea, they are tired of life; for there is in Chelsea all that gardening can afford. Quite so, but there...

Page 45


The Spectator

Give Tusa the job Michael Vestey I am a very great actor,' says the distin- guished thespian Sir Giles Hampton when he bumps into young William Brown. `So am I,' says William...


The Spectator

In the steps of the Master Simon Hoggart I 'm just back from the United States, where I watched no television except the news, which was filled with the usual starry- eyed...

Page 46

The turf

The Spectator

A true gentleman Robin Oakley T iming, and tying yourself to the right event at the right time, is the secret both in advertising and political campaigning. I for- get which...

Page 47

High life

The Spectator

Mind your manners Taki some of you may have heard, the Big Bagel is going through a period of grace. Civility is in, crass expletives, bluster and intimidation are out, out,...

Page 48

Country life

The Spectator

Unspilled blood Leanda de Lisle `Why are they being so horrid to Piggy? He's, a lad!' my 11-year-old eldest asked in the early stages of the story. Peter and I looked at each...


The Spectator

Little 'uns ' Andrew Robson IT is always satisfying to make the 'spot cards' cards work. Hard as it is to believe, the V 'pips' are relevant all the way down to V4 on this...

Page 49


The Spectator

11 111111 11111 UPLIFTING THE SOLE Le Monde in Cardiff — Contained within a dark, woody upstairs room in Cardiff's Continental Café Quarter (and that's official), Le Monde...

Page 50

Imperative cooking: useless potatoes and tomatoes

The Spectator

BEFORE Easter England was full of Egyp- tians. They are cheerful enough, I suppose, and pleasant enough to look at with their light brown, earthy skins, but they are of no use...

Page 52


The Spectator

Some progress Raymond Keene FINALLY there appears to be some posi- tive movement on the vexed question of Garry Kasparov's defence of his world championship. The news is that...


The Spectator

THE MALT Madly miscast Jaspistos IN COMPETITION NO. 2029 you were invited to supply an extract from a review of a well-known stage play, or of a film of a book, criticising...

Page 53


The Spectator

A first prize of £30 and a bottle of Graham's Six Grapes Port for the first correct solution opened on 5 May, with two runners-up prizes of £20 (or, for UK solvers, the latest...

No. 2032: In Excelsis

The Spectator

Not only did Oscar Wilde go to jail as a consequence of libel, so did silly Lord Alfred (`Bosie) Douglas, for libelling Win- ston Churchill. In prison he wrote a poem with the...

Solution to 1355: Ethos

The Spectator

o t kJ V El rielll% rlarielliallijo ono INMEIDEICIar Lin ifil MU 11 In raFI E Oa E Nr10 tIR A ii E An', umarl Er 0 ii II U ril E MUM. z film rl Elio CIA...

Page 55


The Spectator

War or picnic? Simon Barnes LAST week I was going on about chivalry. Michael Schumacher must have missed that one. Last weekend, the Formula One driver was in yet another...


The Spectator

Dear Mary. . . Q. Having invited two old friends to lunch, I was irritated to see them bearing little pack- ages of food, claiming that they were both suffering from `food...