24 MARCH 2007

Page 5

A Budget for Brown

The Spectator

‘A Budget for business’ was how — as usual — it was spun beforehand. ‘A Budget to expand prosperity and fairness for Britain’s families’ was how the speech...

Page 9

O ff to the States for a fortnight’s book tour, trying

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to plug my A History of the English-Speaking Peoples Since 1900 . Prepare yourself for a veritable carpetbombing of name-dropping, on the basis that if you can’t boast...

Page 10

Simplify taxes, shift the burden, reward marriage: this is Osbornomics

The Spectator

E ven when she slips into a room half an hour late, The Lady can still inspire a standing ovation. ‘Can I welcome Baroness Thatcher who has just joined us,’ said Lord Lamont...

Page 11

S ir Alistair Graham is presented as one of the heroes

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of our age. He is the chairman of the Committee on Standards in Public Life, which was originally set up by John Major as what he (Mr Major) called ‘an ethical workshop called...

Page 12


The Spectator

MONDAY Forty-one per cent! Would be nice to celebrate, but of course we know this is out of the question. Mr Maude is in bad enough mood already, since his attempt at optimism...

Page 14

‘We will have to fight them again’:

The Spectator

the untold story of the Lebanese war Edward Stourton has had unrivalled access to the protagonists in the war between Israel and Hezbollah. Here, on the eve of the Winograd...

Page 16

Read the small print before the next Comic Relief

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Ross Clark says that, after all the sponsored pub crawls and enforced jollity of Red Nose Day, the money raised is going to some very surprising causes: caveat donor T he...

Page 18

The false dawn that awaits Zimbabwe after Mugabe is gone

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When the tyrant falls, there will be much glib talk of Zimbabwe’s future as ‘Africa’s One Bright Spot’. History suggests a bleaker fate for the nation, says Rod Liddle...

Page 19

Mind your language

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The unbeatable duo of Judas Iscariot and Jeffrey Archer have teamed up to bring the world The Gospel According to Judas , published this week at a mere £9.99. The scholastic...

Page 20

Eileen Atkins: how Linda McCartney helped me

The Spectator

The beloved ‘third dame’ of British theatre tells Tim Walker about the ‘self-help group’ she formed with Linda McCartney when they were both suffering from cancer D ame...

Page 22

At St Thinian’s, the girls still want to be size zero

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At Cleo Watson ’s school, the weight-obsessed pupils have only water for breakfast and avoid swimming in case they develop muscle. It’s as competitive as their exams A fter...

Page 23

The Pope’s anti-liberal

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revolution has be g un Piers Paul Read says that Benedict XVI’s new statement on the Eucharist shows how conservative the Pope truly is and how irreconcilable he is to...

Page 24

Nations need borders

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Sir: Austen Ivereigh (‘Let’s sort out the migration mess’, 17 March) argues that giving an amnesty to the 500,000-odd illegal immigrants in Britain offers a practical...

Sir: Austen Ivereigh’s proposal of an amnesty for illegal immigrants

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is an insult not only to the indigenous citizens of Britain but also to the millions of immigrant citizens who have entered this country legally and who work hard and pay their...

Churchill and the Jews

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Sir: In his piece ‘Churchill was “too fond of the Jews”’ (17 March), Sir Martin Gilbert suggests that Winston Churchill should not be held responsible for the article...

Bucking the Convention

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Sir: As Charles Moore points out, the government’s plans to reform the House of Lords seem as uncertain as ever (The Spectator’s Notes, 17 March). But one point seems to...

League of cat and mice

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Sir: It would appear that the relationship between cats and mice is more symbiotic than Paul Johnson suggests (And another thing, 17 March). We never had mice until we got our...

Give him enough Roper ...

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Sir: Emma Tennant’s letter on 17 March reminds me of a further retort by my uncle, John Scott, to Hugh Trevor-Roper. This occurred on the hunting field, when John greeted the...

Page 25

The grace and glory, the exultant euphoria of successful flower painting

The Spectator

A rt is not going to the dogs in every field. Take flower painting. The Ancient Egyptians were depicting garden scenes from about 2000 BC , especially in private tombs, painting...

Page 26

Auctioneer by appointment to the world’s new rich

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Joanna Pitman meets Jussi Pylkkanen, president of Christie’s Europe, who says buyers from Russia, China and the Middle East are driving art prices to record highs I n 1987,...

Page 28

A duvet day’s as good as a pay rise

The Spectator

Matthew Vincent E ver wanted to kill your boss? Well, now you can — and, as long as it doesn’t become a regular occurrence, you won’t even have to pay tax on the cost of...

Page 30

High-street icons are safe in private hands

The Spectator

Judi Bevan sees no reason to fear for the future of Boots and Sainsbury’s: they may even become businesses T hose who fear that privateequity bidders, if they secure control,...

Page 32

There’ll be dancing on the Hoe again as Drake’s port begins to punch its weight

The Spectator

T he Luftwaffe blitzed Plymouth for two months in 1941 and destroyed 20,000 houses, 100 pubs, 42 churches, 24 schools, eight cinemas and six hotels. In a symbolic act of...

Page 33

Private faces are wiser and nicer

The Spectator

Philip Hensher O N C HESIL B EACH by Ian McEwan Cape, £12.99, pp. 166, ISBN 9780224081184 T he title of Ian McEwan’s previous novel, Saturday , awoke in at least one reader...

Page 34

Life in Vest

The Spectator

Charlotte Hobson T WO C ARAVANS : A N OVEL by Marina Lewycka Penguin/ Fig Tree, £16.99, pp. 310, ISBN 9780670916375 ✆ £13.59 (plus £2.45 p&p) 0870 429 6655 S ummer,...

Page 35

The mercenary calling

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Andro Linklater H IRED G UNS AND C OUPS D’E TAT by Anthony Mockler Hunter MacKay, £20, pp. 366, ISBN 9780947907075 I t should be impossible to write an unreadable book about...

Wisdom through waiting

The Spectator

Charlotte Moore T HE W IDOW AND H ER H ERO by Thomas Keneally Sceptre, £16.99, pp. 264, ISBN 9780340825273 ✆ £13.59 (plus £2.45 p&p) 0870 429 6655 G race Waterhouse...

Page 36

Gay old stager

The Spectator

Allan Mallinson T HE A DVENTURES OF C OLONEL D AFFODIL by Major-General Sir Roy Redgrave Pen & Sword, £19.99, pp. 208, ISBN 9781844155255 I n 2000, in these pages, I reviewed...

Ignorance is no excuse

The Spectator

Saïd K. Aburish I MPERIAL L IFE IN THE E MERALD C ITY : I NSIDE B AGHDAD ’ S G REEN Z ONE by Rajiv Chandrasekaran Bloomsbury, £12.99, pp. 368, ISBN 9780747591689 ✆...

Page 37

Enough to spoil the appetite

The Spectator

Byron Rogers S EX AND THE P SYCHE by Brett Kahr Penguin, £25, pp. 622, ISBN 9780713999402 ✆ £20 (plus £2.45 p&p) 0870 429 6655 I shall never forget that glorious summer of...

Page 38

The future is black

The Spectator

Anthony Sattin W HEN A C ROCODILE E ATS THE S UN by Peter Godwin Picador, £16.99, pp. 342, ISBN 9780199273713 ✆ £13.59 (plus £2.45 p&p) 0870 429 6655 T he title of Peter...

Voting with My Feet

The Spectator

I wish I could be fun at parties too: Slap men across their backs and flirt with girls, Tell ribald tales, play games with young blonde curls, Shout, ‘Murphy, man, remember at...

Page 40

Keeping it in the family

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Jane Ridley P LUTOCRATS : A R OTHSCHILD INHERITANCE by George Ireland John Murray, £30, pp. 432, ISBN 9780719561535 ✆ £24 (plus £2.45 p&p) 0870 429 6655 H ow the...

The critic and the novelist

The Spectator

William Skidelsky I NNER W ORKINGS : E SSAYS 2000-2005 by J. M. Coetzee Harvill Secker, £17.99, pp. 304, ISBN 9781846550454 ✆ £14.39 (plus £2.45 p&p) 0870 429 6655 N...

Page 41

A golden age for ghouls

The Spectator

Jonathan Keates M OTHER L EAKEY AND THE B ISHOP : A G HOST S TORY by Peter Marshall OUP, £12.99, pp. 323, ISBN 9780199273713 ✆ £10.39 (plus £2.45 p&p) 0870 429 6655 T he...

Page 42

No redeeming features

The Spectator

Adam Zamoyski T HE T HYSSEN A RT M ACABRE by David Litchfield Quartet, £25, pp. 470, ISBN 9780704371194 ✆ £20 (plus £2.45 p&p) 0870 429 6655 U ntil fairly recently, the...

Page 43

A singularly plural life

The Spectator


Page 44

High-table comedian

The Spectator

R ory Bremner is in a hurry. The controversial impersonator surges into his production office a few minutes late for our meeting. ‘So sorry. Did they tell you? We overran,’...

Page 45

Scraping the barrel

The Spectator

Andrew Lambirth The Unknown Monet: Pastels and Drawings Royal Academy, until 10 June Sponsored by Bank of America Renoir Landscapes 1865–83 National Gallery, until 20 May...

Page 46

Shock and awe

The Spectator

Richard Cork Leon Kossoff: Drawing from Painting National Gallery, until 1 July A t the age of only ten, Leon Kossoff undertook a momentous journey across London on his own....

Page 48

Rich pickings

The Spectator

Susan Moore F orget London, Paris and New York. For any serious collector of art and antiques there is just one unmissable event: The European Fine Art Fair at Maastricht. No...

Page 50

Spartan legacy

The Spectator

Paul Cartledge ‘Go, tell the Spartans, stranger passing by, That here, obedient to their laws, we lie.’ T he first four words served as the title of a rather good...

Page 51

Sex and slaves

The Spectator

Deborah Ross I Want Candy 15, Nationwide Amazing Grace PG, Nationwide I Want Candy is a British sex comedy, which should already sound alarm bells, but I will plough on...

Page 52

Something nasty

The Spectator

Lloyd Evans Attempts on her Life Lyttelton Dying for It Almeida Platonov Barbican ‘I ’m not a snob. Ask anyone. Well, anyone who matters.’ The author of this self-knowing...

Page 53

Intense emotions

The Spectator

Michael Tanner The Tempest Royal Opera House L’Orfeo Queen Elizabeth Hall T he first revival of Thomas Adès’s The Tempest showed that, impressive as the first series of...

Fire and water

The Spectator

Giannandrea Poesio Dido and Aeneas Sasha Waltz and Guests, Sadler's Wells Theatre I t is not surprising that Baroque operas have long attracted the interest of contemporary...

Page 54

Acoustic journey

The Spectator

Kate Chisholm I wonder whether Cameron and co. in their attempts to stir up worries about climate change, carbon emissions and the future of the planet ever spend much time...

Page 55

Annoyed by Fanny

The Spectator

James Delingpole S o it’s Sunday night and I’m lying in bed watching Mansfield Park (ITV), stricken with a chest infection, feeling really rough, writhing at all the...

People like us

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Alan Judd ‘G ood neighbours I have had, and I have met with bad; and in trust I have found treason.’ Thus spake Elizabeth I, that font of pithy regal eloquence who learnt...

Page 56

Hatchet job

The Spectator

Taki New York D ripping with malice, envy and venom, hacks are having the time of their life as Conrad Black goes on trial in Chicago, a city known for its smiling...

Page 57

Rogues and funsters

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Jeremy Clarke A t Cheltenham this year I was once again a guest of racing tipster and bon viveur Colonel Pinstripe. The Colonel is famous for his rambling, gossipy, sexist,...

Page 58

Having it all

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Sarah Standing shares her husband’s dream of owning a house abroad — briefly M y husband always maintains that the best places in the world to visit are invariably the...

Page 60

Facing reality

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Women may just have to accept growing older gracefully, says Susan Boyd I suppose there is a time in your life when you long to appear older perhaps when you are 15. You pile on...

Page 63

Viva Emilia Romagna!

The Spectator

Y ou’ll know it by its food: Parma ham, parmesan cheese, lambrusco wine, balsamic vinegar, and spaghetti bolognese. All of those products have become the staples of British...

Page 65

A superior civilisation

The Spectator

John Laughland P aris, for me, means bookshops. Others may associate the French capital with the Eiffel Tower, the haute couture houses on the Avenue Montaigne or inimitable...

Page 66

Heaven on earth

The Spectator

Josie Reed V isiting graveyards on holiday is not just for genealogists and military historians; it’s for lovers of art and poetry, and for anyone with an interest in what...

Page 69

T here are many ways of buying cheap wine, though fewer

The Spectator

means of buying good cheap wine. Supermarkets often have bargains. Recently, however, I went to a tasting by a very downmarket chain — they had Châteauneuf du Pape for £6.99...

Page 79

Middle East conflict

The Spectator

FRANK KEATING O nce more unto the breach! Harfleur, Dunkirk and all that guff is being desperately evoked by the public prints and broadcasters. Goodwill may be suffering from...


The Spectator

Q. I find myself constantly smarting — for want of a better phrase — from the presumptions of instant matey-ness one encounters in almost every human interchange in English...

Q. I am shortly to give the address at a

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memorial service. I have a sentimental streak and may well be overcome by emotion. I dread being unable to continue once the tears start rolling. Name and address withheld A....

Q. I have a pair of solid silver candelabra which

The Spectator

make my table look spectacular. The problem is that they become so badly clogged after one use that they take hours to clean. Is it acceptable to fit them with cardboard...