27 OCTOBER 2007

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Not-so-little Britain

The Spectator

1 t is almost 40 years since Enoch Powell delivered his notorious speech on immigration to the Annual General Meeting of the West Midlands Area Conservative Political Centre on...

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The Spectator

MATTHEW D'ANCONA Valhalla: Row H, Seat 9 1 t's Wednesday, so it must be Rheingold. In an unlikely logistical triumph, I have managed to build my week around the second cycle of...

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CHARLES MOORE This week, my family celebrated a ce

The Spectator

CHARLES MOORE This week, my family celebrated a century of continuous occupation of the house in Sussex where my sister now lives. The place came into the family in the 19th...

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The Spectator

By Tamzin Lightwater Great balls of justiciable fire! If one more person asks me to write a memo about 'optouts' I will explode. People are talking in fluent Alphabetti...

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The ghosts return as Brown fights to escape the Blairite past

The Spectator

Tony Blair told his allies not to sabotage the Prime Minister — but will they obey? In any case, says Fraser Nelson, Brown's real challenge is to bury memories of the Blair...

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Turkey is right to fight for an end to the PKK

The Spectator

The bloodshed on the borders of Iraq reflects the resurgence of this ugly Kurdish terror movement, says Norman Stone. It must be stopped if Turks and Kurds are to make peace...

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I beg to differ... Cats

The Spectator

Should I even need to make the case in writing that cats are better than dogs? Would either a cat or a dog be interested in what I wrote? A dog, told he was less good than a...

'If assassination is the price I must pay. . . '

The Spectator

Christina Lamb, who was with Benazir Bhutto when her bus was bombed, describes the aftermath as Pakistanis wonder whether she can unite the country 1 t's Saturday night on...

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I beg to differ... Dogs

The Spectator

/t was a little guy called Matthew who transformed my attitude to dogs. Before he entered my life more than a decade ago, I thought that I had a preference for cats, having had...

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A child of the Troubles with a smile on his face

The Spectator

Tim Walker talks to Patrick Kielty, the Ulster comedian and TV presenter, about playing all 12 parts in his new show, the murder of his father, and jokes about Islam patrick...

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Ignore the hype: Syria shouldn't be demonised

The Spectator

William Dalrymple takes issue with The Spectator's account of the Israeli bombing of Dayr as Zawr in September — and claims the Asad regime is not as wicked as US sources argue...

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Better always to be late than selectively so

The Spectator

Harry Mount defends the much-neglected virtue of punctuality — a victim of the boom in self-importance and the use of mobile phones to send rude updates on lateness r White...

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Of course there was no 'flash before the crash'

The Spectator

Martyn Gregory, at the inquest into the deaths of Diana and Dodi, reports on the struggle of the 'Hugefee QCs' to prove the pathetic conspiracy theories about the car crash The...

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The Spectator

THEODORE DALRYMPLE For a British patriot, it is a great relief to go to Marseilles. At last somewhere in Europe as filthy and littered as almost the whole of Britain! If we...

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The good news is, we're all living longer; the bad news is, we'll be miserable

The Spectator

Rod Liddle notices an ideological dimension to life expectancy — but concludes that life will hardly be worth living as these little islands become overcrowded beyond endurance...

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Brown has set a trap into which Tory Eurosceptics must not march

The Spectator

Malcolm Rifkind Gordon Brown looks like a motheaten Prime Minister nowadays. His botched handling of a general election and his help in unifying the Conservatives have been the...

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Mind your language

The Spectator

'Let your little tike show off their little trike with this trendy shirt', read an advertisement for toddlers' T-shirts that Veronica showed me. In British English, tyke means...

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Stolen seats

The Spectator

Sir: On what evidence does Stephen Pollard (Politics, 20 October) base his contention that the 'only possible reading of the past three decades' is that the voters 'turn to the...

Inherited virtue

The Spectator

Sir: Irwin Stelzer (Listen to Adam Smith: inheritance tax is good', 20 October) suggests that inheritance tax is a good thing economically because the absence of inheritance...

Islam and truth

The Spectator

Sir: Piers Paul Read (The Muslims' letter to the Pope is not all it seems', 20 October) raises many good points but asserts that Islam enjoins truth. At the risk of attracting...

Potato head

The Spectator

Sir: Following the recent behaviour of the Prime Minister, should he not perhaps be known as 'Hash Brown'? IM Leggett Wimborne, Dorset

History retouched

The Spectator

Sir: Norman Stone ('What has this "genocide" to do with Congress?', 20 October) raises the red herring of alleged forgeries without mentioning that 'the professor at Princeton'...

Wrong about rights

The Spectator

Sir: Whilst I agree with Julian Brazier (Letters, 20 October) that human rights have a murky 'Enlightenment' provenance, his American Civil War example is inaccurate. Rights...

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Why I am sceptical about global warming and a convinced green-energy convert

The Spectator

MATTHEW PARRIS Last Sunday a group from Winster, a lovely nearby village in Derbyshire, had invited me to open their roadshow at 11 a.m. The group, Sustainable Winster, had...

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Nothing to beat a garden full of wildfowl and historical memories

The Spectator

PAUL JOHNSON My favourite spot in London is the Round Pond in Kensington Gardens. I like to sit there, preferably early in the morning, and watch the waterfowl. They are of...

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A hellfire sermon for HSBC's boss

The Spectator

Matthew Lynn says shareholder activist Eric Knight is right to castigate HSBC's strategy, and that the bank's deeply religious chairman Stephen Green now faces a battle to hang...

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The making of Ronald Reagan

The Spectator

George Trefgarne /have a new hero. He is called Lemuel Boulware, of America's General Electric Company. According to a fascinating new book by Thomas W. Evans*, Boulware should...

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'We take the risks that private finance can't'

The Spectator

Edie G. Lush meets Jonathan Kestenbaum, who is on a mission to help turn new ideas into businesses Even being soaked by driving rain isn't enough to dampen Jonathan Kestenbaum's...

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The double-edged symbolism of Mbeki on the shoulders of white rugby victors

The Spectator

LUCY BERESFORD IN JOHANNESBURG South Africa is buzzing — and not just in the afterglow of victory in the Rugby World Cup. Johannesburg, built in the 1880s on the back of mineral...

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Getting to the bottom of John

The Spectator

Sam Leith A VOYAGE ROUND JOHN MORTIMER by Valerie Grove Viking, £20, pp. 560, ISBN 9780670915507 £16.99 (plus £2.45 p&p) 0870 429 6655 The first time I came across John Mortimer...

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Catch me if you can Graham Stewart GORGEOUS GEORGE

The Spectator

Catch me if you can Graham Stewart GORGEOUS GEORGE: THE LIFE AND ADVENTURES OF GEORGE GALLOWAY by David Morley Politico's, £19.99, pp. 349, ISBN 9781842751855 £15.99 (plus £2.45...

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Growing old disgracefully

The Spectator

Cressida Connolly THE PEOPLE ON PRIVILEGE HILL by Jane Gardam Chatto, fl 2.99, pp. 211, ISBN 9780701177997 © £1039 (plus £x.xx p&p) 0870 429 6655 1 t is a mark of how various...

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The triumph of hope over experience

The Spectator

Selina Hastings AS I WAS GOING TO ST IVES: A LIFE OF DEREK JACKSON by Simon Courtauld Michael Russell, £17.50, pp. 192, ISBN9780859553117 £14 (plus £2.45 p&p) 0870 429 6655...

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Strong family ties

The Spectator

Vernon Bogdanor OLD WORLD, NEW WORLD: THE STORY OF BRITAIN AND AMERICA by Kathleen Burk Little, Brown, £25, pp. 832, ISBN 9780316861663 £20(plus £2.45 p&p) 0870 429 6655...

From Cleopatra to Queen Elizabeth

The Spectator

Jonathan Cecil IN THE FRAME by Helen Mirren Weidenfeld, £20, pp. 272, ISBN 9780297851974 © £16 (plus £2.45 p&p) 0870 429 6655 1 n my childhood we used to make what were called...

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A yarn about yarn-spinners

The Spectator

Simon Baker MISS HERBERT by Adam Thirlwell Cape, £20 pp. 535, ISBN 9780224081399 £16 (plus £2.45 p&p) 0870 429 6655 1 n 1937 Vladimir Nabokov described the perfect novel during...

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The view from the nursery

The Spectator

Juliet Townsend THE YOUNG PRETENDERS by Edith Henrietta Fowler Persephone, £12, pp. 231, ISBN 9781903155639 1 t was a perpetual source of regret to me at the age of ten that my...

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Stein and Toklas Limited

The Spectator

Jeremy Treglown Two LIVES: GERTRUDE AND ALICE by Janet Malcolm Yale, £16.99, pp. 229, ISBN 9780300125511 © £13.59 (plus £2.45 p&p) 0870 429 6655 Asin her brilliant study of...

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This splendid, brave, mad imagination

The Spectator

Philip Hensher LETTERS OF TED HUGHES selected and edited by Christopher Reid Faber, £30, pp. 800, ISBN 9780571221387 £24 (plus £2.45 p&p) 0870 429 6655 EYE RHYMES: SYLVIA...

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Sympathy for the Old Devil

The Spectator

1 n his criticism of Sainte-Beuve's biographical method, Proust observes that it 'ignores what a very slight degree of self-acquaintance teaches us: that a book is a product of...

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A well-kept secret Andrew Lambirth visits the litt

The Spectator

A well-kept secret Andrew Lambirth visits the little-known murals of Charles Mahoney in Oxford ne of the great things about having an area of special ism is the discovery of a...

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Lifting the spirit

The Spectator

Mark Glazebrook Richard Meier: Art and Architecture Louise T Blouin Institute, until 30 December Olaf Street sounds as though it should be in some Scandinavian city or other. No...

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Close encounter

The Spectator

Mary Wakefield Bill Clinton looks down at me with that famous, lazy grin. His perfect American teeth show bright white and his blue eyes lock on to mine. I take a few steps...

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Incapable of compromise

The Spectator

Lloyd Evans Big date for Bohemians next month: 28 November marks the 250th anniversary of the birth of William Blake whose memory is honoured by every moth-eaten visionary,...

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Ways of bemg

The Spectator

Laura Gascoigne L'Atelier d'Alberto Giacometti: Collection de la Fondation Alberto et Annette Giacometti Pompidou Centre, until 1 1 Feb/vary 2008 In terms of body shape, the...

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What a waste

The Spectator

Susan Moore Tons of sterilised domestic and industrial I waste lay strewn across the gallery floor. Against one wall mounds of unidentifiable detritus are shrouded with ribbons...

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To finish or not to finish?

The Spectator

Stephen Pettitt Here's your starter for ten. What's the most famous unfinished piece of classical music in the world? Schubert's 'Unfinished' Symphony, his Symphony No. 8, of...

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Cut-throat world

The Spectator

Deborah Ross Eastern Promises 18, Nationwide This is either a seriously good film with some flaws or a seriously flawed film with some good elements. I am hoping to work out...

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Horse play

The Spectator

Lloyd Evans War Horse Olivier Alex Arts Swimming with Sharks Vaudeville Here's something new to ban. Writers who use the Great War as an emotional backdrop to their stories....

A dark and stormy night

The Spectator

Robin Holloway G Where were you when they crucified the Lord?'; when news of Waterloo was brought, or the Mutiny, or the Charge of the Light Brigade, or the death of Victoria?...

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Personal story

The Spectator

Giannandrea Poesio Thierry Bee: Journal d'inquietude The Place: Robin Howard Dance Theatre Shen Wei: Connect Transfer Barbican C o far, the two most thought-provoking...

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Dream team

The Spectator

Michael Tanner Das Rheingold; Die Walkiire Royal Opera Halfway through the second cycle of the Ring at the Royal Opera, I'm feeling far more positive than I could have expected....

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Filth detector

The Spectator

Simon Hoggart Iwish Mary Whitehouse were still among us. In my teenage years, she was an invaluable guide to where the filth could be found on television — though to be frank...

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Sense and sensibility

The Spectator

Kate Chisholm ex is never any good on radio. Think of all those excruciating scenes in The Archers — Sid and Jolene in the shower, or, for those addicts with a good memory,...

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Speed limit

The Spectator

Robin Oakley Twill never agree with the video referee 1 in England's World Cup final, even if he produces a certificate signed by every member of the Royal College of Opticians....

Breach of trust

The Spectator

Taki New York While on the tennis circuit from the midFifties to 1965, it was an open secret that there was a lot of hanky-panky going on in the women's locker rooms. Mind you,...

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Spectator sport

The Spectator

Jeremy Clarke The first thing me and my boy do when we go to the car auction is to head for the burger van and order a cheeseburger each. The burger bar is called CJ's. We...

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Black Hawk down

The Spectator

Alex James My friend Spud had an Agusta 109. That's the best type of helicopter. They're like super-fancy flying Ferraris, shiny, and all Louis Vuitton and shagpile inside, the...

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The Spectator

DEBORAH ROSS St Alban is the latest restaurant from Chris Corbin and Jeremy King, who have almost mythic status as restaurateurs, and rightly so. They are, after all, the team...

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Be the brand

The Spectator

Charlotte Metcalf says that label obsession no longer offers true exclusivity Time was when The Spectator reader, in search of classic style, could look to the top designers,...

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Go figure

The Spectator

Jenny Wilhide tries her hand at sculpture The sculptress Rosamund de Tracy Kelly has exhibited on both sides of the Atlantic and her commissions include an official portrait of...

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Round Britain cruise

The Spectator

John Torode floats back to his ancestral roots Try telling friends you are off to cruise the Yangtse, the Nile or the Dnieper. Mention plans to follow the coast of Brazil, north...

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What bugs me is not identity fraud but who will be watchdog to BBC's Watchdog

The Spectator

TOBY YOUNG couple of weeks ago I got a request rom someone called Amba wanting to be my Facebook friend. Without thinking much about it, I said yes — I usually do when people...

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Your Problems Solved

The Spectator

Dear Maly Q. This summer I spent a couple of nights in an hotel in France. The friend I had been staying with suddenly had rather a lot of people so I volunteered to go to the...

Club before country

The Spectator

FRANK KEATING Widespread focus of national passions on the conclusion of Lewis Hamilton's dash for the chequered flag on the Formula One racetrack and rugby's compelling World...