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When shall we tell them the recession is over, Norman?' B ritain secured a new clause in the treaty on European Monetary Union which will allow EEC members to opt out of using...

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The Spectator, 56 Doughty Street, London WC1N 2LL Telephone: 071-405

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1706; Telex 27124; Fax 071-242 0603 NO, NO, NO I think that we shall not see the final Shape of Europe at Maastricht', Mr Doug- las Hurd told Der Spiegel this week, tut we can...


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SUBSCRIBE TODAY — 12 Months 6 Months UK D £71.00 LI £35.50 Europe (airmail) 0 £82.00 0 £41.00 USA Airspeed 0 US$110 0 US$55.00 Rest of Airmail 0 £98.00 0 £49.00 World Airspeed...

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It will take more than cunning stunts to win the Tories the next election SIMON HEFFER A s much on grounds of taste as of intellect, one resists agreeing with Mr Roy...

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. am always intrigued by the places where writers choose to write. Some retire to a hut at the bottom of the garden, while oth- ers rent separate rooms or go into retreat in a...

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'The novel as an alternative to knitting' CHARLES MOORE W e sat and digested in the Guildhall last week and listened to the chairman of the judges, Jeremy Treglown, as he...

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Charles Clover believes that the National Trust interferes more than it preserves WHAT is the point of the National Trust? Many people like to think that the point of the...

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William Shawcross argues that Cambodia needs our help, now that peace has come IN TWO weeks' time one of the most extraordinary journeys in modern history will come full...

One hundred years ago

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CAMBRIDGE was full of country grad- uates on Thursday to vote against the proposal for an inquiry whether or not Greek ought to be compulsory at the "Little-Go" on all...

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Fitzroy Maclean finds things going from bad to worse in Georgia Tbilisi T 13 ILISI, the sunny southern capital of What was once Soviet Georgia has long b een one of my...


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Michael Heath

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The controller of the Audit for money in the Soviet Union Moscow MESSRS Gorbachev and Yeltsin probably do not spend much time in the Atrium bar O f the Intourist Hotel in...

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Lord Hanson is not past his sell-by date, discovers Margareta Pagano BRITAIN'S most powerful industrial baron, James Hanson, broke his silence this week to talk to The...

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Robin Simon finds it hard to recognise the Anthony Blunt he knew in Alan Bennett 's recent play I WRITE as one of only three people known to have played table football with...

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Andrew Gimson reveals the power-crazed motives of campaigners for constitutional reform OF ALL possible reasons for doing away with the British constitution, the sight of...

If symptoms persist. . .

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AS A citizen and taxpayer, I rejoice whenever I come across an instance of meanness in the disbursement of public money, but as a doctor I often find such meanness irritating....

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SPEC i ATOR 10% OFF SUITS OVER £250 AT DICKINS JONES REGENT STREET A blatant case of discrimination? We think so - in favour of the Spectator's discriminating readers. For...

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Charlotte Eagar on how the train-spotter's derided uniform has become the ultimate target for thieves TRADITIONALLY the anorak has kept a low profile. Warm and waterproof but...

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A reader saw this advertisement: HOW TO TALK TO YOUR CAT Your cat is talking to you. Listen! — your cat is telling you how much she loves you. Watch! — the special friend who...

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Anthony Daniels, with a young friend, investigates the retail reptile business I CANNOT recall now how the subject of chameleons came up, but my friend's son Andrew was...

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DIARY 1992 £10 Plain Ell Initialled The Spectator 1992 Diary, bound in soft red leather, will shortly be available. Laid out with a whole week to view, the diary is 5" x 3....

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The Odling-Smee plan. . .

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JOHN Odling-Smee is the Treasury man- darin who was borrowed by the Interna- tional Monetary Fund and is now its Soviet expert. What to do about a government whose revenues are...

Bridging finance

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SOMETHING unusual happened this week. A major civil engineering project was brought in on time, on budget, and off the Government's balance-sheet. This is the missing link in...

Local boy makes good

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No British banker is more respected than Sir Dennis Weatherstone, and no bank in the world more respected than the one he heads. The catch is that it is an American bank. It is...


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Cooking a Euro-fudge to suit all tastes, and the return of Solomon Binding CHRISTOPHER FILDES R ich, bland and nutty, the Euro-fudge is now baked, or at any rate half-baked....

Hard landing

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THE fire-engines got there first. British Aerospace's £432 million share issue never looked airworthy, and now it has run off the end of the runway and into the under- writers,...

. . . Stop press

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PENDING adoption of the Odling-Smee plan, the Soviet government finances itself • by printing roubles. It has to print more and more of them. Good news for the printers, at...

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Sir: Congratulations to Charles Moore on his excellent article on

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immigration policy. However, I feel that I should point out that the Monday Club has consistently taken the line, that Mr Moore has now taken up, for years. Yet we have been...

LETTERS Running the race

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Sir: It is a welcome surprise to see Charles Moore's plea for a more liberal immigra- tion policy on economic and demographic grounds (Another voice, 19 October). No Politician...

Sir: I must thank Charles Moore for articu- lating the

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fears and concerns of many about British/EEC immigration policy by making it possible to discuss them honestly. The problem with the contemporary immigration phenomenon is that...

Sir: The trouble with immigration policies as (partly) defined by

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Charles Moore is that one does not know when they stop or start being proscriptive. He alludes to, but floes not state a position on, the Hong KOng Chi- nese, whose wealth and...

Pulling rank

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Sir: I can cap Dominic Lawson's story about his car and the police, (Diary, 26 October). In November 1989 my car was parked in Church Street, Chiswick, where I live and where...

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Heveningham revisited

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Sir: Sir Ian Gilmour's letter (28 September) denounces Andrew Lycett's article on Heveningham Hall (`The sad decline of a stately pile', 21 September) in terms that read rather...

Literary timepiece

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Sir: I have always understood that it was at the Savage club that my father placed Lord Maugham on the chimney-piece (And another thing, 12 October). Lord Maugh- am's offence...

Marx and Marxists

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Sir: I have been waiting for someone to pop up reminding me what I wrote about Marx in the 1930s. It still remains that, intellectu- ally, the Marxist approach has much to offer...

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Precious space

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Sir: Regarding Ivor Davies's letter (19 October) as to why if I'm not an anti- Semite I always refer only to Jews who are 'boring, vulgar, brash, arrogant, dishonest,...

Sir: I read your article on Heveningham Hall with some

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interest: it disclosed a sad Picture of unpaid debts and the neglect of the fabric of a fine building which I know well. My concern is that your writer, Mr Lycett, tied into...

Howlers and Honks

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Sir: If Lady Donaldson (Books, 19 Octo- ber) really thinks Artemis Cooper is 'a Peerless editor' who 'has worked very hard' then her standards must be below par even for the...

Biting on the bullet

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Sir: Before anyone else does I must correct a slip in my review (26 October) of Profes- sor Mansergh's The Unresolved Question while pointing out, in the light of recent...


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Sir: Is The Spectator a prisoner of Zenga? Give us a break and remove Omalara for at least one paragraph. Angus Pollok McCall 54 Frederick Street, Edinburgh

Poor Waugh

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Sir:I am heart-broken to read (Another voice, 12 October) that Auberon Waugh would be worse off by £12,500 tax-wise if Labour won the next election. However, as an OAP I have a...

Nutty slack

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Sir: I am not costive, nor am I a mean Christian (Julie Burchill's Diary 5 Octo- ber). As one who has bought so many copies of The Spectator over the years, I regard myself as...

Tax and welfare

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Sir: Auberon Waugh may be right to hope that the Tories win the next general elec- tion (Another voice, 12 October). The arguments for a Labour victory which I advanced in the...

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The lost tycoon James Buchan BILLIONAIRE by Ivan Fallon Hutchinson, .f18.99, pp. 500 W ith this biography, the second in English in five years, the life of Jimmy Goldsmith has...

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Whores' sense but no whores' laughter

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Mark Illis WHORES FOR GLORIA by William T. Vollmann Picador, £4.99, pp.153 W illiam T. Vollmann is a compulsive researcher, a man with a weakness for collecting. Some men...

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Kicking against the pricks

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AMONG THE THUGS by Bill Buford Seeker & Warburg, £14.99, pp. 317 W riters schooled in sociology use the word 'violence' in very strange ways. Cut loose from any imputation of...

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If I knew what they wished me to say I would say it. If! knew the right prayer for my case I would pray it. Would they have me bear witness on knees in the street Like...

Truth, dare or keeping a promise?

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Andro Linklater THE FEATHER MEN by Ranulph Fiennes Bloomsbury, f.15.99, pp. 280 S omething about the desert drives the British mad. Perhaps, because heat and desiccation are...


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My hands, listless aristocrats, hang beneath the cuffs of my shirt sleeves. My feet, their distant cousins, humble peasants flash out beneath the hem of my skirt Hit the dirt...

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In Charing Cross Road she picked up a book

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David Wright BY HEART: ELIZABETH SMART, A LIFE by Rosemary Sullivan Lime Tree,f1 7.99, pp. 416 E lizabeth Smart was an extraordinary woman. Even more extraordinary is the Story...

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Window Seat

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Dawn. On the wall outside wind-chimes whose slaty carillon last night trickled, caressed my ears like a bijou by Ravel. Twitching: a mole-gibbet. And the roses whose nodding...

Under western eyes

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David Crane IN SEARCH OF CONRAD by Gavin Young Hutchinson, £17.99, pp. 304 on't speak to me of Monmouth', Tennyson is reported saying on a visit to Lyme: 'Show me the steps...

Fictions of a truth-teller

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Caroline Moore THE SHORT NOVELS OF MARTHA GELLHORN Sinclair-Stevenson, £19.95, pp. 689 A s a schoolboy, my brother-in-law regularly went to the races;equally regular- ly, his...

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This I know for the Bible tells me so

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A. N. Wilson THE UNAUTHORIZED VERSION by Robin Lane Fox Viking, 120, pp.478 I n May 1991, Robin Lane Fox shared with the readers of the Financial Times an exciting new...

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The SPECTATOR. N ° 52,f.

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Saturday, .ATovember. Li iron Grove Here I kept dole to my clrirs Guide, being follicited. by feveral Phantornes,who aftured me they would thew me a nearer Way to the Mountain...

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Agents and patience

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Patrick Skene Catling HARLOT'S GHOST by Norman Mailer Michael Joseph, £15.99, pp. 1,122 T his is not, after all, The Great American Novel — but it is certainly A Very Big...

The Old Captain I hear him sometimes pacing The bridge,

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a familiar, distracted humming, Like a bee drone. He halts, turns As if whistling up a dog, thinks better Of it. The pacing resumes. Waves like tin, discarded violins, Play...

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A better statesman than politician

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John Simpson ALL IN A LIFE by Garret FitzGerald Macmillan, 125, pp.686 I f England gave America its language and Germany gave it its food, its politics were donated by Ireland....

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Architecture Art from the swipe book Fornasetti, Designer of Dreams (V & A, till 19 January) I n 1944, the Italian architect Gio Ponti wrote that his country had 'nothing but...

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Musical chairs Rupert Christiansen on the comings and goings at Covent Garden and elsewhere T he situation at the Royal Opera House — the orchestra mutinous in its bid for a...

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Booth in Birdland Deirdre McMahon L aurie Booth has appeared regularly in the Dance Umbrella festival since its incep - tion. This year his work features in two sep - arate...

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A monthly selection of forthcoming events recommended by The Spectator's

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regular critics THEATRE Party Time/Mountain Language, Almeida (071 226 4001), 6 November. A Pinter double bill that includes a new play (Party Time) and is directed by the...

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It's Ralph (Comedy) Tartuffe (Playhouse) Something rotten Christopher Edwards H ugh Whitemore's new play is a strange, often hilarious combination of genres. It is partly a...


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Twenty-One ('15', Odeon West End) Boyz n the Hood ('15', selected cinemas) Gift wrapped Harriet Waugh I s every girl's preoccupation at the age of 20 or 21 to do with sex and...

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Autumn Exhibition (Penwith Gallery, St Ives, till 29 November) The Gatherer Garry Fabian Miller (Newlyn Gallery, Penzance, till 27 November) Kiss of life Giles Auty H aving...

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Whose England? Martyn Harris I n last week's Think of England (BBC 2, 9.30 p.m., Tuesday) Roger Scruton demon- strated how not to conduct a televisual argument in his essay on...

High life

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Minor royalties Taki S Athens omething is rotten in the British pub - lishing world, and I'm not thinking of those unreadable novelists who regularly ge t short-listed for the...

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SPECIAL OFFER "Why have we had to wait 20 years for this book? Like the glorious, festering piles of stone he draws, John Glashan is a great national monument that should be...

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New life

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Self service Zenga Longmore Whilst searching for an iced-bunnery last week, Omalara and I found ourselves In the restaurant of a department store. 'Look! Look! It's Aunty!'...

Low life

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Memories of the Master Jeffrey Bernard T he death of George Barker is a sad blow for those of us who had the pleasure of his company and particularly those of my generation...

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IF A restaurant is to pull in the punters in

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these times it has to have something special about it. Sydney Street, London's first all- Australian restaurant, certainly has that. It is the most spectacular place, striking a...

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Anabasis Raymond Keene W ilhelm Steinitz (1836 - 1901), the first world champion, taught that the king is a strong piece. By this I believe he meant that the king could become...


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COMPETITION 12 YEAR OLD SCOTCH WHISKY Utterly astonishing Jaspistos I n Competition No. 1700 you were asked to imagine that our editor has invited someone utterly...

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CROSSWORD 1033: Ye gods above! by Mass

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A first prize of £20 and two further prizes of £10 (or, for UK solvers, a copy of Chambers English Dictionary — ring the word 'Dictionary') for the first three correct solutions...

Solution to 1030: Spin - offs Key radial = SPIDER, suggesting 4/14/27,

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anags; 6/11/33, web fea- tures; and 17/24/31, kindred exam- ples. Circuit lights from radials 1/13/ 34 were clued by SPIDER compounds (see Chambers). Winners: Mrs Lee Cave,...

No. 1703: Marvellian

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You are invited to write a poem (maximum 16 lines), entitled 'To His Not So Coy Mistress', using Marvell's metre but not necessarily his language. Entries to 'Com- petition No....

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Round Britain whizz Frank Keating LIKE the man said, 'the seasons alter, so hoary-headed frosts fall in the fresh lap of the crimson rose'. There is no putting off the winter,...


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Dear Mary. . . Q. My boyfriend, to whom I am engaged, hIS many desirable qualities. However he h as . one major defect which I cannot ignore asit can manifest itself as often...