4 JANUARY 2003

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The Spectator

A third of families entitled to working family tax credits are not claiming them; 604.000 low-income families are missing out on 11.4 billion, an average of 142 a week each. The...

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The Spectator

T hose who mistrust the new biotechnology have always argued that if it is technologically possible to do something, sooner or later it will be done. As far as the fundamentals...

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The Spectator

IDelhi f you are invited to one of these grand Indian weddings, you should jolly well make an effort. I inquired about the dress code, and was told that it would he all right...

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The Spectator

Why I had to flee London for a night with Widow Twankey FRANK JOHNSON J ames Agate, the biggest noise among interwar British theatre critics, bellowed in 1932, 'Clearing our...

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The Spectator

Rod Liddle reveals that in some militaly quarters there is plenty of enthusiasm for assassinating the Iraqi leader, and reports on some of the methods that might be employed...

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The Spectator

David Blunkett accuses Rowan Williams of 'fetishism' in his analysis of the 'market state' IN 1362 the Archbishop of Canterbury complained that, given the slightest...

Second opinion

The Spectator

WHEN I was young, I could explain everything, at least to my own satisfaction. With the passing of each successive year, however, my confidence in my understanding has waned to...

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Ancient & modern

The Spectator

'PREPARE for war, Blair tells army,' announces a newspaper headline, stirring the ghost of the Roman military historian Vegetius in its grave. The civil servant Vegetius...


The Spectator

James Delingpole has discovered that if you are right-wing, the best thing to do is to keep your mouth shut A FEW months ago a groovy young columnist invited me to be her date...

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The Spectator

The bizarre career of Zambia's Archbishop Milingo has embarrassed the Vatican — and, says Hugh Russell, it isn't over yet Lusaka HAVE you been totting up the number of abject...

Mind your language

The Spectator

LAPPED UP Liza Picard's Dr Johnson's London on holiday, and now someone (not my husband) has given me her Restoration London for Christmas. In a small section on the words used...

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The Spectator

The government's 'Age Positive' campaign sounds good, says David Lovibond, but if you're over 50, forget about finding a job THERE were four of us on the shortlist: three...

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The Spectator

You think Nazism couldn't happen here? Theodore Dalrymple isn't so sure. We are a nation of slaves and slave-drivers I GREW UP believing that it couldn't happen here; that...

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The Spectator

It's going to be a tough year in the City, says Peter °borne, but loyalty and honesty are back in town THE most successful investment banker in Europe of 2002, according to...

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The Spectator

Bill Wigmore spends an evening with con men and chancers who live off 'the social' 'I TELL yah, it's already in Archbold's!' Liam wears that look of smug triumph so familiar...

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Seeing something made is half the pleasure of owning it

The Spectator

PAUL JOHNSON A product may now go two or three times round the globe before it reaches the shops. I note this after inspecting boxes in which some of my grandchildren's...

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Islam's liberal force

The Spectator

From Mr Peter Emery Sir: A thesis in Frederic Raphael's review of books by Gore Vidal and Roger Scru ton, 'What will the oracle answer?' (Books, 7 December), cannot be left...

Winston's use of Ultra

The Spectator

From Mr Bernard Reeves Sir: Raymond Carr, in reviewing Churchill: Visionary, Statesman, Historian by John Lukacs (Books, 7 December), says that Churchill accomplished what he...

The great escapist

The Spectator

From Jayne Osborn Sir: I went to see Die Another Day with my friends who live in LA and we found it most enjoyable, so I was amazed that George Trefgame had taken the trouble to...

In vino pietas

The Spectator

From Dr Joseph Lambert Sir: It is possible that the recent comment on the Christian Brothers (Michael Vestey, Books, 16 November/Professor Dandeker, Letters, 14/21 December)...

Baguette snatcher

The Spectator

From Mr Christopher Stephens Sir: Petronella Wyatt's description of her encounter with a baboon (Singular life, 7 December) reminded me of how, in Cape National park, I was...

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High prairie, low life

The Spectator

Caroline Moore THAT OLD ACE IN THE HOLE by Annie Proulx Fourth Estate, £16.99, pp. 359, ISBN 0007151519 A nnie Proulx's latest work is a strange hybrid. It is more a series of...

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Brave men and bunglers

The Spectator

Peter Porter GALLIPOLI by L. A. Carlyon Doubleday, £20, pp. 600, ISBN 0385604750 o r Australians Gallipoli is a name as eloquent as Thermopylae for Greeks, and for much the...

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Alpha minus query

The Spectator

Alberto Manguel THE SELECTED WORKS OF CYRIL CONNOLLY: VOLUME I: THE MODERN MOVEMENT VOLUME TWO: THE TWO NATURES edited by Matthew Connolly, with a foreword by William Boyd...

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Mixed motives and memories

The Spectator

Mary Keen THE PHOTOGRAPH by Penelope Lively Penguin/Viking, £14.99, pp. 235, ISBN 0670913928 H ere is Glyn, charismatic telly don, searching the landing cupboard for an...

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A monkey puzzle of a family tree

The Spectator

John de Falbe SCENES FROM THE LIFE OF A BESTSELLING AUTHOR by Michael Kruger Hamill, £10, pp. 119, ISBN 1860468632 M ichael Krtiger's new volume of short stories will delight...

When conscience is a doubtful guide

The Spectator

Nicholas Fearn WAR IS A FORCE THAT GIVES US MEANING by Chris Hedges Public Affairs Ltd, £12.99, pp. 185, ISBN 1903985595, Tel: 01865 860960 I n the summer, I met a man who...

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A talent to chat

The Spectator

Kate Grimond ASKING FOR TROUBLE by Sheridan Morley Hodder, £20, pp. 342, ISBN 0340820578 R eliable as he has been as a drama critic, lately of this magazine, now of the New...

Remembering to forget

The Spectator

Jonathan Mirsky AFTERMATH: VIOLENCE AND THE REMAKING OF A SELF by Susan J. Brison Princeton, £13.95, pp. 165, ISBN 0691016194 I n this exploration of her pain, terror, and ten...

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The disappearing guru

The Spectator

Robert Edric INVENTING GOD by Nicholas Mosley Seeker, £15.99, pp. 296, ISBN 0436210118 I n 1909, in a late letter to his brother, Henry James bemoaned the fact that the 'novel...

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Nights at the opera

The Spectator

Michael Henderson, despite his day job, indulged in his passion 31 times last year I t puzzles people on both sides of the divide if you are a sports journalist and declare an...

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The Spectator

Gangs Of New York (15, selected cinemas from 10 January) Triangular cliché fest Mark Steyn I so wanted to like Gangs Of New York, which is why I'm reviewing it a week early:...

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The Spectator

Gustav Klimt: Landscapes (Osterreichische Galerie Belvedere, Vienna, till 23 February) Seductive and instructive Elizabeth Clegg V ienna in winter, with its freezing mists...

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Pop music

The Spectator

Ever the optimist Marcus Berkmann Af ter buying a string of terrible albums — if anyone recommends the Natalie Imbruglia to you I suggest you biff them repeatedly on the nose...


The Spectator

Genius remembered Michael Vestey S pike Milligan's extraordinary life was remembered in a tribute on Radio Two on Christmas Eve, Vivat Milligna!, presented by Denis Norden....

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The Spectator

First among equals James Delmgpole M y resolution this year — as it is every sodding year — is finally to acquire the massive and thoroughly well-deserved fame and money which...

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The turf

The Spectator

What the eye doesn't see . . . Robin Oakley I n the days when I was fit enough to go jogging on the Blackpool front during party conferences, I was alerted one morning that...

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The Spectator

Child's play Charles Moore I t does nothing but rain at present, and so, as we make our way across the marsh country of the Vale of Tears Hunt (VT), the posse of children in...

High life

The Spectator

Bleak omen Taki WGstaad hat a way to start the new year. Back in jail. Yes, I've done it again, but this time only for an hour. It was the Radziwill wine that did me in,...

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Low life

The Spectator

Follow the van Jeremy Clarke I only popped out for a packet of fags. The low-intensity family warfare that had blighted our Christmas Day had flared up again at the Boxing Day...

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Winter pilgrimage

The Spectator

PetroneIla Wyatt W e now have a male addition to our Hungarian colony. The first arrived a week ago as a sort of au pair and stayed only one night. He claimed he had to visit...

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Aggers and the oiks

The Spectator

Michael Henderson HOW wonderful it was to return from Australia to find our civic life in such safe hands. A town council in Dorset has banned Bernard Manning from its...


The Spectator

Dear Mary.. Q. A couple of years ago you advised readers to minimise present-buying stress at Christmas by finding something that would be acceptable to people of all age...