5 MAY 2001

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The Spectator

Now showing A narchists and opponents of globalisation demonstrated in London, breaking some shop windows but in the main remaining penned up by the police in Oxford Circus....

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The Spectator

T here is not much, on the face of it, that unites John Townend, the blunt-nosed, blunt-spoken Conservative MP, with his unsavoury opinions about race, and the nose-ringed mob...

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John Townend is the reason why the Tories should return to the old selection methods

The Spectator

BRUCE ANDERSON N o good deed goes unpunished. A few years ago, John Taylor was a jobbing barrister. He is a personable chap and not without some ability, but it seemed likely...

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The Spectator

SARAH SANDS T he third of May, the election date that never was, still has some significance for me. The game is up on my thirties. What is the social guidance for...

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Mr Townend isn't brave and he isn't right, but he must be allowed to express his nasty opinions

The Spectator

MATTHEW PARRIS T hou'st heard the knave abusing those in power,' wrote the poet John Clare in his ode to an axed elm, composed during the Enclosures: Bawl freedom loud and...

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The Spectator

The government knows that the health service is imploding but won't admit it. Christopher Silvester talks to a surgeon who is quitting because of low morale and misery on the...

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The Spectator

Lloyd Evans says that the May Day mob will need a bit of sponsorship if it is to succeed in creating chaos next year I AM writing this under a table, trembling with fear....

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The Spectator

Joseph Estrada may have been a thief and a lecher but, says Justin Marozzi, that does not justify the coup that unseated him IT wasn't the hookers that did for him. Filipinos...

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Mind your language

The Spectator

LONDON is in turmoil over the question of whether Sir Peregrine Worsthorne was responsible for coining the word embonpoint in the sense of 'bosom'. The Oxford English Dictionary...

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The Spectator

John Laughland reveals that the colonial governors of the New World Order treat their subject peoples with cruel contempt Mostar IF I may say so' — the spectacles were settled...

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The Spectator

Rod Liddle conducted a poll of Today staff: Labour won, naturally, but the UKIP didn't do too badly VOTING was orderly and rather brisk. The invigilator reported that there was...

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Banned wagon

The Spectator

A weekly survey of the things our rulers want to prohibit THE leftovers of ancient history, it is quite reasonably asserted when a private landowner wants to plough up an Iron...

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The Spectator

Andrew Gimson attributes the PM's success to snobbely and a system Labour purports to despise TONY BLAIR sounds charming, really charming — or so many people have found,...

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The Spectator

David Carlton says forget the opinion polls and concentrate instead on the new volatility of the British electorate IN the general election of 1997, pundits attempting to...

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Ancient & modern

The Spectator

PRIME MINISTER Blair was said to have announced that youthful criminals would receive bribes in the shape of trainers and CDs to persuade them to take to the straight and...

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Old ghosts of Fleet Street past with nowhere to haunt

The Spectator

PAUL JOHNSON T he recent death of Mike Hartwell removes the last of the old grandees of journalism. I call him Mike because that was how his wife Pamela used to refer to him...

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The case for flogging

The Spectator

From Mr lain Cassie Sir: Clive Stafford Smith (Flow kindness is killing the death penalty', 28 April) is correct to identify the reason for the decay of the death penalty as...

Slavery in Mauritania

The Spectator

From Baroness Cox Sir: William Cash's inaccurate and misleading piece ('The great slave trade scam', 28 April) will serve to prolong the suffering of the people of Sudan by...

Stiffy's skinning

The Spectator

From Mr David Roberts Sir: Andrew Roberts (The dog didn't do it', 28 April) refers to Stiffy Byng's unfortunate run-in with PC Eustace Oates. As recorded in The Code of the...

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Spielberg's war

The Spectator

From Mr Adrian Scrape Sir: Stephen Glover seems to have wound himself into a painful and unproductive knot about the BBC buying Band of Brothers from Home Box Office (Media...

Bring back Major

The Spectator

From Mr Stanley Best Sir: Returning home yesterday just on 5 p.m. to a village in north Devon. I found in the letterbox a letter from the local authority which had been...

What liberty now?

The Spectator

From Mr John Gibbs Sir: Jack Straw (Jack of all tirades', 28 April) says that he 'can't see why someone wouldn't sign [the Commission for Race Equality document]. It struck me...

Still playing our tune

The Spectator

From Mr G.M. Simon Sir: Roddy Williams (`Grand strategy', 31 March) seems to have found his visit to Phillips piano auction so exhilarating — he bought a seven-foot grand piano...

Noises on

The Spectator

From Mr Nigel Famdale Sir: 'Playwrights do not bring farting on to the stage,' writes Paul Johnson (And another thing, 28 April). Not so. Samuel Beckett has one of his tramps...

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It's only a part-time job, so I've got just the man to replace Sir Christopher at the BBC

The Spectator

STEPHEN GLOVER S ir Christopher Bland is resigning as chairman of the BBC. Rosie Boycott is trying to raise money to launch a new London evening paper. How are these two things...

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I'm booking myself in for next year's protest, waving the banner of liberty

The Spectator

CHRISTOPHER FILDES I dressed down for May Day by leaving the collar-stiffeners out of my shirt. It would have been a mistake to go further, for I would not have wished to be...

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Who done it?

The Spectator

Philip Hen sher AUTHOR UNKNOWN: ON THE TRAIL OF ANONYMOUS by Don Foster Macmillan, £14.99, pp.340, ISBN 0333781708 A great surprise and an enormous pleasure to welcome, for...

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All his world a stage

The Spectator

David Hare JOHN G by Sheridan Morley Hodder, £20, pp. 306, ISBN 0340368039 I t's hard to believe that there's anyone interested in the British theatre who doesn't already...

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A hoot from Ukraine

The Spectator

John de Falbe DEATH AND THE PENGUIN by Andrey Kurkov, translated by George Bird Hamill, 49.99, pp. 227. ISBN 1860468357 F irst, a stone landed a metre from Viktor's foot. He...

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Get stuck in

The Spectator

C. R. Cecil GLUE by Irvine Welsh Cape, £12, pp. 469, ISBN 0224061267 I rvine Welsh works, rests and raves in Edinburgh.' reads the author description in Welsh's first book,...

Fingerin' the dykes

The Spectator

Nicholas Haslam THE GIRLS: SAPPHO GOES TO HOLLYWOOD by Diana McLellan Robson Books, £17.95, pp. 440, ISBN 1861053819 A quaint little figure could be seen swishing along the...

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The Sick Man of Europe is not a pretty sight

The Spectator

Philip Glazebrook TURKISH DELIGHT by Philippa Scott Thames & Hudson, £14.95, pp. 110, ISBN 0500 510377 0 ften it is the illustrations in a book, rather than the book's text,...

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Curing artist's block

The Spectator

Patrick Skene Catling NEW CARDIFF by Charles Webb Little, Brown, £16.99, pp. 354, ISBN 0316856991 F ragile Films, the owners of Ealing Studios, have already bought the rights...

Messages from magic fish

The Spectator

D. J. Taylor JOHN DORY by John Murray Flambarcl, 0.99, pp. 221, ISBN 1873226462 reviewer should always declare an interest. Here is mine. I have known John Murray for...

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Brainwash and whitewash

The Spectator

Duff Hart-Davis DOUBLE STANDARDS by Lynn Picknett, Clive Prince and Stephen Prior Little, Brown, £20, pp. 578, ISBN 0316857688 ixty years on, the mystery of what happened to...

Salt of the earth

The Spectator

Tahir Shah HENRY SALT by Deborah Manley and Peta Ree Libri Books, £29.95, pp. 320, ISBN 19019650101 T hree months ago, while searching for King Solomon's gold mines in...

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Theatrical double standards

The Spectator

Sheridan Morley looks back on changing public and police attitudes towards gay actors F or me, it all began with Jimmy Edwards — a revered actor and comedian, a war hero badly...

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The pursuit of culture

The Spectator

Robert Lewis on good intentions and people's pretensions T o the extent that we are all born into a particular climate that calls for particular adaptations, that we speak a...

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The Spectator

Euan Euglow's Night Paintings (Browse & Darby, 19 Cork Street, London Wl, till 31 May) Geometric harmony Martin Gaylord W hat does night remove?' I remember my classics...

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Theatre 1

The Spectator

Richard III (The Young Vic) Epic conclusion Patrick Camegy A year after the RSC launched its Shakespeare Histories cycle at Stratford it has completed it in London with...

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Theatre 2

The Spectator

The Female Odd Couple (Apollo) Buried Alive (Hampstead) Presence (Royal Court Upstairs) Simon's sex-change Sheridan Morley W hen I am good I am very, very good; and when I am...

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The Spectator

Outgrowing solemnity Alan Powers T his week sees the 50th anniversary of the opening of the Festival of Britain on the South Bank. Although born too late even to have been...

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The Spectator

Eugen Onegin (Opera North) Problem piece Michael Tanner W hy do I have such high hopes whenever I go to a performance of Eugen Onegin, considering that they are always...


The Spectator

More of the same Peter Phillips H ere are some statistics relating to this year's Proms. Of the 279 pieces of music to be performed 179 were written in the 20th (or very early...

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The Spectator

Triple Bill (Royal Opera House) Stravins ky thrill Giannandrea Poesio T riple bills are seldom a treat but the Royal Ballet's all-Stravinsky one is an exception. Within this...

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The Spectator

Supplement pseudery Michael Vestey I t was odd coming down in the mornings to an Umbrian farmhouse kitchen and hearing the Today programme emanating from the blank screen of...


The Spectator

Easy money Simon Hoggart T he other day in these pages I quoted a British council official who told Ground Force Goes East that £50,000 went a long way at an Indian orphanage....

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Food for thought

The Spectator

A delight but trouble Simon Courtauld I have never tried eating peas from a knife — it's just not done — but it brings to mind a silly little verse, which has always amused...

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The turf

The Spectator

Loyalty counts Robin Oakley W c will, I hope, never have another National Hunt season like the one which ended last Saturday at Sandown. The hail which beat down on our heads...

High life

The Spectator

Wishful thinking Taki INew York know you English go for that bowing and scraping and forelock-tugging stuff, but we Greeks with a little• bit of Kraut in us tell it like it...

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No life

The Spectator

Money talks Jeremy Clarke I t's a policy of mine never to enquire too closely into what my son is learning at school. We are both bright enough not to attach too much...

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Singular life

The Spectator

Concealed assets Petronella Wyatt L iving in a hotel has reawakened one of my old ambitions. That is, to be a bandleader. I remember, years ago, watching a Fred Astaire film...

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The Spectator

Simon Hoggart WE had logistical problems, so I called Quantock Abbey Wine Cellars, urgently. Could they put together a Spectator Wine Club offer in a single week? They promised...

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Some of us can walk the walk

The Spectator

Simon Barnes PARTICIPATION journalism is one of the standard Mephistophelean temptations of the profession. If you work in sport for long enough, you cannot avoid the notion...


The Spectator

Dear Mary. . . Q. My block of flats has a communal dustbin area which in recent weeks has been polluted by giant dog messes. As our block is pet-free, it was clear that the...