6 JANUARY 2007

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A cautious welcome

The Spectator

The news bulletins over the Christmas holiday were dominated by the vengeful execution of the deposed leader of a ruinous country. The leader, of course, was Nicolae Ceaucescu,...

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The Spectator

MARCUS DU SAUTOY Iwas ready for the depression but it still doesn't stop it hitting. Doing the Royal Institution Christmas Lectures was such an exhilarating, exhausting...

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Diary of a Notting Hill Nobody

The Spectator

By Tamzin Lightwater MONDAY Happy New Year and May The Force Be With You in 2007! I think it's fair to say that Dave's brilliant message sent shivers down all our spines, mine...

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We already know what the political event of 2007 will be, so let's move on

The Spectator

STEPHEN POLLARD 1 t is clear from the Prime Minister's new year message (issued somewhat surreally from the Florida home of the Bee Gee Robin Gibb) that he has already entered...

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Israel will do whatever it takes to stop another holocaust

The Spectator

Douglas Davis says that the Israelis are considering the nuclear option in response to President Ahmadinejad's threat to 'wipe Israel off the map'. An attack could be launched...

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Ken's mega-mosque will encourage extremism

The Spectator

Irfan al-Alawi and Stephen Schwartz warn that the Olympic mosque has been conceived by Islamic radicals, supported by politically correct politicians, and will add to divisions...

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Memo to Brown: people must be allowed to fail

The Spectator

The Prime Minister-to-be knows competition works in business. Now, says Irwin Stelzer, he must learn that it can work in the public services He tried targets, and they didn't...

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These people may be bloodthirsty, but at least they understand democracy

The Spectator

Rod Liddle does not greatly care for the Countryside Alliance, but says a lot of pious nonsense was spoken about how it rigged the Today poll Do you remember the Conservative MP...

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The Spectator

With the intention of making us healthy they sell us meat now with no fat. What is the point? If you cook it, it shrivels into dry toughness. During the period we have just...

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Blair, brave?

The Spectator

From Correlli Bamett Sir: I wish there were something I could do to help poor deluded William Shawcross (The West must be the strong horse', 30 December). He seems to be just...

Unfair on More

The Spectator

From Julian Brazier MP Sir: Rod Liddle's article on William Tyndale ('We are what the English Bible has made us', 16/23 December) is as unfair to Thomas More as it is unbalanced...

British bad service

The Spectator

From Laurence Hughes Sir: I concur with Rian Malan in his article 'British banks make me glad to be South African' (16/23 December). Banks here are no longer user-friendly...

George and the Romanovs

The Spectator

From C.D.C. Armstrong Sir: Simon Hoggart in his review of the Channel 4 documentary Three Kings at War (Arts, 16/23 December) writes that George V reneged on a promise to...

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Why didn't our government speak out against the execution of Saddam?

The Spectator

MATTHEW PARRIS Small lapses of taste or principle can be so revealing. Why did it take two days, and why was it left to John Prescott, speaking in what sounded like his personal...

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Don't laugh too loud — this theatre of the world is unsafe

The Spectator

PAUL JOHNSON Ive smile, naturally, sometimes on our first day of life. But we have to learn to laugh — that is, we imitate the mouth motions, facial contortions and, above all,...

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Snouts still in the trough — and now bosses want 20 per cent of every profit

The Spectator

MARTIN VANDER WEYER Ilike to think I helped start the national debate about fairness and executive pay with an article here in May 1993 headlined 'Snouts in the Trough',...

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More often right than wrong

The Spectator

Geoffrey Wheatcroft ORWELL IN TRIBUNE edited by Paul Anderson Politico's, £19.99, pp. 401, ISBN 1842751557 © £15.99 (plus £2.45 p&p) 0870 429 6655 After leaving the Burmese...

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A man of many parts

The Spectator

Mark Archer JOHN EVELYN: LIVING FOR INGENUITY by Gillian Darley Yale, £25, pp. 382, ISBN 0300112270 © £20 (plus £2.45 p&p) 0870 429 6655 Until the publication of his Diaries in...

Mr Facing- both- ways

The Spectator

Frederic Raphael THE BISEXUALITY OF DANIEL DEFOE by Leo Abse Kamac Books, £19.99, pp. 308, ISBN 1855754568 The classical scholar T. P. Wiseman decided that, once he had passed...

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Magic in the Gulf of Finland

The Spectator

Philip Hensher A WINTER BOOK: SELECTED STORIES by Tove Jansson Sort of Books, £6.99, pp. 192, ISBN 0954899520 © £5.59 (plus £2.45 p&p) 0870 429 6655 Tove Jansson's The Summer...

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The mysterious sign of three

The Spectator

Andrew Taylor WASH THIS BLOOD CLEAN FROM MY HANDS by Fred Vargas, translated by Sian Reynolds Harvill Secker, £11.99, pp. 388, ISBN 1843432730 © £9.59 (plus £2.45 p&p) 0870 429...

Pooter crossed with Wooster

The Spectator

Hugh Massingberd THE ADVENTURES OF MR THAKE by J. B. Morton Old Street Publishing £9.99, pp. 194, ISBN 1905847033 © £7.99 (plus £2.45 p&p) 0870 429 6655 J. B. Morton, a bluff...

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No ladies' man

The Spectator

w 6 alter Scott is unjust towards love., there is no force or i colour n his account of it, no energy. One can see that he has studied it in books and not in his own heart.'...

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The discoverer of death

The Spectator

A new film about Truman Capote stars Toby Jones. Here, he writes about the tortured man he portrays Some time after 10 p.m. on 28 November 1966 Truman Capote sashayed into the...

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Highs and lows

The Spectator

Michael Tanner In a wise editorial in the January number of Opera magazine, John Allison urges opera-lovers to remember that 'opera is only part of a much bigger musical...

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Edwardian sensibilities

The Spectator

Deborah Ross Miss Potter PG, nationwide Qh no, not a Beatrix Potter biopic. How will I ever get through it? I don't like nature. I don't like the country (what are you meant to...

In tune with Dylan

The Spectator

Kate Chisholm Bob Dylan on Radio Two? Sounds like an oxymoron to me. His Bobness, the hippie troubadour and Voice of Sixties America on the Light Programme, the station for...

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Comedy crunch

The Spectator

Simon Hoggart The most popular programme on Christmas Day, with nearly 12 million viewers, was The Vicar of Dibley (BBC1), which returned for its positively final episode on New...

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Lethal combination

The Spectator

Taki Gstaad Penned in by the surrounding Alps, huddled around the Saanen valley and scrambling up the mountains for extra space, Gstaad bursts at the seams during the New Year...

Perseverance pays

The Spectator

Robin Oakley It was 7.30 on Christmas Eve, a time when all sensible people are filling children's stockings or starting on the single malt. I was instead armpit-deep with an...

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In the high silence

The Spectator

Jeremy Clarke To escape the foul weather and the inevitable family bust-ups over the Christmas period, I holed up in a tiny rented cottage in the Sierra Nevada in Spain until it...

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Picking up

The Spectator

Roy Hattersley The epidemic which struck the village last week is nothing like as severe as the contagion that made Eyam — just four miles away — famous in 1665. But it has...

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Tricked into trekking

The Spectator

Jenny Wilhide almost missed being on top of the world 1 n the dark days after Christmas, what could be nicer than a friend calling to ask if I'd come to Morocco for a long...

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Your Problems Solved

The Spectator

Dear Maly Q. A friend decided to celebrate her anticipated Christmas bonus by taking a day's shooting and kindly invited me to be one of the guns. She emailed that most of her...

Anniversary year

The Spectator

FRANK KEATING If you thought you'd got away with one ruddy World Cup in 2006, then brace yourself: there are two of them in 2007, so obviously a double helping of the baloney...