Coffee House The Spectator Podcast

Podcast: Can William Shakespeare save the union, plus Maria Miller’s resignation

10 April 2014

9:39 AM

10 April 2014

9:39 AM

Did William Shakespeare invent Britain and can he save it? On this week’s View from 22 podcast, Fraser Nelson debates this week’s Spectator cover feature with the SNP’s Westminster leader Angus Robertson. Do the English and Scots have many cultural values in common? Are there any other countries contemplating splitting up who are so similar? Is there a political disconnect between the two countries, or is the ‘No’ campaign simply losing the debate?

James Forsyth and Isabel Hardman also discuss Maria Miller’s resignation and what it means for David Cameron. Was she pushed out of her job or did she jump? Has the Prime Minister’s reputation and judgment been damaged by supporting her for too long? Will there be any long-term effects for the government? And what does the appointment of Sajid Javid mean for the government?

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Plus, James Delingpole and Peter Robins debate the British Museum’s latest exhibition on the Vikings. Is it good or a waste of time? Does it give you a sense of what Viking life, and ships, were like?

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Show comments
  • Samuel Johnson

    The great Irish writers were surely born or lived when Ireland was part of the Union. Swift, Sheridan, Burke, Wilde, Shaw, Beckett, even Yeats and Joyce. Wouldn’t it be more accurate to say that there was a falling-off in Irish culture once Ireland decided to leave the Union and eventually the Commonwealth? By the way I do not make an exception for English culture either. The point is that our various cultures are mutually enriched by Unionism.

  • DaveTheRave

    Why should anyone want to ‘save the union’ if Scotland actually decides to leave? Besides, if Scotland goes, it will surely make a new bed with Brussels (the English yoke replaced by the EU yoke). I’m sure Shakespeare would have some poignant observation to make, though I doubt he would feel passionate about saving an old, dysfunctional marriage.

    • https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1561203163/shakespeare-on-demand ShakespeareOnDemand

      You’ve obviously never seen Macbeth

      • DaveTheRave

        I have seen it several times, did it at school. The Bard couldn’t save the Empire, so I doubt he can save the Union. Britain is dead.

  • Kitty MLB

    Two separate threads on beloved Shakespeare, today ( the other one better)
    We are being spoilt. Although my fellow posters seem only to wish to speak of Scotland.
    Some might say under the circumstances, For England :
    Is Fhearr teicheadh math na droch fhuireach- But never, we are English and we have
    not yet spoken- as Chesterton said..
    Quite honestly-‘ For God, For Scotland and For St Andrew’- Can Shakespeare
    save England- I think he can save England.. but I am not sure about Scotland,
    Apart from Wee Alec playing the role of Macbeth.
    And I am bored with the Miller debacle.. And so was George Osborne….Yawn !

    • telemachus

      Miller was cathartic
      It shook out folks’ true sentiments

      • Kitty MLB

        Given the choice, Who reminds you of Alex Salmond. Shylock or
        Lago, If not Macbeth. Quite honesty- this thread is not just about Miller-
        I just give up, I really do…Its done with, finished the end. She
        has left the stage. The ghastly woman has gone.

        • telemachus

          Not so see the redoubtable Charles Moore on the next thread
          *
          PS I have been wondering and been too timid to ask
          What is MLB?

          • Kitty MLB

            I would not describe you as a timid little mouse Telemachus.
            It’s what I am . “Kitty” is who I am in actual characteristics and the name used by friends and relatives.
            And what about Shakespeare saving England- Oh I get,
            if he lived now, he would not have been a socialist so therefore not worth mentioning.

            • telemachus

              Opaque

              • Kitty MLB

                No Shakespeare was not “Opaque” he was an example of the
                creative genius of the human mind, never the word you have just mentioned. Very silly Telemachus.

                • telemachus

                  And my answer
                  Now that I have plucked up courage?

                • Kitty MLB

                  Glad you managed to climb out of that shell of yours and
                  muster up some courage, well done, Telemachus.

        • Maidmarrion

          Lago?
          Your knowledge of your beloved Shakespeare seems a tad awry.

          • Kitty MLB

            Thank you most graciously, dear Scottish woman, for spotting the typo,
            I know the difference between I and L..
            How is King Arthur these days, and Avalon obviously.

            • Maidmarrion

              No need to thank me , I always find when attempting to discredit others one should aim for accuracy ,even when typing.
              I’m sure you agree.

              • Kitty MLB

                Yes, I do indeed agree, thank you.

  • telemachus

    Osborne pushed her

    • Alexsandr

      and rightly so. she was unfit for office.

      • telemachus

        There but for the grace of god go many
        See Charles Moore
        It was DT bullying for Leveson

        • Alexsandr

          moore is plain wrong
          she went because of her expenses.
          and while we are there leveson was wrong too. His recommendations would have been the end of the free press in the UK.
          the phone hacking could have been dealt with under existing criminal law.

          • telemachus

            Are you mad
            Week on week the NoW destroyed lives without redress
            To whom does a sick old man just out of hospital when door stepped by the Telegraph
            And what are the current chances of redress
            You know very well what happened, far from apologising they took it out on his daughter day after day after day

            • Alexsandr

              there is laws in place already to deal with that. do your homework

              • telemachus

                OK
                So you go down and get a lawyer and put together a case then butt in to a Judges busy docket
                We need a responsive and fair system as advised by Leveson

  • dalai guevara

    A stronger sense of Communitarianism. Lovely – all the centralist elite need to do then is adapt their Pickles-style localism and we’d be on to a winner then wouldn’t we? Most of us see right through that one, sorry.

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