×
coffee house

Coffee Houserss

Labour invented Scottish devolution. Why can’t it devolve?

25 October 2014 18:33
Yes, we're pulling our hair out too. Johann Lamont, who quit today as Scottish Labour leader - their 6th in 15 years. Photo: Getty Images.

One of the greatest ironies of these past 15 years of Scottish home rule is that Labour never really got devolution. Sure, it talked a good game. From Donald Dewar… Continue reading

44 Comments

Russell Brand: Newsnight’s tragic solution to its plummeting ratings

25 October 2014 17:17
russell

The issue is not that Russell Brand seems to believe that 9/11 was some sort of joint effort between George W Bush and the bin Laden family – that’s sort… Continue reading

51 Comments

Gordon Brown tipped as a new leader of Scottish Labour. But Anas Sarwar is the favourite

25 October 2014 11:46
Gordon Brown - will he (please) no come back again?

Now that Johann Lamont has quit as leader of Scottish Labour, bookies are now taking odds on her successor. Four of the eight most likely candidates are Westminster MPs and third-favourite is Gordon Brown… Continue reading

91 Comments

Alas, poor Johann Lamont: a symptom, not the cause, of Labour’s decline in Scotland

25 October 2014 11:31
Alex Salmond Takes First Minister's Questions

It was the wee things that did it. Things like vision, inspiration, confidence and all the other details that coalesce into that strange something called leadership. There are many types… Continue reading

153 Comments

A double strength headache for Miliband

25 October 2014 8:35
Image: Getty.

Johann Lamont and Tony Blair don’t have much in common. But they are both causing Ed Miliband trouble this morning.   I suspect that those close to Miliband are relieved… Continue reading

179 Comments

Iraq and Syria are lost causes: Western intervention can’t help – or can it?

24 October 2014 18:05
Iraq-and-Syria-debate-website-image-700x350

Iraq and Syria are lost causes: Western intervention can’t help. Well, at least that was the motion put forward on Wednesday evening at a Spectator debate, in association with Brewin… Continue reading

53 Comments

Is Canada’s foreign policy making the country any safer?

24 October 2014 16:58
Canada's National War Memorial, on October 23, 2014 (Photo: Getty Images)

We Canadians like to think that we are a boring and peaceful nation, that nothing much ever happens here, and everybody likes us. It therefore comes as a shock when… Continue reading

33 Comments

Smoking weed won’t make your kids smarter, but it won’t make them brain-dead, either

24 October 2014 16:20
(Photo: Getty)

I don’t want this to become the ‘Tom Tells You To Get High’ blog, so this will be the last time I write about cannabis for awhile, I promise. Unless… Continue reading

82 Comments

Anglicanism keeps muddling on — thank God

24 October 2014 15:20
St Paul's Cathedral (Photo: WPA/Getty Images)

A new survey of Anglican clergy has been published. Its findings are reassuringly unsurprising. For example, almost one-third of the clergy identify as evangelical; exactly one-third as Catholic; and just… Continue reading

15 Comments

8 ways the EU might spend that 1.7 billion surcharge

24 October 2014 15:12
Image: Getty

So the EU wants Britain to pay a 1.7 billion surcharge for the heinous crime of having an economic recovering. How dare we object? Just think of all the good… Continue reading

34 Comments

Cameron: We’re not paying this EU bill on the 1st of December

24 October 2014 14:55
Image: Getty

A visibly riled David Cameron railed at the European Commission’s ‘completely unacceptable’ behaviour in demanding another £1.7 billion from Britain by the 1st of December. He warned that he certainly… Continue reading

107 Comments

Ottawans to jihadists: our city is stronger than ever

24 October 2014 13:29
Flowers left in front of the Canadian Parliament in honour of Cpl Nathan Cirillo of the Canadian Army Reserves, who was killed while guarding the National War Memorial (Photo: Andrew Burton/Getty Images)

I was born in Ottawa. I grew up in Ottawa. I studied in Ottawa. I work in Ottawa. Ottawa is in my DNA, as it is for more than a… Continue reading

31 Comments

Having an abortion means ending a life. Even pro-choice students should realise that

24 October 2014 12:42
(Photo: Pedro Armestre/AFP)

Last week, the Tab, an online student tabloid, published an article by an anonymous Cambridge student entitled ‘I shouldn’t have been aggressively reminded of my abortion at Freshers Fair’. The… Continue reading

131 Comments

A federal UK? Home Rule all round? We have been here before.

24 October 2014 11:48
Dublin 1912: a crowd gathers on Sackville Street (as was) for Herbert Asquith after the government introduces a bill for Irish Home Rule. Photo: Getty/Hulton.

There are fewer truly new things in politics than you think. The present constitutional uncertainty – which, it should be said, could scarcely have been avoided – is no exception.… Continue reading

49 Comments

The NHS Wales disaster vindicates Tony Blair, not David Cameron

24 October 2014 11:09
(Photo: Getty)

As someone who believes that a Labour government would be a calamity for Britain, I ought not to mind the recent fuss about NHS Wales. Yes, it is a disaster… Continue reading

52 Comments

Westminster’s gone barking

24 October 2014 10:40
This year's winner, Diesel and Rob Flello MP

It’s that time of year again – sandwiched between conference season and the Autumn statement – when the nation’s political pooches (and their owners) descend on Westminster. Yes, yesterday saw the… Continue reading

5 Comments

The EU’s gift to Nigel Farage – Brussels demands £1.7 billion more from Britain

24 October 2014 10:15
(Photo: AFP)

With truly dreadful timing, the European Commission has sprung David Cameron with a demand for £1.7 billion in extra British budget payments to the EU. The commission says this amount… Continue reading

231 Comments

Kelly Tolhurst wins Rochester primary on turnout of 5,688

23 October 2014 18:03
David Cameron in Rochester. Picture: Getty

Kelly Tolhurst has won the open primary to be Conservative candidate for Rochester and Strood, I understand. The result is not due to be announced until this evening, but I… Continue reading

136 Comments

So what if the Canadian terror attacks are blowback?

23 October 2014 17:56
Shooting In Ottawa At City's War Memorial And Near Parliament Hill

Anti-NSA crusader Glenn Greenwald published an article on Wednesday morning where he explained that the recent murder of a Canadian soldier by a radicalised Muslim convert was down to Canadian… Continue reading

53 Comments

NHS ambulance trouble is more complex than miserly Tories and NHS privatisation

23 October 2014 16:52
An ambulance man in Hampshire on January 6, 2010.  (Photo: AFP/Getty)

English NHS ambulance services are spending twice as much on private ambulances than they were in 2012, according to Labour, while response-times have lengthened and ambulance staff appear increasingly disgruntled. So… Continue reading

16 Comments

Breitbart’s loss is Nigel Farage’s gain – or is it?

23 October 2014 14:51
Nigel Farage at the Bolton Arms Pub in April 2014 (Photo: Getty)

It’s no great surprise that Raheem Kassam, the troublesome managing editor of Breitbart London, has left his job. Kassam is a wildly self-important figure who flits about on the internet… Continue reading

187 Comments

‘Hang ‘em high!’ – leftists for the death penalty, re Pistorius et al

23 October 2014 13:32
George Cruikshank's  bank note of 1819 (Photo: Hulton Archive/Getty Images)

O, the fury of my Sisters over the risible punishment (I’ve seen longer sentences in Ulysses) handed out to Oscar Pistorius! I’m with them all the way on this one.… Continue reading

55 Comments

The UKIP effect: killing the thing you love

23 October 2014 12:48
B0jWNTeIQAAddfr

This chart, courtesy of Mike Smithson, shows Ipsos-Mori’s polling on British membership of the European Union. It shows support for leaving the EU is no higher now than it was… Continue reading

231 Comments

Why would jihadi terrorists attack Canada? Better to ask: why not?

23 October 2014 12:32
Forensic police officers near the National War Memorial in Ottawa, Canada on October 22, 2014 (Photo: AFP/Getty)

The attacks in Canada probably seem non-sensical to some people. After all, much of the press and political class in the West has spent years trying to cover over the… Continue reading

183 Comments

Why the UK should should be subject to different rules on European migrants

23 October 2014 11:25
(Image: Getty)

The rest of Europe has, predictably, reacted negatively to the suggestion that the UK should be able to impose some kind of cap on free movement while remaining in the… Continue reading

78 Comments