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Will the Calais crisis create another EU headache for David Cameron?

24 June 2015 9:08
Migrants climb in the back of a lorry on the A16 highway leading to the Eurotunnel on June 23, 2015 in Calais, northern France.

The crisis at Calais has once again raised the issue of UK border security. Some of the 3,000-odd illegal migrants residing at the port took advantage of yesterday’s ferry workers… Continue reading


The world belongs to Taylor Swift now. There will be no free-trial period

23 June 2015 17:46
Shake it out and rake it in (Photo: Getty)

All hail Taylor Swift. How she must give baby boomers the fear. Not just baby boomers. Also those who came next, the Generation Xers, who seemed to define themselves culturally… Continue reading


Tim Farron strengthens his position in the Lib Dem leadership race

23 June 2015 17:11
Norman Lamb and Tim Farron on the Victoria Derbyshire show today. Photo: BBC.

While the media has been focused on the Labour leadership contest, the Liberal Democrats are also shuffling closer to choosing their new leader. The ballot papers are being sent out… Continue reading


A British policeman shouldn’t take orders from a radical Islamist preacher

23 June 2015 16:58

Each year Anjem Choudary earns more in benefits than a soldier does starting off in our armed forces. This is a fact I never tire of pointing out – especially… Continue reading


Is Home Rule the only realistic alternative to independence for Scotland?

23 June 2015 14:11

‘Is Home Rule the only realistic alternative to independence?’ was the question posed at a Spectator debate, sponsored by Brewin Dolphin, in Edinburgh last week. In one sense the question… Continue reading


Constituents give Zac Goldsmith ‘permission’ to run for Mayor of London

23 June 2015 13:39
Zac Goldsmith and Boris Johnson attend a rally against the Heathrow expansion. Photo: Getty Images.

Zac Goldsmith is in the race to be the Tory candidate for Mayor of London. After announcing his intention to seek the nomination last week, Goldsmith balloted his constituents in Richmond Park… Continue reading


‘No’ campaign coordinator pushes idea of two referendums

23 June 2015 12:56
David Cameron Meets With Angela Merkel In Berlin

Dominic Cummings is the man drafted in to put together the putative No campaign for the EU referendum. Cummings has a tendency to surprise and he has done that today… Continue reading


Students worrying about ‘value for money’ miss the point of an arts degree

23 June 2015 12:05
The point of an arts degree is the time it gives you to pursue other hobbies (Photo: Getty)

University towns are already awash with fur-trimmed gowns and proud parents, but behind the smiles there’s a glimmer of resentment: four in 10 of those graduating this year think they’ve… Continue reading


The one thing that might ensure a Greek deal: fear

23 June 2015 11:17
A protest held in Athens against the prospect of new austerity cuts demanded by the country's international creditors (Photo by Milos Bicanski/Getty)

On a narrow, sloping street in downtown Athens sits a graffiti-strewn wall that has captured the spirit of a nation. Amidst the spray-painted slogans and flaking posters, a black-and-white stencilled… Continue reading


Michael Gove vs. the ‘creaking’ legal establishment — round one

23 June 2015 9:06

Members of the legal profession who were hoping Michael Gove’s time would be consumed trying to solve the Human Rights Act puzzle will be disappointed. In a speech to the Legatum… Continue reading


A trip to Greece might make Charlotte Church fear national debt

22 June 2015 17:11
People's Assembly Against Austerity Hold Demonstration And Festival

It is amazing what some people are willing to listen to on a Saturday.  I have just watched Charlotte Church’s speech to the small fringe of ‘anti-austerity’ activists in Westminster… Continue reading


Greece: The devil will be in the detail

22 June 2015 17:04

The Greek economy minister Giorgos Stathakis has told Robert Peston in an interview that the deadlock between Athens and its creditors has been broken, that $7.2 billion of funds should… Continue reading


Business for Britain attempts to show the positive side of the ‘No’ campaign

22 June 2015 13:15

The EU ‘out’ campaigners have two troublesome image problems to contend with: the message of ‘No’ is intrinsically negative and will scare off voters, plus they are looking to change the… Continue reading


Cameron has created a socialist utopia for pensioners

22 June 2015 12:33
(Photo: Getty)

On the radio this morning, a campaigner from the Child Poverty Action Group had an ‘emperor’s new clothes’ moment. Why not, she said, treat the young like the old. If… Continue reading


David Cameron makes the case for the Tories’ moral mission

22 June 2015 9:16
Demonstrator's signs are seen at an Anti Austerity demonstration at Bank Of England on June 20, 2015 in London, England.

David Cameron has never particularly warmed to the language of compassionate conservatism. In the past, that side of the conservatism has generally been represented by Iain Duncan Smith — with… Continue reading


How to grapple with discipline in schools

21 June 2015 20:29
February - Cutting Weather', 1839. A typical day at Dr Swishtail's Academy.

The government’s new school discipline leader Tom Bennett has a difficult brief; he’s in charge of stopping the schoolchildren of the entire nation swinging on their chairs, playing on their… Continue reading


Greece may soon face a humanitarian crisis of its own

21 June 2015 15:39

Normally, the phrase ‘continent in crisis’ is hyperbole. But it seems appropriate today as we contemplate the situation Europe, and more specifically the EU, finds itself in. In the next… Continue reading


Diane Abbott’s car-crash Sunday Politics interview shows the depth of Labour’s denial

21 June 2015 15:12
Screen Shot 2015-06-21 at 15.04.57

The Labour leadership contest is compulsive watching for conservatives with a taste in schadenfreude. Jeremy Corbyn’s inclusion reminds everyone how the party may have succeeded in expelling the electable Blairites, but… Continue reading


What does the Tim Hunt saga tell us about the future of democracy?

21 June 2015 10:45
Students protest against Marine Le Pen's attendance at an Oxford Union debate. Image: Getty

A friend of mine, who attends a top UK University, recently attended a generic debate on feminism and sexual violence. He made a point from the floor that, contrary to… Continue reading


Spectator competition winner: The poetry of cricket (plus: can you see a rainbow?)

20 June 2015 11:40
Len Hutton and  Cyril Washbrook coming out to bat for England at a Test Match, at Trent Bridge, Nottingham. (Photo by Central Press/Getty Images)

In Competition No. 2903 you were invited to supply a poem incorporating a dozen cricketing terms. English poets love cricket: Housman, Betjeman, Chesterton and Sassoon all wrote about the game.… Continue reading


David Cameron’s Unstrategic Defence Review

20 June 2015 11:35
David Cameron on the Vanguard Class Submarine HMS Victorious. Image: Getty

Michael Fallon’s confirmation last week that a Strategic Defence and Security Review is underway adds another question to the Conservatives’ growing list of slim-majority headaches: what to do about defence policy. With… Continue reading


Labour’s Blair problem

20 June 2015 10:41
Former Prime Minister Tony Blair Gives Evidence To The Leveson Inquiry

Ed Miliband believed that after the financial crisis, Britain had moved to the left. He argued that there was no need to adopt all the Blairite positions to win. The… Continue reading


Earn as you burn: the green energy offer that saved the monks of Pluscarden

19 June 2015 18:26
Brother Michael, a Benedictine Monk, gets ready for St Benedict's Feast at  Pluscarden Abbey

Pluscarden Abbey, just outside Elgin in northeast Scotland, is one of the most beautiful places in Britain. But to those who have visited in winter over the years, it has… Continue reading


Syed Kamall enters race to be Tory Mayor of London candidate

19 June 2015 18:03
Syed Kamall is vying to be the Tory candidate in the London mayoral election

Syed Kamall, the Conservative leader in the European Parliament, has entered the race to be the party’s Mayor of London candidate. The field now consists of Kamall, Andrew Boff, Sol Campbell, Stephen Greenhalgh,… Continue reading


Is the SNP an Anglophobic party or just a party for Anglophobes?

19 June 2015 17:31
Pressure Increases For A Scottish Independence Referendum

Writing in the Herald this week Iain Macwhirter noted that “Any trace of ethnic nationalism, and anti-English sentiment, was expunged from the [Scottish National] party in the 1970s”.  Responding to this JK Rowling… Continue reading