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Coffee Houserss

Failure, failure, failure

31 May 2007 11:43

The news that 256 schools are now failing to give their pupils an adequate education, even by our currently low standards, is as damning an indictment as anything of Blair’s… Continue reading

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The truth about dirty dancing

31 May 2007 8:47

Stephen has a good post on really bad films. I have never understood the appeal of the dreadful Dirty Dancing, nor its passage into Rocky Horror-style cult status. So this… Continue reading


Is this man the next Ronald Reagan?

30 May 2007 18:54

The Republican presidential field just got even more crowded with the news that former Tennessee Senator Fred Thompson is jumping in. You probably know Thomspon’s face, if not his name,… Continue reading

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A political handbag

30 May 2007 16:58

“Do we want to be a divided society where some people struggle and others spend £10,000 on a handbag?” Harriet Harman asked last night during the Labour deputy leadership debate.… Continue reading

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30 May 2007 14:36

A work of meticulous scholarship has appeared entirely devoted to the 1943 musical and it sets new standards of accuracy in what has been a gossipy milieu. From the distinguished… Continue reading

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A good old tell-all

30 May 2007 12:29

Those disappointed that the initial instalments of the Campbell memoirs won’t be dishing up the good stuff might like to turn their attention to those of Bob Shrum, the veteran US political consultant… Continue reading


Ranking the deputies

30 May 2007 11:53

The race to be the next John Prescott is getting serious with the six contenders debtaing on Newsnight last night, watch it here. So, who won? Here is Martin Vander… Continue reading


Can you Google human nature?

30 May 2007 9:24

The great Google debate shows no sign of abating (see my earlier post). Some of the comparisons between the search engine company and Big Brother have been plain daft (can… Continue reading

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Sorry Alan, you can’t beat the real thing

30 May 2007 9:12

Alan Milburn is one of my favourite politicians. But even he won’t persuade me to drink Pepsi. As he likes to say: “We’re not daft”.


The world’s new banker

30 May 2007 1:10

Bob Zoellick, George W. Bush’s pick to replace Paul Wolfowitz at the World Bank, is a safe choice. Zoellick was long regarded as one of the few safe pairs of… Continue reading

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Watching with auntie

29 May 2007 22:39

Though I cannot in all honesty pretend that I shall be staying in to watch this televisual feast, the BBC is surely on to something in its celebration of  the… Continue reading

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Royal Reality TV

29 May 2007 17:52

If the rumours are to be believed, Sarah Ferguson will be a judge on the next series of the US reality TV show Project Runway. Maybe, Rod was right: Kate… Continue reading


Dressing the part

29 May 2007 12:55

What a difference deportation makes. On the right is a picture of Sheik el-Faisal, the Islamofascist who was finally sent back to his native Jamaica last weekend after serving time… Continue reading


Spinning a yarn

29 May 2007 12:38

Entertaining to read in today’s Standard more details of the row between Alastair Campbell and Cherie Blair over the forthcoming Campbell Diaries. This relationship has had its ups and downs… Continue reading



29 May 2007 10:13

When Günter Grass confessed last year that he had been in the Waffen SS it took everyone by surprise. It seemed like a cynically timed admission coming after he had… Continue reading


Cameron creates a meritocratic martyr

28 May 2007 22:42

No question about it: when a frontbencher breaks ranks flagrantly, a party leader who hopes to be seen as strong must sack him. Many people agreed with Howard Flight’s remarks… Continue reading


Obama’s 100 days

28 May 2007 22:36

For an interesting take on how Barack Obama’s presidential campaign is doing read this interview with David Axelrod, Obama’s political mastermind, by the veteran US political reporter Al Hunt. Hunt’s… Continue reading


An American Tragedy

28 May 2007 12:02

It’s Memorial Day in the United States today, the official beginning of summer. Fierce Americans mark the day by beating their war drums; gentle Americans by beating their breasts. The… Continue reading


Where does Brown stand on FOI?

28 May 2007 9:59

The media section of today’s Guardian has a very telling piece on how the PM in waiting’s closest allies are at the heart of various efforts to dampen down the… Continue reading

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Not going quietly

27 May 2007 20:56

Tony Blair’s piece in the Sunday Times echoes some familiar themes of his. But the language seems blunter than usual, perhaps because it is not broken up by the Prime… Continue reading


A third way on Iran

27 May 2007 14:20

This interview by Bibi Netanyahu with the Wall Street Journal is well worth reading. In it, Netanyahu sets out a third way between diplomacy and military action that could stop… Continue reading

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Standing Firm

27 May 2007 9:04

I said we would stand our ground on grammar schools – on all fronts. See my piece in today’s Sunday Telegraph, which discloses Tory plans to select by race, but… Continue reading


Why Gordon will go soft

26 May 2007 16:29

This review of Gordon Brown’s book on Courage from Blair’s pollster Philip Gould is absolutely fascinating. This is his take on Brown’s chapter on Bobby Kennedy’s career: “its fascination for… Continue reading


How good is Kevin Pietersen?

26 May 2007 16:19

Well, after his innings of 226 today, there’s only one player who has scored more runs than him in their first twenty five tests and that’s Don Bradman. Pietersen might… Continue reading

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Don’t cede ground to the far right

26 May 2007 15:03

It’s Saturday afternoon, and I can’t quite shake the chill that came over me when watching Friday’s Newsnight. They were still on how Margaret Hodge suggested giving Brits priority over… Continue reading