coffee house

Coffee Houserss

Hezza still a conference darling after all these years

30 September 2007 15:14

Michael Heseltine just rolled back the years with a crowd-pleasing address to conference. Heseltine extolled the values of decentralisation, celebrated the triumph of the Tory agenda and bashed Gordon Brown… Continue reading


Warsi illustrates the Tory dilemma

30 September 2007 13:11

Amid all the polls, hoopla and election prognostications as the Tories gather in Blackpool, don’t miss this interview in today’s Sindy with Sayeeda Warsi, the shadow minister for social cohesion.… Continue reading


Hague on Brown

30 September 2007 12:25

William Hague has been given the task of Brown baiting. His speech went quite well until this bit: "After ten years of failure and disappointment, he cannot be the change… Continue reading

1 Comment

Not the best cut

30 September 2007 12:16

Given that David Cameron has given himself a tiny fund for tax cuts, I’m not at all convinced that cutting stamp duty should be his priority. Are first time buyers… Continue reading


Sons of the Manse

29 September 2007 17:47

Governments recycle policies, pledges and promises. Gordon Brown has decided to recycle his rhetoric as well-with some fine-sounding phrases about what he owed his father, a minister of the Church… Continue reading


As Tories head to Blackpool, Brown has a landslide lead

29 September 2007 12:05

Today’s polls are grim for the Tories. Labour lead by double digits in both and with a uniform national swing would have a majority well into three figures. Gordon Brown… Continue reading


Is Osborne set to commit the Tories to the abolition of inheritance tax?

28 September 2007 20:29

The Taxpayers’ Alliance is reporting that George Osborne will pledge to abolish inheritance tax at Blackpool. The TPA believes that the proposal that Osborne will unveil will be very similar… Continue reading

1 Comment

Toby Young’s video diary of the Boris campaign

28 September 2007 16:58

Toby Young presents his latest video diary of the Boris Johnson campaign. You can watch previous entries here and here. 

1 Comment

You’ll be laughing presently

28 September 2007 15:55

Present Laughter opens at the National Theatre next week and I went to a preview last night. Theatre-goers are in for a treat. Alex Jennings is a terrific Garry Essendine… Continue reading


It’s folk music but not as we know it

28 September 2007 14:38

There’s more to folk these days than dodgy beards and cable-knit sweaters and it’s clear why Bellowhead, instigators of an outbreak of frenzied folkish foot-stomping at Shepherd’s Bush Empire on… Continue reading


Isn’t saying The Brothers Karamazov rather idiotic?

28 September 2007 14:03

On holiday I read (not reread I am afraid in my case, as people tend to claim about great classics) The Karamazov Brothers, in a new translation from Penguin. The… Continue reading

1 Comment

Might Salmond stand against Brown?

28 September 2007 11:52

Iain Dale has a fascinating story up about a rumour that Alex Salmond might stand against Gordon Brown at the next general election. I’d love to see such a contest,… Continue reading


Brown to decide by Sunday on snap poll

28 September 2007 8:53

Gordon Brown will decide whether or not to call an election this weekend, The Guardian reports today. His aides, apparently, now think he is more likely to go for it… Continue reading


A dazzling evening

28 September 2007 0:59

Just come home from Theo Fennell’s exhibition "Show Off" at The Royal Academy of Arts – one of the glitziest and most impressive parties I’ve been to this year. Theo… Continue reading


The UN is not a moral authority

27 September 2007 21:54

I never understand why people hold the UN up as some great moral arbiter. Far from being some vehicle for the world’s collective good intentions, it is a classic balance of… Continue reading


One of the best places in London to hear music

27 September 2007 17:12

I spent last night in one of my favourite places in the whole of London: Wilton’s Music Hall. Anyone who hasn’t yet been to the magical, near-derelict building which is… Continue reading

1 Comment

What else Brown takes from America

27 September 2007 16:04

I loved the Fink’s tracing of passages in Brown’s speech back to those of American politicians. But why stop at rhetoric? Brown’s policies are burgled from America too. He used… Continue reading


Now for something truly horrible

27 September 2007 15:54

They say that things will be better between Britain and American — or at any rate between No 10 and the White House — when Hillary Clinton becomes president. How… Continue reading


BT need to be more broad minded

27 September 2007 15:39

Success – of a sort. I first contacted Virgin Media seven weeks ago as I wanted to change from dial-up to broadband. Yesterday (after some five weeks of almost daily… Continue reading


Have the Angry Young Men won out?

27 September 2007 14:55

Proofs of The Letters of Noel Coward and a new book about the Royal Court Theatre arrived at The Spectator together and their conjunction made me wonder, who is winning?… Continue reading


Labour gets ready to go, but cabinet remains divided on timing

27 September 2007 13:34

The chances of an autumn poll just increased with the news that Labour is hiring key election staff. Now, this doesn’t mean Gordon is definitely going but it does show… Continue reading


The McCanns go through hell again

27 September 2007 12:03

The longing for the girl snapped in Morocco to be Madeleine McCann rippled round the world. This story has taken so many twists and turns, many of them savage, but… Continue reading


Boris wins Tory mayoral primary

27 September 2007 9:44

It was the Spec wot won it….well, not quite. But I like to think that our ferocious, implacable support for Boris played a small part in persuading London voters to… Continue reading


A vintage split

26 September 2007 23:28

Nick Robinson has a great post up on the generation gap opening up among the cabinet about whether or not to go to the polls now. As Robinson points out, the young… Continue reading

1 Comment

What Osborne meant

26 September 2007 19:35

My interview with George Osborne in tomorrow’s Spectator has caused much interest, particularly his contrasting of himself with the "uber modernisers". This phrase has travelled so fast that a Cabinet… Continue reading