coffee house

Coffee Houserss

This failure won’t obscure the government’s failure for long

22 November 2007 8:36

The failure of Steve McClaren’s England team last night has knocked the HMRC debacle off some off the front pages but it is certain that this story will be back.… Continue reading


When will the guilty party be revealed to us?

21 November 2007 22:25

So where is the "junior official" who sent all the 25m record on two computer discs? What news of the British civil service’s answer to Nick Leeson? Waiting for his… Continue reading


At least we know about it

21 November 2007 22:20

Britons today may not be inclined accentuate the positive about the way their government goes about its business but there is one consolation to be had from the lost data… Continue reading


Too much information

21 November 2007 15:34

“It’s nonsense to think of Brown as a principled man who wants a new constitutional settlement,” snorted one Whitehall knight. Over a light Italian lunch he revealed that there are… Continue reading

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Playing to a packed house

21 November 2007 12:35

I have seldom seen the chamber so packed. Brown got his apology in early, thanks to a planted Labour question. In the Brown-Cameron clash, Brown scored a good hit, saying… Continue reading


Why the government is in so much trouble

21 November 2007 12:23

The most important political story on the internet is nothing written by a journalist, but the reaction being posted to on the lost data catastrophe. From the BBC to our… Continue reading


Brown survives PMQs

21 November 2007 12:06

Gordon Brown came out of that exchange better than I thought he would. He stayed calm and was actually doing very well until he tried blame the Tories, arguing that… Continue reading


What should Gordon say at PMQs?

21 November 2007 11:51

Gordon Brown must be sick to his stomach about going to have to face David Cameron at PMQs today. The Tory leader, who thrashes him every week, is bound to… Continue reading

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Oh Gord, this is bad

21 November 2007 9:00

Charlie Whelan takes to the Telegraph today to defend his old boss but only ends up emphasising how bad his current situation is. Whelan writes, “[Brown] also knows that there… Continue reading


The government’s identity crisis

20 November 2007 16:57

There were genuine gasps of amazement in the chamber when Darling unveiled the scale of this disaster. If you have a child, and receive child benefit, your bank details are… Continue reading


Does Britain need Trident? Listen live tonight

20 November 2007 16:23

From 6:45 PM Spectator.co.uk will be broadcasting the latest Spectator / Intelligence Squared debate on whether or not Britain needs its Trident nuclear weapons system. Speakers include Baroness Helena Kennedy,… Continue reading


Not another one, Darling

20 November 2007 14:31

As Alistair Darling scurries off to the House to make a statement on the latest crisis to rock the Treasury, Martin Vander Weyer has some thoughts on the latest developments… Continue reading


How Cameron can win a second term

20 November 2007 12:30

Cameron’s proposal for Swedish style school reform may not win him the next election, but if he implements it properly it will win him a second term. His speech today… Continue reading


Cameron needs to modernise his world view

20 November 2007 12:04

As James has noted, there is a yawning gulf of ideas opening up between the Tories and Brown on foreign policy. Read this piece by David Aaronovitch in The Times… Continue reading


The Brown retreat

20 November 2007 11:37

Rachel Sylvester’s column today details how Gordon Brown is both retreating from the public service reform agenda and further into the bunker. In lots of technical ways that don’t make… Continue reading

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A victory for press freedom that leaves West Midlands Police in the dock

19 November 2007 17:01

The decision by Ofcom to clear Channel 4 completely over the programme Undercover Mosque is welcome news. To recap, the documentary featured various preachers spouting hateful rhetoric about women, gays… Continue reading


How deep in the bunker are the Brownites?

19 November 2007 13:40

When Gordon Brown was riding high in the polls, the Brownites were a ubiquitous present. Now, they have gone to ground. Last night’s, Blair documentary was a reminder of just… Continue reading


The case for 56 days

19 November 2007 11:36

Following my Sunday Telegraph column yesterday, I debated the Government’s plans to extend the pre-charge detention period from 28 days with Henry Porter at the end of the Today programme… Continue reading


There is nothing like a pair of Dames

19 November 2007 10:15

A pair of dames made last night’s new television adaptation of Mrs Gaskell’s Cranford. Dame Judi and Dame Eileen played the two sisters Matty and Deborah Jenkyns in this terrific… Continue reading


Might Clegg not make it?

19 November 2007 8:40

If I was a betting man, I’d fancy a sly tenner on Chris Huhne right now. Nick Clegg has failed to impress during the leadership contest and Huhne, who doesn’t… Continue reading


Cameron needs to read on

18 November 2007 13:22

Much as I applaud the Tory education plan in general, my heart sinks when I see stories such as one on the front of The Observer that Cameron wants all… Continue reading


The danger of another Balkans war

18 November 2007 11:45

 Andrew Rawnsley has an important piece in the Observer this morning about how conflict could again break out in the Balkans. The issue this time is the final status of… Continue reading


Blair’s warning

17 November 2007 11:50

David Aaronovitch’s piece in The Times today based on his interviews with the former Prime Minister and his associates for his The Blair Years series on the BBC is fascinating.… Continue reading


Spin ahoy

16 November 2007 19:32

John Pienaar’s BBC column has a great little anecdote in it this week about Alan West’s reaction to the way his comments on not being convinced of the case for… Continue reading

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Can the Tories win black votes?

16 November 2007 15:47

Clive points to a fascinating New Statesman story by David Matthews on whether the Tories can pick up significant black support at the next election—last time out they only got… Continue reading