coffee house

Coffee Houserss

Your last-minute Valentine’s solution 

14 February 2008 17:15

I’ve often thought it slightly odd that the Feast of St Valentine (that day of Love and Romance) commemorates a Roman martyr who was tortured and put to death in… Continue reading


Where there’s a will, there’s a way (around Parliamentary regulations)

14 February 2008 15:53

James wrote earlier on plans to make MPs formally declare any family members who work for them.  But, if the New Statesman’s Kevin Maguire is right, the new measures may be to little avail. … Continue reading


How cuddly is Musharraf?

14 February 2008 15:09

Yesterday, we posted a letter by Wajid Shamsul Hasan, the former Pakistan High Commissioner to London, in which he took issue with a Coffee House post by Rani Singh.  Here, Rani responds to… Continue reading


Remember to hold Brown to account!

14 February 2008 12:04

A reminder that Boris wants to know which of Gordon Brown’s misleading little claims you find the most outrageous. At the moment, our Prime Minister’s statements about inflation are topping the chart.  As CoffeeHouser ‘m’ puts it:… Continue reading


Lib Dem frontbenchers in open revolt

14 February 2008 11:03

Two Lib Dem frontbenchers are—in open defiance of their party line—supporting a referendum on the EU Reform Treaty, Sam Coates reveals this morning. This is a major challenge to Nick… Continue reading


Towards a written constitution?

14 February 2008 10:58

Prompted by Peter Riddell’s article in the Times today, I’ve just read through the speech that Jack Straw delivered yesterday on "modernising the Magna Carta".  It’s heady stuff - all talk of Labour’s… Continue reading


A declaration of intent

14 February 2008 8:53

The idea that MPs should have to declare in the Register of Member’s Interests any family members who work for them is a sensible response to the Conway crisis. However… Continue reading


Ashdown’s plan for Afghanistan

13 February 2008 17:46

Paddy Ashdown, who was going to be the much needed UN special envoy in Afghanistan, until Hamid Karzai vetoed him, has a piece in the FT today laying out how… Continue reading


China, Africa & oil…

13 February 2008 17:38

Following Steven Spielberg’s withdrawal as an artistic adviser to this year’s Beijing Olympics, a new web exclusive article by Heidi Kingstone investigates Chinese relations with Africa, and what both regions hope to… Continue reading

1 Comment

Government backs Blair for EU Presidency

13 February 2008 15:56

I interview Jim Murphy in tomorrow’s Spectator, in which he gives his endorsement to Tony Blair as EU president. For the first time, we’re running a longer version of the… Continue reading


Musharraf’s Pakistan

13 February 2008 14:17

Coffee House was recently sent the following letter from Wajid Shamsul Hasan, the former Pakistan High Commissioner to London: Sir, Your report by Rani Singh made quite a jolly read,… Continue reading


Miliband’s democratic case

13 February 2008 12:13

David Miliband’s speech on ‘the democratic imperative’ marks an important moment in post-Iraq foreign policy. It is the first time since Tony Blair’s departure that a Labour politician has delivered… Continue reading


Hold Brown to account

13 February 2008 11:22

You may have seen the disgraceful suggestion by Gordon Brown in Prime Minister’s Question Time that I want to cut the Metropolitan Police budget when the reverse is the case.… Continue reading


Sprinting leaves morality behind

13 February 2008 9:06

As a sporadic but enthusiastic follower of British athletics, I find the Dwain Chambers story very dispiriting. There is something utterly compelling about the sprinters – from Jesse Owens, via… Continue reading



13 February 2008 9:00

Americano has reaction to last night’s Democratic and Republican primaries which saw Barack Obama and John McCain both notch up another three victories. With Obama having won the last eight… Continue reading


On the trail of The Phantom Carriage

12 February 2008 17:30

If you’re after a profound cinematic experience, then you could do far worse than to invest in Victor Sjöström’s The Phantom Carriage (1921), which got its first UK DVD release yesterday. … Continue reading


The case for Tory boldness

12 February 2008 16:04

Over at Three Line Whip, Iain Martin argues that the Tories need a plan B as Gordon Brown shifts tactics. This is all goes back to the hares versus tortoises… Continue reading


The victims of a lifestyle culture?

12 February 2008 15:31

A new YouGov poll for the DWP confirms the dangers of a lifestyle culture.  The bottom line: many young people now expect to enjoy certain luxuries when they retire, without having to save… Continue reading


They really don’t want you to have a referendum

12 February 2008 14:18

Labour is clearly rattled by the row over it reneging on its promise of a referendum on the EU Constitution. Not content with threatening to withdraw the whip from Labour… Continue reading


The supporters and opponents of vote-rigging

12 February 2008 12:53

Unlike in, say, American politics, pre-elections polls are bit thin on the ground in Pakistan. The results of one, however, have been published by the Dawn. Conducted during January 2008,… Continue reading

1 Comment

Is Britain still relevant on the world stage?

12 February 2008 11:45

Britain’s place in the world is under increasing scrutiny.  There’s the continuing debate over the Lisbon Treaty; mutterings that the "special relationship" may break down; and questions about the viability of Brownite free trade. … Continue reading


Yet another rethink…

12 February 2008 10:24

After a wave of criticism, Alistair Darling’s said to be considering a rethink over the Treasury’s non-dom tax proposals.  He’s right to do so – the current plans are a mess –… Continue reading


Brown’s idea

12 February 2008 8:53

The Brown re-launch, or strategic readjustment as I expect the Prime Minister would prefer us to call it, is the subject of Steve Richards’s column today. Richards notes how Brown… Continue reading


So far, so planned

12 February 2008 8:30

I meet with Pakistan’s Deputy High Commissioner to the UK and former High Commissioner to Norway, Abdul Basit. Debonair and sophisticated, he’s a career diplomat from the Foreign Service.  He… Continue reading


NHS on life support

11 February 2008 18:31

Earlier, Fraser mentioned the work of the think-tank Reform, and today that same group released an insightful – and scathing – report on the state of the NHS.  Download it,… Continue reading