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Coffee Houserss

Richard Rorty-one kind of Tory

12 June 2007 12:48

Richard Rorty – who died last week – was a playful thinker and a serious philosopher. In his time he attracted attacks from the committed left – and the equally convinced right.… Continue reading


Politics 2.0

12 June 2007 11:18

My column in this month’s GQ is on politics and the web – timely, as Joe Trippi, Howard Dean’s online guru, is in town this week. And do have a… Continue reading


The return of the established order?

12 June 2007 10:32

With Tony Blair’s departure from Downing Street there’ll be much talk of restoring ‘good government,’ an end to the centralisation of power, politicisation of the civil service and ‘spin’. Rachel… Continue reading

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For God’s sake

12 June 2007 8:29

God has had a hard time of it lately, what with Richard Dawkins and Christopher Hitchens weighing in to see who can be the most aggressive Alpha Atheist. Then again,… Continue reading


Did the grammar schools row come at the right time?

11 June 2007 16:27

The conventional wisdom on the grammar school row is that it came at precisely the wrong time for the Cameroons. With Brown about to take over at No.10, they needlessly… Continue reading


Brown’s mind is made up on Iraq

11 June 2007 15:33

When you hear that Gordon Brown is engaged in “fact-finding”, you can assume with complete confidence that he has made his mind up on a subject – whatever it is… Continue reading

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The Sarko revolution

11 June 2007 14:30

History continues to be made in France following Nicolas Sarkozy’s election as president last month. Yesterday’s first round parliamentary elections were an absolute triumph for his centre-right UMP party, which… Continue reading


What are the police for? Or rather, who are the police for?

11 June 2007 12:04

The road was cordoned off by Horse Guards parade on Friday afternoon, because of some ‘function’ on the pavement beside the Treasury building: squat little marquee, squat little men drinking… Continue reading


Debating life

11 June 2007 11:28

The abortion debate continues, but with the continued absence of the key statistic. How many pregnancies in this country end in an abortion? In my experience, people guess at around… Continue reading

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Government’s primary responsibility

11 June 2007 7:42

During the grammar schools row – now in recess – The Spectator argued that policy-makers should focus more aggressively upon primary education if social mobility was to have a chance.… Continue reading


The politics behind the row over the terror laws

10 June 2007 17:35

The proposed anti-terror laws, as I write in today’s Sunday Telegraph, are an example of how Brown will, to an extent many will find surprising, persist with Blair’s policies. This… Continue reading


Their rules

10 June 2007 11:25

This primer in the New York Times on what jihadis consider to be the rules of war is fascinating. Seemingly the only restrictions are that, with the exception of Iraq,… Continue reading

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The boy behind the man

9 June 2007 17:57

This piece in the Telegraph about Brown’s upbringing is well worth reading. It gives you an idea of how precocious Brown was and how early he developed his sense of… Continue reading


Food glorious food

9 June 2007 12:55

I take back most of my biting comments on Wholefoods. It is now up and running and irresistible. Last night I went and was seduced into spending a small fortune.… Continue reading


Fond farewells

9 June 2007 9:30

I caught the end of the Darcey Bussell farewell after an evening at the birthday party of Blair’s departing head of communications, Ben Wegg-Prosser, an event attended by many of… Continue reading

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No technicolour language, please

8 June 2007 17:47

Thought for the weekend: what if the racist Tourette syndrome rampaging through the nation’s reality shows hits Lewis, Keith or Lee tomorrow night as they battle it out to decide… Continue reading


Why the 7/7 bombers did it

8 June 2007 16:04

This essay by Shiv Malik in Prospect about the lead 7/7 bomber Sidique Khan is an absolute must read, it is one of the best thing I’ve ever read on… Continue reading


Sunday rules

8 June 2007 12:38

I’ve been following with fascination the still-ongoing spat between Iain Dale and Sunday journalists: he suggests they wrote up a story Gordon Brown planted on the condition that no opposition… Continue reading


Why are we all so fascinated by Paris Hilton?

8 June 2007 10:29

It is easy to denounce the media for the amount of attention that they devote to Paris Hilton’s antics, to rail against the cult of celebrity and the like. But… Continue reading


Rivers of reality

8 June 2007 9:56

I have yet to capitulate to this series of Big Brother, which is not to say that I won’t. But it does seem very striking to me that the reality… Continue reading

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Yes, Prime Minister Brown

8 June 2007 8:43

Interesting piece by Denis MacShane in the Telegraph on how Brown is planning to “trust the professionals” when he becomes PM. MacShane thinks that Brown is comfortable with the governing… Continue reading


Top McCain man would rather quit than work against Obama

7 June 2007 17:47

If you want a sense of how an Obama candidacy might shake up American politics, consider this: John McCain’s ad man, who was Bush’s media adviser, has reportedly told the… Continue reading


How big a deal is the climate deal?

7 June 2007 15:32

Not very. As Matt pointed out the other day, anything like this that doesn’t mandate binding cuts is just hot air. The big winner from the failure to agree a… Continue reading


Big Brother’s standards

7 June 2007 12:40

A truculent, argumentative blonde drama student called Emily has just been kicked off Big Brother for saying to the even more truculent and argumentative black WAG wannabe Charley – as… Continue reading


Am I the only person who hated Glastonbury?

7 June 2007 11:40

Reading James Delingpole’s fine piece about ‘the best music festival in the universe’ brought it all flooding back. Twenty years ago, buoyed by rave reviews such as James’s, I headed… Continue reading

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