Saturday Morning Country: Steve Earle

5 December 2009 1:01

Apologies for the light blogging these past couple of days. Still, it’s Saturday and so it’s time for some more country. Since I’m seeing him perform in Perth on Monday… Continue reading


Benefits of a multi-cultural Britain

5 December 2009 0:49

The first of an occasional series – those benefits of a multi-cultural Britain in full. Let me introduce you all to this human filth. It could be an anomaly, of… Continue reading


Rum, Sodomy and a Radish

4 December 2009 14:06

Proof that even well-intentioned and useful fads can go too far: the Grow Your Own Vegetables movement has reached a tragi-comic end with the news that Shane MacGowan, the hardest-living… Continue reading


Sarah Palin, Birther?

4 December 2009 13:27

Nearly! The thing is that Mrs Palin doesn’t need to pander to the nutty fringe. Many of them love her anyway. So perhaps she really does mean this sort of… Continue reading


Progress On Our Pernicious Libel Laws

3 December 2009 17:31

It was great to see the cover story in Progress about this country’s pernicious libel laws. The magazine did well to commission Jonathan Heawood, the rather brilliant director of English… Continue reading


The New Class War

2 December 2009 23:45

James argues, quite correctly in my view, that it is now clear that Gordon Brown is preparing to run a campaign arguing that, as Brother Forsyth puts it, "a Cameron… Continue reading


Pirate Markets

2 December 2009 18:24

Capitalism is not in crisis everywhere. Somali pirates have launched their own stock exchange: One wealthy former pirate named Mohammed took Reuters around the small facility and said it had… Continue reading

1 Comment

Obama’s War: Same as the Old War

2 December 2009 14:16

President Barack Obama speaks in Eisenhower Hall at the United States Military Academy at West Point. Photo: Roger L. Wollenberg-Pool/Getty Images The text of President Obama’s West Point address is… Continue reading


Dazed and confused

2 December 2009 11:49

How are you feeling this morning? Muddled and confused? Follow my rule, then: always wait until Thought for the Day has finished before you enjoy your first stiffener of the… Continue reading


Cumbrian Floods: How Long Till We Forget?

1 December 2009 22:29

So what happens when the news cameras leave and the people who have been flooded out are left to clear up the mess and rebuild their lives? The point is… Continue reading


For Taipei exile and others……………

1 December 2009 17:04

I’m writing about the Swiss referendum for the magazine this week. In lieu of a blog on the same issue I thought I’d direct you to a different blog which… Continue reading


The Afghan Conundrum

1 December 2009 16:20

Like Yglesias, I guess one ought to have an official "What I Think About Obama’s Escalation in Afghanistan post". And the truth is that I don’t know. Don’t know whether… Continue reading


You couldn’t make it up

1 December 2009 12:19

So, here we are then. Another one of life’s harmless little pleasures outlawed by Brown’s nanny state. What will they ban next? You’d think the police would have better things… Continue reading


Why are the Tories so Miserable?

1 December 2009 2:33

My excellent chum Iain Martin observes that seven of the ten most recent polls have put the Tories below the "magic figure" of 40% support. The latest ComRes survey has… Continue reading


What if the Lib Dems are right?

1 December 2009 1:38

James is right to say that the Lib Dems’ commitment to increase the tax-free personal allowance to £10,000 trumps any obvious campaigning soundbite the Tories can offer. Isn’t that a… Continue reading


Libertarians vs Tories

1 December 2009 0:46

This, from E.D Kain at the League of Ordinary Gentlemen is a good paragraph: Conservatism is not only about limited government, and where it seeks to limit government it does… Continue reading


Iraq Inquiry Digest

30 November 2009 21:34

The Chilcot Inquiry is already proving a hundred times more interesting than anyone expected. My only worry is that people already view 2003 as ancient history. There is a tendency… Continue reading


Marketing Tiger Woods

30 November 2009 20:25

An unfortunately timed Accenture advertisement in the Wall Street Journal today: [Thanks to JNS for the heads-up and MF for the image]


The American Way of Empire

30 November 2009 18:29

Actually, the existence of any such imperial ambitions is generally denied, even though the US has been an expansionist power almost since its inception. The inter-war years of "isolationism" are… Continue reading


Red Toryism by Merle Haggard

30 November 2009 15:03

Iain Martin has an excellent post on Philip Blond and his Red Tory project. But it occurs to me that Mr Blond could have more concisely explained Red Toryism if… Continue reading


Hugo, Jim and the rest………………….

30 November 2009 11:29

There is a surfeit of arrogance and certitude on both sides, of course. My own position is that I have little doubt that the climate is changing and most of… Continue reading


An Open Letter to Alex Salmond

30 November 2009 0:14

Dear Alex, Happy St Andrew’s Day! Today you publish your mildly-awaited plans for a referendum on Scottish Independence. Alas, unless the Liberal Democrats can be persuaded to endorse the bill,… Continue reading


Plucky Little Balkans

29 November 2009 17:20

Many thanks to Christopher Snowden for alerting me to this little piece by Euan Ferguson in the Observer today. It begins with this photograph: Photo: Nikola Solic/Reuters As Euan says,… Continue reading


Autumn Rugby Round-Up

29 November 2009 16:21

So, now that the autumn internationals have been completed, we can assess who’s best advanced their preparations for the Six Nations this spring and, longer-term, the next World Cup which,… Continue reading

1 Comment

Saturday Morning Country: Merle Haggard

28 November 2009 1:45

At this time of year and with Christmas all but upon us Mr Haggard offers a rare but necessary perspective on all this Christmas Cheer. If we make it through… Continue reading