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Nigel Mills goes cold turkey on crushing candy

8 December 2014 15:05
Candy Crush. Image: Getty.

When the Sun found Nigel Mills had spent most of a select committee session playing Candy Crush on his iPad, the MP’s first response was to say he’d ‘try not… Continue reading

4 Comments

Top Tory rails against Osborne’s Stamp Duty reform

8 December 2014 11:43
Conservative MP Mark Field. Photo: BBC.

Tory MP Mark Field is not a happy bunny about Osborne’s Autumn Statement. Writing to members of his association, the MP for the Cities of London and Westminster has blasted… Continue reading

71 Comments

Another UN official who makes me more likely to vote Ukip

7 December 2014 22:49
United Nations Special Rapporteur on the human rights, Francois Crepeau attends a press conference in Doha on November 10, 2013. KARIM JAAFAR/AFP/Getty Images

The latest half-witted United Nations official to stick the boot into the United Kingdom is one Francois Crepeau, UN ‘Special Rapperteur’ (nope, sorry, don’t recognise the term), on the Rights… Continue reading

88 Comments

Why are the Elgin Marbles going to Russia? They belong to Greece

5 December 2014 10:59
Letters1

There can’t be a better spot in the whole of London than the British Museum, the crown jewel of the city’s cultural life and a fantastic tribute to the British… Continue reading

183 Comments

Tony Blair reaches out to Gove

4 December 2014 17:37
blair

Tony Blair has taken some time out from posing awkwardly with his wife in order to pen a piece for the New York Times. While he tries to avoid getting… Continue reading

87 Comments

Cardinal Pell: ‘hundreds of millions of euros’ were hidden away in the Vatican

3 December 2014 15:16
Illustration by Christian Adams, courtesy of the Catholic Herald

Cardinal George Pell, the Australian prelate charged by Pope Francis with cleaning up the Vatican’s murky finances, has decided to speak bluntly about the appalling corrupt mess he found when he started work… Continue reading

50 Comments

Autumn Statement Tricks: Osborne confounds the betting market

3 December 2014 13:01
What colour is this tie?

Ignore the numbers, the spin and the bleak borrowing – there is only one question that needs answering. What colour is the Chancellor’s tie? Ladbrokes were offering bets on the… Continue reading

4 Comments

Death of a Cricketer: Phillip Hughes 1988-2014

3 December 2014 11:53
Michael Clarke speaking at the funeral of Philip Hughes in Macksville, New South Wales today.

If sport is a quest for the epic it is also, at the highest echelons, a tilt at immortality. Phillip Hughes has achieved that in the most unconscionable fashion. He… Continue reading

13 Comments

Who cares that Liz Lochhead has joined the SNP?

2 December 2014 15:11
Members Of The Royal Family Attend The Commonwealth Day Of Observance At Westminster Abbey

Is it acceptable for writers to sport their political allegiances publicly? In more sensible times you’d hardly need to consider the question since its answer would ordinarily be so bleedin’… Continue reading

33 Comments

Surgical league tables: no, thank you

2 December 2014 9:50
cardiac surgery

After the Bristol Heart Scandal in the 1990’s, the speciality of cardiac surgery rose to the occasion, leading the way in publishing individual surgeon’s mortality figures and self-audit, which made… Continue reading

5 Comments

Tory MPs have new nickname for Carswell and Reckless

2 December 2014 9:33
unnamed-13

There is no love lost between UKIP defectors Douglas Carswell and Mark Reckless and their old Tory colleagues. Catty Conservative MPs have for some reason nicknamed the Ukip twosome ‘Popeye… Continue reading

188 Comments

An art award that actually rewards talent

1 December 2014 14:11
Doldrum, (Video: Le Clash), Anri Sala. Installation at Gemeentemuseum for 'The Vincent Awards 2014'. Photo: Daniel Nicolas

Before I was asked to go out and cover it, I’d never heard of the Vincent Award for contemporary art. It’s a big deal in the Dutch art world, apparently,… Continue reading

1 Comment

A Putinesque world of cronyism and fear: life in BBC News

30 November 2014 16:21
Investigation In Jimmy Savile Allegations Continues

I’ve a piece in the current issue of Standpoint  on the disastrous rule of James Harding as the BBC’s Head of News. He was a former editor of the Times,… Continue reading

116 Comments

Spectator competition: unlikely aphrodisiacs (plus: New Year haikus)

29 November 2014 9:30
Hong Kong Customs Seize Endangered Species Cargo

It was ‘In Praise of Cocoa — Cupid’s Nightcap’ by that legend of the comping world Stanley J. Sharpless that gave me the idea for the most recent challenge, to… Continue reading

0 Comments

Hugo Chavez – the ballet

28 November 2014 17:12
The late Comandante, Hugo Chavez. Photograph: Reuters

Here’s something to watch next time you’re visiting Venezuela, if you can avoid getting murdered while you’re there – a ballet based on the life of the glorious late president… Continue reading

12 Comments

Forget genre: P.D. James wrote novels that are worth reading and re-reading

28 November 2014 13:22
p-d-james

P.D. James was the Queen Mother of crime fiction. Her career as a writer stretched over half a century, and her death at the age of 94 deprives the country… Continue reading

10 Comments

Tories give Mark Reckless ‘worst office in Parliament’

28 November 2014 11:19
(Photo: Rob Stothard/Getty)

Earlier this year Zac Goldsmith complained that he had been given ‘the worst office of any MP in Parliament’ as punishment for his disparaging remarks about the coalition. Now word… Continue reading

174 Comments

The Turner Prize shortlist is the worst in its history. Who should have won the award? Nobody

27 November 2014 17:23
turnerprizebanner

What were you thinking? What? What? What? This is the question I’d ask the people who selected the artists for this year’s Turner Prize. The first time I visited, I… Continue reading

25 Comments

Theresa May pulls out all the stops at the Spectator Parliamentarian awards

27 November 2014 17:08
Theresa May and Emily Thornberry. Photo: Alan Davidson.

If ever there was a tell-tale sign of who won the Great War between the Speaker and the Clerk of the Commons, it was today’s Spectator Parliamentarian of the Year… Continue reading

80 Comments

Is theatre more left wing than other art forms? Yes – and so it should be

27 November 2014 17:07
rwd12-theatre-uncut-1-059-lst113531

A couple of nights ago a question arose in our post-show discussion. It is a question I am familiar with. I run Theatre Uncut. We commission writers to create short… Continue reading

37 Comments

‘Painting is total idiocy’ says Gerhard Richter – and he has some new paintings to prove it

27 November 2014 16:33
Gerhard Richter's '920-4 STRIP', 2011, now showing at the new Marian Goodman Gallery in London

Gerhard Richter has got a website. This is odd in itself – artists only usually have websites when they are young and not represented by a commercial gallery. They then… Continue reading

0 Comments

P.D. James (1920 – 2014) on Jane Austen and the joys of great-grandparenting

27 November 2014 13:57
p-d-james

P.D. James died today at the age of 94. She was a great friend of The Spectator. Here is her diary from 27 January 2010: Our protracted family Christmas with my… Continue reading

3 Comments

Want to stay warm this winter? Then get naked, wear mittens and tuck into a curry

27 November 2014 11:22
mug

Brrr, getting chilly out there, isn’t it? Here are some proven – and perhaps surprising – ways to keep warm and cosy in cold weather: Sip a hot drink There’s… Continue reading

9 Comments

Tristram Hunt is right: private schools do need to do more for the state sector

27 November 2014 10:35
(Photo: Christopher Furlong/Getty)

Please can we give Tristram Hunt a break? I’m right behind him when it comes to getting private schools to share their largesse with the state sector, and I mean,… Continue reading

63 Comments

Apollo Awards 2014: Digital Innovation of the Year

26 November 2014 18:36
Tate Britain robot viewing art After Dark project. Photograph: Alexey Moskvin/Tate Britain/PA

This article first appeared in Apollo magazine Apollo’s new Digital Innovation of the Year award commends organisations harnessing digital technology to advance access to, or knowledge of art. The winner will be chosen… Continue reading

1 Comment