Escape from the Village

10 February 2009 20:17

Patrick McGoohan’s character never made it out of "the village". But I’m back in London after a six hour journey from Portmeirion, where the series was filmed and don’t seem to… Continue reading

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The Libertarian Tail

10 February 2009 19:14

This is the funniest line I’ve read today: Fifty per cent of the libertarians would agree to surgery giving them a prosthetic tail if they were paid enough to do… Continue reading


The Taking of Pelham One Two Three: Take Two

10 February 2009 15:27

Did you know that Tony Scott is filming a remake of Pelham One Two Three? If you think that sounds as though it must be a bad idea wait until… Continue reading


The Evening Standard on Israel

10 February 2009 12:30

A somewhat surprising headline in today’s Evening Standard: UPDATE: The headline has been changed to read "Israelis go to the polls in tight election race".


Iraqi Reality Check

10 February 2009 12:15

Right now, Afghanistan has become, if you will, the trendy war again. So much so, in fact, that it’s now Iraq that threatens to be the "forgotten war". Some of… Continue reading


The Perils of Weighing In

10 February 2009 11:49

Newsweek, facing declining sales and losing money and advertisers, has decided to move away from it’s wrestling match with TIME and try and be a gutsier, more opinionated, less-soporific enterprise.… Continue reading


Obama’s Idea of Bipartisanship

10 February 2009 10:47

Noam Scheiber addresses complaints that Obama is too conciliatory, too keen on the idea of bipartisanhip for bipartisanship’s sake: But complaints like this miss what’s been accomplished these last few… Continue reading


David Cameron’s Peculiar Unionism

10 February 2009 0:35

David Cameron’s op-ed in Scotland on Sunday this week was interesting. Not because of anything that Cameron said but because it appeared at all. It’s another small indication that the… Continue reading


Ecstasy and the Agony that is Jacqui Smith

9 February 2009 23:21

So the government is going to reject advice that Ecstasy be reclassified as a Class B drug. No surprise there. Got to adopt a tough stance on these matters, you… Continue reading


We are not a number … We are a free man

9 February 2009 19:54

Portmeirion is a surreal place at the best of times. But it gets even stranger when you see Clarence Mitchell, the spokesman for the McCanns taking a stroll through this… Continue reading


France’s Sorry Decline

9 February 2009 19:04

Photo: Keystone/Getty Images Once upon a time Citroen produced the DS – driven here by Lord Hailsham -  as revolutionary and beautiful a car as anyone has produced in the… Continue reading


Obama Still Extremely, Inconveniently Popular

9 February 2009 16:59

Melanie may think that the United States made a monumental blunder when it elected Barack Obama, but right now, it must be said, the Americans themselves seem pretty happy with… Continue reading


51 All Out

9 February 2009 15:30

Apologies for the radio silence. I’m still struggling to comes to terms with England’s Jamaican debacle. Matters were scarcely improved by an ill-considered trip to Murrayfield yesterday. Back to the… Continue reading


Talent spotting

9 February 2009 13:25

I hope to bring on new talent through this blog, so here’s Tara Hamilton-Miller’s drawing of the panel on social entrepreneurship: From left to right: Robert Phillips CEO of Edelman,… Continue reading


A note from Portmeirion

9 February 2009 11:36

I’m posting from the We are Names not Numbers symposium in North Wales and wondering what the founder-builder of Portmeirion, Clough Williams-Ellis, would make of this discussion of individualism in… Continue reading


Towards a modern New Deal

8 February 2009 22:04

Good to see Will Hutton writing about Roosevelt’s Works Progress Administration in today’s Observer. I am convinced that the government needs to start looking at some seriously imaginative work creation… Continue reading


The Opening Salvo

6 February 2009 22:57

What I am about to do makes me more nervous than any other piece of writing I have embarked on since my first forays into journalism in the late 1980s.… Continue reading


Dubious Proposition of the Day

6 February 2009 15:39

I have nothing to say on this ludicrous Jeremy Clarkson controversy, save to observe that this constant hoopla over whether BBC presenters have offended anyone is beyond wearisome. That said,… Continue reading


Special Relationship Fretting Special!

6 February 2009 13:28

Could there be anything more juvenile than Fleet Street’s unanimous view that Gordon Brown has been embarrassed by Tony Blair "beating" him to an audience with Barack Obama? Sure, it’s… Continue reading


Italian Jobs for British Workers

6 February 2009 12:25

I’m indebted to Justin at Chicken Yoghurt for alerting me to this article from La Repubblica: "PORTO VIRO (Rovigo) – ‘It’s a pity – È un peccato – I love… Continue reading


On not doing God

5 February 2009 19:09

From Tony Blair’s speech to the National Prayer Breakfast in Washington this morning: I believe restoring religious faith to its rightful place, as the guide to our world and its… Continue reading


The sky is falling

5 February 2009 17:43

Good grief. Gov. Timothy M. Kaine and House Speaker William J. Howell announced a deal Thursday morning to ban smoking in restaurants and bars in Virginia, a monumental decision in… Continue reading

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School Choice Q&A

5 February 2009 14:55

Fraser’s report from Michael Gove’s education reform shindig today is a must-read. I agree with him that this is the key point Gove, Cameron and the Tories need to make:… Continue reading


Did Bush keep America safe?

5 February 2009 14:35

Commenting on this post, Juliana raises a talking point one hears quite often. "Bush was not perfect by a long chalk but he kept America safe for his two terms.… Continue reading


Is Obama A Failure? (Already!)

5 February 2009 12:26

It’s not been an error-free start for the new President has it? But, really, even for the internet age, some of the reaction to the stumbles is laughably over the… Continue reading