Pigs at the Trough?

2 June 2009 13:31

Now that the Tories have reopened their candidate selection process, there are going to be plenty of candidates wondering how best to take advantage of their opponents’ extravagant expense claims.… Continue reading


Ricky Jay & Susan Boyle

2 June 2009 11:41

Ricky Jay has an op-ed in today’s NYT on the Susan Boyle phenomenon. It’s interesting – there may not be many people alive who know more about the history of… Continue reading


Why is Kevin Pietersen Playing in the Twenty20 World Cup?

2 June 2009 4:56

Every so often someone at Lords remembers to trot out the line that Test Cricket is and must remain the pinnacle of the game; every time this happens something pops… Continue reading


Obama’s Human Rights and Democracy Hypocrisy

2 June 2009 4:26

How committed is Obama to human rights? Not very, it seems. Perhaps his speech in Cairo on Thursday will change one’s view of this, but the new President must be… Continue reading


Who leads Iran?

2 June 2009 0:12

Marty Peretz makes a sensible point: A story by Parisa Hafezi at Reuters knocks the wind out of the expectation that, if Dr. A’jad loses his re-election campaign, Iran’s nuclear… Continue reading


Is Anyone Thinking Strategically?

1 June 2009 23:27

The MPs’ expenses scandal has been a devastating distracttion. It has been an essential process. But it is a distraction all the same. How many times have commentators now said the country… Continue reading


Oprah: The Queen of Snake-Oil

1 June 2009 23:20

Michael Kinsley has a very entertaining take-down of the "new" Newsweek in this week’s edition of the New Republic*. However, I doubt the "old" Newsweek would have dared publish this… Continue reading


How to deal with a problem like North Korea?

1 June 2009 17:33

As Yglesias notes, it’s uncanny how too many conservative pundits continue to believe that every problem is a nail and the only tool the United States possesses is a hammer.… Continue reading


Gordon Brown’s Presbyterian Conscience

1 June 2009 12:21

When a politician tries to make a virtue out of the fact that he was brought up in a household in which lying was frowned upon then, verily, you know… Continue reading


Saturday Morning Country: Nothing Ain’t Worth Nothing But It’s Free…

30 May 2009 1:40

As a couple of commenters noted I was shamefully remiss in forgetting to post some quality country music last Saturday. My excuse? I was en route to the Heineken Cup… Continue reading


Can Republicans win without Hispanic votes?

29 May 2009 23:59

This is one of the Big Questions. Nate Silver was one of the biggest winners in last year’s election and one is wary of suggesting that he’s got this question… Continue reading


Tory Cuts and British Defence Policy

29 May 2009 18:24

More riffing on Nelson! Fraser, that is. His Telegraph article and subsequent Coffee House post on future spending cuts argue that the Tories are, defensively, planning to leave the NHS… Continue reading


The BNP is a British Sinn Fein

29 May 2009 0:23

Fraser’s piece on the BNP is well worth your time. Parts of it were eerily familiar as I had the feeling that I’d been down this road before. That’s because… Continue reading


Lance Armstrong and the Giro: Part 2

28 May 2009 23:31

I’ll give Lance Armstrong’s fans this: they know how to count to seven. Beyond that, however, they’re rather like members of a cult who refuse to accept that there could… Continue reading


Department of Denial

28 May 2009 21:44

Responding to today’s Telegraph story which quotes Major-General Antonio Taguba as saying that the unreleased interrogation photos show "torture, abuse, rape and every indecency" White House spokesman Robert Gibbs had… Continue reading


Where the Sisters Have No Mercy and the Brothers No Christianity

28 May 2009 17:36

Carol Sarler may be correct to argue, as she does in this week’s edition of the magazine, that we have an unhealthy fascination with sex crimes that is both prurient… Continue reading


More Drug Law Madness

28 May 2009 14:14

It is the very ordinariness of this case that makes it worth mentioning. From this week’s edition of our local paper, the Southern Reporter: Unhappy with conventional treatments, Jean Sherlow… Continue reading


Tour de France: Prison Edition

27 May 2009 15:36

The Giro d’Italia isn’t the only cycling story around right now. Not by a long shot! Consider this: Close to 200 prisoners will cycle around France next month, watched by… Continue reading


Champions League Final

27 May 2009 13:56

Like any sensible person, I shall be supporting Barcelona this evening, even if that does also require one to endorse the insufferable Thierry Henry. Nonetheless, give me wee Lionel Messi… Continue reading


Cuba: The Last Refuge of Excuse-Making Scoundrels

27 May 2009 2:01

I suppose one ought not to be surprised that there remain some folk for whom the Cuban revolutionaries remain unblemished heroes. Equally, there is, alas, no great reason to be… Continue reading


Nancy Pelosi is, er, Pussy Galore?

26 May 2009 14:54

Has anyone at the Republican National Committee actually watched Goldfinger? Apparently not. My friend Garance Franke-Ruta picked up on a web video posted on Youtube by the RNC which compared… Continue reading


Obama’s Supreme Court

26 May 2009 14:24

I have no idea whether Sonia Sotomayor is qualified to sit on the United States Supreme Court. But, unlike Harriet Miers, she’s not obviously unqualified. Having been appointed to the… Continue reading


The Dangers of Brilliance

26 May 2009 14:08

Given the nature of his own work there was something delightfully, shall we say, mischievous about David Brooks’ review of Simon Schama’s (absurdly titled) The American Future: A History. The… Continue reading


The Telegraph’s Secret Agenda!

26 May 2009 11:57

Nadine Dorries is at the end of her tether: Does the DT [Daily Telegraph] have an agenda other than the desire to perform a public service? Why would they expose… Continue reading


Whitsun Break

23 May 2009 9:41

I’l be taking a break from blogging over the next week. Back at the beginning of June.