Ukip is a disaster for Labour. And then there’s Scotland…

10 October 2014 2:40
The SNP faithful. Image: Getty

Heywood and Middleton is a far worse result for Labour than for the Tories: we can agree on that, surely. Clacton is grim for Dave, of course, but I’m interested in… Continue reading


Grayson Perry has a pitiably phalloscopic perspective

9 October 2014 17:12

Calm down, dears: the strange coughing noise that was heard across Britain at around 8.30 yesterday morning was not the last gasp of an exhausted Mother Earth, nor was it… Continue reading


New party, same old politics for Douglas Carswell

9 October 2014 16:49
Douglas Carswell poses outside a polling station in Clacton-on-Sea (Photo: Ben Stansall, AFP)

Douglas Carswell is not like normal politicians; he’s authentic, genuine and in touch with real people. Or so the spin goes. So what was today’s by-election-day stunt at a polling… Continue reading


Why, if Cecilia Bartoli invites you to a party, you drop everything and go

9 October 2014 16:47
Disguised as a snow queen, Cecilia Bartoli launches her new album of forgotten Russian Baroque gems for Decca

Classical music has a few certainties: Götterdämmerung will always be that little bit longer than you remember, it will reliably rain if you pack a Glyndebourne picnic, and if Cecilia… Continue reading


The Sun's new campaign unites us against Islamic State and Islamophobia

9 October 2014 15:07
The Sun's cover on Wednesday

There are two campaigns doing the rounds on social media at the moment. One is the ludicrous #WakeUpCall, which asks that people take a photo of themselves in bed to… Continue reading


Winter is coming: do you really need a flu jab?

9 October 2014 11:27
A French cartoon circa 1800, published in 'The History of Inoculation and Vaccination for the Prevention and Treatment of Disease' (Image: Hulton Archive/Getty Images)

Winter is coming. You can tell because the days are drawing in, the light has that autumnal greyness, and the first bloody advent calendars are in the shops. Also, those… Continue reading


Get me out of here: London is the ‘childbirth capital of Europe’

9 October 2014 10:37
St Mary's Nursery College in Hampstead, April 1916 (Photo: Hulton Archive collection)

I see that London is now the ‘childbirth capital of Europe’, with the highest birth-rate on the entire continent. London, and the UK generally, previously enjoyed very low birth-rates, among… Continue reading


Seven foods that will help lower high blood pressure

9 October 2014 9:57
Video: an advert for avocadoes from Mexico TV

Consuming certain foods and drinks may help reduce one of the main risk factors for heart attack and stroke. Who knows, you could find you don’t need medication after all… Continue reading


Podcast special: Nick Clegg’s speech

8 October 2014 15:57
(Photo: Getty)

Nick Clegg delivered an aggressive speech this morning. But will it be enough to keep the Liberal Democrats in government? James Forsyth and Isabel Hardman discuss it in this View… Continue reading


The unbearable ingratitude of Kevin Pietersen

8 October 2014 13:32
Australia v England - Fourth Test: Day 2

Seven years ago Kevin Pietersen produced his first attempt at autobiography, Crossing the Boundary: The Early Years in My Cricketing Life. Atrociously written, it demonstrated no awareness of the world… Continue reading


A new low for NHS doublespeak

8 October 2014 13:20
(Photo: Topical Press Agency, Hulton Archive)

Orwell had it that political writing is ‘defence of the indefensible,’ and that ‘political language has to consist largely of euphemism, question-begging and sheer cloudy vagueness.’ For the latest example,… Continue reading


Will Self is wrong (again): online reading isn’t negligent reading

8 October 2014 12:39
Will Self publicising his latest novel Shark

Dim the lights, half-muffle the bells, replace your Hatchard’s bookmark with a strip of black crepe: the novel is dead. Again. Will Self broke the news in last Saturday’s Guardian,… Continue reading


Gleeful end to Lib Dem conference

8 October 2014 11:03

listen to ‘Podcast: Nick Clegg's speech’ on audioBoom Nick Clegg put in an appearance at Glee Club last night – albeit only in 2-dimensional form as a cardboard cutout –… Continue reading


Ten reasons to give up smoking

8 October 2014 10:52
(Photo: Joel Saget, AFP)

Earlier this year a research study revealed that people were more likely to quit smoking when confronted with the reasons why they should give up rather than being told how… Continue reading


In praise of #WorldBalletDay, Ivan Vasiliev and beautiful butts

8 October 2014 10:00
Sergei Polunin, the brilliant wildcard who deserted the Royal Ballet, is trying his luck in Hollywood. Image: Bryan Adams for Zoo Magazine

The Twittersphere never fails to surprise but it’s still hard to believe that last week #WorldBalletDay actually beat #HongKong and #Windows10 in the Twitter popularity stakes, on a day of… Continue reading


Hunting is history - so why would the BBC pretend otherwise?

7 October 2014 18:03
Hugh Cecil Lowther, the 5th Earl of Lonsdale, on a hunt in 1908 (Photo: Topical Press Agency/Getty Images)

Of all the BBC’s output, the Antiques Roadshow is one of the programmes least likely to cause a row. Alright, so you might disagree with the odd estimate, or argue that some… Continue reading


The Mayor of London is a wally: official

7 October 2014 15:51
(Image: Illustration from 'Where's Boris?' by Wan at Monkey Feet, Orion Books)

Far from it being Mr Steerpike’s prerogative to call a former editor of the Spectator a wally, he was rather amused by Boris’s latest escapade. Now we can all relive those classic… Continue reading


To statin or not to statin: a new test could help decide

7 October 2014 12:36
(Photo: Getty)

In the context of the ongoing and increasingly sterile debate about the pros and cons of statins to lower cholesterol, it is refreshing to hear something new. At a recent… Continue reading


Liechtenstein is utterly ridiculous – but that’s a big part of its appeal

7 October 2014 11:23

It’s official: Europe’s least visited country is unloved little Liechtenstein. Last year, a mere 60,000 tourists travelled to this absurd Alpine principality. For discerning Spectator readers, this is great news.… Continue reading


Why Bombay airport is the greatest 21st century building – and what we can learn from it

7 October 2014 11:10

‘If I had to say which was telling the truth about society, a speech by a minister of housing or the actual buildings put up in his time, I should… Continue reading


Lib Dems to announce mental health policy ‘red line’

7 October 2014 9:03
Norman Lamb

The Lib Dems haven’t really announced many enormous policies so far at their party conference. Yesterday’s speech from Vince Cable was more notable for its loyalty than it was for… Continue reading


Anglican bishop: Rome must protect Christians from Islamism

6 October 2014 21:48
Bishop Michael Nazir-Ali. Image: Getty

The Rt Rev Michael Nazir-Ali, the former Bishop of Rochester and an evangelical Christian, has delivered a remarkable message to a group of Catholics: ‘Bishop Nazir-Ali said that, with the… Continue reading


Nick Clegg takes a page from David Cameron's style guide

6 October 2014 17:30
Nick Clegg at the Lib Dem conference (Photo: Getty)

What exactly is going on with Nick Clegg’s conference get-up in Glasgow? As of this writing, the Deputy Prime Minister is wearing his third outfit of the day – casual jeans and a… Continue reading


The Foyle prize for poetry will restore your faith in arts awards

6 October 2014 15:10

Those of us who were never destined to be great young poets can probably remember the attempts. I kept my verses from when I was 14 in a pillowcase, which… Continue reading


The Pulse: Could red wine solve the world’s problems? Probably not…

6 October 2014 12:35

The Pulse is the Spectator’s answer to media nonsense about health. Tom Chivers looks past the headlines and all the conflicting advice about health in the news to find out… Continue reading