Thomas Sutcliffe

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Column One: Liberal Democrats lose their left wing on take-off

EARLY ARRIVALS at the Liberal Democrat conference in Harrogate were greeted by the sight of a bright yellow bubble car parked in prime position outside the conference hall. I have a vague memory that this appealing vehicle once featured in one of John Cleese's party political broadcasts for the Liberal Democrats, but even so it hardly seemed the most potent image for a party with a new driver at the wheel - cute, undoubtedly, but notoriously unstable when turning left or right.

Starck attack

You've got the lemon squeezer, and you love the loo brush. But just wait until you see the new hotel

Who wants to be a millionaire?

(The bloke on the left talking to Chris Tarrant does - and so do 19 million others)

At least he died with his boots on

He was the world's most popular cowboy, and he was blamed for more deaths than Billy the Kid. Now the Marlboro Man's famous billboard has been handed to those who want to tarnish his memory. Welcome to the world of `subvertisement'

Bill Gates wants to take over the word

ONE ASSUMES Microsoft's new dictionary of world English, the first entirely new English dictionary to be produced for some 30 years, will contain a definition for the phrase "killer app".

I don't believe it!

Tony Hancock would have been 75 today. Lauded as our greatest modern comedian, he stood for the hopes, expectations and pretensions of another era. But stone me, he would have been horrified by the pessimism of contemporary comic creations such as Victor Meldrew. So does he have any relevance in 1999?

First Night: BBC Television News - Corners are cut, but relaunch is good feng

A NEWS broadcast is rather sharply divided between two sets of ingredients - those you control, such as the set, running order, colour scheme and presentational flavour - and those you don't, namely the news itself.

Parliament: The Sketch: House enjoys rare breather from war

ALUN MICHAEL, taking what he must fervently hope were his last questions as Secretary of State for Wales, protested at one point about the "noise from the rabble opposite".

The Rock

It is one of the great icons of nature, the navel of a continent. It is also the centre of a global industry with its own hotels and airport. As geological features go, it has immense raw talent. And like all places of significance, Ayers Rock has a side no one wants to see
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