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Friday, 8 December 1995

  • LETTER: By Jupiter, there is no Planet X!
    Saturday, 9 December 1995

    Sir: These lines from Ptolemy (2nd century AD) came to light as I heard of the successful Jupiter drop: Mortal though I be, yea ephemeral, if but a moment I gaze up to the night's starry domain of heaven, Then no longer on earth I stand; I touch the ...

  • LETTER: By Jupiter, there is no Planet X!
    Saturday, 9 December 1995

    Sir: What a pity Tom Wilkie ended his otherwise excellent article on spacecraft that have gone to Jupiter and beyond (8 December) with a paragraph about a "tenth planet beyond the orbit of Pluto" that might have been written years ago. Few planetary ...

  • LETTER: Quality television direct from the West End
    Saturday, 9 December 1995

    Sir: David Lister's case (Section Two; "As not seen on TV", 6 December) for the making of television recordings of some of the best theatre productions in the British theatre is well argued. It should now be perfectly possible to negotiate rights for...

  • QUOTE UNQUOTE
    Saturday, 9 December 1995

    In Britain, if you are blonde and have blue eyes, then you are called a bimbo, which is rather unfortunate for 90 per cent of Scandinavians - Ulrika Jonsson, television personality, who is Swedish In their teenage years, when your average lad is out ...

  • No sign of panic down on the farm
    Saturday, 9 December 1995

    Mr Burtt is at once both an ordinary and an eminent figure in livestock farming. His 250-acre farm amid the wild beauty of Glaisdale in the North Yorkshire moors is "small to medium", as he puts it, on a par with hundreds of others around the country...

  • Stressed out? Here's some more bad news
    Saturday, 9 December 1995

    This study obliges us to place stress at the core of mainstream medicine as a cause of ill-health. And it begs the question that if stress really does cause disease, what can doctors do about it? Doctors do not like stress because it is difficult to ...

  • Nobel poet shaped by contradictions
    Saturday, 9 December 1995

    In an artistic life marked by an increasing volume of public celebration, culminating with his acceptance of the Nobel Prize for Literature tomorrow, Seamus Heaney has also tried to avoid subtle political commitments. He is not an unpolitical writer....

  • LEADING ARTICLE: The Queen of Hearts turns up trumps
    Saturday, 9 December 1995

    This is not the discreet, diplomatic, Windsor way of doing things. The closest the Queen has ever got to telling us how she feels about anything was when she reached for a Latin textbook. "Annus horribilis" is hardly language to stir the hearts of th...

  • LETTER: Let 100 currencies bloom
    Saturday, 9 December 1995

    Sir: One can sympathise with Andrew Marr's dream ("The secret that Blair and Major share", 5 December) of stirring up apathy about Europe. But he is unlikely to realise it. And that is probably just as well. Our politicians may agree with each other ...

  • A matter of fax
    Saturday, 9 December 1995

    And why? It's a strange tale. On Budget day, Ken Clarke announced that cars more than 25 years old would no longer be subject to road tax. Hooray, said vintage car enthusiasts. Whoopee, said the House of Commons Classic Car Club, which shot off faxes...

  • LETTER: In favour of a leghold trap ban
    Saturday, 9 December 1995

    Sir: I refer to the full-page advertisement in today's Independent placed by a coalition of animal welfare groups (7 December). It states that the European Commission has decided to propose a postponement of the implementation of the leghold trap ban...

  • LETTER: Snowbound with the Swiss
    Saturday, 9 December 1995

    Sir: If we have to sell British Rail, and bearing in mind the disruption at the first fall of snow, let's sell to the Swiss. Yours faithfully, Neville Conder London, SW7 7 December

  • LETTER: Labour fails French strikers
    Saturday, 9 December 1995

    Sir: As someone who has just returned from France, I was interested to read Tony Barber's perceptive analysis of the current industrial unrest there and its significance for the future of Economic and Monetary Union (EMU) ("The battle for Europe's fu...

  • LETTER: Sheep's brains on the menu
    Saturday, 9 December 1995

    Sir: Today, in your letters column, Dr H. C. Grant says that because sheep brains were removed from the carcasses they did not enter the human food chain and so posed no risk. They were removed and sold as a common food to be prepared in a variety of...

  • LETTER: Quality television direct from the West End
    Saturday, 9 December 1995

    Sir: Channel 4 has over the last few years commissioned a number of stage plays for the screen (6 December), including Alan Bennett's Madness of George III, Ariel Dorfman's Death and the Maiden, David Mamet's Oleanna, Jonathan Harvey's Beautiful Thin...

  • LETTER: Can't afford a church wedding
    Saturday, 9 December 1995

    Sir: I have been reading reports from the General Synod of the Church or England regarding marriage and deploring the drop in the number of church marriages, but nowhere have I seen any reference to the high cost of getting married in a state church ...

  • LETTER: In the vernacular
    Saturday, 9 December 1995

    Sir: In response to R. V. Wells (letter, 6 December), the Roman church actively sponsored Latin translations of the "original" Hebrew scriptures in the 16th century, as the translation of Santes Pagninus and the Alcala and Complutensian Polyglot Bibl...

  • LETTER: The benefits of a good consultant
    Saturday, 9 December 1995

    Sir: In Chris Blackhurst's piece ("Ministers fail to justify consultants' fees of pounds 95m", 4 December) health minister Tom Sackville is reported as saying that consultants were used to assist in improving efficiency, but that "it is not possible ...

  • LETTER: Some facts about the tribunal that condemned Saro-Wiwa
    Friday, 8 December 1995

    Sir: The Independent of 6 December published a lengthy advertisement by the Nigerian High Commission justifying the conviction by a Civil Disturbances Special Tribunal of Ken Saro-Wiwa and eight others. It made the remarkable claim that the tribunal ...

  • LETTER: Church disclosure
    Friday, 8 December 1995

    Sir: As the person responsible for the release of the Nine O'clock Service story to the press - tabloid and respectable - I have to say that I found Bryan Appleyard's article ("A church in psychedelic chaos", 28 November) ill-informed and unfair. He ...

  • LETTER: Moving furniture won't stop theft
    Friday, 8 December 1995

    Sir: Although crime figures have spiralled upwards over the last decade, government policy relating to the prosecution authorities is now set to describe a full circle ("Big boost for police in CPS shake-up", 5 December). In 1985, prosecuting offende...

  • Engr. Inu, do you take me for a fool?
    Friday, 8 December 1995

    I should not divulge the contents of a letter sent to me in confidence, I know, but confidence is the name of this Nigerian's game, confidence trickery, and I reckon it is time you were told. The letter purports to come from "Engr. Inu Mustapha". Eng...

  • LETTER: Playwrights' capital work
    Friday, 8 December 1995

    Sir: David Lister asks ("Lottery cash may fund new plays", 5 December) why shouldn't playwrights be left to the dictates of the marketplace? The system of state arts investment (I refuse to call it subsidy) in this country operates to provide resourc...

  • LETTER: Required reading
    Friday, 8 December 1995

    Sir: One gets used to anti-German digs in the British press. A case in point is the report about the sale of the manuscript of Remarque's All Quiet on the Western Front ("Epic manuscript sold for pounds 276,000", 2 December). You claim that Remarque ...

  • Imagine - the elder brother I never knew
    Friday, 8 December 1995

    Believe me, everyone else had met one of the Beatles by 1963. The whole of the sixth form of my grammar school seemed to spend their weekends at parties popping pills in the presence of John, Paul, George or Ringo. Especially George, for boy George, ...

  • Solitary words that live on baleful tenterhooks, alack
    Friday, 8 December 1995

    A: That's right. Q: Would you like to? A: I'm sorry? Q: Would you like to tell us something about the work of the Single Word Protection Society? A: Certainly. Our aim is to stand up for those words in the English language that have been relegated to...

  • LETTER: Some facts about the tribunal that condemned Saro-Wiwa
    Friday, 8 December 1995

    Sir: The attempt by the Nigeria High Commission to set the record straight for the Federal Government of Nigeria, in a half-page advertisement in your newspaper, is a despicable travesty of democracy. Nigeria, headed by Sani Abacha, has not only grav...

  • LETTER: Dirty war fought on British soil
    Friday, 8 December 1995

    Sir: I would like to applaud Robert Fisk for his thorough reporting and analysis of the situation in Egypt (reports, 6 December). What troubles me, as a British citizen, is not only the barbarity of President Mubarak's regime, but that the Egyptian g...

  • LEADING ARTICLE: What if EMU can't fly?
    Friday, 8 December 1995

    What would this mean? The European Commission believes it would be a disaster, and many on the Continent share that view. They argue that a failure to move ahead with monetary union in 1999 would deal a body-blow to the whole European project. Their ...

  • LEADING ARTICLE: Seeking the secrets of the universe
    Friday, 8 December 1995

    Members of the US Congress are asking this question with an eye on the vast budget deficit and the politically sensitive squeeze on the nation's welfare spending. After all, why pay billions gazing into outer space when back on planet Earth there are...

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