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Wednesday, 1 April 1998

  • Letter: The strong pound
    Thursday, 2 April 1998

    The Labour governments of the Sixties and Seventies turned huge payments deficits into surpluses by encouraging investment in manufacturing. It is open to the present government to do the same. It can be done the hard way by using fiscal policy inste...

  • Letter: Millennium bug
    Thursday, 2 April 1998

    I was world-wide leader of Year 2000 services for Deloitte Consulting for 18 months to December 1997. In my experience, 75 per cent of all business IT systems need to be changed to avoid Year 2000 problems. About 50 per cent of departmental systems (...

  • Letter: Too many mayors
    Thursday, 2 April 1998

    JIM TRIMMER Isleworth, Middlesex

  • Letter: The strong pound
    Thursday, 2 April 1998

    High interest rates keep inflation down by discouraging borrowing, but the people they discourage most are business people who calculate the cost of credit. For retail customers the costs of credit are often disguised in the price, and people are mor...

  • Letter: Lords of misrule
    Thursday, 2 April 1998

    DAVID BARRON London SW15

  • A heart-warming story from the golden age of irritating interruptions
    Thursday, 2 April 1998

    A reader writes: Why don't you just tell us the story and let us make up our own mind about all that? Well, perhaps I will, at that. The story I am about to relate concerns a man called Martin Trapp, who was an expert on showbiz history. You know how...

  • Letter: Vaccine risk
    Thursday, 2 April 1998

    Sir Kenneth Calman is reported to have ruled out making the three vaccines available separately for those parents who would prefer that method of treatment. Yet separate-dose vaccination would in time provide a control group against which the present...

  • Tony has some little lambs, but they never ever bleat
    Thursday, 2 April 1998

    Since they were elected last May, I have watched New Labour backbenchers - people I know to be lively, intelligent and irreverent in private - turn into enfeebled drones. Tony Blair used to urge his supporters to think the unthinkable. Once in Parlia...

  • Letter: 'Safer' cigarettes
    Thursday, 2 April 1998

    We refused to commit ourselves to any forecast of the effects of reduction in either tar or nicotine content, pointing out that this could be discovered only by observation, over a number of years, of the incidence of smoking- related diseases in smo...

  • China will not follow Russia down the stony path of political reform
    Thursday, 2 April 1998

    Now misty mornings in Greenwich, when palaces float on air and the sky and the river become one, have a way of playing tricks with the memory. As I watched Zhu yesterday, mine went back to 1984, when an earlier reforming Communist upon whom great hop...

  • Leading article: Injustice seen to be done to Josie
    Thursday, 2 April 1998

    So it isn't just mild puzzlement that greets the refusal of the Criminal Injuries Compensation Board to augment the puny annual sum paid Josie Russell as the surviving victim of that murderous attack which killed her mother and sister. We feel angry ...

  • Leading article: Work matters, hours don't
    Thursday, 2 April 1998

    We wouldn't be so sure about the last bit. Of course no one should be intimidated or forced to work for excessively long days against their wishes. Transport workers and hospital doctors should be prevented from damaging our health as well as their o...

  • The Duchess of York, the Squatters of Dulwich and Kenneth Branagh
    Thursday, 2 April 1998

    At Sky's Isleworth HQ, they've been auditioning Madges for the show. A "Madge" is the generic name (deriving from Dame Edna's mournful companion and ex-bridesmaid) for those people on American talk shows whose sad function is to sit with the host and...

  • Letter: The strong pound
    Thursday, 2 April 1998

    His answer would cause smiles in the finance ministries of Europe, the United States or even Switzerland, where a mix of measures have been used by policy-makers to determine currency values. If Gavyn Davies is right (column, 30 March) and the Bank o...

  • On the PM's spokesman: Alastair Campbell - Blair's virtuous thug and now a key Tory target
    Wednesday, 1 April 1998

    The Prime Minister himself will be unworried. He knows that Campbell is blamed for his own success. Like the others, he is a target for people who haven't yet worked out how to go for Blair himself.Blair knows too that in an era of media-driven polit...

  • Letter: We need natural food
    Wednesday, 1 April 1998

    The shelf-life of a pesticide is around 10 years: that's how long it takes for resistance to develop in the pests it is supposed to kill. In 10 years' time, we will be witnessing a doubling of genetic engineering in our food crops to cope with the no...

  • Letter: We need natural food
    Wednesday, 1 April 1998

    However, in making a comparison with this area of concern and the health risks associated with eating meat, she misses a central point. A diet high in fresh fruit and vegetables has enormous health benefits, reducing the incidence of a whole range of...

  • Letter: Poplar planning
    Wednesday, 1 April 1998

    MARY A LANGRIDGE (A sufferer) Inverness

  • Letter: Home for historic library
    Wednesday, 1 April 1998

    In the splendours of the King's Library room at Bloomsbury, the exhibitions and museum surroundings made it almost a matter of background; now it is seen as fully part of the British Library, and gives new character to that library. There are regrets...

  • Things that go crash in the night of 31 December 1999
    Wednesday, 1 April 1998

    Do you know why Tony Blair has suddenly become so excited about the Millennium Bug? Dr Pinkerton writes: Yes. Because he is suffering from the Millennium Bug Bug. What is the Millennium Bug Bug? Dr Pinkerton writes: It is the state of excitement cont...

  • Letter: ITC regulations
    Wednesday, 1 April 1998

    BSkyB has been licensed by the ITC since January 1991 and is subject to the same codes as the terrestrial commercial broadcasters. Although BSkyB uses the Luxembourg-based Astra satellite, the Broadcasting Act 1990 requires that every satellite opera...

  • Letter: Promoting adoption
    Wednesday, 1 April 1998

    Campaigning vigorously for the introduction of comprehensive new adoption legislation, currently shelved by the Government, which would place the child's welfare as the paramount consideration in court decisions on freeing children for adoption. Orga...

  • Letter: Who pays the Bug bill?
    Wednesday, 1 April 1998

    It will be up to us to recognise genuine trickery and know who to complain to. Perhaps we could address all disputed cases to an official Millennium Ombudsman? MICHAEL D MITCHELL Flackwell Heath, Buckinghamshire

  • The rights of smokers: I've seen the future and it makes me smoke
    Wednesday, 1 April 1998

    Even now, though, my habit is not properly formed. I can go for weeks without a cigarette then smoke millions in a night. My friend Deborah always complains: "You are the most crap smoker I know". But I maintain that though I am not a particularly co...

  • On the rise and rise of sterling: When a high pound is inevitable, rela x and enjoy
    Wednesday, 1 April 1998

    The obvious reply to the first question is that for some parts of the economy - manufacturing exporters in particular - the strong pound is making life very tough. But this undoubted pressure has not stopped a German company paying over the odds for ...

  • Letter: Battle for green power
    Wednesday, 1 April 1998

    The Government wants to see that new and strong drive extended to the whole of Europe. That is why we have welcomed the Commission's White Paper, not opposed it as you claim ("Britain fights shy of EU plans for 'green' power", 23 March). We support t...

  • Leading Article: A great health project - despite the spin
    Wednesday, 1 April 1998

    Why? Because if you plot mortality, illness and disability the map tends to look the same as if you had coloured it for educational under-achievement, unemployment and the other indices of social exclusion. No wonder then that the first health action...

  • Leading Article: Role for Blair in the Middle East
    Wednesday, 1 April 1998

    Well, the United States may try to remove itself from the peace process but abdicating its wider role and responsibilities in the Middle East is not an option. The dilemmas of American policy will persist whether they are hosting talks or not. The Am...

  • Letter: Poplar planning
    Wednesday, 1 April 1998

    The developer, with the agreement of the local council, has agreed to replant trees elsewhere in the scheme and the trees, by the council's admission, only had a lifespan of another 20 years. These actions were agreed by the local authority as part o...

  • Letter: Who pays the Bug bill?
    Wednesday, 1 April 1998

    Am I alone then in being dismayed by what Tony Blair says (Comment, 30 March) about the Millennium Bug? Few things in life have been predictable for so long and with such a high degree of confidence as the following of year 1999 by year 2000. The Bug...

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