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Home 1998 April

Wednesday, 8 April 1998

  • The Government may know your secrets, but who told them?
    Thursday, 9 April 1998

    It was common knowledge in my family that the phone was tapped. A friend who was a local GP, and like my Mum and Dad a member of the local branch of the Communist Party, had been told as much by a terminally ill Post Office employee. I used to wonder...

  • The paedophile that haunts our imagination
    Thursday, 9 April 1998

    The anger itself is natural, when there are sexual predators who kill on the loose, and when the law has been unable to keep them locked up. But there are very few such sex-murderers and no evidence that paedophilia is more prevalent now than before....

  • Letter: Foggy logic
    Thursday, 9 April 1998

    DAVID W McCRIRICK Weymouth, Dorset

  • Letter: Tate fund-raiser
    Thursday, 9 April 1998

    Surely, in these troubled times we should surely be thankful for any artist without descending into petty ontological speculation. Indeed, so impressed was I by Boyd's detective work that I am applying to the National Lottery for funds to set up a ne...

  • Letter: Bonzo Britannia
    Thursday, 9 April 1998

    PETER RUSSELL Glasgow

  • Leading Article: Blair's foot-washing Maundy photo-op
    Thursday, 9 April 1998

    The ceremony recalls the Last Supper when, according to St John, Jesus rose from the table, laid aside his garments, girded himself with a towel and proceeded to wash the feet of his disciples. Afterwards he gave them a command, or mandatum (hence Ma...

  • Letter: The elusive civil servant
    Thursday, 9 April 1998

    In his analysis of the reasons for bad civil service advice, he blamed the anonymity of that advice and the continual shifting of civil servants from one department to another. It is always the department's advice. The individual civil servant respon...

  • Thoroughly modern etiquette from one-who-knows-where-you-are
    Thursday, 9 April 1998

    From time to time, I hope to bring an update on these forms of address, and today I am going to make a start with those ones that seem to give readers the most concern. To a bishop Begin your letter: Dear Sir/Madam, End your letter: Yours in doubt an...

  • Letter: Education spending
    Thursday, 9 April 1998

    The facts are as follows. Total Department for Education and Employment cash plans for 1998-99 (after allowing for the debt sale and the transfer to local government of funds for nursery education) represent a cash increase of 6 per cent over 1997-98...

  • Leading Article: Is big best for British business?
    Thursday, 9 April 1998

    Well, this is certainly not the time or the place to predict a stock market crash. The last time commentators started speculating on this, last autumn, around the 10th anniversary of the 1987 crash, the markets did indeed see a nasty "correction". Bu...

  • Letter: Tests for modified food
    Thursday, 9 April 1998

    CSL Food Science Laboratory launched such a test last October at a meeting of food industry, laboratory and biotechnology companies that was attended by, amongst others, Nuclyx. Since its launch, this service has already been used by a number of inte...

  • Letter: The future of defence
    Thursday, 9 April 1998

    I can reassure him that rather than being overlooked, as he feared, the starting point for the review was indeed a thorough forward-looking reassessment of our foreign policy and security objectives. The Foreign and Commonwealth Office and Ministry o...

  • Hitler's children - the spawn of the twentieth century
    Thursday, 9 April 1998

    But release from guilt - and the realisation that our endless fascination with Hitler and the war he unleashed is entirely justified - came quickly, from the most unexpected quarter, Time magazine. Driven by that eternal American obsession with lists...

  • Letter: Involuntary euthanasia
    Thursday, 9 April 1998

    In Holland, where euthanasia is part of accepted medical practice, there have been hundreds of cases of involuntary euthanasia. Indeed the Remmelink Commission estimated that three people per day were killed without consent in Holland in 1990. HUGH J...

  • Letter: Tests for modified food
    Thursday, 9 April 1998

    What is needed now is not more laboratory tricks, but real political action, like that of Iceland Foods in declaring their own-label products non-GM. Other retailers and companies would do well to follow their lead. And, yes, I do mean political acti...

  • It's only common sense - hitting children is wrong
    Wednesday, 8 April 1998

    Poor Roger Hately. He lost his rag when called to a school to investigate a burglary. A 12-year-old boy showing off in front of his mates called him "a slaphead" and started making grunting noises. Hately "tried to grab the boy ... he made contact wi...

  • Foreign policy will determine military goals
    Wednesday, 8 April 1998

    You will soon need to publish the Government's Strategic Defence Review. Some of the main and difficult decisions will by now have been taken. However, how these decisions are presented can have a significant impact on the reaction of the armed servi...

  • Go away, ye merchants of gloom, your wares are not needed here
    Wednesday, 8 April 1998

    Pessimistic punditry is just about the biggest growth industry around. Publishers are pouring out books with titles like The Global Trap and False Dawn, consultants are cashing in on the Year 2000 conference circuit and even insolvency practitioners,...

  • Letter: Fusty old church is full
    Wednesday, 8 April 1998

    IT APPEARS that the religious leaders looking "to rid the church of a fusty, old-fashioned image" ("Churches join forces to reverse decline in worship", 7 April) did not read the article you printed some weeks ago ("Incense, icons and faith", 19 Marc...

  • Letter: Government of Scotland
    Wednesday, 8 April 1998

    DONALD MACINTYRE ("How can Labour stop Scotland slipping out of the British state?", 7 April) suggests that Paddy Ashdown might refuse to allow Scottish Liberal Democrats to make common cause with the SNP. I have to say of Don Macintyre what Malcolm ...

  • Letter: Generous smokers
    Wednesday, 8 April 1998

    I WAS surprised to read the coverage ("Tobacco firms 'telling lies' on low-tar safety", 1 April) of the ASH and Imperial Cancer Research Fund report on low-tar cigarettes. The testing used to produce the numbers on cigarette packs is from an internat...

  • Leading article: It's wise to wait for breast cancer drug
    Wednesday, 8 April 1998

    But the dramatic way in which the American National Cancer Institute handled the revelations of its research results - announcing interim, rather than complete findings, and declaring that it would be "unethical" not to offer the drug to women who we...

  • Letter: Millennium pen
    Wednesday, 8 April 1998

    TO unbug the Millennium, back to the quill pen, say I. Cheap to replace when they do split, far fewer clever human input errors, and total economy in costly and precious electrical energy. DAVID E WILLIAMS Evesham, Worcestershire

  • When the children won't play ball on children's television
    Wednesday, 8 April 1998

    She had got as far as the War Office where she had gone to ask for permission to go to the Crimea. "So why do you want to go to the Crimea, Miss Nightingale?", said the grand official, and Miss Nightingale said nothing because she had forgotten her l...

  • Leading article: Birt: the Ian Beale of broadcasting
    Wednesday, 8 April 1998

    First, diversity. Mr Murdoch puts in a strong claim: "the next generation will wonder at our obsession with the death of 'pluralism and diversity' when they are actually endemic in this brave new world of media". True, at first glance, the only thing...

  • Letter: BSE animal experiments
    Wednesday, 8 April 1998

    I AM writing as a person who contributed towards the research by Dr Steven Watley presented at the BSE inquiry last week, to pose a few questions about the Ministry of Agriculture Fisheries and Food's research into BSE. Dr Watley's research has given...

  • Letter: Lenient sentencing policy
    Wednesday, 8 April 1998

    A PAEDOPHILE guilty of murder has been released from prison having served only nine years of a 16-year sentence (report, 6 April). Why has the criminal justice system allowed, or even as a matter of policy planned for, this to happen? The principle o...

  • Letter: Dangerous biking
    Wednesday, 8 April 1998

    MOTORBIKES should be as noisy as possible (letters, 6 and 7 April); they are often so badly driven that the noise is useful in alerting the rest of us to dive for cover. On a recent journey into London by car, as rush-hour traffic was leaving the cit...

  • Letter: Generous smokers
    Wednesday, 8 April 1998

    SUZANNE MOORE is quite right to call smoking's bluff (Comment, 1 April). Of course it isn't rebellious. If unselfishness can be called social, smoking is the most social activity I know. Smokers pay huge taxes - typically pounds 500 a year for 40 yea...

  • Letter: BSE animal experiments
    Wednesday, 8 April 1998

    YOUR report ("Thousands of animals to be infected in BSE experiment", 4 April) uncovering a pounds 150m Ministry of Agriculture laboratory research programme into BSE, laid stress on the perceived threat to the research by animal rights protesters. I...

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