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Sunday, 29 September 2002

  • Stranger than fiction
    Monday, 30 September 2002

    If Jeffrey Archer had written about a junior minister's affair with a whip whom the junior minister called B because he was the second man in her life, we would have sneered that it was hardly true to life. It is not so much the idea of ministeria...

  • Another unnecessary concession to US bullying
    Monday, 30 September 2002

    Foreign Ministers of the European Union seem likely to decide today that, rather than give in individually to US arm-twisting, they will agree to common terms of surrender.No, this is not about Iraq – not directly. Today's meeting is to decide w...

  • After a long sleep, Old Labour is back, half-right and dangerous
    Monday, 30 September 2002

    Old Labour has been in a state of suspended animation for the eight years of Tony Blair's leadership. The Conservatives failed to frighten the electorate before 1997 that the left was waiting in the wings to take over once stooge Blair had won the...

  • Our Man in Paris: The mystery of the Académie française
    Monday, 30 September 2002

    Although I mangle it every day, I adore the French language – the music of its vowels, its ability to convey abstract thought and elegant bitchiness. An article in a Paris newspaper last week started with the words: "Un distingué journaliste, cél...

  • The truth is the Tories are more interesting as a soap opera than a political party
    Monday, 30 September 2002

    Imagine it is the autumn of 1993. The summer had been overshadowed by the resignation of David Mellor after his affair with Antonia de Sancha. Hard on the heels of this scandal came the humiliation of the Major government in the débâcle surroundin...

  • Miranda McKearney: The power of reading together
    Monday, 30 September 2002

    The Reading Agency believes that readers, libraries' core business, should be at the centre of service, resource and partnership development. This is firm ground on which to build a 21st-century vision and funding for the service. What libraries ...

  • Lesbianism becomes fashionable
    Sunday, 29 September 2002

    At this time of year, one's thoughts naturally turn to lesbians. If cuddling up to one female body is an appealing thought as autumn rolls in, how much warmer would it be to curl up with two? And luckily the BBC is obliging us with Tipping the Velvet...

  • Gwyn Prins: The man is a tyrant whose time has come. The war must be fought
    Sunday, 29 September 2002

    Why did Tony Blair stake high on his weaker card? Yes, he genially mugged or outflanked his more obvious critics on Iraq last week, even if his celebrated dossier added little new to public knowledge about Saddam's weapons of mass destruction. Th...

  • Philip Hoare: Hell upon earth and other shocking impieties
    Sunday, 29 September 2002

    Out walking in the New Forest, my seven-year-old nephew Jacob turned to me and said: "Do you know what memento mori means?" Somewhat taken aback, I was about to enlighten him, in that casual but loftily avuncular manner one adopts on such occasio...

  • Thank you, Edwina, for blowing open the hypocrisy of the Major years
    Sunday, 29 September 2002

    If the revelations by Edwina Currie about a four-year affair with John Major had come to light any time before 26 November 1990 – the date of the second ballot for the Tory leadership following the resignation of Margaret Thatcher – he would neve...

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