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Home 2010 September

Wednesday, 8 September 2010

  • The new girl power: Why we're living in a young woman's world
    Thursday, 9 September 2010

    And yet. Why, when I look around my circle of close friends – most of whom, like me, are now 25 – do I struggle to make this fit? Almost without exception, the smiling faces in my graduation photos are still smiling, three years on. They have gone on...

  • Leading article: A burden of economic responsibility
    Thursday, 9 September 2010

    He is right, too. The Republicans are indeed determined to stop Mr Obama offering tax breaks to business and the middle classes. And he is equally sure he will not give way and extend the Bush-era tax cuts for the very rich which are due to expire at...

  • Leading article: Taxation - neither transparent, nor efficient
    Wednesday, 8 September 2010

    For some it will be good news. Around 4.3 million people have paid too much and are due a refund from Her Majesty's Revenue & Customs (HMRC). But 1.4 million have underpaid and will face an average repayment bill of £1,400. Some will face demands...

  • Michael Brown: Cameron's safe from rebels – for now
    Wednesday, 8 September 2010

    When the report stage begins in earnest – considering questions such as the date on which the referendum is to be held and whether there should be a 40 per cent threshold of voters supporting a "Yes" vote – the Tory whips may have a harder task. But ...

  • Letters: Perspectives on the tax people
    Thursday, 9 September 2010

    Helpful staff, terrible laws I don't doubt Sean O'Grady's account of his unfortunate personal dealings with HM Revenue and Customs, but his article (8 September) is unfair in extrapolating those dealings into a generalised cheap shot at HMRC staf...

  • Leading article: Morbid legal rigidity
    Thursday, 9 September 2010

    Such stories are perennially popular in the tabloid press, and it was hypersensitivity to the outrage they caused that led Labour to coin its most effective catchphrase ever: "tough on crime, tough on the causes of crime", promising, in classic old L...

  • Harriet Walker: The brains behind the beauty
    Thursday, 9 September 2010

    The reason I spout such terrible nonsense at hypothetical parties is because of the common assumption that people who like fashion have either been lobotomised or are swathed in so much designer gear that the oxygen no longer reaches their brains. Fa...

  • Fiona Phillips: A treatment for this most cruel of diseases would mean so much to so many
    Thursday, 9 September 2010

    A diagnosis of Alzheimer's is like having a bomb lobbed into your family. It places a terrible burden of helplessness and guilt on carers. Looking back, my mum's behaviour started to change when she was in her mid to late fifties. She was finally dia...

  • Ben Chu: Bob Diamond - a very dangerous banker
    Thursday, 9 September 2010

    Much attention has centred on his remuneration. It is true that Diamond is the very model of the overpaid banker. In 2007 alone he earned $42m (£27m). And he will soon be earning up to £11.5m a year. But disgustingly overpaid bankers are, sadly, no r...

  • Letters: Languages
    Wednesday, 8 September 2010

    Michael Gove's plans to consider a new baccalaureate certificate ("Baccalaureate planned to reverse the decline in modern languages", 6 September) and combat the flight from languages should be warmly applauded. He rightly said that lack of languag...

  • Susie Rushton: A lesson needed in lightening up
    Wednesday, 8 September 2010

    After a long legal battle with his neighbours and the council, Mr Alvand agreed to reduce the height of the concrete barrier known locally as the "Berlin Wall". His revenge is Megahedge, a stupendous specimen that demonstrates the growing powers of t...

  • Leading article: A promise is a promise
    Wednesday, 8 September 2010

    The aims were ambitious, the intentions sincere and the means approved. Yet it would be foolish to think that, a decade on, we are anywhere near achieving these goals. Strides have been made in improving primary education (enrolment is now 90 per cen...

  • Simon Price: This year the shady cabal of faceless judges got it right
    Wednesday, 8 September 2010

    For the last 19 years, the Mercury has presented itself as a connoisseur's alternative to the Brit Awards, a classy Cannes Palme D'Or to the Brits' trashy Oscars (though it's debatable how genuine an alternative it can claim to be, given that it, lik...

  • Sean O'Grady: My tangles with HMRC's culture of bullying and fear
    Wednesday, 8 September 2010

    Thus, my abiding memory of contact with HMRC was a threatening call from the Inland Revenue Collections Centre in Bradford, which seems to be the HQ of HMRC's elite squad of sadists. A woman – who might easily have got a role on a West Yorkshire vers...

  • Boyd Tonkin: Some big omissions, but a nicely balanced list overall
    Wednesday, 8 September 2010

    McCarthy, now flavour of the month, reaches it with the richly inventive but structurally flawed historical novel C; whereas Mitchell's richly inventive but structurally flawed historical novel The Thousand Autumns of Jacob de Zoet disappears from si...

  • John Rentoul: Nick Brown and the whip hand
    Thursday, 9 September 2010

  • Leading article: Twitter crowd problems
    Thursday, 9 September 2010

    Perhaps this will become the new gauge of celebrity success. It used to be the size of your trailer, or your backstage dressing room, or the number of times you appeared on the cover of magazines, that indicated whether you had made it or not. But ma...

  • Michael Glover: Of the 'greats' on display, Hepworth is the best of a bad bunch
    Thursday, 9 September 2010

    Eric Gill is, frankly, poor and Epstein only fitfully convincingly wild. By the 1930s there was Henry Moore, of course – but Moore, even the early works, strikes you as oddly dated and lumpen and derivative of much older things when compared with the...

  • Leading article: Body talk
    Wednesday, 8 September 2010

    Apparently some of the crucial components of a successful male display are the speed of the right knee, and the size of movement of the neck, trunk, left shoulder and wrist. One can only hope that no man takes that little summary too literally, or we...

  • Kim Sengupta: Insulting Islam can have lethal repercussions on battlefield
    Wednesday, 8 September 2010

    General Petraeus's warning that the stunt is likely to put the lives of American troops in danger is not far-fetched. Five years ago 15 people were killed and dozens injured in riots in Afghanistan after Newsweek magazine claimed that interrogators a...

  • Alice-Azania Jarvis: While in London, solidarity with Tube staff is in short supply
    Wednesday, 8 September 2010

    No problem, I thought - at least the bus drivers are still working. I logged on to Transport for London and selected an hour-and-fifteen-minute route. Easy! Expecting extra traffic, I left two hours to get from my home in east London across to The I...

  • Holly Williams: No manual could improve a man's dancing after seven pints
    Wednesday, 8 September 2010

    Sorry chaps, but a manual can't help you here. Any man who reveals turning cogs while attempting to throw shapes is doomed to fail. In British nightclubs, with confidence bolstered (but co-ordination unimproved) by seven pints and a tequila slammer, ...

  • Shaun Walker: Democratic opposition live in fear of arrest – or worse
    Wednesday, 8 September 2010

    Scratch the surface, however, and it becomes clear that it's also not the harmonious paradise the Belarusian authorities and their Western PR agencies insist it is. "Life is fine here, as long as you don't decide to go into business or politics," one...

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