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Saturday, 8 January 2011

  • Leading article: A vote that makes a difference
    Sunday, 9 January 2011

    The debate about electoral reform has taken an unexpected turn in the past year. Last May's election produced a hung parliament, the kind of result assumed to be more likely under AV, and hence offered a window into a reformed future. But the arithme...

  • Leading article: Our libel laws have become a threat to freedom of speech
    Saturday, 8 January 2011

    That is not a title to be proud of. Our exalted position is a consequence of some extraordinarily skewed libel laws. Anyone can be sued in a British court for anything published in any country, provided the defendant can show they have a "reputation"...

  • Tim Lott: Bald or not, we spend our lives with one eye on the mirror
    Sunday, 9 January 2011

    There among the rows and stalks of the wilting male thatch, there is more potential for pride and preening than any other part of male physiognomy I can imagine – willy size included. The other news last week that scientists are now not far off a cur...

  • DJ Taylor: Artfully, those pesky motorists dodge the bullet once more
    Sunday, 9 January 2011

    My own slight preference would be for Mr Pickles, on the no doubt unreasonable grounds that the demands of our new age of communal austerity are better advertised by one of those tight-lipped, Crippsian enforcers than by a man who, not to put too fin...

  • Letters: Renting or buying?
    Saturday, 8 January 2011

    All property has to be owned by someone, if not me then a landlord, and the idea of huge numbers of landlords owning vast tracts of land and housing is very disturbing and could lead to great deterioration of much of our housing stock. Landlords are ...

  • Leading article: Sudan's biggest test is yet to come
    Saturday, 8 January 2011

    Tomorrow Sudan will allow its southern half to break away using the ballot box. What makes the vote by citizens of Southern Sudan even more remarkable is that most of the country's oil will end up to the south of the new borders. This alone has promp...

  • Jonathan Aitken: What Chris Huhne and Vicky Pryce can expect from prison - by a man who knows
    Saturday, 8 January 2011

    ShockDavid Chaytor will find the start of his sentence a cultural and personal shock.A high-profile inmate carrying the baggage of the parliamentary expenses scandal should be prepared for a bumpy ride from some of his fellow prisoners and from the m...

  • Harriet Walker: Who cares whether a political leader is married or not?
    Saturday, 8 January 2011

    Radio 2 listeners (that tolerant bunch) want answers, having besieged Miliband during a phone-in earlier this week to complain about his lack of wedding ring. Quite right too: we need our politicians trustworthy and we need them married. A man who ca...

  • Alice Jones: Get real about EastEnders. After all, it is just a soap opera
    Saturday, 8 January 2011

    On his flight, he is killed, stabbed to death by a consortium of 12 grieving relatives and friends who have taken it upon themselves to avenge the murder, each with his or her own personal score to settle. The investigators learn the truth and choose...

  • Andy Gill: In rock music's cruel lottery, living fast and dying young is for the lucky
    Saturday, 8 January 2011

    Choose law, accountancy or medicine, and you know that, with diligent application and steady perseverance, you will one day reap the rewards of high office in your chosen profession. Become a plumber or mechanic, and you should still be able to buy y...

  • E Jane Dickson: Will plumbing be the new accountancy?
    Saturday, 8 January 2011

    The Secretary of State for Education has many times acknowledged the advantage of his own, rigorously selective education and his admirable ambition to bring the benefits of a traditional, classical education within reach of the poorest of society. B...

  • IoS letters, emails & online postings (9 January 2011)
    Sunday, 9 January 2011

    Accounts used to be based on historical cost – what actually happened. But this has been replaced by "fair value", an imaginary figure that can be neither proved nor disproved. Such valuations are often accompanied by so many caveats as to render the...

  • Paul Vallely: Modern life is slowing us down
    Sunday, 9 January 2011

    It's easy to lose sight of the basics here. The iPhone is a great little device for getting your emails on the move, acting as a personal sat nav, picking up internet radio stations, downloading games to keep the kids occupied in the car, and countin...

  • Liane Jones: Soap operas are a matter of life or death
    Sunday, 9 January 2011

    So far, so ridiculous. But both plot developments struck a chord. Archers listeners, who had been warned for weeks that something catastrophic was going to happen, broke into genuine outrage over the loss of a character they had liked for years. Much...

  • Susie Mesure: Another baby on the way – I just wish I were younger
    Sunday, 9 January 2011

    Thanks to those medical advances, age is almost an obsolete factor these days when it comes to having a child. No longer do women rush to push them out in their early twenties, as they did little more than a generation ago. Almost half the babies bor...

  • David Randall: Secrets, lies, and the evil genius behind Assange's arrest
    Sunday, 9 January 2011

    But, it turns out, the reports owed more to campaigners' zeal than to science. Professor Angelicque White of Oregon State University has taken the trouble to take a trip to try to find it, reviewed the evidence, and concluded: the "island" is 200 tim...

  • Harriet Walker: 'Friends are... people who'll help you clean up in the morning'
    Sunday, 9 January 2011

    You have to take friends where you can; sometimes you get lucky and, as well as having things in common, you also like each other. It isn't the same as a romantic partner, because you can actively search for and discard them much more easily, and wit...

  • Leading article: Sailing by
    Saturday, 8 January 2011

    Even those whose can remember as far back as Bailey were in no doubt – this was an English triumph to rank with Trafalgar. To what can we ascribe a first Ashes series win on Australian soil for nearly a quarter of a century? Some pointed to a Fastnet...

  • Ben Chu: If the monarchy performs a public function, it needs scrutiny
    Saturday, 8 January 2011

    In medieval times, the king was the fount of all patronage. Noble factions sought to acquire information about the tastes of the sovereign in order to gain access to those benefits. Insider knowledge of Henry VIII's moods and sexual appetites enabled...

  • Matthew Bell: The IoS Diary (09/01/11)
    Sunday, 9 January 2011

    If you bump into a shrunken Simon Russell Beale, don't worry. The diary's favourite actor, who turns 50 on Wednesday, has managed to lose three stone simply by taking up ballet and giving up beer. This comes after he was persuaded to perform in th...

  • Matthew Bell: Rant & Rave (09/01/11)
    Sunday, 9 January 2011

    Well, I'm glad that's over. Last week I had 10 for lunch. It was meant to be a low-key affair, just a few friends and a roast pheasant. What better way to spend a Bank Holiday Monday? But there must be something about the host-guest dynamic that enco...

  • John Rentoul: Hit the Spot
    Saturday, 8 January 2011

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