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Saturday, 10 November 2012

  • Editorial: The answer for the BBC is reform, not a witch-hunt
    Sunday, 11 November 2012

    In the wake of all these events it is right that the Director-General, George Entwistle, has fallen on his sword now that the flaky nature of the journalism behind this second programme shown on 2 November has been exposed, now that Lord McAlpine, u...

  • Letters: How to make corporations pay up
    Sunday, 11 November 2012

    Multinationals can adjust their profit or loss figures in many ways – they can easily adjust transfer prices and take profits in tax havens. They can doctor profits figures by imposing arbitrary management and royalty licence charges. In the event...

  • Editorial: Aid to India still has its place
    Sunday, 11 November 2012

    If the time frame for winding up is shorter than most people had anticipated, the thrust of the Development Secretary's ruling was not unexpected. Aid to India has been a toxic topic ever since Pranab Mukherjee, now President, then Finance Minister,...

  • The next Director General will need a tough hide - and real support
    Sunday, 11 November 2012

    Three separate issues confront the BBC at the moment. The first and most serious is the possibility that Jimmy Savile’s sexual predations were allowed to take place unchecked within the BBC. Were there more than rumours? Were formal complaints made t...

  • Diary: Entwistle was helped onto his sword by the brilliant John Humphrys
    Sunday, 11 November 2012

    Any of Humphrys’s fellow Today presenters Evan Davis, Justin Webb or Sarah Montague would have been respectful to their director general. In 16 minutes of cross-examination by Jim Naughtie, 15-and-a-half would have gone on the questions.Mr Entwistle ...

  • If Assad goes, Hezbollah will be alone in the Levant – much to the delight of Israel
    Sunday, 11 November 2012

    Today, it looks more like yet another Arab “security” institution – or insecurity institution – as it flies drones over Israel and continues to support, to the increasing condemnation of many Lebanese, the Syrian regime of President Bashar al-Assad.W...

  • The body harpies have it in for Adele. For the sake of all women, let's hope she stays strong
    Sunday, 11 November 2012

    The very few who try and hold out against the image harridans seemingly lose the fight. You should see how many blogs, sites, tweets and articles swill around that pick on female names with bigger bodies than is allowed in the witch’s manual of femal...

  • Newsnight and the BBC might have screwed up, but the real victims of this are being forgotten - again
    Sunday, 11 November 2012

    The psychological effects of child abuse are profound. Shock, fear and disbelief come immediately, psychologists note; in the long term come anxiety and post-traumatic stress disorder. Abused children often start wetting the bed again; as they become...

  • Reddit diagnoses cancer in man who peed on pregnancy test
    Forbes Sunday, 11 November 2012

    CappnPoopDeck posted a rage comic of his friend's experience on social news site Reddit, complete with a sketch of a horrified male face confronted with an unwanted - and biologically impossible - pregnancy.The very first commenter on the story, whic...

  • Too close for comfort: Prime Ministers, the arms industry, and Remembrance Day
    Sunday, 11 November 2012

    Nearly ten years on from the invasion, the only people who seem chuffed about the Iraq War these days are its architects and their dedicated cheerleaders. Blair’s particular cynicism lies in the fact that he frames promoting British interests in Iraq...

  • Did George Entwistle have to resign as BBC Director General after the Savile and Newsnight scandals?
    Sunday, 11 November 2012

    George Entwistle last night resigned as Director General of the BBC after an episode of Newsnight incorrectly implicated former Tory minister Lord McAlpine as a paedophile.In a statement given outside New Broadcasting House Entwistle accepted that hi...

  • Priest bites off ear in unholy punch-up
    Australia News Network Sunday, 11 November 2012

    Father Thomas Henry Bryne, 80, was charged with grievous bodily harm over the incident involving his neighbour, 81-year-old Father Thomas Joseph Cameron Smith.After the fight ended, Byrne told Smith to pick something off the ground - only when Smith ...

  • IoS letters, emails & online postings (11 November 2012)
    Sunday, 11 November 2012

    The Green Party believes that everyone working a full week should earn sufficient money to pay for the necessities of food, clothing, housing and transport – and that's what the Labour Party should enforce should it return to government.If the minimu...

  • Editorial: A necessary sacrifice
    Sunday, 11 November 2012

    However, it is hard to ignore the BBC's impulsion to be the story rather than the messenger. By distracting public opinion from the pursuit of justice for the victims, the corporation has probably made it less likely that anyone will get to the botto...

  • Middle Eastern snakes exceed ladders for the US
    Sunday, 11 November 2012

    Romney soon steered away from his initial posture of attacking Obama for "apologising for America" and failing to assert US power. He recognised that the one thing the US electorate does not want is another war in the Middle East. By beating the patr...

  • Our zombie church has a new leader. So what?
    Sunday, 11 November 2012

    Admittedly the job couldn't have gone to a woman – this particular pressure group isn't up to speed with equality – but did they have to pick an Old Etonian? Even more puzzling has been the reaction, with lots of people rushing around and using words...

  • A shot at glory: President Obama's second chance
    Sunday, 11 November 2012

    Yesterday, it was almost as if his trouncing of Mitt Romney four days earlier had never happened, as both sides dug in for negotiations over a deficit-reduction deal without which automatic spending cuts and tax increases will kick in at the start of...

  • 'I was a tiny part of something that really mattered'
    Sunday, 11 November 2012

    The battle for the White House was looking worryingly close and I decided that what the Democrats needed was my years of experience campaigning for the British Labour Party. With all my ideas and enthusiasm, I rolled up at a huge sound studio close t...

  • Blame the establishment! (But which one?)
    Sunday, 11 November 2012

    The 1970s have always been fertile ground for exposés of the covert alliances that gang up to bypass the democratic process. One of the best BBC television dramas of the past 20 years is Peter Flannery's Our Friends in the North, which sketched out a...

  • Why I won't be voting for a police commissioner
    Sunday, 11 November 2012

    Lord Blair, of course, could be dismissed as a man with a personal grievance. After all, he was sacked as head of the Metropolitan Police by the man who was, in effect, the prototype elected police commissioner, the Mayor of London, Boris Johnson. B...

  • You don't have to copy Bradley Wiggins. There is a better way
    Sunday, 11 November 2012

    Of course, there are impediments to taking up walking. One is the growth of our towns. It is said that the last man to walk every street in London was Thomas Babington Macauley. That would have been impressive even if he hadn't written all that histo...

  • David Cameron and the impossibility of modern politics
    Sunday, 11 November 2012

    He could see that wild and baseless allegations were being waved around. He may even have seen some of the names, taken from the internet, on the list that Schofield handed to him, and recognised people who are gay or who have often been said to be. ...

  • Growing up in the White House: Trials, tribulations and triumphs
    Sunday, 11 November 2012

    Try as their parents might to make life as normal as possible (no shirking of homework, summer camp in New Hampshire, and doing their own laundry), things are not quite as they are for most American girls. It will be a brave teenage lad who asks Mali...

  • I've discovered how to lose weight: fast
    Sunday, 11 November 2012

    I watched a Horizon programme about fasting. The first three-quarters was a bit dull, on the medical benefits of fasting – about it giving your body time to repair itself. It was the last quarter, however, that got me; the idea you can have 600 calor...

  • The Emperor's New Clothes (11/11/12)
    Sunday, 11 November 2012

    Floodgates duly unlocked, the past couple of decades have seen men over-emoting like actors in Bollywood musicals. And just last week came three fresh examples. First, the newly re-elected President of the United States was caught blubbing like a ...

  • The Republican Party: The death of America’s angry white man
    Sunday, 11 November 2012

    And it wasn't just a defeat, it was a big one, whose dimensions were a surprise even to many Democrats: over 2 per cent in the popular vote and a crushing 332 votes to 206 in the electoral college, in what is supposed to be a 50/50 country. And this ...

  • Politicians beware! It's live TV
    Sunday, 11 November 2012

    Social media has a growing role in modern politics, but television remains the key weapon in the fight for power. Over here, the Prime Minister recently signed up for Twitter, but relies on carefully chosen telly appearances to get his message across...

  • After the Pink List, the social media deluge
    Sunday, 11 November 2012

    Some people were surprised that anyone could have beaten the glorious Clare Balding to number one. (Sorry, Clare. We love you, but you stopped just short of actually winning a gold medal.) Others were amused to see young reality TV stars on the list....

  • 'Routine screening would stop suffering'
    Sunday, 11 November 2012

    For instance, it would be good if, every three or five years, veterans were given routine medical appointments for check-ups and to ask if they have any problems. Many servicemen and women would not want to take advantage of this, but it would be ve...

  • Harriet Walker: Karaoke is always so harmonious – at first
    Sunday, 11 November 2012

    At an East End pub last week, I saw humanity come together, and then rapidly divide, over the pleasures of a simple songbook. This was no "Little Brown Jug" round the old joanna; it was Bone Thugs-n-Harmony with a backing track of Woodbine coughs – T...

  • Think Nadine's bad? Look at Naza
    Saturday, 10 November 2012

    No, no. After all, Conservatives are all about free market economics and 40 grand is 40 grand. Other serving politicians have done far worse. Take Kazakhstan's president Nursultan Nazarbayev. Two years ago, after occupying the country's highest offic...

  • It's no different to being a minister, says Dorries
    Saturday, 10 November 2012

    Alistair Burt is MP for the Bedfordshire constituency that adjoins that of Dorries. It can't be denied that he spends a lot of time abroad. That is because he is a minister in the Foreign Office.Yesterday, Mr Burt seemed a bit put out that she should...

  • Philip Roth is a true great with range and chutzpah
    Saturday, 10 November 2012

    The arc of his creative life, from the assured debut of Goodbye Columbus (1959) to the tragic power of Nemesis (2010), is one of extraordinary range and imaginative chutzpah. He has chronicled American life over six decades, and written with assuranc...

  • Why ‘Dad’s Army’ still makes us laugh
    Saturday, 10 November 2012

    The storm came and went, and much the same thing happened with the American election, which failed to live up to its billing as a cliffhanger, and about which I read a hundredth of what my newspaper offered me. Yes, yes, the fate of civilisation was ...

  • You don't have to be able to see the future to get the benefit of good timing
    Saturday, 10 November 2012

    Lucy Kirkwood's new play NSFW (above) provoked the word in me – largely because of its opening conceit, which has the staff of a down-market lads' mag discovering that the winner of their readers' girlfriends beauty contest – appearing in the current...

  • Let councils sell our great works of art – just don't let them vanish
    Saturday, 10 November 2012

    What has happened is that Moore gave his notable work Draped Seated Woman to Tower Hamlets council in London's East End in the early Sixties for a knock-down price of £6,000. He wanted it displayed for the public in East London and wasn't too concern...

  • Letters: The EU is friend of British workers
    Saturday, 10 November 2012

    The EU is a system of checks and balances: the counterpoint to its free-market policies are those promoting workers' rights. And which country has steadfastly rejected this objective? Britain, a notable "fight them on the beaches" standoff being the ...

  • Rant & Rave: A bad week for a naked Sienna Miller, but a good one for Adele
    Sunday, 11 November 2012

    A rumour went out last week that the artist Jonathan Yeo had made the front pages. Unfortunately, it turned out that only his painting of Sienna Miller naked was all over the papers (and more images of a naked Sienna Miller appeared in Vogue), while ...

  • Editorial: Exaggerated reports on the GOP
    Saturday, 10 November 2012

    It is true that the American electorate is becoming less white, and that President Obama did well among black and Hispanic voters. Although he also did well among women, and the American electorate is not becoming more female, as far as we know. It ...

  • Editorial: Less aid to India must mean more sent elsewhere
    Saturday, 10 November 2012

    In a way, that was just what this newspaper wanted. We support the ambition of successive British governments to devote 0.7 per cent of national income to the sustainable alleviation of poverty around the world. However, there is no hope of achievin...

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