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Home 2013 January

Saturday, 5 January 2013

  • Editorial: The unholy row over gay Christians
    Sunday, 6 January 2013

    This is the opposite of the line taken 10 years ago when the furore broke over the appointment of Jeffrey John, a gay man, as Bishop of Reading. He had to stand down despite announcing that he and his partner were celibate. Nothing material has chan...

  • Editorial: A good idea badly implemented
    Sunday, 6 January 2013

    But good ideas do not always work in practice. Because tax is determined on an individual's earnings, while benefits are fixed according to the income of a household, the new measure is throwing up a range of administrative complexities and anomalie...

  • Editorial: Closed blinds vs closed minds
    Sunday, 6 January 2013

    Yet the relish with which the Chancellor has pursued the theme from his party conference speech about "the shift-worker, leaving home in the dark hours of the early morning, who looks up at the closed blinds of their next door neighbour sleeping off...

  • When taking the train was a sign of prosperity
    Sunday, 6 January 2013

    The Transport minister Norman Baker suggested that rush-hour travel is a "premium product" and people should expect to pay more for it. If we could look into Mr Baker's mind, I suspect we would see an image of a commuter that is 40 years out of date:...

  • Events, not policies, will decide who takes Downing Street next
    Sunday, 6 January 2013

    They both have good arguments. The Conservatives are 11 points behind in the opinion polls and need to be four points ahead to remain the largest party in the Commons. Only in 1955 did the governing party increase its share of the vote after a full p...

  • The case for an independent Falklands
    Sunday, 6 January 2013

    The power of Brookes's masterful drawing lay in its ambiguity. His bullet-riddled flag could be an image of plucky defiance but also of imperial collapse. Thirty years on, those islands are still a blank canvas on which any image of bellicose nation...

  • Editorial: Why we have extended our Christmas Appeal
    Sunday, 6 January 2013

    The second is that the security situation in the Central African Republic has deteriorated to the point where the capital, Bangui, may fall to the rebels. Peace talks between them and the government are due to begin in nearby Gabon next week. The 64...

  • Friends and family could be just another box-ticking exercise
    Sunday, 6 January 2013

    Based on the customer satisfaction survey known as the Net Promoter Score, used by companies including Apple, Virgin and British Airways, patients will use it from next April. Its detractors point out that a recommendation from a friend is no guaran...

  • Army was the target audience of President's theatre at the opera house
    Sunday, 6 January 2013

    Those who hate Assad will remind us that Hitler’s most important speech came at the Kroll Opera House in Berlin. Bashar al-Assad’s most important speech came yesterday in the opera house he opened scarcely nine years ago. The last work to be performe...

  • Benefit reform will ensure that work always pays
    Sunday, 6 January 2013

    But for over a decade, and for millions of people, it hasn’t been the case. For years, the gap between those who earn and those who live on benefits has grown. Consider this fact: since 2007, the pay of those working in the private sector rose by 12 ...

  • The battle to instil hope again
    Sunday, 6 January 2013

    Please donate to our appeal for child soldiers here.It was a sunny, warm afternoon in October when Grace was walking home with her friends. The 13-year-old girls had just finished a long day at school and were chatting about a boy they fancied in the...

  • Why the numbers game doesn’t add up in the killing fields of Syria
    Sunday, 6 January 2013

    But then at New Year’s the UN’s Human Rights Commission tells the world that the real figure is close to 60,000. Come again? Did 15,000 Syrians climb into a mass grave on 1 January, 2013?First, however, a health warning. No-one disputes the carnage i...

  • The Tories intend going on and on. Labour needs a radical alternative
    Sunday, 6 January 2013

    Just think of all the proud achievements they’ve notched up in just 32 months: a six-fold increase in people relying on food banks; the first attempt to deliberately slash the real income of the poor – whether in or out of work – since 1931; a shamel...

  • We always knew aunts were important
    Sunday, 6 January 2013

    Many of us had seen this before Biddulph did, but his stamp of authority is hugely important. What’s more, instead of academic obfuscation, he gives brilliant pieces of advice, in simple, clear language. And one of those is to ensure that daughters h...

  • Indigenous people have inherent rights to territory
    Sunday, 6 January 2013

    We began by focusing on a piece of legislation called Bill C-45, which attacks the land base reserved for indigenous people and removed protections for hundreds of our waterways. We discussed and planned a national day of action for 10 December – whi...

  • The US sneezes and the UK still gets a cold
    Sunday, 6 January 2013

    At the final hour the House of Representatives passed the American Taxpayer Relief Act on a vote of 257 to 167. The vast majority of Democrats voted for it –172 to 16 – compared with only one third of Republicans (85 to 151), including the vice-presi...

  • Spooky-couture: the fashion show from hell, via Fantich & Young
    Sunday, 6 January 2013

    The East-London based duo Mariana Fantich and Dominic Young currently have a show in Berlin, Apex Predator, closing 7th February, that features some of the strangest and most unsettling clothes we've ever laid eyes on.There's a Savile Row suit made o...

  • Dos and Don'ts for gay Bishops in the Church of England
    Sunday, 6 January 2013

    • Gay Bishops and their partners are allowed to hold hands on the sofa when watching Downton Abbey but snuggling on the sofa is forbidden.• When greeting their partner, gay Bishops may only kiss them once on the cheek. To kiss them twice on the cheek...

  • Why does Beyoncé advertise Pepsi?
    New York Times Sunday, 6 January 2013

    "Knowles is renting her image to a product that may one day be ranked with cigarettes as a killer we were too slow to rein in", he says. Plus, there's a measure of hypocrisy in her support for Michelle Obama's "Let's Move" campaign, drawn up to get k...

  • IoS letters, emails & online postings (6 January 2013)
    Sunday, 6 January 2013

    Most people I know are tolerant and fair towards immigrants, but I am becoming more and more aware of a general anxiety, at best, and anger, at worst, among normally decent people who feel there is no acknowledgement of the problems. In difficult ec...

  • Guns won't protect Indian women. Ask the US
    Sunday, 6 January 2013

    They think owning guns will make them safer. Some women in India seem to have come to the same conclusion following the gang rape and murder of a student on a bus, with reports that hundreds of women in Delhi have applied for gun licences. The numbe...

  • Corny PSY fixes my new year blues
    Sunday, 6 January 2013

    As we start a new year, perhaps PSY's unlikely success marks a new development – the demise of the global influence of American pop culture. After the Second World War, the US was determined to topple the dominance of European culture and artists lik...

  • If Sarko took Gaddafi cash, why oust him?
    Sunday, 6 January 2013

    According to Mr Takieddine, Mr Sarkozy's courageous decision to spearhead, with David Cameron, the western support for the Libyan revolution in 2011 was a flagrant double-cross, one of the most extraordinary acts of political treachery in recent time...

  • Change needs to start in Britain
    Sunday, 6 January 2013

    What people here find hard to grasp, as well as this being practised in the UK, is that it completely ruins a woman's life, turning joyous events like the beginning of a love affair into a nightmare. In the part of London where I live, I meet a lot ...

  • US glass ceiling shows political cracks
    Sunday, 6 January 2013

    And something of the same is starting to happen on Capitol Hill as well. "Women have the responsibility gene," Hillary Clinton – the most recent of those female secretaries of state – once remarked. In which case, all may not be lost for that feckles...

  • Sometimes, competitive blokes are best ignored
    Sunday, 6 January 2013

    Still, I'm torn. On the one hand, there's little I like less than the thought police, picking holes in the comment boxes on the bottom half of the internet, or coming after you on Twitter, or complaining to Ofcom about nothing. (Strangers have accus...

  • The true cost of business at any price
    Sunday, 6 January 2013

    And so Willie Walsh, chief executive of the BA-owning International Airlines Group, wanted some new airports and the abolition of Air Passenger Duty ("This tax punishes hard-working families, destroys jobs and damages prospects for our economic reco...

  • The world of letters is another male preserve
    Sunday, 6 January 2013

    Mr Talbot is already a multi-award-winning graphic novelist, and perhaps that's why he seems to be pretty relaxed about hiding his light beneath his wife's bushel on this occasion. Or perhaps, being married to a writer (Mary Talbot's previous books ...

  • Tom Hodgkinson: 'Throw away that guilt-inducing clock'
    Sunday, 6 January 2013

    And this remains the dominant ethic today. Politicians, by nature, favour industry over contemplation. They tend to be utilitarian philistines. Chancellor Osborne, of the sixth-form triumvirate, recently said that he was "on the side of those who wor...

  • First rule of international fight club? No chin hits...
    Saturday, 5 January 2013

    This week, President de Kirchner placed a full-page advert in The Guardian and The Independent, urging us to return the Falklands. And, like a legislation-becalmed foxhound hearing the parp of a hunting horn, The Sun immediately took its tat to the ...

  • Django Unchained and the dated shooting devices that no longer hit the target
    Saturday, 5 January 2013

    On the one hand, you have something like a tracking shot – which individual directors can easily do without, but which remains, year-in, year-out a familiar part of cinema syntax – and on the other you have the whip-pan and the crash-zoom, inventions...

  • The problem for English directors of the Scottish National Theatre
    Saturday, 5 January 2013

    Should the director of the National Theatre of Scotland be Scottish? That seems to me a similarly reasonable debate to have. However, it has provoked accusations of bullying, and veiled hints of racism. How decorous and civilised football seems compa...

  • Letters: The misleading history of the Falklands
    Saturday, 5 January 2013

    Argentina was formed during the 19th century as a result of Spanish colonialism, and did not exist securely with its current name and boundaries until the 1860s. If all colonialism is outlawed by the UN, Argentina ought to be "returned" to the descen...

  • The Emperor's New Clothes (06/01/13)
    Sunday, 6 January 2013

    Quite a lot, it turns out. What you have done – the part of the transaction confirmed by that reassuring "confirmation of order" email in your inbox – is the easy electronic bit. Now comes the hard, practical part: getting your buy moved from a ware...

  • Rant & Rave (06/01/13)
    Sunday, 6 January 2013

    Only early January, and already we have a contender for 2013's advert-most-likely-to-offend-everyone award. The ad, for a bike shop which also does small car maintenance jobs, has a woman explaining how to change a headlight bulb: wait till it's dar...

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