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Fackbook Acquires WhatsApp For $16 Billion

Monitoring social media is easier said than done

The three British girls who packed their bags and took a flight to Turkey have apparently crossed the border into Syria. Their… Continue reading

George Osborne’s ex-dominatrix friend plans a sequel

Image: Getty

Oh dear. The Chancellor of the Exchequer is not going to be pleased. Natalie Rowe, the former dominatrix who enjoyed… Continue reading

Madonna fell off the stage at the Brit Awards and we laughed because we’re sadistic

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Go on, admit it, you laughed, didn’t you? When Madonna was yanked off the stage by a dancer pulling her… Continue reading

The footprint of Britain’s immigrants – and emigrants – is important

(Photo: Shaun Curry/Getty)

Half a million people. That’s quite a lot, isn’t it? I mean, half a million here, half a million there,… Continue reading

Ukip is the most trusted party on controlling immigration

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Which party does the public trust the most to control immigration? ComRes/ITV News have released a new poll revealing it’s not the… Continue reading

The crude legal term ‘cannabis’ is unhelpful. Skunk causes psychosis, regular weed doesn’t

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Next Tuesday Channel 4 will air their pseudo-scientific ‘Jon Snow stoned’ show The Cannabis Trials (or Drugs and How Not… Continue reading

Single snowdrop sells for £1,390: welcome to galanthomania

Galanthus plicatus 'Golden Fleece'

Have you heard of galanthomania? It’s an affliction that can rob people of their money – and, it seems, their… Continue reading

How Cameron’s jobs miracle ate his immigration target

Last year, employment rose faster in Yorkshire than in France (Photo: Getty)

The embarrassing truth is that David Cameron did not think carefully about this pledge to take net immigration into the… Continue reading

Why are the Lib Dems spending so much time talking about mental health?

(Photo: Dave Thompson/Getty)

Nick Clegg is to hold an hour-long phone-in next week on mental health. The Deputy Prime Minister will host the… Continue reading

The Tory trouble to come on defence spending

Eurofighter Typhoon Launched To Replace Tornado F3s

There are still some unhappy mutterings about the possibility that the Tories won’t commit to spending 2 per cent of… Continue reading

Guardian hustings bode well for external candidates

Janine Gibson, editor of the Guardian website, hosts an event with her departing editor Alan Rusbridger

Yesterday the four internal candidates vying to succeed Alan Rusbridger as the Guardian editor-in-chief took part in hustings for the… Continue reading

New figures show Cameron’s net migration target in tatters

Britain's Prime Minister David Cameron p

Today’s news that lots of people want to come and work in a free, welcoming country with many opportunities and… Continue reading

Podcast: the SNP threat to Westminster and the myth of a house building crisis

First Minister Alex Salmond, Deputy First Minister Nicola Sturgeon and Jim Sillars, former deputy leader of the SNP campaign in Piershill Square with activist on September10, 2014 in Edinburgh,Scotland.

Are the SNP poised to become Westminster’s kingmakers? On this week’s View from 22 podcast, Alex Massie discusses this week’s… Continue reading

The Spectator at war: Animal sentries

Image: Getty

From ‘Animal Sentries’, The Spectator, 27 February 1915: OBSERVERS of birds have been much interested by the evidence, which seems… Continue reading

Labour unsure about health policy its own councils support

Public Inquiry Into Stafford Hospital Scandal Resumes

The announcement today that Greater Manchester will receive full control of health spending – worth £6bn – has left Labour… Continue reading

PMQs sketch: A jam for Cam but the greased piglet escaped again!

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That was a close one. Miliband set two traps for the PM today. One was visible. The other, far more… Continue reading

Anna Soubry’s choice of words raises eyebrows

Anna Soubry arriving in Downing Street on reshuffle day. Picture: PA

After Inside the Commons drew to a close last night, a new row involving the House of Commons documentary developed. Reports… Continue reading

The Syrian-bound schoolgirls remind us that feminism isn’t for everyone

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There is much to be said for Rod Liddle’s view that the fuss over the aspiring jihadi brides from the Bethnal… Continue reading

MPs hang out with the wealthy so is it any wonder their worldview is warped?

UK Political Parties Seek To Form A Coalition

Had the public been asked, before Monday morning, to identify two MPs who stood for honesty and decency, the names… Continue reading

You can tell a lot from watching how MPs act

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One thing worth noting from today’s PMQs – and indeed from all the sessions since the start if the year… Continue reading

Is London Calling for Dan Snow? The Clash of the classes kicks off in Kensington

Dan Snow has been tipped for the seat in Kensington (Photo: Getty)

Following news that the Tories are apparently hoping telegenic posho historian Dan Snow will stand in Kensington, class war looks to be coming to the… Continue reading

The Tories need to put Boris front and centre of the campaign — the numbers prove it

London Mayor, Boris Johnson is shown around the Aura residential development which is under construction in the Edgware district of north London on February 20, 2015 in London, England.

Have you seen Boris Johnson? The Mayor of London has been surprisingly absent from the Conservatives’ floundering campaign so far.… Continue reading

The real scandal of zero-hours contracts: HMRC’s greed

Fast Food Rights campaigners and members of the Bakers, Food and Allied Workers Union protest against the rise of zero hour contracts and job insecurity.

Cue the Guardian headlines of ‘exploitation’ in ‘Dickensian’ Britain. Nearly 700,000 people are now working on zero-hours contracts, a rise… Continue reading

PMQs: Second jobs, lobbying and ‘obsessive crackpots’

Cameron lost today's bout.

Ed Miliband boxed cleverer than David Cameron at PMQs today and came out with a comprehensive points victory. Miliband went,… Continue reading

Twitter has become a barometer for the political issues of the day

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Twitter has never been friendly to British politicians. From MPs’ gaffes that spread across the platform like wildfire to the incessant… Continue reading

Boris boards plane with mysterious blonde

Boris was on best behaviour during a trade tour to America (Photo: Spencer Platt/Getty)

Boris Johnson was on best behaviour during a recent trade trip to the USA. But the minute his top aides left his side,… Continue reading

As ‘long-term economic plan’ goes global, will Cameron have an easy PMQs?

David Cameron And George Osborne Visit The North Of England

How will Prime Minister’s Questions go today? Both party leaders have had to deal with troublesome MPs this week, with… Continue reading

When did it become OK for the police to electrocute children?

(FILES) A file picture taken on December

Hard as it may be to imagine, dear reader, once upon a time the police managed to fulfil their obligations to… Continue reading

Magazine

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The myth of the housing crisis

The coalition is letting developers concrete over the countryside, but that won’t help young people buy houses

Why an SNP surge at Westminster could mean the end of Britain

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A landslide for the SNP will inevitably lead to the end of the Union

How liberal Britain is betraying ex-Muslims

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These people are risking their lives for the freedom not to believe – and liberal Britain is betraying them

My wood-burning stove is expensive, trendy – and miserable

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My trendy wood-burning stove is leaving me cold, wheezy, red-eyed and exhausted

Zac Goldsmith: How my dad saved Britain

Sir James Goldsmith

If you’re grateful not to be in the euro, it’s James Goldsmith and his ‘rebel army’ you should thank

A cruise around Cleopatra's wedding present

Dramatic mountains and hidden bays

Legend has it that Mark Antony considered Turkey’s Turquoise Coast so beautiful that, in about 32 bc, he gave it to Cleopatra as a wedding present. The country’s southernmost shore… Read more

Columnists

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No one wants to fight a national campaign. This will be the least general election in years

There’s normally an easy way to tell which party is losing a general election campaign. Whenever one side starts telling… Read more

Oh joy! Sean Penn has tried to crack a joke

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What a pleasure it is to see the Hollywood actor Sean Penn neck deep in PC ordure. The rodentine thespian… Read more

How do bright schoolgirls fall for jihadis? The same way they fall for Justin Bieber

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How could they? How could girls brought up in the wealthy West abandon their families and their own bright futures… Read more

Two shops. Two philosophies. Which side are you on?

Profits Rise At Aldi Supermarket Chain

Are you Lush or are you Aldi? Me, I’m Aldi all the way. So much so that when someone —… Read more

How Labour’s 50p tax trick has ended up helping George Osborne

Prime Minister David Cameron Visits Manchester

Last week’s public borrowing and tax-receipt figures, headlined ‘Chancellor hails biggest monthly surplus in seven years’, received considerably less attention… Read more

Arts

Crazy horses: Andy Scott’s Kelpies at sunset

The Spectator declares war on public art

Stephen Bayley announces the launch of What’s That Thing?, The Spectator’s award for bad public art

Don’t mock Elvis’s style - he was ahead of the curve

Don’t mock the schlock: from left to right: Taking Care of Business Ring designed by Elvis and Priscilla Presley; presidential cufflinks; gold phone

In the giftshop at the new Elvis exhibition at the Dome, you can buy your own version of his flared… Read more

Sculpture Victorious at Tate Britain reviewed: entertainingly barmy

‘The Great Elm at Lacock’, 1843–45, by William Henry Fox Talbot

In the centre of the new exhibition Sculpture Victorious at Tate Britain there is a huge white elephant. The beast… Read more

The dos and don’ts of the Russian art scene

‘Two Figures in a Room’, 1959, by Francis Bacon

They’re doing fantastic deals on five-star hotels in St Petersburg the weekend the Francis Bacon exhibition opens at the Hermitage.… Read more

The Boy Next Door reviewed: a terrible new J-Lo movie that's disturbingly enjoyable

Jennifer Lopez sets her sights on the boy next door

Stateside critics, who panned Jennifer Lopez’s new film The Boy Next Door on its US release last month, may be… Read more

Muswell Hill reviewed: a guide on how to sock it to London trendies

How I Learned to Drive at Southwark Playhouse

Torben Betts is much admired by his near-namesake Quentin Letts for socking it to London trendies. Letts is one of… Read more

A legendary piece of iconoclastic dance returns. Does the piece still stand up?

Flamenco Festival at Sadlers Wells Photo: Josep Aznar

Funny how things turn upside-down with time. A work of contemporary dance that made an iconoclastic splash decades ago is… Read more

Opera North's Gianni Schicchi and La vida breve reviewed: a flawless double helping of verismo

Puccini’s Gianni Schicchi Photo: Bill Cooper

Is there a more beautiful aria than ‘O mio babbino caro’ from Puccini’s Gianni Schicchi? There are more overwhelming moments… Read more

There’s nothing wrong with getting into Thomas Tallis on the back of Fifty Shades of Grey

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Great works of art may have a strange afterlife. Deracinated from the world that created them they are at the… Read more

Critical on Sky1 reviewed: a new medical drama where everyone radiates an unusual degree of competence and concern

The cast of Critical

Sky1’s new hospital drama Critical (Tuesday) can’t be accused of making a timid start. Within seconds, an urgent request had… Read more

The perils and pleasures of podcast listening

US President Theodore Roosevelt's teddy bear Photo: Getty

No phrase is better calculated to tense the neck muscles of a regular podcast listener than ‘We have something special… Read more

Life

Greek Finance Minister Yanis Varoufakis Photo: Getty

Once upon a time I was very proud to be Greek. But no more

Gstaad A naked, very good-looking young man skied down the mountain evoking shrieks of laughter and admiration from the hundred or so skiers lining the slopes. He turned out to… Read more

The day an ancient and very wonderful sport died

Waterloo Cup The Blue Riband Of Hare Coursing Day 2

Last week was the tenth anniversary of the last running of the English hare-coursing classic, the Waterloo Cup. I shan’t start raving on about the perversity of banning a so-called… Read more

My request to see my medical notes has sparked all-out panic at my GP surgery

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My request to see my medical notes has sparked all-out panic at the GP surgery. ‘What do you mean?’ said the receptionist who answered the phone when I called to… Read more

You can’t force low-income people to go to an art gallery or the theatre if they don’t want to

A visitor views a painting by Flemish artist Peter Paul Rubens entitled 'Tiger, Lion and Leopard Hunt' Photo: Getty

I went last week to see the justly praised production of Wagner’s The Mastersingers at English National Opera, and I didn’t see a single black face there, nor even much… Read more