The Spectator’s Notesrss

The fishing port of Honfleur

Charles Moore’s Notes: If peers aren’t to be elected, they should be impossible to get rid of

1 August 2015

Obviously when one attends what the papers call ‘cocaine-fuelled orgies’, one expects to find several members of the peerage present, but I must confess that until all this trouble, I… Read more


Charles Moore’s Notes: Why the Greek No is a great moment for socialism

11 July 2015

Even if everything goes wronger still, the Greek No vote is a great victory for the left. Until now, the left has not mounted a serious challenge to the claims… Read more

(Photo: Getty)

Charles Moore’s Notes: Now even the FT has joined in issuing threats to the Greek people

4 July 2015

‘The Greek people,’ the Financial Times leading article said on Monday, ‘would be well advised to listen closely to the words of Ms Merkel. The plebiscite will be a vote… Read more

(Photo: Getty)

Charles Moore’s notes: Grexit isn’t like Brexit (and that’s why it won’t be allowed to happen)

27 June 2015

People write about ‘Grexit’ and ‘Brexit’ as if they were the same, but they need not be. Grexit is about leaving the euro. Brexit is about leaving the EU. It… Read more

David Cameron Meets With Angela Merkel In Berlin

Charles Moore’s notes: The anti-EU camp need to be sure what No means

20 June 2015

It is natural to assume that, if a majority votes No in the referendum on Britain’s EU membership, we shall then leave. It is not automatically so. After the vote,… Read more

(Photo: Getty)

Charles Moore’s notes: A warning from Prince Charles’s lost speech

13 June 2015

Two beautiful volumes in a cloth-bound case reach me. They are Speeches and Articles by HRH The Prince of Wales 1968-2012, published by University of Wales Press. The explanatory list… Read more

Chuck Blazer (Photo: Getty)

Charles Moore’s notes: Does Chuck Blazer exist?

6 June 2015

We in the West all hate Sepp Blatter, so we pay too little attention to the manner in which the Fifa executives were arrested. For what reason, other than maximum… Read more

(Photo: Getty)

Charles Moore’s Notes: people who love making new laws like to present them as human rights

30 May 2015

Amnesty International and others have placed a large newspaper advertisement telling Michael Gove ‘Don’t Scrap Our Human Rights’. The ad asserts that ‘A government cannot give human rights or take… Read more

Prince Charles shakes hands with Sinn Fein president Gerry Adams (Photo: Getty)

Charles Moore’s Notes: Who benefits from Prince Charles shaking Gerry Adams’s hand?

23 May 2015

Who benefits from Prince Charles’s handshake with Gerry Adams? Not the victims of IRA violence, including the 18 soldiers who died at Warrenpoint on the same day as Lord Mountbatten… Read more

David Cameron with his new cabinet (Photo: Getty)

Charles Moore’s Notes: Cameron should bring back twice-weekly PMQs

16 May 2015

David Cameron is taking a bit of trouble to unite his parliamentary party. Having built a coalition outside it last time, he knows he must now build one within. The… Read more


Charles Moore's notes: A matched pair of popes, and a patronising judge

13 December 2014

Pope Francis is favourably compared to Pope Benedict in the media. I hope it is not being slavishly papist to admire both of them. For Francis, the chalice is half-full.… Read more

WW1 Recruitment Posters To Be Auctioned

The Spectator's Notes: My grandfather's dire omen on the eve of war

2 August 2014

This week’s issue is dated 2 August. On that date 100 years ago, my great-grandfather, Norman Moore (always known as ‘NM’), went to Sunday Mass. ‘Father Ryan,’ he noted in… Read more

Job swap: Oliver Letwin and Lady Stowell

The Trojan Horse affair proves Michael Gove right – and MI5 wrong

26 July 2014

Peter Clarke’s powerful report on the Trojan Horse affair in Birmingham schools is confirmation of the weakness of David Cameron in demoting Michael Gove. When Mr Gove appointed Mr Clarke… Read more


The Spectator's Notes: this is the worst reshuffle since 1989

19 July 2014

This must be the worst reshuffle since Mrs Thatcher demoted Geoffrey Howe in 1989. Unlike that one, its errors are unforced. This year, David Cameron had established a surprisingly strong… Read more

Prime Minister David Cameron Meets Emir of Qatar Sheikh Hamad Bin Khalifa al-Thani

The real scandal is that government files are 'lost' all the time

12 July 2014

Like almost everyone else, I have no idea whether the accusations about paedophilia in Parliament in the 1980s are true. One thing I do feel quite confident about, though, is… Read more

Rolf Harris leaves court after being found guilty of 12 indecent assault charges

The Spectator's Notes: Hunting down dirty old men is not a challenge to the current culture

5 July 2014

‘A culture changes by example and a licentious old man being found guilty will help do that,’ says a leader in the Times. Perhaps, but I would be much more impressed… Read more

Polish Foreign Minister Radek Sikorski Photo: Getty

Why the 1989 revolutionaries still love the European Union (and why they're still wrong)

28 June 2014

Radek Sikorski, the Polish foreign minister, is undoubtedly one of the most dashing figures on the world stage. I first met him in the mid-1980s, possibly when I was a… Read more

Queen Elizabeth and Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh attend a garden party at Buckingham Palace Photo: AFP/Getty

The Spectator's notes: Diana's bed, Boris's dirty trick and Prince Philip's mystery tie

21 June 2014

On Friday night, I went to Althorp, childhood home of Diana, Princess of Wales, to speak at its literary festival. My first duty was to appear on the panel of… Read more

European People's Party's (EPP) choice to head the European Commission, Jean-Claude Juncker

Jean-Claude Juncker is stale, grey and likes his booze. That's why Cameron should back him

7 June 2014

David Cameron is surely right to think that Jean-Claude Juncker is not the man to relieve the European Union’s woes, but I wonder if it is worth a fight. It… Read more

Tony Blair's Keynote Speech On The Middle East and North Africa

What is Tony Blair after now? I fear I know...

31 May 2014

Tony Blair appeared on the Today programme on Tuesday morning to talk about Europe. The televised version showed him against the backdrop of the Brandenburg Gate. He said somewhat predictable… Read more

Main Political Parties Take Heavy Losses In UK Euro Vote

David Cameron's plot to keep us in the EU (it's working)

24 May 2014

I write this before the results of the European elections, making the not very original guess that Ukip will do well. Few have noticed that the rise of Ukip coincides… Read more

Eurovision winner, Conchita Wurst Photo:AFP/Getty

My tax avoidance tip – win literary prizes!

17 May 2014

David Cameron is said to want a woman to be chairman of the BBC Trust, now that Chris Patten has had to retire early because of ill health. Perhaps he… Read more

The funeral of Fusilier Lee Rigby Photo: Getty

It's time for Muslim agitators to stop suing and start debating

10 May 2014

Not long after the murder of Drummer Lee Rigby in Woolwich last summer, I wrote a piece in the Daily Telegraph criticising the concentration on the alleged backlash against Muslims.… Read more

Jury Reaches Verdict In The Trial Of Publicist Max Clifford

The Spectator's Notes: Max Clifford's conviction vindicates juries. But so did the acquittals

3 May 2014

The conviction of Max Clifford for indecent assaults feels like a vindication of the jury system, as did the acquittal of the many other showbiz characters charged under Operation Yewtree.… Read more