×

The Spectator

Cover_020213_issue

2 February 2013

Off the leash

The once-cuddly animal charity seems to have become another species altogether

Subscribe from £12 »

Previous Issues

Features

Cover_RSPCA

Does the RSPCA think it’s the FBI?

2 February 2013

The once-cuddly animal charity seems to have become another species altogether

Hollande

Hollande runs into the sand

2 February 2013

Even the dashing intervention in Mali might not she the French President

Rough Sleeper In Oxford Street

Cold comfort

2 February 2013

Boris Johnson claims his 'emergency shelter' keeps London's homeless off the freezing streets. I put it to the test

Germany's Escort Girls Anticipate Increasing Demand During World Cup

Why even Amsterdam doesn’t want legal brothels

2 February 2013

The Dutch experiment in legalised prostitution has been a disaster

Quarr Abbey stock

Two months as a monk

2 February 2013

A Benedictine monastery on the Isle of Wight is now accepting interns

The Week

Leading article

Bad care

2 February 2013

When the letters ‘NHS’ appeared to the world above the dancing nurses at the Olympic opening ceremony, many in Britain will have imagined two darker words hovering alongside: ‘Mid Staffs’.… Read more

portrait_02-02

Portrait of the week

2 February 2013

Home Britain decided to send 40 ‘military advisers’ to Mali, 70 more with an RAF Sentinel surveillance aircraft and 20 with a C17 transport plane, and 200 to neighbouring states… Read more

Diary

Diary

Simon Barnes

2 February 2013

It’s a rum go, working in sport professionally. Your business is everybody else’s fun; their frivolity is your seriousness. Still, at least I was able to watch the Australian Open… Read more

A&M

Ancient and modern

Socrates vs Rod Liddle

2 February 2013

Last week Rod Liddle suggested that on Question Time the Cambridge classicist Professor Mary Beard did not distinguish herself on the subject of immigration, and concluded that the BBC hired… Read more

Any-Other-Business

Barometer

2 February 2013

A desert mystery Insurgents were reported to have burned tens of thousands of ancient manuscripts in Timbuktu as French troops surrounded the city. Timbuktu has long been a byword for… Read more

Letters

Letters

2 February 2013

Reforming criminal justice Sir: Crime continues to fall under this government and is now at its lowest level since the crime survey began in 1982. But we can’t be complacent.… Read more

Columnists

James_Forsyth-80x98

Cameron will have to fund his Mali adventure

2 February 2013

‘This is the hour of Europe, not the hour of the Americans,’ Jacques Poos, foreign minister of Luxembourg, declared in 1991. Yugoslavia, he said, was a problem in Europe’s neighbourhood… Read more

Rod Liddle

The law doesn’t change just because you’re on horseback

2 February 2013

I’ve just sent off a cheque to the RSPCA in the hope that they will put it towards the costs of bringing another prosecution against those arrogant pink-jacketed psychopaths who… Read more

By_the_books

A tale of HS2 cities

2 February 2013

The route was unveiled this week for phase two of HS2 — and those who got hot under the collar about phase one (London to Birmingham) are furious again, on… Read more

James Delingpole

At last: your chance to make me a kept man

2 February 2013

Sometimes my wife accuses me of being sexist but I really don’t see how this can possibly be because a) I’ve acknowledged for some time that I consider women the… Read more

Hugo Rifkind

Gerald Scarfe isn’t anti-Semitic – but David Ward is

2 February 2013

I’m turning into a Holobore. I can feel it happening, and it’s sapping at my soul. What a week. It started with David Ward, the Lib Dem MP and anti-Semite.… Read more

Vander-Weyer-NEW

I look forward to using my pensioner’s pass on HS2 – and I’ve spotted the people to run it

2 February 2013

Investing £33 billion in HS2 — £46 billion if you accept the Taxpayers’ Alliance’s calculation — won’t boost us out of this triple dip, but it might ease the one… Read more

Books

‘Dark Desires’, 20th century, Gino D’Achille

Secrets and ties

2 February 2013

Jane Ridley says that reports of the death of the family are greatly exaggerated – it has simply mutated

A woman of substance

2 February 2013

Hermione Ranfurly wrote two books. One was called The Ugly One. The other, the first, was called To War with Whitaker. Its success came as a surprise to her, but… Read more

Doing business in Khartoum: China is now Africa’s biggest trading partner

China’s second coming

2 February 2013

It’s a new version of the Yellow Peril. The Chinese are taking over the world, starting with the nasty bits, like Burma, Sudan and Iran, which we are boycotting for… Read more

Going under

2 February 2013

As someone slightly older than Al Alvarez, and also a regular swimmer — although not in the ice-edged Hampstead Heath pools into which he dived for over 60 years —… Read more

TS_Eliot

Playing Possum

2 February 2013

The contending versions of T.S. Eliot on display in the latest bumper instalment of his collected letters are practically legion. To begin with there is the hieratic, if not downright… Read more

A Palestinian helps a smuggler out of a tunnel near Rafah on the Gaza-Egypt border

Gaza stripped bare

2 February 2013

Imagine a piece of land: sandy, roughly rectangular, and about the size of the Isle of Wight. It is surrounded on three sides by desert and hostile neighbours, and on… Read more

Up

2 February 2013

One of the reprinted reviews which make up the bulk of this book opens: ‘I vividly remember when I first read George Orwell. It was at Eton.’ How would it… Read more

gavin_corbett 3

Down to a T

2 February 2013

There are normally three problems with reviews of books which, like This is the Way by Gavin Corbett (Fourth Estate, £14.99), concern the Traveller community. The first is that while… Read more

Arts

A picture to contemplate: ‘Music in the Tuileries Gardens’, 1862, by Manet

Thoroughly modern Manet

2 February 2013

Andrew Lambirth says that the painter’s work has wide relevance today

Githa Sowerby: tough and serious

Unacceptable faces

2 February 2013

Robert Gore-Langton on the revival of a play that upset critics when they realised it was written by a woman

Arts_TheatreMadeleyMorton

Women only

2 February 2013

A triple thick dose of chicklit at Hampstead. Amelia Bullmore’s good-natured comedy has three girls sharing a student house in 1983. Those were the days. Back then we received ‘grants’… Read more

Mauvais goût

2 February 2013

It was dinner at a prize-winning hotel in Burgundy. I looked, stupefied, at an awkward arrangement of trapezoidal plates, unaccommodating to food and unergonomic to both eater and plongeur. There… Read more

Terrifying: John Tomlinson as the Minotaur

Addicted to myth

2 February 2013

The revival of Harrison Birtwistle’s opera The Minotaur is the most significant artistic event at the Royal Opera since its première, almost five years ago. Unlike Thomas Adès’s more immediately… Read more

Changing habits

2 February 2013

The question of who is going to buy EMI Classics has arisen once again in the past few days with the collapse of HMV. This followed on from the collapse… Read more

‘The acrobats are amazing: their bodies doing things I didn’t know bodies could do’

A Cirque to irk

2 February 2013

Just as Les Mis was soaringly monotonous, Cirque du Soleil: Worlds Away (3D) is soaringly pointless. No point to it whatsoever. I looked. I looked everywhere for a point, even… Read more

David and Jackie Siegel: as human as the rest of us

Ordinary people

2 February 2013

There was little reason to be curious about David or Jackie Siegel at the beginning of Queen of Versailles (Monday, BBC4): he is the King of Timeshare and she is… Read more

Aung San Suu Kyi Meets With Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon At UN

‘My country first’

2 February 2013

It’s not unusual for Kirsty Young’s castaways on Desert Island Discs to choose music that reminds them of people who are important to them. But Aung San Suu Kyi must… Read more

Culture

Time Travel

2 February 2013

Merrily We Roll Along (Menier Chocolate Factory, until 9 March) lets you escape the winter cold to a showbiz party in a Bel Air beach house. Still, despite its summery… Read more

Life

High life

High life

High life

2 February 2013

Good for you, Clive, as in James, on your television criticism for the Telegraph. Not many people nowadays know how good a painter Gerald Murphy was. Richard E. Grant pointed… Read more

Low life

Low life

Low life

2 February 2013

A superstitious Devon woman who lived and died in the residential home run by my parents, used to reckon that, if her first glimpse of a new moon was through… Read more

Real life

Real life

Real life

2 February 2013

When it is too painful to go forward any more, it is time to go back. And so it was that I found myself in the Oxfam bookshop down a… Read more

Long life

Long life

Long life

2 February 2013

I went to a funeral last Saturday, a depressingly frequent occurrence at my age. But it was an exceptional funeral, not only because of its gloriously peaceful rural setting amid… Read more

TheTurf

The turf

Sporting greats

2 February 2013

I don’t just love jumping horses — I love the folk who train them and ride them and those who watch them doing it, too. Open the sports pages on… Read more

Bridge_020213

Bridge

2 February 2013

Once you’ve made a fool of yourself in public often enough, you pretty much stop minding. At least, that’s my experience of playing bridge on Vugraph (which is broadcast online,… Read more

Chess-Column2013

Chess

Opposite bishops

2 February 2013

No, not the Church of England and its troubles with the question of whether women should be allowed to be bishops, but chess endgames, with rival bishops moving respectively on… Read more

Chess-Solution2013a

Chess puzzle

Puzzle no. 251

2 February 2013

Black to play. This position is a variation from Caruana-Nakamura, Wijk aan Zee 2013. Black is two pawns down but White is badly tied up. How can Black continue? Answers… Read more

Investigation

Competition

Supersize me

2 February 2013

In Competition No. 2782 you were invited to submit a poem in praise of fatness. Thanks to John Whitworth for this magnificent and timely topic. What better, at this self-flagellatory… Read more

Crossword-Puzzle2013

Crossword

2098: Song IX

2 February 2013

Four unclued lights might justly sing ‘4D/18/13’ (five words in total). A relevant pair of clued lights must be shaded.   Across 10    European secretes strange smeary enzyme (10) 11   … Read more

Crossword-Solution2013

Crossword solution

2095: Getting around

2 February 2013

The unclued lights are alcoholic drinks, and thus might be included, if one was getting a round in. First prize David Heath, Elston, Newark Runners-up Mrs J. Vernalls, Thame, Oxfordshire;… Read more

Toby Young

Status anxiety

Kenyan highways

2 February 2013

Before setting off for Kenya, where I’m spending six weeks helping The Spectator’s ‘Wild life’ columnist, Aidan Hartley, set up a school, I worried about the safety of my family.… Read more

Dave_2feb
Rory_Sutherland

The Wiki Man

Doing more with less

2 February 2013

If you ever need confirmation that necessity is the mother of invention, you can do worse than watch one of the rash of property programmes on Channel 4. A typical… Read more

Dear Mary

Dear Mary

2 February 2013

Q. Having recently relocated to my company’s Russian office, I now report to an uncouth Homo sovieticus. Knowing he’s the product of a society that had no time for so-called… Read more

Drink

Drink

A reason to like Ted Heath

2 February 2013

My reference to Taylor’s ’55 elicited a number of communications about the glories of old port — and one on a less glorious veteran: old Edward Heath. When the Tory… Read more

Mind Your Language

Mind your language

Onesie

2 February 2013

The onesie has brought Britain one step nearer fainéant infantilism than the slanket. The slanket, a portmanteau of sleeved and blanket, reached a height of popularity in 2009. It looked… Read more