The Spectator


1 August 2015

Osborne rules

The Chancellor has Westminster in his grip

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Previous Issues



Inside George Osborne’s empire: how the Chancellor rules Westminster

1 August 2015

His friends prosper; his enemies wither. But how long can it last?

Paul Mason, Economics Editor of the BBC'

Paul Mason's Postcapitalism is proof that the left is out of ideas

1 August 2015

It's in a long left-wing tradition of consolation and self-reassurance in the face of economic reality


Lesbos: the tourist island where half Greece's migrants land

1 August 2015

Dispatches from the beach: ‘The smugglers don’t care what happens – they just put you on the boat and say: go’


Charities are the last bastion of corporate greed

1 August 2015

Their fundraising practices will have to change, after a huge increase in complaints from the public

Donald Trump Holds Campaign Rally And Picnic In Iowa

The Republicans are ready to win – once they’ve dumped Donald Trump

1 August 2015

American conservatism has become accustomed to a narrow, purist appeal. It doesn’t have to be

Look homeward, angel: Glasgow Necropolis

The graveyard where old Glasgow lives on

1 August 2015

If the Science Centre represents a transition from shipyard to pleasure dome, the Necropolis still stands for the Second City of the Empire

The Week

The State Opening Of Parliament

Leading article

Look beyond the Sewel video: the House of Lords still works

1 August 2015

The second chamber plays a valuable role in parliament


Portrait of the week

Portrait of the week

Home A man died when 1,500 migrants tried to enter the Channel Tunnel terminal in Calais in one night. The night before, 2,000 had tried. Theresa May, the Home Secretary,… Read more



Road rage and hot air balloons: Jessie Burton’s diary

1 August 2015

The author of The Miniaturist on horse-racing, solitariness, editors and Twitter

Oxford Circus

From The Archives

Out of service

1 August 2015

From ‘The new standard’, The Spectator, 24 July 1915: If a change must be made at all, it is worthwhile to make a great change, to put right our mistakes, to… Read more



Just how hard is it to sack a lord?

Plus: money laundering; drugs in sport; IQ and income


Ancient and modern

Aristotle wouldn't have rated Jeremy Corbyn’s fan club

1 August 2015

The enthusiasm of the young is not an unmixed blessing, as the Greek philosopher knew



Spectator letters: Housing associations fight back; and more world-wrecking British graduates

Plus: legislation to pursue the Isis brainwashers; Low Life’s violent episode; a case against the RAF; and milkmen



Whoever wins the Labour leadership, Blairism is at death’s door

1 August 2015

The ‘modernisers’ are curiously stuck in the 1990s – while the party membership has shifted far to the left

Spectators notes

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

1 August 2015

Plus: the surprising pleasures of a cruise; revisiting Honfleur; the Pink ’Un; Jeremy Corbyn’s out-of-date beard

Rod Liddle

Jeremy Corbyn won’t destroy Labour. But he might yet destroy the country

1 August 2015

With only the slenderest tweaking of the national mood, it could conceivably happen


‘Not to worry, just a gang killing’: the mantra of the metropolitan middle classes

1 August 2015

Their extreme indifference isn’t just amoral, it’s a cause of crime

James Delingpole

The wonders of the Muslim world that my children will never get to see

1 August 2015

More often than not, my most memorable travel experiences happened in Muslim countries. I can't see the same happening in a generation's time


I remember Nikkei’s journalistic values – and I’m not sure they’re much like the FT’s

1 August 2015

Plus: Busting myths on Lloyds’s takeover of HBOS; AO World’s troubles; and the thrilling Yanis Varoufakis


The refrigerator takes centre stage at a 1920s luncheon party

Cooling is as important to civilisation as making fire — only much harder

1 August 2015

Chilled, Tom Jackson’s enthralling history of how refrigeration changed the world, takes us from Mesopotamian ice-houses to the Large Hadron Collider

The Clouded Yellow, especially vulnerable to cold, wet weather, is rare in Britain and usually confined to the South Downs and south coast

We all love butterflies — so why are we wiping them out?

1 August 2015

Two new books — Rainbow Dust by Peter Marren and In Pursuit of Butterflies by Matthew Oates — celebrate the powerful myths surrounding these ravishing ephemera


A novel to cure fear of missing out

1 August 2015

Left of the Bang, Claire Lowden’s sparky fictional debut, is a comic exposé of the non-glamour of London life, where no one’s having fun

A shopping centre is engulfed in flames during the Los Angeles riots, 1992 (Photo: Getty)

The gangs of LA are caught in an unending bloody vendetta

1 August 2015

All Involved, Ryan Gattis’s buzzing thriller about riots and racial tension in 1992, might just as well have been set yesterday

Riots occur in Uighur, the muslim capital of Xinjiang (Photo: Getty)

China’s repressive policy towards its Islamic fringe has badly backfired

1 August 2015

There was no Islamic extremism in China until Beijing inadvertently created it, according to Nick Holdstock’s measured history of the Uighurs of Xinjiang

Illusions of grandeur: Roy Strong as a Stuart king (Charles I, after Sir Anthony Van Dyck)

Camp carnival: Roy Strong’s 80th birthday pageant

1 August 2015

Sir Roy poses as Henry VIII, Rasputin, Tennyson and other assorted princes, priests and poets in a series of mock masterpieces by the photographer John Swannell

This year Alice in Wonderland celebrates its 150th anniversary (Photo: Getty

Green djinns and a green boy: the best summer reading for children

1 August 2015

Melanie McDonagh’s selections include adventures in Wonderland and in space

Rabdentse, near Pelling, the ruined former capital of Sikkim, with Mount Kanchenjunga in the distance

The story of Sikkim’s last king and queen reads like a fairy tale gone wrong

1 August 2015

Glamour, romance and a deposed monarch are vividly evoked in Andrew Duff’s nostalgic history of the beleaguered Himalayan former kingdom

Author Paul Murray (Photo: Getty)

A broad farce about banking’s dirty secrets in post-Celtic-Tiger Dublin

1 August 2015

The Mark and the Void, Paul Murray’s follow-up to the much acclaimed Skippy Dies, is sharp, satirical and utterly of the moment


Fringe rubbish: Company Non Nova’s ‘L’Apres-Midi d’un Foehn’, a highlight of 2013

‘I’m about to lose a lot of money’: our theatre critic prepares for his Edinburgh Fringe debut

1 August 2015

After ten years of covering Edinburgh, Lloyd Evans can at least predict the errors he can't avoid blundering into

After countless hours of secret discussion the successor to Simon Rattle was announced as Krill Petrenko (Photo: Getty)

Why are symphony orchestras expected to survive indefinitely?

1 August 2015

We forget that the great symphony orchestras like the Berlin Philharmonic were once radical project ensembles — until they became part of the establishment

Turner's 'Shakespeare Cliff, Dover' (c.1825)

Whole worlds are conjured up in a few strokes: Watercolour at the Fitzwilliam Museum reviewed

1 August 2015

Plus: a Californian light and space artist who would have interested Turner at the White Cube

The Car Man (Photo: Bill Cooper)

You can feel as if you’re in a colony of rabbits: Matthew Bourne’s Car Man reviewed

1 August 2015

The London Coliseum’s latest dance gala showed that Bourne’s supremacy as the master of popular dance theatre is being challenged by his partner Arthur Pita

An abundance of spectacle: Iestyn Davies as David, with Sophie Bevan as Michal

Startling and sublime - even the candles got a round of applause: Glyndebourne’s Saul reviewed

1 August 2015

But for really stylish Handelian string playing head to Iford Manor’s 80s-inspired Agrippina

Life in Squares, BBC2

Bohemian conformity can be just as suffocating as any other type: BBC1’s Life in Squares reviewed

1 August 2015

Plus: BBC1’s new Agatha Christie adaptation Partners in Crime should be somewhere between a disappointment and a car crash

Shakespeare's Richard II (Photo: Johan Persson)
You can’t keep your eyes off Iris

Fashion tips - and replacement hips - from a nonagenarian style icon: Iris reviewed

1 August 2015

There is something captivating about Albert Maysles’s documentary portrait of Iris Apfel and her mad outfits

Tallulah Bankhead (Photo: Getty)

If the government have their way, will Radio 4’s dramas be broken up by ads for dentures?

1 August 2015

Plus: why Radio 4’s Inside the Ethics Committee is as gripping as any drama. And we have a nose around the tiny libraries of New Zealand


High life

High life

Manners matter, even at an orgy

1 August 2015

We all agree that a world without manners would make this a pretty grim place to live. Offensive informality is pretty much accepted nowadays, and manners are at times seen… Read more

Low life

Low life

My glimpse into the brotherhood of bouncers

1 August 2015

After Trev had mugged the mugger in the toilet we moved quickly on to another club. The Double O is frankly a horrible place, but it stays open later than… Read more

Real life

Real life

I don’t do WhatsApp, and that’s final

1 August 2015

‘No, I do not do WhatsApp.’ That’s pretty much all I ever seem to say to people nowadays. They ask me if I do WhatsApp, I say I don’t do… Read more

Long life

Long life

My role in saving The Spectator

1 August 2015

I was wondering what to write about this week when I suddenly realised that exactly 40 years ago this Saturday I became editor of this magazine. Despite eventually getting the… Read more




Imagine going to a golf tournament and finding yourself competing against Rory McIlroy; or a tennis match and facing Roger Federer. That’s the wonderful thing about bridge: turn up to… Read more



Stormy Petroff

1 August 2015

Alexander Petroff (1794-1867) is often remembered as the first great Russian chess master. He became the strongest player in Russia at the age of 15 and produced the first chess… Read more


Chess puzzle

No. 372

1 August 2015

White to play. This position is from Howell-Sokolov, Staunton Memorial 2009. How can White finish off his attack with a fine flourish? Answers to me at The Spectator by Tuesday… Read more



Open and shut case

1 August 2015

In Competition No. 2908 you were invited to submit a comically appalling opening to an imaginary novel. Thanks are due to the inventor of the annual Bulwer-Lytton fiction contest from… Read more



2222: Exquisite

1 August 2015

One unclued light (hyphened) is a 38 of a word hidden in the grid. Two unclued lights are definitions of the hidden word, which is also the surname of a… Read more


Crossword solution

To 2219: Keep going

1 August 2015

Unclued lights complete the titles of Carry On films. First prize Tony Hankey, London W4 Runners-up Mark Roberts, Hostert, Luxembourg; Tony Dew, London SW13

Toby Young

Status anxiety

It's my duty to expose my children to the moral depravity of Acton

1 August 2015

A few years ago, I got a bit fed up with receiving Christmas cards from my friends designed to show off just how well they were doing. A typical card… Read more


Battle for Britain

Battle for Britain

1 August 2015

The Wiki Man

Turn the licence fee into a digital currency – and save more than just the BBC

1 August 2015

What follows is a proposal for reducing the BBC licence fee and improving the corporation’s output while saving the British newspaper industry. All that’s involved is a basic understanding of… Read more

Dear Mary

Dear Mary

Dear Mary: Dare I put my wife and three ex-mistresses all at the same table?

Q. I have learned that someone I much admired in youth is about to become single again. I only have the sketchiest details but am single myself and keen to… Read more



A six-year-old sharpshooter and a New Zealand white – both bound to improve with age

1 August 2015

The Honourable Society of Odd Bottles began proceedings with a report on the activities of our junior branch. These youngsters are not yet eligible to become drinking members, but they… Read more

Mind Your Language

Mind your language

Why I hate ‘I love that…’

1 August 2015

I had never heard the Country (Red Dirt) singer Wade Bowen before, although his latest album Hold my Beer (Vol 1) has already sold 14,000 copies. On an earlier album, he… Read more