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James Forsyth

Politicsrss

Norman Lamont as seen by The Spectator's Peter Brooks during his reign as Chancellor.

Norman Lamont

25 May 2013

I was surprised to be told, by the editor of this magazine, that next week will mark the 20th anniversary of my standing down as Chancellor. The anniversary had entirely… Read more

Chris Patten (left), chairman of the BBC Trust, with Tony Hall, the new Director General of the BBC

Why does the BBC so love lefty journalists?

25 May 2013

My response to the appointment of Ian Katz, deputy editor of the Guardian, to the editorship of BBC2’s Newsnight has been one of disbelief and amusement. Of course there’s nothing… Read more

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The secret of David Cameron’s Europe strategy: he doesn’t have one

18 May 2013

Shortly before the Conservative party conference last year, the head of the Fresh Start Group of Eurosceptic Conservative MPs went in to see the Prime Minister in Downing Street. The… Read more

nadine dorries

Nadine Dorries interview: why I want to run as a UKIP-Tory joint candidate

18 May 2013

It’s not often you see Tory MPs celebrating anything, but on Monday a bunch of them were packed into an office high in Portcullis House to toast the rehabilitation of… Read more

First Cabinet Meeting Is Held Since The Recent Elections And Reshuffle

5 Days in May, by Andrew Adonis - review

18 May 2013
5 Days in May: The Coalition and Beyond Andrew Adonis

Biteback, pp.185, £12.99, ISBN: 9781849545662

Andrew Adonis enjoyed a week of glory in 2010. The former Lib Dem activist was asked to join Labour’s negotiating team as they tried to forge a coalition with Nick… Read more

Nigel Farage reacts during a press confe

Why the Tories need their own Nigel Farage

11 May 2013

There are two talking points in Westminster this week. One is about who is up and who is down following the local council elections. This finds the Cameroons privately pleased… Read more

Why isn't Charles Moore part of the ruling elite? Photo: Getty

Why do journalists think they’re not part of the ruling elite?

11 May 2013

Look, we’ve known each other a while, you and I, so I think it’s time for a confession. It’s a big one, this. I haven’t even told my parents yet.… Read more

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Britain can’t afford to surrender to the greens on shale gas

11 May 2013

The scandal of official reluctance to develop Britain’s shale gas potential is at last beginning to surface. It may prove to be the dress rehearsal for the ultimate drama —… Read more

BRITAIN-ENVIRONMENT-BEES-PESTICIDES

The Queen’s speech can’t repeal the Law of Unintended Consequences

11 May 2013

Last week, the European Commission voted to ban three pesticides which are said to harm bees. Everyone loves bees, so perhaps we should all be rejoicing? Well, I’m afraid my… Read more

'Do you vote for the party of our leader, Adolf Hitler? Yes. No.’

The Hitler guide to rigging a referendum

11 May 2013

In 1964 Harold Wilson was so afraid that a scheduled election-night broadcast of Steptoe & Son would cost him at least a dozen marginal seats that he successfully pressured the… Read more

Game-changing

11 May 2013

In the days when we had bottles of milk delivered, some tits discovered how to peck through the foil tops and consume the cream beneath. Suddenly all the tits were… Read more

The arts, the Ancient Greeks and Maria Miller

4 May 2013

The Culture Secretary, Maria Miller, has said the arts world must make the case for public funding by focusing on its economic, not artistic, value; it must ‘hammer home the… Read more

castro

Don’t believe the hype: the French still live better than Americans

4 May 2013

In recent months I’ve read at least ten articles about French malaise — all of it apparently due to some mysterious Gallic trait that makes the world’s luckiest people unable… Read more

Margaret Thatcher: The Authorized Biography, by Charles Moore, and Not for Turning, by Robin Harris - review

4 May 2013
Margaret Thatcher: The Authorized Biography, Volume One Not for Turning Charles Moore

Allen Lane, pp.859, £30, ISBN: 978071399282

Not for Turning: The Life of Margaret Thatcher Robin Harris

Bantam, pp.493, £20, ISBN: 9780593058916

It is a measure of Lady Thatcher’s standing that her death has been followed not only by the mealy-mouthed compliments from political opponents which are normally forthcoming on such occasions… Read more

Britain-Britain's Breakup?

Scotland is an ingenious country saddled with the most witless politicians in Europe. Why give them more power?

27 April 2013

It would be all too easy this week to argue that the case for Scottish independence is falling apart. Alex Salmond is an able politician and a peerless mischief-maker, but… Read more

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A rare mood of unity descends on the Conservatives

27 April 2013

The idea that ‘loyalty is the Conservative party’s secret weapon’ was always dubious. Benjamin Disraeli, for instance, made his name attacking a sitting Conservative prime minister. This, though, did not… Read more

france-split2

Why France's gay marriage debate has started to look like a revolution

27 April 2013

Paris: Revolutions are often sparked by an unexpected shock to an already weakened regime. As commentators in France remark not only on the crisis engulfing François Hollande’s government but also on… Read more

McLaren

My battle with Britain's mean, ineffective immigration system

27 April 2013

When I first came to this country nearly a decade ago, Britain wanted immigrants like me. Back then you could get a visa just for being creative. It was called… Read more

Margaret H. Thatcher

The Falklands victory

13 April 2013

A little rejoicing is now in order, but only a little. We may rejoice that the Falklands war did not end in a bloodbath at Port Stanley, that the Argentinians… Read more

BRITAIN-ECONOMY-BUDGET

For once, Osborne will be glad not to be the story

23 March 2013

A few years ago George Osborne would have bristled at the idea that one of his budgets wouldn’t be the biggest event of the political week. His ability to conjure… Read more

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Lord Rennard, Mark Oaten and the Lib Dems’ embarrassing adolescence

2 March 2013

Imagine if seven Tory Cabinet ministers had resigned since David Cameron became Prime Minister. Then think about another seven being accused of having covered up alleged sexual misconduct by a… Read more

The Spectator’s Notes

1 December 2012

There is excitement that a foreigner could have been made Governor of the Bank of England. But the truth is that Canadians (and Australians and New Zealanders) are not really… Read more

After the celebrations, a summer of discontent

2 June 2012

The next few days will see David Cameron doing what he does best: looking the part. Whether it is the Jubilee celebrations or the Olympic torch relay, Cameron can be… Read more

Politics: Don’t bet on Ed Miliband to win it for the Tories

19 May 2012

In the past few difficult months, the Cameroons have taken comfort from their belief that Ed Miliband will never be prime minister. After the local elections earlier this month, when… Read more

Politics: Why a European referendum is now almost certain

12 May 2012

The Romford Pledge might not have the same ring to it as the Tamworth Manifesto. But Boris Johnson’s decision while campaigning last month to sign up to the campaign for… Read more