James Forsyth



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


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


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


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


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


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


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

Politics: It’s grim up North for Tories

5 May 2012

It is perhaps inevitable that, after two years in government, the Tories settled on a local election strategy of holding on to as much as they can. It is rare… Read more

Politics: Cameron and the civil service coup

21 April 2012

There is a split in the Cameron circle. The divide is between those who think that the problems of the past few weeks have been a blip, one that will… Read more

Politics:  Which party will win the anti-politics vote?

14 April 2012

One might think that the Cameroons would be desperate about a poll showing their leader’s personal approval rating to be the lowest it has ever been. But the Prime Minister’s… Read more

Politics: How Boris could rescue Dave

7 April 2012

Downing Street is, in the words of one senior aide, in a mood of ‘sober reflection’ about how and why so many things have gone wrong in the past fortnight.… Read more

Politics: The cost of giving

31 March 2012

David Cameron was in a foul mood on Monday night. ‘Cash for Cameron’, the scandal about a Tory treasurer trying to lure donors with the prospect of dinner in the… Read more

Politics: Osborne goes for growth

24 March 2012

This Budget was a reminder that political tactics alone are not enough to explain George Osborne’s actions. The most striking thing about it was the political risks that it took… Read more


Siege mentality

24 March 2012
The Man Without a Face: The Unlikely Rise of Vladimir Putin Masha Gessen

Granta, pp.320, 20

The Strongman: Vladimir Putin and the Struggle for Russia Angus Roxburgh

I.B. Tauris, pp.352, 20

The mirrored sunglasses worn by Putin on the cover of Angus Roxburgh’s The Strongman give the Russian president the look of a crude mafia boss, while the half-face photo on… Read more

Politics: Taking back the cities

17 March 2012

When the Prime Minister’s chief adviser, Steve Hilton, quits Downing Street in May, he’ll leave behind what he believes to be a mechanism to solve the Conservatives’ biggest electoral problem,… Read more

Politics: A struggle for the Tory soul

10 March 2012

Walking back to the Palace of Westminster the other day, I bumped into a new Tory MP. He was eager to tell me what the Chancellor should do in the… Read more

Politics: The Liberal Democrats hold the key to boundary reform – and therefore the next election

3 March 2012

The Cameroons believe they have come up with a policy that will deliver at least 20 more Tory seats at the next election. No. 10 is, understandably, determined to get… Read more