The Spectator

Barometer | 30 May 2019

Barometer | 30 May 2019
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Tears for fears

Theresa May welled up while announcing her resignation in Downing Street. How often do leaders cry?

— Lady Thatcher was seen to have tears in her eyes while being driven away from Downing Street for the last time.

— Tony Blair nearly broke down in public, but not while in office — while responding to the publication of the Chilcot Report in 2016.

— Several US presidents have been witnessed crying — and at a time when it was rare for men to be seen showing emotion in public. Dwight Eisenhower

had to cover his face with a napkin to hide his tears in 1952, when recalling wartime experiences.

— In the same year Richard Nixon was seen crying after surviving a funding scandal and being retained as vice-presidential candidate.

— Barack Obama was seen to wipe away tears on several occasions, from Aretha Franklin’s singing at his inauguration to his farewell speech.

— Australian prime ministers have been frequent blubbers. Malcolm Fraser was seen to cry after losing the 1983 general election to Bob Hawke. Not to be outdone, Hawke burst into tears during several interviews as PM, over Tiananmen Square and his private life

Up, up and away

A photograph showed mountaineers queuing to reach the summit of Everest — with delays leading to at least 11 deaths. How many people climb Everest

annually? Between 1975, when Chris Bonnington’s expedition tackled the

south-west face, and 2014, Everest was climbed at least once a year. In 1990, 72 people reached the summit, and in 2000, 145 got there. Since 2012, the numbers reaching the summit:







2015 (earthquake closed mountain)








The price of uniformity

Princess Charlotte is to start school at a private school in Battersea where the uniform is reported to cost £550. How much do parents spend on school uniform?

— £192.14 for a boy at primary school

— £201.04 for a girl at primary school

— £231.01 for a boy at secondary school

— £239.93 for a girl at secondary school

— PE kit added a further £87.67