The Spectator

Barometer | 6 December 2018

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Big defeats

Could the vote on the Brexit deal set a record for a government defeat in the Commons? Aside from opposition day motions and other votes where nothing substantive is at stake, the post-1945 record is shamefully held by MPs who voted against the Major government’s attempt to limit pay rises for MPs (motion lost by 215 votes). Other hefty defeats (with the margin of defeat):

1978 (Labour, Jim Callaghan) Opposition amendment demanding income tax basic rate be cut from 34% to 33%, 108 votes.}

2014 (Coalition, David Cameron) Under-occupancy rules for social housing, 75 votes.

1978 (Labour, Jim Callaghan) Clause on Wales devolution referendum, 72 votes.

1975 (Labour, Harold Wilson) Disclosure of government economic forecasts, 71 votes.

1978 (Labour, Jim Callaghan) Rules on Scotland devolution bill, 58 votes.

Far-away people

An American missionary who tried to introduce Christianity to a remote tribe on North Sentinal Island was killed by arrows and buried by the group. How many such tribes remain in the world?

Andaman Islands 2 groups, the Sentinelese, who are believed to number at least a few dozen and the Jarawas, who number a few hundred.

Brazil 77 tribes at the government’s count.

Papau/West Papau 44 tribes known.

Peru 15 tribes believed to exist.

Bolivia 7 known groups (total pop. ~1,000).

Venezuela 3 groups.

Paraguay 1 tribe.

What’s the catch?

President Macron threatened to force Britain into the ‘backstop’ if it did not continue to allow French trawlers to fish in UK waters. Who were the biggest fish-producers in the EU in 2015?

Haul in 1,000s of tonnes

Spain

1,195

UK

913

Denmark

905

France

661

Netherlands

427

Italy

340

Source: Eurostat

Zipping it

Environmentalists demanded a decision by the Lake District National Park to allow a mile-long zip wire be reviewed. Where are the longest five zip wires in the world?

Parque de Aventura,

Barrancas del Cobre, Mexico

8,350ft

Toro Verde Adventure Park,

Puerto Rico

7,590ft

Eye of the Jaguar,

Sacred Valley, Peru

7,000ft

Crimean Hawk, Sudah, Russia

6,631ft

Sun City, South Africa

6,561ft