Featured articles


The windfarm delusion

The government has finally seen through the wind-farm scam – but why did it take them so long? To the nearest whole number, the percentage of the world’s energy that comes from wind turbines today is: zero. Despite the regressive subsidy (pushing pensioners into fuel poverty while improving the wine cellars of grand estates), despite

Putin power

Sunday will be Russia’s Coronation Day. The emperor is back from his constitutionally imposed four-year break, Dmitri Medvedev, the fill-in, finds his coach turning back into a prime ministerial pumpkin, and Vladimir Putin will be president for another term: only this time it’s been extended to six years. President of Russia till 2018, and he’ll

Secrets of Singapore

They learned from us – now we need to learn from them The last time I visited Singapore, I stayed at the charmingly run-down, distinctly colonial Raffles Hotel. I drank a Singapore Sling in the Long Bar, contemplated a well-fed cockroach in my room and fancied myself to be following in the footsteps of Somerset

An astronaut at 80

In a couple of weeks, Alan Bean will turn 80. He’s not planning any special celebration. If he does go out, it will probably be to a local restaurant in Houston, Texas. ‘I’ve eaten barbecue at this restaurant once a week, have done for 15 years,’ he tells me. ‘Nobody there has any idea that

Coventry blues

He who would see England’s future should be separated for a while from the better parts of London and sent (literally, not metaphorically) to Coventry. There, amid the hideous and dilapidating buildings of a failed modernism, he will see precincts with half the shops boarded up, where youths in hoodies skateboard all day along the

‘A little bit extra’

A very chic lady turned to me at a dinner party recently and in tremulous tones confided that she was being investigated for benefit fraud. ‘Infernal cheek,’ I said. ‘How typical that our chaotic benefits system should make such a stupid mistake. Instead of going after the layabouts, some idiot pen-pusher has put two and

Private property

Celebrities have a right to profit from the exploitation of personal information – and so do you Something has been bugging me about the Leveson inquiry, and it’s not a private investigator hired by News International. It’s the pervasive line of defence that you hear when it comes to the invasion of privacy, and with