John Howard is defying political gravity. After nearly ten years as Prime Minister of Australia he has no serious challengers. Tony Blair, by contrast, hobbles along performing an excellent impression of a fellow in the crippled poultry phase of his leadership. At 66, Howard is 14 years older than Blair. He has served a year longer in office, and he has won four elections to Blair’s three.
The nightmare of the Catholic Church in Ireland continues. Last month a US law firm, Manly & Maguire, ann- ounced it was suing the Irish diocese that trained the busy paedophile priest Oliver O’Grady. This worthy is now at the centre of at least 17 multi-million-dollar child-abuse lawsuits in the Californian diocese of Stockton.
Worse is to come. Another 18 Irish priests are facing multiple-abuse charges in California alone, with law firms hustling for their share of the action against the Irish dioceses from which they came.
Ross Clark on the workers who milk the rest of us by retiring early as a result of ‘ill health’The next few months may well see the political death of Tony Blair. But whether he will get buried is another matter. In an echo of the public-sector bolshieness 27 winters ago that eventually brought down the Callaghan government, public-sector unions have renewed their threat to stage a national strike over proposals to raise their normal retirement age from 60 to 65.
I am surprised, incidentally, that our tradi-tional enemies do not object that only Aryan names are used for these disasters — why no Hurricane Isidores or Chaims?David Irving offers up his observations on the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, September 2005.David Irving, the British histo-rian and alleged ‘Holocaust denier’ will be spending this Christmas and New Year in a Viennese prison cell while the Austrian authorities attempt to cobble together a charge against him relating to something he said 16 years ago.
Simon Nixon on what happens when North Sea oil runs out — and we have to do without the drug that fuelled the boom yearsThe New Labour spin doctor’s handbook has clear guidelines on how to deal with a crisis. First, deny it exists. If that doesn’t work, attack anybody who dares draw attention to the problem, usually subjecting them to a vicious smear campaign. And, if all else fails, blame it on Europe.