The Week

Leading article

A return to normality

It is easy to mock the most strident critics of capitalism, like Bernie Sanders and Jeremy Corbyn. It’s harder to ask whether they might actually have a point. Consider the past ten years of evidence. Since the collapse of Lehman Brothers, wages for ordinary workers have been on the floor — even today, the average

Portrait of the week

Portrait of the week | 8 February 2018

Home Stagecoach and Virgin could only manage to run the East Coast rail franchise for a few more weeks, Chris Grayling, the Transport Secretary, said, because ‘Stagecoach got its numbers wrong. It overbid.’ To cut 2,000 Royal Marines and the Royal Navy’s two specialist landing ships, a plan considered by the Ministry of Defence, would


Diary – 8 February 2018

I’ve been meaning to write a Spectator diary since the summer but as a Gemini with Aries rising I find I have the annoying trait (just the one?) of being too easily distracted. Not by social media as so many are — Twittering and Instagramming only grab my attention for a couple of minutes each

Ancient and modern

The emptiness of ‘issues’

Jeremy Corbyn is the master of ‘raising issues’. He received an obscure prize last year for his ‘work for disarmament and peace’ — i.e. talking about it. He ‘raised issues about human rights in Iran’, he said, when he worked for TV there. It will be at the ‘centre of my foreign policy’. The ancient


Barometer | 8 February 2018

How to sell snake oil Ex-cabinet secretary Lord O’Donnell accused Brexiteers of ‘selling snake oil’. How do you sell snake oil? Some eBay listings: — Original snake oil. £11.99 for 125ml. ‘Natural hair treatment. No chemicals. Feeds the hair and protects from precipitation. Free from alcohol. Country or region of manufacture: Saudi Arabia.’ — Snake


Letters | 8 February 2018

Stop knocking May Sir: I find this knocking of Theresa May increasingly depressing (‘Theresa’s choice’, 3 February). She has a terrible job which she was dropped into when David Cameron resigned. She was a Remainer, yet she is expected to steer the UK through the Brexit process of leaving the EU with no experience, as it has