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Art for the people

How do people respond to Rubens these days? Is all that lush flesh so out of fashion that he is of historical interest only? The good people of Lille evidently think not, for a large and ambitious Rubens exhibition has been organised under the special patronage of M. Jacques Chirac to celebrate the fact that

No youth at all

Freddie Sayers went to an EU conference for young people in Ireland — and no one turned up. Euroenthusiasm is not groovy Imagine a huge celebrity wedding before any of the guests have arrived. A romantic Irish castle, a giant marquee with ruched egg-white lining and silver-birch detail, flurries of organisers talking into radios and

No hanging chads, please

Bob Alexander on the need to reform the voting system to get rid of ‘electoral bias’ One of New Labour’s most outspoken commitments in opposition was that it would reform Parliament. It vowed to make the House of Lords more democratic and representative and later committed itself to the Wakeham recommendation to introduce some elected

Nothing to fear but fear itself

Simon Jenkins says that Tony Blair’s Sedgefield speech was just another attempt by the Prime Minister to scare us into believing that we are all in mortal danger. We are not ‘And the clouds came flying through the air bringing winds and hurling lightning and arrows, and it rained hail, fire and swords, and killed