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Australian odyssey

I must admit that the first arts event in which I participated on arriving in Australia was entirely by chance. Sitting in the sun on the restaurant terrace of the Museum of Contemporary Art in Sydney, looking at the ferries bustling in and out of Circular Quay, I picked up a small printed notice that

The state can’t set you free

The Human Rights Act has seemed to many to be an innocent adaptation of principles already contained within our common law, and indeed affirmed by statute once before, in the Bill of Rights of 1689. Seen in this way, the Act is no more than an affirmation of an ancient principle of our jurisdiction, which

Ankara should be wary of Brussels

Earlier this month Turkey’s bid to join the European Union crept past the tipping point from possibility to probability. The European Commission recommended that accession negotiations be opened with Ankara, and the outgoing enlargement commissioner Günter Verheugen announced that ‘no further obstacles remain’ on Turkey’s path. The news sent the Turkish press into frenzies of

How Labour is turning Britain into a land of paupers

If there was one reason above any other for the British electorate’s flight to socialism in 1945, it was surely the means test. In some ways the national government’s grudging state charity of the Depression years was worse than nothing. For his ha’p’orth of black pudding, the 1930s welfare claimant had first to surrender his