The Week

Leading article

Heels over head

The news that union members at the TUC Congress are eager to ban high heels in the workplace, for health and safety reasons, confirms a number of our long-held theories. First, that dreaming up health and safety hazards is more of a hobby than a job for union officials. Rather than focus on real risks,

Summit about nothing

As a rule of thumb, it is wise to ignore anything said at any summit beginning with the letter G. When Harold Wilson went to the G6 summit in 1975 there was a point: there had just been an oil crisis so Britain, France, West Germany, Italy, Japan and the United States got together to


Diary – 19 September 2009

Everywhere I go in Manhattan I meet British tourists. ‘Oi, Boris,’ they shout across the street, ‘who let you out, then?’ How come it is the Brits, with their puny devalued pounds, who are swarming through the streets of New York, when the New Yorkers have stopped coming to London? Tourism from North America to

Diary of a Notting Hill Nobody | 19 September 2009

MONDAY Double code red alert: Dave’s going too grey! Huge postmortem into why we let a sprinkling of hairs which put him in touch with older voters escalate into whole patches of grey which led to an interviewer at the weekend uttering the T word*. Obviously there are things we can do to minimise impact

Ancient and modern

Ancient & modern | 19 September 2009

Is ‘progress’  happiness and relationships or philosophical awareness and self-discipline? ‘What is “progress”?’ asks President Sarkozy, and answers ‘happiness and relationships’. One looks forward to his ‘progressive’ policies. The ancients would have thought him mad. Greeks and Romans took the view that, far from things getting better, they were getting worse. The ages of gold,

More from The Week

Clegg needs to find a way out of No Man’s Land

Not many people know this, but next week will be Nick Clegg’s third annual conference as Liberal Democrat leader. It often seems as if he is still awaiting his debut. The last two conferences were overshadowed by falling pieces of financial masonry (Northern Rock then Lehman Bros) and thus the leader was overshadowed by Vince


Letters | 19 September 2009

Clever culling Sir: As the chairman from 1995 to 2000 of the government’s biggest and most worthwhile quango, the Environment Agency for England and Wales, I would like to make two comments on Dennis Sewell’s article (‘Cameron must cull the quangos’, 5 September). Sewell seems to think that the Nolan Principles introduced by John Major’s