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James Forsyth

Parliamentarian of the Year | 26 September 2009

James Forsyth invites you to submit nominations for the Spectator Readers’ Representative in our Parliamentarian of the Year Awards ‘MP in Public Service Shock. Politician found to be honest and hard-working. Wife standing by him.’ As the MPs expenses scandal dominated the front pages for month after month, one half expected to see a headline

The real origin of Darwin’s theory

Last week, snorkelling into a small bay on Chatham Island (San Cristobal), I looked up from watching a sea lion twist and turn underwater between a novelist and a neuroscientist to see a large man dressed in an incongruous overcoat standing with his back to us on a rocky outcrop. I wiped my goggles and

‘This job isn’t good for the soul’

Alistair Darling talks to Fraser Nelson about the importance of telling the truth, why Labour’s cuts are ‘kinder’, and the disheartening trudge between Number 11 and the Commons Is Scottish black pudding made from the blood of pig or sheep? Alistair Darling insists it’s sheep. ‘I don’t have any in at the moment, I’m afraid,’

‘A liberal mugged by reality’

Irving Kristol didn’t coin the term ‘neoconservative’ but he was the first person to run with it. Although it was originally intended as an insult towards those alleged to have abandoned their initial ‘liberalism’, Kristol wasn’t bothered with quibbling. ‘It usually makes no sense… to argue over nomenclature,’ he once said. ‘If you can, you

How far can Balls bounce?

As leadership hopefuls go, Ed Balls is not the most obvious candidate to win hearts and minds. A divisive figure behind the scenes and a stilted performer in front of the camera, he has — to put it politely — not always exhibited the qualities most closely associated with future prime ministers. But his reputation

It’s over. Labour’s only hope is the next generation

No one in the Labour party now believes the next election is winnable. Last year, there were a few who believed in an outside chance of victory. There are still some who hope that some unexpected catastrophe might yet befall David Cameron. There will be a collective brave face put on by delegates who gather

Dear Peter, here’s how to revive the Labour party

To: Peter Mandelson From: Daniel Finkelstein Re: What Labour should do now I was, naturally, flattered to be informed that you would like me to provide you with a memo of advice on how Labour should cope with its predicament. As I explained to your assistant, I do not have much of a history of

How can Labour save itself?

Here at The Spectator, we take no pleasure in the misfortunes of others. Here at The Spectator, we take no pleasure in the misfortunes of others. Watching a once great political party flounder in this undignified manner is almost as painful to us as it must be to them. So in the spirit of comradely