The Week

Leading article

Just managing

From the moment she arrived in 10 Downing Street, Theresa May has been commendably clear about her economic priorities for Britain. She wants the country to be a beacon of free trade, at a time when protectionism is on the rise the world over. She is annoyed at the way in which quantitative easing has

Portrait of the week

Portrait of the week | 24 November 2016

Home In his Autumn Statement, Philip Hammond, the Chancellor of the Exchequer, against an expectation of increased borrowing and slower growth, found an extra £1.3 billion to improve roads, which is 0.2 per cent of planned public spending next year, and £1.4 billion to promote the building of 40,000 houses. He improved the lot of


Diary – 24 November 2016

 Washington DC Washington has been, for the past two weeks, indescribably depressed. When I walked into the deli down the street to buy a bag of cookies, a neighbour who was having coffee with her girlfriends hailed me. ‘Are you as despondent as the rest of us?’ she asked. I told her: ‘No, I’m not.’

Ancient and modern

Electoral ‘communities’

In the eyes of the bien-pensants, the election of Donald Trump and the vote on Brexit have brought democracy to an end, and a good thing too since the people are clearly incapable of appreciating what the bien-pensant has to offer. In this they are bang up to date with their rather mieux-pensants and certainly


Barometer | 24 November 2016

Bucks for Bucks Buckingham Palace is to be renovated at a cost of £369m, funded through an increase in the sovereign grant. How much have home improvements to the palace cost over the years? — The original house was built by the Duke of Buckingham in 1706 for £7,000. — In 1761, George III spent

From the archives

War and votes for women

From ‘News of the Week’, The Spectator, 25 November 1916: We admit that before the war we should have placed, and indeed did place, Female Suffrage in the catalogue of ‘no compromise’ subjects. The war, however, has modified our view by altering our belief that some fundamental difference of opinion might arise between the sexes upon


Letters | 24 November 2016

Prisons and the public Sir: Your leading article on the sorry state of our prisons (19 November) was very welcome. However, you refer to the ‘public demand’ for sending offenders to prison. I have to query this. I cannot think of any occasion when the public has been consulted on prisons or sentencing policy or