Here are a few reasons why the Football Association should have sacked the manager of England, Sven-Goran Eriksson.
1. Allowing England to lose to one of the worst teams in the world, Northern Ireland, in a crucial World Cup qualifying game.
2. Spending what seems to have been most of his free time attempting to find even more lucrative employment elsewhere.
3. Failing to get past the quarter finals of both the European championship and the World Cup despite possessing the most talented and competent English team for more than 40 years.
Sholto Byrnes talks to Chris Huhne, second favourite in the Lib Dem race, about coalitions, privacy and the Austro–Hungarian empireUntil a couple of weeks ago, the name of Chris Huhne was known only to the most dedicated followers of politics, and a few economists. Now the MP for Eastleigh, who won his seat last May, could just be the next leader of the Liberal Democrats. The odds against Huhne succeeding Charles Kennedy have dropped from 300–1 to 5–2; in the last few days he has overtaken the party president, Simon Hughes, to become the second favourite after the deputy leader, Sir Menzies Campbell.
After some consideration I am not sure that I can get excited about the debate as to whether cannabis should be classifed as a Class B drug or whether, as the Home Secretary Charles Clarke decided last week, it should remain Class C. Rather, I am coming round to the conclusion that it should be declassified as a drug altogether — and reclassified as a banned foodstuff. Instead of being handled by a bunch of creepy do-gooders from the drugs’ charities, the battle to keep it off the streets would then be run by the zealots of the Food Standards Agency.
William Cash meets a Devon farmer who keeps the family’s gruesome family heirloom — Hitler’s red telephone — in his safeA week before Christmas the Grampian microphone that Sir Winston Churchill used to make his VE Day speech in Westminster Chapel went under the hammer at a specialist sale of historical documents at Ludlow Racecourse by the Shropshire auctioneers Mullock Madeley. The estimate was a fairly modest £700–£1,000.
When the Twin Towers collapsed, I read nothing sane upon the subject in any newspaper until Michael Wharton, as Peter Simple, filed the following to the Telegraph: ‘Only a stony-hearted fanatic could have been unmoved by the massacre in America. Yet for us feudal landlords and clerical reactionaries, cranks, conspiracy theorists and Luddite peasants, the downfall of the Twin Towers that symbolised the worldwide empire of imaginary money is not in itself a cause of grief.
Everybody loves the Poles. Everybody loves reliable plumbers and natural-born nannies. Only Andrzej Tutkaj, of the Federation of Poles in Great Britain, is sceptical about the benefits of the march from East to West.
I spoke to Mr Tutkaj on the telephone this week and asked him how all the new Poles were faring in London. There was silence, then a sigh. ‘I personally,’ said Mr Tutkaj, ‘don’t like to over-glorify the Polish people.
Europe is one of the most divisive issues in British politics. But on one thing most Europhiles and Eurosceptics agree: that enlargement, letting those benighted former communist countries into the warm democracy-enhancing embrace of Brussels, was a good thing. Just about all respectable, right-thinking people feel that the UK should congratulate itself for opening its borders to Eastern European workers on 1 May 2004.