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Mary Wakefield

Revealed: The hidden crisis in Britain’s ambulance services

[audioplayer src=”http://traffic.libsyn.com/spectator/TheViewFrom22_28_August_2014_v4.mp3″ title=”Mary Wakefield and Julia Manning discuss the ambulance crisis” startat=63] Listen [/audioplayer]Last month I wrote about the weird exodus of paramedics from London’s ambulance service. Flies would blanch at the rate they’re dropping, and so I was curious — and also anxious. Everyone who lives in this heaving city relies upon 999, and

The wars that really are about the oil

Is international conflict really just a fight over oil? It sometimes seems that way. In Syria and Iraq, the militants of the so-called ‘Islamic State’ sell captured oil while battling to establish a puritanical Sunni theo-cracy. From Central Asia to Ukraine, Russia is contesting attempts (backed by the US) to minimise Europe’s dependence on Russian

The wonderful and unpredictable Candida Lycett Green

With Candida, you learned to expect the unexpected. She said she might make the charity sale at my house on Thursday, but not to rely on her. I didn’t. But on Friday, a bright red pick-up truck turned into the yard and out got Candida with a bagful of contributions. But she also brought a

Switching on to a new generation gap

[audioplayer src=”http://traffic.libsyn.com/spectator/TheViewFrom22_28_August_2014_v4.mp3″ title=”Mark Mason and Alex Owen discuss the cultural generation gap” startat=1603] Listen [/audioplayer]I was recently talking to an intelligent 24-year-old Cambridge graduate. The conversation turned to TV comedy, and I mentioned Vic Reeves. The graduate had never heard of him. Nor had she heard of Bob Mortimer. This would have surprised me, but


Notes on...

The quest for the perfect malt

It was poker night. Five yuppies crammed round a table in a room at the back of a south London semi. Tumblers and water were on the table. Conventions had developed. The host cooked the food (or so he said) and the four guests each brought a bottle of whisky. The guests rotated between four