The Week

Leading article

Portrait of the week


Andrew Marr: December elections are a very bad idea

December elections are a bad idea. Never mind politicians talking rot — the ludicrous promises, the ludicrous numbers — it’s the lack of light and the foul weather that is making this one so bleak. People should be out of their houses, having lively conversations in the daylight, queuing for public meetings, hammering placards on

Ancient and modern

Socrates would have made the leaders’ debates real interrogations

There is something deeply unsatisfying about the debates featuring party leaders. The questions put to them, whether by an audience or presenter, are the routine ones that they face every day and therefore draw routine responses. What they never get is an interrogation. Enter Socrates, licking his lips. He once described how a friend of


From the archives

Koo detat

From 16 October 1982: Prince Andrew’s Caribbean holiday with Miss Koo Stark (following, perhaps prompted by, months of all-male company in the Falklands) has reassured the nation that its royal family is ‘normal’.The Prince’s conduct is hallowed by tradition. Indeed, the difficulty is in finding a single heterosexual prince… who confined himself to the woman


Letters: Just how should you pronounce vermouth?

Down to zero Sir: Paul Collier’s siren call to take advantage of near-zero interest rates to go on a massive government infrastructure splurge is one Jeremy Corbyn might welcome but Conservatives should resist (‘Back to Plan A+’, 16 November). Japan tried what he is proposing when its bubble burst in 1990. The result: $6.3 trillion debt and