New Statesman (1996)

Articles from Vol. 132, No. 4654, September 8

America Produces 23 per Cent of the World's Carbon Dioxide, and the Glaciers in a Montana National Park Are Melting. but Has This Anything to Do with Global Warming? Certainly Not!
There is no such thing as global warming, or carbon dioxide emissions. And if they do exist, it's certainly not the job of the Bush administration to do anything about it. Those environmentalist troublemakers may come up with statistics--such as that...
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An Elite in Search of a New People
If you want to understand the issues behind the Swedish referendum on the euro (the vote takes place on Sunday 14 September), you have to understand "the Swedish exception". This is about more than nudity, Ikea and driving around in the daytime with...
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Awkward? Us? Never! If the Unions Are So Angry with the Government, Why Is Their Top Man So Placatory?
These days, a candidate in a trade union election who gets labelled a Blairite might as well give up--his campaign is dead in the water. The so-called "awkward squad" of trade union general secretaries, which loathes new Labour and all its works, wins...
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Bollocks to York's Bollards (and Its Road Signs and Mini-Roundabouts, Too)
I spent last Saturday evening walking around the York suburb in which I grew up, and noting the changes that have occurred in 20 years, the most obvious of which is the increase in the amount of street furniture. There's a certain kind of railway...
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Competition
Win vouchers to spend at any TESCO store Competition No 3795 Set by Bazza,18 August We asked for an extract from a fantasy novel in which the Soviet Union won the cold war. Report by Ms de Meaner I have been taken to task by Bazza himself...
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"Congratulations on the Baby," Said the Journalist. "You Must Be Very Pleased." "Whaddya Mean?" Demanded the Veteran Star. "That I'm Too Old to Have a Baby? Get Outta Here"
New York City is somewhere I've never been, but I'm finally about to go. In a couple of weeks, I'll be hitting the Big A for the US publication of my new novel, a comic romance set in the south of France. My American editors have been diligent in excising...
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Events: The NS Guide to What's Going on in Politics, Current Affairs and Culture
AN INTRODUCTION TO PSYCHOANALYSIS TODAY British Psychoanalytical Society. A course held on Wednesday evenings at the Institute of Psychoanalysis during the autumn and spring terms. Each week, there is a lecture followed by discussion in small groups....
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Harmonious Discord: Peter Conrad Welcomes Cecilia Bartoli's Restoration of Mozart's Greatest Rival
In 1823, Antonio Salieri--a venerable court composer in Vienna, Gluck's protege and also the respected tutor of Beethoven and Schubert--allegedly accused himself of poisoning Mozart, and tried to slash his own throat in remorse. As he was suffering...
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Hello Boys: David Thompson Samples the Latest Japanese Invasion-Gay Manga
Ah, the baffling delights of Japanese pop culture. Those feverish imaginations brought us a radioactive, fire-breathing monster called Godzilla and the infinitely collectable cuddly toy franchise Pokemon. That same inscrutable intelligence also unleashed...
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High Court Writs Are Flying in the Square Mile, Alleging Bad Behaviour among Stockbrokers. It's the Last Thing the City Needs as Small Punters Tentatively Start to Invest Again
A dispute between an obscure investment analyst and a relatively minor firm of stockbrokers has boiled over into a furious City row. In a high court writ, James Middleweek has accused his former employer Collins Stewart of a string of failings, including...
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If Blair Really Means What He Says about Ending Spin and Creating a New Openness, He Should Start by Taking His Grubby Hands off the Today Programme
Word is out that the first casualty of the war between the BBC and Downing Street is to be the independence of the Today programme. During the summer, stories were leaked to friendly papers that the jewel in the Today crown, John Humphrys, was to have...
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Imagine Branson Giving His Trillions to a Russian Hot-Air Balloon Team
Oh, it's so great to be back, life returning as we know it, football life that is, what else is there. And it's so exciting this season, more news, more fun. More to look forward to than I can ever remember at this stage. Which isn't saying much. Once...
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In March This Year, Red Nose Day Raised 35m [Pounds Sterling]. That's Less Than One Quarter of Philip Green's Annual Earnings: Nick Cohen on How Meritocracy Became a Reality in New Labour's Britain
The worst fate for a satirist is to be taken at face value. In 1958, Michael Young, one of the authors of the 1945 Labour manifesto, looked at the country he had helped to create and decided he wasn't sure he liked the way it was going. Young invented...
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In the Family Way: Richard Cork on the Boyles' Lifetime Project to "Include Everything", Rubbish and All
Almost 40 years ago, Mark Boyle and Joan Hills sent out invitations to an extraordinary event. People who accepted found themselves led down Pottery Lane in west London to the rear entrance of a building marked "Theatre". Seated on chairs ranged in...
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Livingstone Really Does Want to Carry on as Mayor: He Even Sips His Wine Now
The reception was part of Trafalgar Live 2003: a free concert thrown to show just how great Ken Livingstone's "newly redesigned and pedestrianised Trafalgar Square" has turned out. At South Africa House, I sipped a glass of Pinot Grigio among the pleasant,...
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Macrobiotics: A Recipe for Rapid Weight Loss, and No Dinner Invitations
We live, as a brief perusal of the Sunday supplements will inform you, in an age of the diet. Or, more precisely, in an age of diets. For if one thing is certain about our current love affair with the Atkins diet (which, according to a frontpage Daily...
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Mandy Spins Again, a Victory for Blunkett, and How I Made a Hoon of My Summer Comp
The frequently disgraced Peter Mandelson has begun his new role as Blair's backroom spin supremo in characteristically shy manner. He told lobby correspondents that he does not take calls from the press, and certainly not on Sundays. And then proceeded...
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Neoliberals Frighten the Horses: In Its Mania for More Competition, New Labour Now Threatens the Future of Racing
There are few things in the early 21st century that we can say Britain does best. Our postal service may once have been the envy of the world with its thrice-daily deliveries, but if you receive your first (and only) post by noon nowadays, you can...
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Piat d'Or Is Liked for the Same Reasons That Children Love Primary Colours
Windows that a fortnight ago, flung wide, would not admit so much as a stirring of air are now battened down and still, as autumn comes slithering through in cool, sharp gusts. It is quite a relief. Only after such a long and hot summer can I enjoy...
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'Power Failures Reveal a Deep Truth: The Earth's Resources Are Irrevocably Finite': We like to Believe That Growth Can Go on for Ever and That the Western Way of Life Can Be Replicated across the World. Electricity Cuts and Computer Viruses Are Early Warnings That We Are Wrong
The crowds milling gently around Charing Cross Station when the power failed did not look too worried. Many seemed to view the breakdown as nothing out of the ordinary--just another trial in the daily ordeal of commuting. A few--perhaps welcoming the...
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Putting the Boot In: Andrew Billen on Rival Broadcasters' Predictable Eagerness to Attack the BBC
There's no better moment to kick a man than when he is down. And so it is that Channel 4 and Five celebrated the arrival of autumn by putting the boot in to the BBC, just at the moment when the government, the press, Sky and Hutton have it pinned to...
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Roman Tragedy: Philip Kerr Is Driven to Despair by an Anodyne Rip-Off and Its Tween Queen Star
Remember Roman Holiday? Who has not been to the portico of Santa Maria in Cosmedin and copied the scene where Gregory Peck sticks his hand into the so-called Bocca della Verita and pretends, much to Audrey Hepburn's shock and horror, that he has been...
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Should a Kiss Be Just a Crime?
If David Blunkett gets his way, modern-day Romeos and Juliets will be threatened with five years in jail for a mere kiss or caress. For the first time in British law, all forms of consenting sexual behaviour between two people below the age of consent...
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The Hutton Files, Starring Michael Barrymore, Rachel Weisz and Victor Meldrew: Philip Kerr Takes a Dramatist's Eye to the Royal Courts of Justice
London. Michaelmas term not yet begun, and Lord Hutton sitting in Court 73 at the Royal Courts of Justice in the Strand. Sticky summer weather. As much litter in the streets as if London's road sweepers had retired from the face of the earth, and it...
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The US Black Revolt Began on the Cotton Plantations, Not at the Lincoln Memorial
We live in an age of celebrity, when concentration on the individual is all. So I am not surprised to see how the recent celebrations of Martin Luther King's masterful piece of oratory, delivered from the steps of the Lincoln Memorial in Washington,...
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They Say Arms Sales Generate Jobs. So Does Burglary. but Do Ministers Hand out Awards for Most Innovative Use of a Crowbar?
Prince Charles once said in support of the arms trade. "If we didn't do it, someone else would." Put aside the fact that he is an inbred buffoon cosseted in a haze of abject luxury and Viagra. Put aside the fact that the only decent thing he has ever...
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We Sell Arms to Saddam's Friends While Syria Is Accused of Being a Danger to the World, the Ministry of Defence Invites Its Generals to London to Buy Weapons. What Is Going On?
Like most people, I remember exactly where I was when I first heard that terrorists had flown aeroplanes into the World Trade Center and the Pentagon. I was outside a huge arms exhibition in London's Docklands, where 14 Middle Eastern nations were...
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Whitehall Is Bewildered: The Row over the BBC Became So All-Consuming This Summer That Downing Street Wasn't Interested in or Able to Do Anything Else. Can Blair Start Afresh?
As Lord Hutton concludes the first stage of his investigation into the tragic state of Britain's political process, Tony Blair and his people are taking stock. The inquiry has delved deep. It has exposed malfeasance at many levels. The testimony of...
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Why It's OK to Be Bliar: Do Voters Really Want Politicians They Can Trust? the Success of Harold Wilson, Richard "Tricky Dicky" Nixon, Jacques Chirac and Others Suggests Not
On one thing all the papers, whatever their political loyalties, seem agreed: the Kelly affair has damaged public trust in Tony Blair. A YouGov poll in the Daily Telegraph on 25 July found Blair to be less trusted than either Iain Duncan Smith or Charles...
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Why Sir and Miss Should Go Home
Look around your child's school this month, particularly if it is in London or the south-east, and you are likely to see several teachers from overseas who may or may not be qualified to teach in the UK. Recruitment from former colonies has become...
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Why We Need Powerful Unions
Old cliches never die; they do not even fade away. No sooner does Tony Blair agree reluctantly to set up a forum for unions to discuss public service changes with ministers than we hear again the gibes from employers and their allies in the national...
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With the Oscars Coming a Month Earlier, the Venice Film Festival Is More Important Than Ever
The Venice Film Festival is 60 years old this year. To keep it going that long, previous delegates must have been a bit better organised than us. It is always held on the Lido di Venezia, the beach front immortalised by a weeping Dirk Bogarde. Naturally,...
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