New Statesman (1996)

Articles from Vol. 130, No. 4540, June 4

A Dying Body Attracts Vultures
Ziauddin Sardar in riot-torn Oldham finds no scent of curry, no sound of Bollywood, no evidence of electioneering: "an Asian area quite unlike any I have ever seen" It is 10.50 on Friday morning and I am the only Asian in Oldham town centre. Regulars...
A Tale of Theft, Bugs and Bottoms
John Booth decided to take on Peter Mandelson, but was unprepared for a quite bizarre sequence of events When a BT customer services manager arranged the phone lines at my headquarters in Hartlepool, where I am standing as the Genuine Labour candidate,...
Barely Alive
RICHARD COOK gets the heeBee-Geebees over the comeback of the Seventies siblings There's nothing wrong with being a long-serving artiste. but it helps if you still have something useful to contribute. The blight on rock, as it enters its sixth decade....
Blair Has Stolen Everyone's Clothes
Dull? We are seeing a sensational realignment. The PM drove the Tories to the extreme right; now he is pushing the Lib Dems way to the left. Once they would have doubled up with laughter at the very thought. Now, it seems, many high-profile lefties...
Blame It on Amis, Barnes and McEwan
British novels no longer bring us "news" of our times. The British novel is back in the stocks -- and this time it is the ubiquitous Andrew Marr who is throwing the wet sponges. The impish political editor of the BBC is surely exhibiting early symptoms...
Booth
The back page of the paper said: "When nothing makes sense, the maniac is king" As we near polling day, in the family-oriented suburbs of north London, some nice mummies and daddies display ever more radical tendencies. Take last weekend. At the...
CHARLIE WHELAN'S Racing Card
The Bet: How many seats will the parties win at the election? I didn't bother to attend the party press conferences earlier in the week because I was fed up with listening to the finest journalists in the country repeating the same questions about...
Class Conscious
To any man, there are few things deadlier than the words "special fashion issue", but worse still are headlines such as "New crisis at M&S", or anything else implying that the world is about to end because a few new dresses from Marks & Spencer...
Cripes! Ted Kennedy Is Back
ANDREW STEPHEN AMERICA There are two rules of Washington life that old hands always bring up. First, never kick a man or woman when they are down, because -- if they stick around long enough -- they will surely come up again to a position of power....
Diary MARK STEEL
Who would ever parachute a millionaire into a place where they quote George Formby in the karzy? While campaigning for the Socialist Alliance, I recall a conversation I had, during last year's London Assembly election, with two students outside...
Fu Fighters
STEPHEN SMITH gets a kick out of a kung fu video retrospective The life of a kung fu monk is a demanding one, as those of us who have lived it know to our cost. That's right, gentle reader, I once trod the unforgiving shingle of the path to enlightenment....
How Our Writers Will Vote
The New Statesman asked its contributors to reveal their intentions. Here are 69 replies, including 30 for Labour, 13 for the Lib Dems and seven for the Tories I WILL VOTE LIBERAL DEMOCRAT BECAUSE: Barry Norman (film critic) I believe we need...
How the Suburbs Turned Red
On 7 June, for the first time, most Labour voters are likely to be middle class. Ivor Crewe explains how the electoral world was turned upside down On that memorable election night in May 1997, what made people rub their eyes in disbelief was...
Letters
More Labour men of principle MUCH AS I admire John Pilger's reporting, I feel it was unfair of him to list only six Labour MPs who have held to true principles during the four years of the new Labour administration (28 May). Alan Simpson, the...
MARK Thomas
Does the US really believe that the future of the planet is threatened if it allows Thermos flasks into Iraq? There are certain words and phrases that gloriously defy reality. "Tory moderate" or "British tennis champion", for example, are expressions...
Model Behaviour
TOM ROSENTHAL looks at the relationship between muse and master The Marlborough Gallery in London is showing two perfectly complementary exhibitions together. Both are prime examples of the interplay between artist and model. The show of Picasso...
No Room at the Top for Tory No-Hopers
The ubiquitous Yvette Cooper has done it again. In two consecutive rounds of our Fantasy Politics game, she has emerged as Prime Minister in the judges' cabinet. Now, in the highest-scoring reader's cabinet of the current round (submitted by Sarah...
Not the Real Thing
CHARLOTTE RAVEN finds few highs in a tale of the cocaine trade The best cocaine scene I have ever seen in a film was the bit in Pulp Fiction where Uma Thurman takes it on her date in Jack Rabbit Slims. Excusing herself from the table where she and...
PAUL Routledge
The William Hague bus is an altogether more subdued experience than life with new Labour. It's a lot of travel for not very much exposure of the Tory leader--under an hour by my calculation in Blackpool and Llandudno -- and with no clear sense that...
Red All Over
VICTORIA MOORE discovers the simple pleasures of eastern bloc plonk Let's free-associate for a moment. I say: "Romania." You say: "Ceansescu, communism, orphans and war ravaged grey cities. Oh, and Dracula." Probably. What you definitely don't say...
Sobering Stuff
ANDREW BILLEN looks at our fascination with real-life breakdowns In drama, there is nothing so compulsive as watching a human being crack up. Think Medea, Lear, Macbeth and Gabler. But in a documentary, self-destruction is harder to watch. Issues...
The Journal OF Lynton Charles FIDUCIARY SECRETARY TO THE TREASURY
Monday And this is a totally new one on me. It is one thing to do an election hustings when you're in opposition (which for most of my political life we were), but quite another when you are yourself the government. You become the local representative...
The Left Can Seize the High Ground
Take a deep breath, grit your teeth, put on a cheery smile: next Thursday, there is no alternative. This Labour government has been an outrage to many decent, liberal minded people. Its record on civil liberties is execrable; its attitude to immigrants...
The Mummy Returns
BEE WILSON on how Maggie spent her good old British pound It was an eerie, anomalous moment when Lady Thatcher appeared recently at her first Conservative general election rally since 1987. "The mummy returns," she joked, and the Daily Tele graph...
The Scorn of the Literati
A L Kennedy, James Fenton, David Hare: these and other writers fill the media with their elite disdain for politicians. John Lloyd denounces them Like many in this election campaign. I have had something like a Bryan Gould experience. It is. wrote...
These Are Real Race Riots, the First since the 1950s
As-salaam aleikum, readers. This Muslim greeting should make it clear that we are returning to Oldham and the issues at large there. Let me describe the town in its basic outline. The population is divided broadly between generations of white Oldham,...
Turn Whitehall Upside Down
Within days of the election result, Tony Blair could have made the most crucial decisions of the second term, writes Tristram Hunt The days following an election provide a decisive opportunity to reshape Whitehall. In May 1997, Tony Blair appeased...
Wellies, Brooches and Wispy Hair
Annalisa Barbieri, our election fashion correspondent, finds female politicians in a state of sartorial shock Our first model, Margaret H, is wearing a taupe trouser suit with a delicate necklace and sensible black shoes. She could have done with...
Work for People
Boosted by low-cost Internet access, around half of British people are online - 37% from home, the rest at work, schools and colleges. This will soon match the USA's level, estimated at over 55%. Once we were confined to our desktops. Now there...