New Statesman (1996)

Articles from Vol. 139, No. 4990, March 1

10 People Dave Should Fear: From the Spectre of Maggie to Mad Nad, Boris to Ken-Cameron Is Surrounded by Troublemakers in His Own Ranks
David Davis MP for Haltemprice and Howden As well as being an arch-civil-libertarian who disagrees with much of the shadow cabinet's approach to terrorism and security, David Davis is an arch-plotter. He knows how to undermine a leader. When...
Adrift on Denial
Those who believe in climate change are losing the battle for public opinion. According to an Ipsos poll carried out in February on behalf of the advertising agency Euro RSCG, just 31 per cent of people believe that climate change is "definitely a...
Boy George and the Wily Fox
George Osborne and Liam Fox are once more a happy couple of neocons after a Tory kiss-and-make-up to rival that of John and Toni Terry. The Tory equivalent of frolicking for the cameras took place at Major Fox's New Year's party. Guest of honour was...
Breakfast of Champignons
Will Self At what mute, inglorious juncture in the history of British cuisine did the "all-day breakfast" make its appearance? I can't recall it being scrawled on a yellow cardboard sunburst in Magic Marker until the early 1990s--which makes sense,...
Cameron's Conjuring Trick Is Failing
In April 2006, the Conservative leader, David Cameron, was asked a direct question by the Sky News reporter Joey Jones: what exactly was it about the Tory party he wanted to change? It was the sort of opportunity Tony Blair would have relished. Instead,...
Dave the Mystery Chap-But the Substance Isn't There
The Conservatives could not have had more propitious circumstances in which to demonstrate that not only has the previously self-described Nasty Party changed for the better under the leadership of David Cameron, but that it has become, once more,...
Don't Be So Down on Brown
Gordon's not a Gorgon I am not surprised that Gordon Brown has got a boost in the polls after his Piers Morgan interview. I thought he did himself a lot of good. I didn't agree with Conservative commentators who do their own "emoting". The Prime...
Emotional Wreckage: Andrew Billen Finds a Snapshot of 1970s Chicago Poignant Yet Unconvincing
Serenading Louie Donmar Warehouse, London WC2 To write a play as jaded as Serenading Louie you would, I had suspected, need to be very young. In fact, Lanford Wilson, one of those Nobel prizewinners most of us are vague about, was 33 when it...
Even Abraham Lincoln Saw Red
If the published extracts are any guide, far too much fuss is being made about Andrew Rawnsley's book The End of the Party. Rawnsley himself--in an explanation that was difficult to distinguish from an apology--has tried to elevate its importance by...
Germany Should Jettison the Euro
I honed my letter-writing skills recently when, with Professor Marcus Miller and Keynes's biographer Lord Skidelsky, both of Warwick University, I organised a letter from 58 economists to the Financial Times. The purpose was to argue that fiscal consolidation...
Give the Old Fella a Good Shake
I was in the lavatory at Arsenal, trying to have a pee. At this time of the year, I take my flask of coffee. At half-time, at Arsenal or Spurs, I drink two cups. I wait till the crowds are coming back, then I rush and have a slash. If I can. If there...
In Search of Electoral El Dorado
The Conservatives look likely to form the next government. Yet, for all the energy that David Cameron and his lieutenants have expended on decontaminating their brand, "Cameronism" remains incoherent and opportunistic. In this special issue, we ask...
Listen to the Heroes of Israel
I phoned Rami Elhanan the other day. We had not spoken for six years and much has happened in Israel and Palestine. Rami is an Israeli graphic designer who lives with his family in Jerusalem. His father survived Auschwitz. His grandparents and six...
Many Talents, Many Paths
The state of the English school system depends on personal experience. For some, it is a rip-roaring success, leading to a lifetime of opportunities. For others, it is a failure from which their life never recovers. For most, it is an OK experience...
No 4115
Set by Leonora Casement Words uttered at the moment of birth by famous figures. This week's winners Well done. I was sorry to lose "Free at last!" from Nelson Mandela, but I've seen that joke before. And by the time I'd read the umpteenth...
No Such Thing as a Quick Fix
On 15 February, Anthony Seldon, the Master of Wellington College and political commentator, made his case for a grand debate on education at an event organised by Bright Blue, an organisation campaigning for progressive Conservative policies. The...
Notes on a Scandal: As We Launch Our Search for the Next Great Music Critic, Norman Lebrecht Surveys the State of Arts Criticism and Asks: Does It Have a Future?
One summer's day a dozen years ago, while lecturing a class of Spanish graduates on arts criticism, 1 suddenly realised they hadn't a clue what I was talking about. Spain had lived under Church repression into the 20th century, and under Fascism until...
Poor Relations: The Former Tory Leader Iain Duncan Smith Talks about His "Damascene" Conversion and How the "Sharp Bits of Thatcherism" Hurt the Nation
In his 2009 speech to the Conservative party conference, David Cameron acknowledged the contributions made by several of his shadow cabinet colleagues. George Osborne, Kenneth Clarke, David Willetts, Chris Grayling and Dominic Grieve were all warmly...
Quel Dommage: A Once-Addictive Drama Has Turned into Pure Soap, Writes Rachel Cooke
Damages BBC1 Does anyone still watch Damages (Wednesdays, 10.45pm)? I suppose someone must, because the BBC has invested in season three of the American legal melodrama and, given the bill for Patty Hewes's wardrobe, I can't believe it came cheap....
Shades of Blue: Are Today's Conservative Parliamentary Candidates Any Different from the Old Guard? an Exclusive Survey of 101 Hopefuls for the New Statesman Reveals All
Conservative prospective candidates are a combination of traditional Tory values and modern Cameronism. The old tribal loyalties are there all right-witness the primacy of Gordon Brown and Tony Blair over Hitler and Stalin as political villains. But...
Stuck Record: Fisun Guner Surveys a Ragged Retrospective of an Underground Hero
Billy Childish: Unknowable But Certain Institute of Contemporary Arts, London SW1 Billy Childish, painter, writer and prolific musician, was a founding member of the Stuckists--that minor, rather silly, anti-conceptual art movement. In 1999 they...
Tandrew Rawnsley's 24-Carat Party People
"Did you fall asleep on the sunbed or is this new look intentional?" I asked, looking up from my copy of the less-for-the-same Observer. Rawnsley, who is renowned for only laughing at his own jokes, if that they be, responded with a chunter and...
Thanks to the Little People: Britain's Broadcasters Are Overwhelmed by Luvvies, Writes Antonia Quirke
The Baftas Radio 5 Live, Radio 4, World Service Live coverage of the Baftas was surprisingly sketchy, despite the ceremony's rehabilitation as the "British Oscars" and relocation to the Royal Opera House--as opposed to that sticky-carpeted do...
The Books Interview
Your first novel, Then We Came to the End, was set in an office. Why do you think there are so few novels about work? It requires a good deal of actual knowledge and very often experience, and writers are often tending to their craft, the craft...
The Gospel According to Dave: The Party Knows What It Wants-Grammar Schools, Immigration Controls, Spending Cuts. but Does the Leader?
I don't want this to sound too much like an undergraduate PPE essay, but the question of whether David Cameron is a Conservative requires one to define what one means by that term. The Tory party is a broad church, and the conservative movement in...
The Iron Lady's Lethal Legacy: Corby Was Once a Thriving Town, but Then a Tory Government Set about "Deindustrialising" the Steel Region, and Killed Its Soul
When I was ten years old, my family left a cold, damp prefab in West Fife and moved to Corby, Northamptonshire, where my father quickly found work at what was then the Stewarts & Lloyds steelworks. Because we didn't know any better, we thought--like...
The New Feudalism: The Poundbury Toryism of Zac Goldsmith and His Posh Pals Is Ripe for Caricature, Writes George Walden
I have a vision of Britain: not mine, I hasten to add, but one that seems to be catching on in Tory circles, where the rejection of big business and the state, coupled with environmental anxieties, suggests nostalgia for life a century or two ago,...
The NS Crossword by Otterden
Across 8 Ban email about high capital plant (4,4) 9 Craft--Sam Weller would say as much (6) [ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] 10 Said "not fit for purpose" about the same thing as before (4) 11 Osprey claw worryingly found by the lane-side (3-7)...
The Tragic Roundabout
I sometimes wonder whether public transport in this country is secretly run by the Lord's Day Observance Society. Or perhaps that weird Catholic sect, the one Ruth Kelly belongs or belonged to--you know, the one whose members wear a ring with spikes...
"This Recession Wasn't Caused by Unions, It Was Bankers": Boris Johnson, Mayor of London
What's your favourite place in London? I might mention Greenwich, where we used to go for picnics, or Highbury Fields, where I go and smoke cigars and stare at the sky. But you know what? I am increasingly taken by the view from the office in City...
Tomorrow's New Homes
Despite the difficult economic climate, the UK housebuilding sector has continued to deliver cutting edge, visionary projects, many with powerful learning messages for the UK's world-leading ambition for achieving zero emission homes from 2016. In...
Tory Traits and the Guardian's Woes
Here are three arguments for voting Tory in the forthcoming election. First, a hung parliament might spook the markets, causing a run on the pound and a refusal to buy UK government bonds. We would all be ruined and should therefore, whatever our usual...
Young Music Critic Competition
The New Statesman, in association with the Royal Academy of Music, is delighted to announce the launch of its Young Music Critic competition. We are looking for classical music writers under 30. If you have a passion for and knowledge of the canon,...