Magazine article The Spectator

Portrait of the Week

Magazine article The Spectator

Portrait of the Week

Article excerpt


Theresa May, the Home Secretary, spent a few days announcing things. She broadcast on the Andrew Marr Show on television and then on Desert Island Discs . She said Britain was 'unlikely' to meet a target of reducing net immigration to the tens of thousands, because EU migration had 'blown us off course'. Regarding child abuse, she said: 'What we have already seen revealed is only the tip of the iceberg.' She then announced a new Security Bill, obliging internet providers to retain Internet Protocol addresses to identify individual users, and requiring schools, universities and councils to counter radicalisation. Asked if she wanted to succeed David Cameron, the Prime Minister, in leading the Conservative party, she said she hoped he was 'going to be doing that for a very long time'. Hundreds of people in Manchester and Salford tweeted about a loud bang on 24 November, but police and firemen found nothing.

The murder of Fusilier Lee Rigby near Woolwich Barracks in 2013 could not have been prevented despite his killers appearing in seven intelligence investigations, a report by the parliamentary Intelligence and Security Committee found. After it emerged that one of the killers had spoken on Facebook about wanting to murder a soldier, David Cameron said that internet companies had a 'social responsibility' to act on terrorist material posted online. Tesco redesigned its newspaper display stands so that shorter children would not be able to see the filth and violence depicted on tabloid front pages. Lewis Hamilton took the Formula 1 world title for the second time.

Nicola Sturgeon, the First Minister of Scotland, addressed 10,000 party supporters at the Glasgow Hydro, saying: 'Right here, right now, democracy rocks.' Gordon Brown, the former prime minister, was reported not to be seeking re-election to Parliament. Royal Bank of Scotland apologised for directors giving incorrect evidence to a parliamentary hearing in June when the Treasury Committee asked about claims that the bank had deliberately killed off viable firms. The number of mortgages granted by banks fell by 16 per cent in the year up to October.


Buildings were burnt and many shots fired during riots in Ferguson, a suburb of St Louis, Missouri, after a grand jury decided against prosecuting a policeman for shooting dead Michael Brown, an 18-year-old black man, in August. …

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