Magazine article The Spectator

High Life: Taki

Magazine article The Spectator

High Life: Taki

Article excerpt

I was not on the winning side of the debate, despite giving it the old college try. Thank god for my South African friend Simon Reader, who coached me just before I went on. Mind you, my side felt a bit like Maxime Weygand, the French general who, in June 1940, was happily smoking his pipe back in Syria when he got the call to take over the French army. The Germans had already taken Holland and Belgium and had breached la Ligne Maginot, Gamelin had thrown in the towel, and Paul Reynaud had called for a fresh face to stop the mighty Wehrmacht. 'Gee, thanks a bunch,' said Weygand, but took it like a real Frenchman and surrendered to the German army a couple of weeks later.

Two months ago, when I was kindly invited by The Spectator to defend the Donald, he was yet to do an Annie Oakley on his foot. But I've always loved lost causes, especially one who is up against a woman who, however inadvertently, will continue Obama's strategy of destroying western hegemony. I was happy to see Conrad Black again, who by the way debated without notes and wiped the floor with everyone. The one that didn't race my motor was a boring American man who heads Democrats (yawn) Abroad. He kept name-dropping locations he had visited during the campaign, as if any of us gave a damn where he'd been.

So what else is new? Daniel McCarthy wrote in these pages that Hillary will push for globalist economics, and that, with the support of Beltway insiders -- read neocons and other architects of the Iraq disaster -- she will be an interventionist and nation-builder. All I can say is heaven help us. My only hope is that Saint Theresa doesn't do a Blair and follow that Clinton woman like a lemming.

What fun it was to be back in London for four days of partying that made me want to shout. One thing men no longer do in America is have fun lunches. They are too busy chasing the mighty buck. There are only ladies who lunch, and they are mostly over the hill, pulled to the extreme, and widows. Not in good old London. Bellamy's, for example, is as good a place to lunch and spend the early afternoon in as any St James's club. Gavin Rankin runs it like a club: the service is impeccable, the food excellent, and I didn't see the kind of low-lifer from the Gulf one runs into nowadays in chic London establishments. I lunched there with my very old friend Timmy Hanbury, who had brought along Zuleika Dobson. …

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