The Spectator's Notes

By Boot, William | The Spectator, March 29, 2003 | Go to article overview

The Spectator's Notes


Boot, William, The Spectator


St Stephen's Club, the venerable sluicing hole in Queen Anne's Gate, lately auctioned off a number of its art works to its members. Among the lots on offer were photographs of recent Tory leaders, which allowed, as it were, a freemarket valuation of their relative standing among the club's traditionally Toryish membership. According to one present, `There was lively bidding for Lady Thatcher; Churchill fetched L200 or so: William Hague fetched around 20 quid; and John Major a bit less. Nobody at all bid for lain Duncan Smith.' The club's Lance Mawby assures me, however, that `all the political pictures were hotly contested', but says it would be 'inappropriate' to discuss specific prices. Did an eleventh-hour bidder intervene to save the club from having to leave IDS hanging on the wall?

The very first round of War Cant Bingo has produced a housey-housey. This week's featured phrase: `first casualty'. Many newspapers have warned their readers that the first casualty of war is 'truth', but others have been more imaginative. Their suggestions have included: the United Nations (Daily Mail); the Fire Brigades Union (Andy Gilchrist); the film director Jawed Wessel (Esquire); Tina Brown (Evening Standard having another stab); Robin Cook (Daily Telegraph and Daily Star); good television (Sunday Telegraph); accurate, meaningful accounting (Evening Standard yet again); the stock market (Scotland on Sunday); debut novels and literary fiction (Observer); bare flesh (a rueful Daily Express); ITN News Channel's viewing figures (Daily Star tries again); RISE (People columnist Marina Hyde); and my wee telly show (Tam Cowan, a Scottish pundit whining about the cancellation of his weekly football programme). Well done to all, and a special commendation to the Independent, which identified five different first casualties of war in little over a week. For the record, they were: truth (at least twice), common sense, UN Resolution 687, and Andy Reed, former parliamentary aide to Margaret Beckett. Oh, and imaginative English prose.

At a time when we are rehearsing terrorist attacks in the capital, stocking up on smallpox vaccine, and fretting that a supervirus will wipe out one person in ten, it's reassuring to hear of a government agency with its eye on the ball. The FSA has issued a communique warning us against eating raw oysters - a practice which is responsible, according to the FSA's own figures, for as many as three cases of food-poisoning a year. In these circumstances it's customary to consult an expert on whether this is the Nanny State Gone Mad. The acknowledged authority in the field is the Labour MP, Sion Simon, who boasts of having eaten 52 native oysters in a single lunchtime session at Wiltons. `It's nonsense,' is his judgment. 'I won't be put off eating oysters at all.' A brave stand on principle, and a sure vote-winner in his Birmingham constituency, to boot.

What manner of man is General Sir Mike Jackson? A gossip columnist who once claimed that the Chief of the General Staff insisted on 'Mike' because of a traumatic early television interview in which his hosts had hired a Michael Jackson impersonator to moonwalk around his chair received a highly galvanising personal phone call on the morning of publication. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Note: primary sources have slightly different requirements for citation. Please see these guidelines for more information.

Cited article

The Spectator's Notes
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen
Items saved from this article
  • Highlights & Notes
  • Citations
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Search by... Author
    Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.