Issue 362: 2023 12 07: Cover page

Cover Page, 7 December 2023, Issue 362 Welcome to our December issue. This month we consider: oh no, is the mic on?; Kamala Harris; proportional representation (a cautionary tale from New Zealand); Corbynista’s week; a season of goodwill; the return of David Cameron; Ridley Scott’s ‘Napoleon’; ‘Covenant’ by Danny Kruger; a Christmas short story; three… Continue reading Issue 362: 2023 12 07: Cover page


7 December 2023 Stockton Probably a lovely town. By John Watson “Shithole” or “not shithole”, that is the question. No, not whether Stockton is a shithole. No one seems to care much about that but there has been quite a fuss about whether the Home Secretary James Cleverly said that it was one in the… Continue reading Stockton

Make Kamala Great Again 

7 December 2023 Make Kamala Great Again by J.R. Thomas That is an ambitious line for a placard.  It assumes that Ms Harris was sort of great before, and there is some evidence of that, but nobody seems to take it seriously.  There was a time when she looked like a contender, a strong contender,… Continue reading Make Kamala Great Again 


7 December 2023 Smoking And proportional representation. By Robert Kilconner Those who believe in proportional representation should think carefully about the decision by the New Zealand government to reverse the progressive smoking ban. The idea of the ban was that each year the age at which an individual can buy tobacco rises by one so… Continue reading Smoking

Corbynista Rides Again

7 December 2023 Corbynista Rides Again One Man’s Terrorist by Don Urquhart 8 November 2023 Watching the Commons debate on the Humanitarian Situation in Gaza I am struck by our impotence to influence events.  Andrew Mitchell, the Foreign Office Minister tells us that Government and Opposition front benches are agreed that a ceasefire will not… Continue reading Corbynista Rides Again

Men of Goodwill

7 December 2023 Men of Goodwill Christian, Jew, Arab. By Neil Tidmarsh It’s the season of goodwill. Given the current shortage of this commodity in that very part of the world where those angels first announced “on earth peace, good will toward men”, it might be timely and reassuring to look at some of the… Continue reading Men of Goodwill

The Prodigal Returns

7 December 2023 View from the Cotswolds:  The Prodigal Returns by Paul Branch Picture the scene:  an impressive but not overly large mansion house in a charming hamlet in the North Cotswolds.  Evening has descended, the lights are on, a bijou Shepherd’s Hut is tastefully illuminated just off the driveway.  In the main dining room… Continue reading The Prodigal Returns


7 December 2023 Napoleon Ridley Scott’s epic new movie. By Neil Tidmarsh Ridley Scott – the genius director of such classics as Alien, Blade Runner, Thelma and Louise, Gladiator and The Martian – has made quite a few duds in recent years (see this column’s review of The Last Duel, issue 298, 28.10.21, and let’s… Continue reading Napoleon


7 December 2023 Covenant By Danny Kruger. Book review by J R Thomas This column has often suggested that for political parties to succeed they must have a well-argued core philosophy, from which a set of policies will logically spring forth.  Thus Gladstone’s Liberalism; Disraeli’s One Nation Toryism; Attlee’s radical socialist Labour; and Thatcherism.  Not… Continue reading Covenant


7 December 2023 Pass A Christmas short story. By Neil Tidmarsh The chef frowned at the order he’d just plated and shook his head. “No one’s going to eat this” he muttered. “Course they will.” The runner waited impatiently for the chef to put the order down on the pass so she could take it… Continue reading Pass

Letter from Victor Gallant

3 November 2023 Letter to the Editors From Victor Gallant with reference to Issue 361 Dear Sirs I totally disagree with Don Urquhart about the Israel-Hamas War. Hamas attacked and butchered 1400 people in the most brutal way on October 7 and kidnapped over 200.  The overwhelming majority were civilians, including 240 young people attending… Continue reading Letter from Victor Gallant

Letter from Tony Peowrie

3 November 2023 Letter to the Editors From Tony Peowrie with reference to Issue 361 Dear Sirs Here are a few points on the Israel-Hamas conflict which do not get enough emphasis: The Palestinians in Gaza elected Hamas as their government 15+ years ago, knowing them to be terrorists whose main policy was the destruction… Continue reading Letter from Tony Peowrie

Letter from Stuart Berliner

November 2023 Letter to the Editors From Stuart Berliner with reference to Issue 361 Dear Sirs I almost totally disagree with Don Urquhart on the situation in Gaza. You will find that the Jews of the UK are deeply saddened by the way that the Palestinians are suffering, but the slogan “Free Palestine” is incomplete.… Continue reading Letter from Stuart Berliner

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