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The Ogre

The state of the nation as 2021 draws to a close depends very much on whether you happen to be considering history or geography. In...

Unparliamentary Language

Angela Rayner walked into a bar at the Labour Party Conference and confidently announced: “All Tories are scum.” A group in the corner...

Postcard from Panama

There was another shooting yesterday inside my local shopping mall, Multiplaza, on the Via Israel in Panama City. A friend who was...

The Lockdown and the Vaccine

Michael Gove has said that it is a selfish act to refuse the vaccine against coronavirus, a statement which will presumably have a...

The Ones Who Walk Away from Omelas

I am writing these words on a slow and very comfortable train from Luxor to Alexandria. The journey is supposed to take a little over...

The Kiss of Caiaphas

At long last, government propaganda may have overreached itself. The Great British public has shown itself ready to believe six...

Government by Gaslight

The most atrocious bores, recounting stories of their children, their holidays, or their dreams, present you with a precious and...

The Moral Minority

In The Screwtape Letters, C.S. Lewis writes from the perspective of an experienced devil addressing his young nephew on the most...

The Disappearance of Dissent

The range of responses to the April protests against lockdown from what we might now call the media-political complex has been...

The Light of India

The new fundamentalism that has made an idol of a virus is based on two great lies. The first is that those who worship the blessed virus...

The Hobgoblin of Little Minds

How do you know you’re not mad? If not mad, exactly, how do you know that you are not being deeply unreasonable, stupid, or resistant to...

The Emperor's New Shoes

More than a thousand years ago, a Chinese Emperor of the Southern Tang, the state that later gave its name to a popular brand of barbecue...

Labour's Leader's Lost

Things, the Labour Party theme song assured the public in 1997, can only get better. This optimism is misplaced. The elastic of...

Love and Liberty

In 1881, Oscar Wilde was due to make his West End debut with a play about a gang of Russian nihilists assassinating the Tsar. In March of...

The Rulers and the Rules

It is not yet clear whether David Cameron is a criminal. What is perfectly obvious is that he is an oily, money-grubbing, conniving...

Sickening Lies

Among the many failures of the media during the course of the pandemic, perhaps the most striking has been the astonishingly easy ride...

The Elusive Anti-Vaxxers

Not long ago, I had the opportunity to give a novel I had written to a distinguished literary critic for review. When I asked her, some...

Politeness costs Everything

If you ever find yourself thinking that the British government, while astonishingly stupid, is not actively malicious, try spending ten...

Band of Brothers

In his novel, Galápagos, Kurt Vonnegut points out what a nuisance it is to be intelligent. The oversized human brain, he says, is a...

An Englishman's Prison

David Lammy has received widespread praise this week for his response to a woman who called in to the Leninist Broadcasting Company to...

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