I did not know that the Mark of Cain was put on him by God to protect him from those who might want to do him harm because he had killed his brother. (Cain and Abel, by Titian, right.) So it is an analogy that does not quite work for Ed Miliband, then.
I have written [...]
First there was Big Brother; now we have regressed as far as The Brothers.
I’m exaggerating, but not much. The front page story of David and Ed really does belong somewhere between Reality TV and 1970s-style Family Drama. Unlike the re-make of Bouquet of Barbed Wire, which has been broadcast on ITV1 recently, the re-make of [...]
Interesting long interview by Simon Schama with David Cameron (right) in the Financial Times (registration) today.
The first thing I ask him is to imagine Florence, 16 years hence, about to do her history GCSE (in the restored version of the curriculum I push him to reinstate), asking her pa what he’d done to deserve the plaudits. An [...]
As a teacher, one of the main debates that I find myself in at the moment with colleagues in the staffroom and parents alike, is the Coalition government’s recent introduction of free schools, which are state-funded schools set up in response to parental demand, the most high-profile attempt being led by writer and parent Toby [...]
A while ago, I promised some more nuggets from the revised paperback edition of Andrew Rawnsley’s The End of the Party, to which the author with his trademark modesty has failed to draw the world’s attention.
He reports that, during the election campaign, Tony Blair misheard someone who told him about a car that crashed into [...]
I seem, or rather Ed Miliband seems, to have (re)started something with the declaration that the invasion of Iraq was “wrong”, about which I wrote on Wednesday.
This generated a large number of comments, some of the authors of which seem to be coming to the issue for the first time, and some of them seem [...]
Two quotations to deepen the gloom. A friend who left the Labour Party to join the SDP in the 1980s writes:
I was all ready to rejoin Labour before Ed got it. Even if I agreed with him on some things, his whole campaign was just so horribly cynical. Does anyone think that if he’d been [...]
In a miserable failure of self-promotion by the seventh most popular media blog, I forgot to link to my review of Steve Richards’s excellent book, Whatever It Takes, on Sunday. The title of the book is taken from Brown’s speech at Labour conference in Manchester in September 2008, just after Lehman Brothers went bust: “When people [...]
Socialising with alcohol is fun and we should not pretend otherwise. We also shouldn’t fool ourselves into thinking that young adults won’t eventually discover this and want to do it themselves. There is a reason why a taste for alcohol is not specific to a single demographic in society; why it is not something we “grow out of” and why, no matter how many times the NHS warns of it detrimental effects, we won’t stop drinking the stuff. That’s because chatting with friends over a pint or a bottle of wine is an enjoyable cultural tradition: the fuel of conversation, intimacy and the exchange of ideas.
Unused quotation of last week, from Nick Clegg’s diary for The Spectator:
If someone’s sick in the back of my cab, nobody blames the person who comes with a mop and bucket to clean it up, do they?
How “a Liverpool cabbie” explained the coalition’s political situation to the Liberal Democrat leader. “A little too graphic, I fear, for my conference speech.”
Photograph: The Taxi Project, Tate Liverpool [...]
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