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Narendra Modi makes his first big prime ministerial speech in English, The Foreign Desk

Narendra Modi makes his first big prime ministerial speech in English

Narendra Modi yesterday made his first major speech in English since becoming prime minister – a day after I pointed out on this blog, and in a Times of India column, that he spoke it fluently in a 2001 television debate, and wondered why he rarely does so now. He was addressing scientists after the [...]

By | The Foreign Desk | Tuesday, 1 July 2014 at 11:20 am

Payday lenders: tough new rules but are they the same old unscrupulous firms?, The Money Blog

Payday lenders: tough new rules but are they the same old unscrupulous firms?

The Financial Conduct Authority is forcing high-cost credit firms to be more responsible, but new rules may not be tough enough

By | The Money Blog | Tuesday, 1 July 2014 at 8:05 am

Bill shock: new roaming caps benefit mobile users in the EU, but not elsewhere, The Money Blog

Bill shock: new roaming caps benefit mobile users in the EU, but not elsewhere

New mobile roaming rules come into force on 1 July, but you still risk massive charges if you download elsewhere abroad

By | The Money Blog | Monday, 30 June 2014 at 8:59 am

Creativity, commerce, and choking tradition: Dior Homme, Hermes, Loewe, Thom Browne in Paris, Fashion

Creativity, commerce, and choking tradition: Dior Homme, Hermes, Loewe, Thom Browne in Paris

If you ascend Paris’ Eiffel tower – say, during a free moment during the spring/summer 2015 menswear shows – you can look out on a vista relatively unchanged from the first day the tower was opened in 1889, of Baron Haussmann’s neoclassical façades and wide avenues. French law ensures that: Second Empire plans are in many cases more or less followed, with “alignement” law still in place to regulates a building’s height according to the width of the streets it borders. It’s fabulous for a sight-seer who gets to step back in time, almost. But many argue it’s choking the development of the city as a whole. Personally, I see a parallel with much of Paris fashion, where tradition can often choke creativity.

By | Fashion, Fashion Sense | Monday, 30 June 2014 at 1:32 am

Modi spoke good English in 2001 – and looked like a future leader, The Foreign Desk

Modi spoke good English in 2001 – and looked like a future leader

In September 2001, I met Narendra Modi, India’s new and controversial prime minister, on an Indian tv programme called The Big Fight just after the 9/11 terror attacks in the US. I was struck by his powerful presence, his conviction, and even some tolerance when he talked about “my Muslim friends” and urged them to [...]

By | The Foreign Desk | Sunday, 29 June 2014 at 10:21 am

Her Outdoors: Chateau Merrers, Her Outdoors

Her Outdoors: Chateau Merrers

A silly label, I know. I don’t really have a Chateau with a vineyard, but I do have a grapevine and it is one of my life’s ambitions to make my own wine. When I was first offered an allotment in April last year, there were three choices of plot. Only one was completely overgrown [...]

By | Her Outdoors, Notebook | Saturday, 28 June 2014 at 7:46 pm

Dish of the Day: The Royal Academy of Culinary arts, Dish of the Day

Dish of the Day: The Royal Academy of Culinary arts

10 years ago almost to the day, I graduated from the specialised chefs scholarship, which is run by the academy of culinary arts. It’s a very prestigious course, which is responsible for training some very fine chefs, and, me.

By | Dish of the Day | Friday, 27 June 2014 at 12:32 pm

If Miliband got it right, Cameron would be finished, Eagle Eye

If Miliband got it right, Cameron would be finished

A bit slow getting to the article in yesterday’s Times (pay wall) by Dominic Cummings, Michael Gove’s brilliant former special adviser. He says he recently conducted focus groups in marginal constituencies with people who voted Conservative in 2010 but who were unlikely to do so next year. This research was for Business for Britain, the [...]

By | Eagle Eye | Friday, 27 June 2014 at 12:30 pm

Is business investment really back this time?, Chunomics

Is business investment really back this time?

I think it’s reasonable to hope business investment growth will, this time, be sustained. But after the disappointments of recent years we should be wary of taking anything for granted.

By | Chunomics, Eagle Eye | Friday, 27 June 2014 at 11:40 am

Friday Book Design Blog: Meatspace, by Nikesh Shukla, Arts

Friday Book Design Blog: Meatspace, by Nikesh Shukla

It takes a moment for the cover art of Nikesh Shukla’s new novel, Meatspace, to make itself fully understood. It shows a simple one-two of aviator shades and red bow tie, on a white background, with title, author name and quote discretely set in a narrow Helvetica.

You’ll see straight away that the shades and tie [...]

By | Arts | Friday, 27 June 2014 at 11:39 am

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