Too few answers in this too-long question session

The 1980s was a mixed bag as decades go. There was Depeche Mode, shoulder pads, and glorious cat fights on Dynasty. Alas, there was also Phil Collins, Swatch watches, and Hi-de-Hi! But the most egregious sin of the Eighties — worse even than mullets or Arthur Scargill — was management-speak, that soulless jargon of boardroom…

Shades of Maggie as Nicola loses control of classroom

She walked into the parly like she was walking onto a yacht. A cerulean streak of polyester cut a businesslike stride to the First Minister’s seat. There enthroned she exuded the easy confidence of a star arrived on the lot, ready for her close-up, and keen to remind these B-listers why she was still top…

Russia Today, Britain tomorrow

The poisoning of Sergei and Yulia Skripal was not the work of the Russian state. It was ‘a complete set-up’; Theresa May had ‘found this one issue that can boost her’. The attempted murder in a Salisbury restaurant was ‘a provocation intended to worsen relations even further between Russia and the West’. Whoever was responsible…

Putin the boot in to Comrade Alexei and his telly show

The SNP is a bit like a Russian doll. Every time you strip away a layer, you find another (usually more sinister) one underneath it. At First Minister’s Questions, Ruth Davidson tried to test the Nationalists’ unity on the poisoning of Sergei Skripal, a Russian spy who defected and who Theresa May says was targeted…

Want to restore faith in Holyrood? Give voters a right of recall

MSPs will be back at Holyrood tomorrow for the start of another parliamentary week. This time all 129 of them will be there because, for the first time in almost four months, Mark McDonald will turn up too. The former childcare minister hasn’t been seen in parliament since he was suspended from the SNP amid…

That’s another fine mess Jeremy & Co have got themselves into

Dundee is the City of Discovery and Labour is learning all sorts during its conference weekend there. Early on, they announced the winners of the Keir Hardie Awards, given in honour of the party’s founder and enduring hero. Only this year they had been renamed, according to the legend beamed onto the conference backdrop, the…

Of shortbread and chauvinism

Robert Welch, founder of the John Birch Society, was a red-baiter of such ferocity he made Joe McCarthy look like Julius Rosenberg. There was almost no one in 1950s America Welch did not accuse of allegiance to the Soviet Union. His crusade reached its apogee as only it could with a 1958 tract naming President Dwight Eisenhower…

Munroe Bergdorf and the left’s monopoly on morality

Munroe Bergdorf has resigned as Labour’s LGBT adviser after just one week in the job. Her appointment looked quite promising until it emerged she had deployed ‘butch lezza’ as an insult, joked that she’d like to ‘gay bash’ a TV character, and described gay Tory men as ‘a special kind of dickhead’. ‘Ever find that sometimes you’re just NOT…

Sturgeon’s last stand

As the country emerges from this week’s enforced hibernation, many will be thinking ahead to a summer holiday in warmer climes. A break away from the stresses and strains of life and a chance to relax before returning to the rat race.  Those of a sensitive disposition might want to extend their sun-kissed sojourn indefinitely….

Cancelled trains? Must be virtue signalling problems

Question time at Holyrood began with a solemn statement from the First Minister.  Her tone recalled those disaster movies where the US President makes his final stoic address to the nation as an asteroid hurtles to Earth or a barrage of Kremlin warheads zeroes in on New York. She intoned: ‘Conditions such as those that…