Majesty Britain 

Will the real Her Majesty please stand up?

The royal soap opera is back. No, not the Prince Andrew thing but series three of The Crown, which became available on Netflix at the weekend. It is, however, jarring to find in the series details that are obviously inaccurate, fanciful or sensationalised.And yet monarchy is an idea in each of our own heads. We project upon its leading players our fantasies of their characters. Moreover, the actual dramas of the lesser royals appear to demonstrate life exceeding the implausibility of art. Prince Andrew’s car-crash TV interview, designed to shut…

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no-deal Britain 

Nigel Farage’s agonising calculation

Anthony Wells, director of political research at YouGov, says: “Nigel Farage is sending a message that you can trust Boris Johnson to deliver Brexit”. This is untrue. Farage is not sending that message at all. Yesterday he repeated that “the direction we are going in is simply not Brexit”. He has not retreated from his opinion that the Johnson deal is a trap for the UK which, after it has left the EU will remain remain bound to it by destructive ties. Although Farage said he was encouraged by Johnson’s…

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communism Britain Culture wars 

Communism thrives in our moral vacuum

One of the many unsettling aspects of this general election concerns the extremism of Jeremy Corbyn and his cadre of ideological soulmates who are in control of the Labour Party. They have rightly been described as unreconstructed Marxists, Trotskyites, Leninists and even Stalinists who, if they came to power, would destroy Britain’s economy, leave it defenceless against its enemies and undermine freedom and democracy. This has created a Stop Corbyn movement, with many voters reportedly planning to shelve their normal party allegiance — or support for a clean Brexit —…

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Britain Culture wars 

National identity is the key to life and liberty

The former Labour foreign secretary David Miliband, now head of the International Rescue Committee, last month delivered the Sir Martin Gilbert lecture at Highgate synagogue. Under the title “Brexit and the anti-liberal moment”, he argued that Brexit was both cause and symptom of the destruction of the “liberal democratic idea”. First, cards on the table. I am a staunch, clean-break Brexiteer. I nevertheless respect many who voted Remain in the 2016 referendum out of their anxiety about the costs of leaving the EU which, although I disagree with them, is…

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Blake Britain 

Pullman and Blake: subversive artists for a godless era

Two cultural treats currently available to us have more in common than might at first be realised. At the weekend, the BBC transmitted the opening episode of His Dark Materials, the eight-part adaptation for TV of the first book in Philip Pullman’s acclaimed and controversial trilogy. London’s Tate Britain, meanwhile, is displaying an exhibition of the visual art of William Blake, the 18th-century poet and engraver known principally for The Tyger and the lines from a longer work that became known as Jerusalem. Both Pullman and Blake are subversive artists.…

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Britain 

The blue-on-blue onslaught on Nigel Farage

The last few days have seen the eruption of a ferocious, no-holds-barred, blue-on-blue onslaught on Nigel Farage by Conservative party Brexiteers and others including members of his own Brexit party. See, for example, here, here, here, here, here and here. The essence of the Tory Brexiteers’ case against Farage is that his strategy is likely to stop Brexit by depriving Boris Johnson of a workable majority, and that the split it may cause in the Conservative vote could let Jeremy Corbyn achieve power. The latter scenario is a real possibility…

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UK Britain 

On media’s Planet Remain, truth has become a “hard-right” concept

President Trump’s dramatic intervention into Britain’s general election may have raised eyebrows, but he has made the absolutely crucial point that I have been making here. This is that the deal that Boris Johnson has done with the EU will damage the UK by preventing it from making beneficial trade deals with the rest of the world. It will keep the UK shackled to the EU but without the power to influence it. It will thus negate the point of Brexit altogether. In his audacious LBC phone interview with Brexit…

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Britain Culture wars 

Brexit, nationhood and the Jewish question

In Britain, the crisis so long dreaded by many British Jews is finally upon them. The general election that has been called for December raises the possibility that hard-left Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn might come to power. The election was made inevitable by political paralysis over Brexit, with the Conservative Prime Minister Boris Johnson effectively held hostage by a parliament dominated by Remainer MPs determined to prevent the United Kingdom from making a clean break with the European Union. This Brexit election is being described as the most important…

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cox Britain 

The nightmarish election dilemma

In the coming general election, those of us who are true Brexiteers are facing a potentially nightmarish decision. If we want to a) get Brexit finally and properly delivered and b) prevent the Labour party from gaining power, for whom do we vote? Because these two aims may well be incompatible with each other. This is why. Boris Johnson will be going to the country as the leader who will Get Brexit Done. Expect a bravura performance, with him posing as the heroic defender of democracy and the sovereign right…

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Britain 

Migrant deaths prove our borders are inadequately policed

The deaths of 39 migrants whose frozen bodies were discovered last week in a refrigerated lorry at Purfleet in Essex are first and foremost an appalling tragedy. Beyond the human cost, what leaps out is the question of what on earth has happened to Britain’s border controls. Ministers have failed to act upon warnings from border inspectors and the National Crime Agency that criminal gangs have been smuggling migrants into the country by transporting them in refrigerated containers through Zeebrugge and other ports. In Purfleet, locals say that they have…

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