04:14

Ruth Davidson

Amongst the possible future Tory leaders there is only one that stands out - in a good way that is; Ruth Davidson. On the face of it she has everything a modern party leader should have: she is a woman, Scottish (a neutral accent), working class, gay and personable. Every box ticked. 

I saw her, up close and in the flesh, about eighteen months ago being interviewed by Tina Brown. This was before the electoral success that catapulted her to the fore of Scottish politics. She was very impressive. Three things stood out. Her intelligence was obvious and you could see that she would be a formidable debater with a dexterity of mind that didn’t remind you of Jeremy Corbyn. She was also humourous with an ability to turn a question and laugh at herself. But above all she was passionate. This is something that is difficult to fake and is political gold. It is that quality that raises her above the  technocrats and egoists that traditionally inhabit the political world and make her the Tory leader in waiting that pretty well everyone could get behind.

The problem is that she is not a Westminster MP and protests that her ambition is only to be First Minister of Scotland.. Well, she would say that wouldn’t she, as the SNP would make hay with any doubts about her Scottish loyalties. But her history says different as she did, in fact, try for an English seat before one north of the border: she lost to Savid Javid in the selection process for his seat in Bromsgrove.

Interestingly, this does not appear in her Wikipedia entry. 

This is a very smart politician. Watch this space.
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16:02

The Turder Prize

The Turder Prize
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Trump’s language problem

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Golan Heights

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Jeremy Thorpe

Jeremy Thorpe
Hugh Grant is doing a great turn as Thorpe. Looking back on it, the whole tale was much more than ‘A very English Scandal’. It was high farc...
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14:46

St Kilda

St Kilda
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Theodora’s speech

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This is Empress Theodora’s speech to her husband Justinian and his council during the Nika Rebellion of 523. It must be up there with Church...
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18:39

Grade inflation

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2nd Referendum

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16:48

American Porn

American Porn
I  These are the top shelves (note the plural) of a magazine shop in Miami Airport. Note the (slightly) ashamed way they (sort of) cover the...
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15:39

Mary Stuart

Mary Stuart
Robert Icke’s production of Schiller’s Mary Stuart is great theatre. It starts with Juliet Stevenson and Lia Williams tossing a coin - a sov...
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12:38

Burns night joke

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The  Health Secretary was being shown round a hospital. In one room he saw three poor souls gibbering apparent nonsense. "The best laid...
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15:17

The illogicality of drug laws

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The best that can be said about modern drug laws is that we are where we are. The link between harm and legality is obviously illogical as i...
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19:10

Somerset

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Last week I went to the funeral of a friend in Yeovil, Somerset. Lily was a wonderful person and the crematorium was packed. Her husband, Gr...
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Darkest Hour

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The reviews were ecstatic and praise for Gary Oldman universal - ‘the definitive Churchill’. I went to Darkest Hour in great anticipation - ...
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14:02

Interesting stuff

Interesting stuff
These are things I’ve read, heard or seen - and enjoyed last year. Of course I believe in luck. How else does one explain the success of tho...
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