Counterpoints

Border bard

"Patrick Kavanagh wrote about an Ireland that “froze for want of Europe”. He was thinking of an Ireland that history had removed from the mainstream of European culture"

Snack attacks

"Greggs was supposed to be safe from the liberal metropolitan elite. The vegan sausage roll showed that it wasn’t"

What’s in a word?

"Without a way of visualising and recording our spoken words, our world would not be the same"

Age discrimination

When I was a precocious Young Conservative, people were most willing to tell me they disagreed with me and I thrived on it. But how much of a challenge does Greta Thunberg have from her classmates or teachers?

Brexit bolters

Where are Tony Blair, Gordon Brown, David Cameron and George Osborne? It was as if they couldn’t wait to leave Parliament, having got what they could out of the system, with no thought of putting something back

Act of assent

Was Her Majesty waiting behind the scenes in Westminster, ready to provide her Royal Assent to the EU Withdrawal Act? The reality is more mundane

Hot for lunch

If there is an art to writing after three courses and wine, I never mastered it. But now that the long, boozy lunch is endangered, I’m having serious second thoughts

A future foretold

The long-awaited sequel to A Very British Coup

Dog days

'If every writer who disliked what other contributors wrote decided to withdraw their work, there would be no papers, no magazines, perhaps no telly'

Outsider values

"The dispute over Parkfield’s “No Outsiders” scheme shows that some people are eager for the state to take over"

Underrated: Abroad

The ravenous longing for the infinite possibilities of “otherwhere”

The king of cakes

"Yuletide revels were designed to see you through the dark days — and how dark they seem today"
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