The Spectator

Letters: could Nigel Farage ever be a statesman?

Debunking the debanking Sir: Toby Young is wrong to say the Conservatives have ‘failed us on debanking’ (No sacred cows, 8 June). On the contrary, this was a situation where immediately following his incident being brought to my attention, swift and decisive action was taken. The Free Speech Union was indeed ‘patient zero’ of the

The danger of a Labour supermajority

We are witnessing what could well be the last few weeks of a constrained Labour party. Sir Keir Starmer is saying as little as possible about his agenda and is instead listing what he won’t do (raise income tax, etc). He is rightly fearful that the Conservatives may do better than the opinion polls suggest.

2655: Primacy – solution

The unclued lights are ten recent Archbishops of Canterbury, with 7D being the solution of two words. First prize Alana Thompson, Dumfries Runners-up Julian Downton, Bucks Cross, Devon; Clive West, Old Windsor, Berkshire

What was in the first manifesto?

Made manifest What was in the first manifesto? The word ‘manifesto’ is first recorded as being used in English in a 1620 translation of the History of the Council of Trent – the series of meetings held by the Catholic Church between 1545 and 1563 in an attempt to stem the rise of Protestantism. Among

Multiverse Valentine

In your lit eyes I see other candles, other flames. On the stiff white tablecloth I lay out my jokes like the contents of a handbag. Your laugh, as mine, sounds far away. But the scene — how close and familiar it all is! Uncountable sweetnesses, tragedies.

Letters: the problem with Ozempic

At your service Sir: National service is a contentious issue with many people including the Armed Forces themselves (‘Identity crisis’, 1 June). National community service might be a far better option whereby everyone reaching the age of 18 would spend a year working in a care home, hospital, day nursery, park, graffiti cleaning, litter clearance

2654: 14-222 – solution

The eight unclued lights are names of Roman emperors. The puzzle’s title refers to the period 14-222 AD covered by the eight reigns. First prize Michael Crapper, Whitchurch, Hants Runners-up Peter Moody, Fareham, Hants; Mark Steele, Hatfield, Doncaster

The EU ‘elections’ vindicate Brexit

If Britain had not left the European Union, we would be going to the polls this week as well as on 4 July. The European parliament elections have come round again and it is likely that there will be a mass revolt against the direction of the EU project. Across the continent, voters disillusioned with

Letters: why the Tories need to lose

Back to blue Sir: What a pity your leading article (‘The valley of death’, 25 May) did not reach Downing Street in time. It might have dissuaded the Prime Minister from ruining a good suit, rushing off to Belfast to associate himself with Titanic and allowing himself to be photographed on an aeroplane under a

2653: Order! Order! – solution

The twelve symmetrically placed unclued entries NATURAL, MAIL, MONASTIC, STANDING, PECK, LOGICAL, BATTING, APPLE-PIE, OPEN, EVICTION, BANKERS and SIDE can precede the word ORDER, and the title alluded to an ‘A to Z’. Thus unclued entries had to be entered in alphabetical order. First prize Seonaid Chapman, Brampton, Cumberland Runners-up Peter Lawrence, Durham; Julie Sanders,

What Labour lacks

Has Keir Starmer promised anything so far, during this general election, that will make anyone’s life significantly better? The clearest pledge is to impose VAT on independent schools and it’s hard to see how this benefits anyone. Many of the smaller schools will have to close and others will be forced to cut bursaries. The

How dangerous is it to fly by helicopter?

Crime without borders How many nations are signed up to the International Criminal Court? – 124 signed the Rome Statute in 1998 and ratified it. – 31 have signed it but never ratified it (includes Iran, Thailand, Ukraine). – 2 (Philippines, Burundi) ratified it but have subsequently withdrawn. – 4 signed the statute, never ratified

Letters: save our churches!

Free the C of E Sir: Patrick Kidd’s article on the shortcomings of today’s Church of England maintains the importance of the ‘volunteers in the pews’ who bind the church together (‘Miracle workers’, 18 May). He warns that these people ‘can so easily run away’. This is exactly what happened to the Church of Scotland in 1843

2652: A and M – solution

The unclued Across lights are makes of AUSTIN (in yellow) cars and the unclued Down lights are MORRIS (in red) cars, hence A and M in the title. First prize Chris Taylor, Helensburgh, Dunbartonshire Runners-up Sara MacIntosh, Darlington; Stephen Smith, Messing, Essex