Archive for the ‘UK politics’ Category

Ghosting: why the novel is so very good

Posted by HC in Books / People / UK politics on 27 August 2008 | No comments ›

Robert Harris seems to understand what it is to become the shadow of a person. The ghost-writer in The Ghost is wonderfully aware that he is of less significance than those he writes-up, even if they are phoneys, or stupid or second-rate. He’s not a negligible person, but he knows his secondary place in the order of things. Journalists should all know that, and seldom do. As he passes into the world of his subject, he knows that he’s there on sufferance and briefly. He doesn’t for more than a few seconds and occasionally even bother to fantasise that this is really his world. Read more ›

Seen The Ghost?

Posted by HC in Books / Controversies / Ethics / Spirituality / UK politics on 26 August 2008 | No comments ›

Robert Harris’ thriller The Ghost is a brilliant lark. It succeeds because you could enjoy it without knowing much about Tony Blair, Cherie Blair, Anji Hunter and all the other people who have been described as the reality on which Harris has spun a fictional web. But there are some quite big gaps in Harris’s satire. Read more ›

Living it large the Porritt way

Posted by HC in 'In the news...' / Boats / Monasticism / People / Travel / UK politics / US politics on 21 July 2008 | No comments ›

Every time I do something un-environmental, I think of Jonathon Porritt. He is the embodiment of my guilt. The other day, the phenomenon was given a twist by my reading a column of his. It was uppermost in a mulch of Guardian pages left behind by a passenger on a short haul flight I was taking. Read more ›

Nixon and McCain vs. Obama

Posted by HC in Books / UK politics / US politics on 10 July 2008 | No comments ›

In my earlier post on Rick Perlstein’s Nixonland I sort of conveyed the book’s message but I didn’t trouble to get across how good the book is, or tackle the way it describes how the voting went in the 1972 Nixon/McGovern election. It matters because Perlstein says some of the same factors are still at work, though plenty aren’t. Read more ›

That great guy Barry Goldwater

Posted by HC in Books / Travel / UK politics / US politics on 4 July 2008 | No comments ›

Barry Goldwater, handsome, manly, outspoken. Just the character we could do with in politics today. Yet forty years ago, he was a bogeyman for my generation. So it did me a lot of good to read Pure Goldwater, an anthology of the great man’s own, mostly informal, writing. Read more ›