November 18, 2004


The Spectator's office parties must be lively events:

Johnson's sacking as a Conservative Party frontbencher for allegedly lying to his party leader, Michael Howard, about the affair, followed earlier revelations about The Spectator's (married) publisher, Kimberly Fortier, having a three-year affair with the Home Secretary David Blunkett, and its (married) associate editor, Rod Liddle, having an affair with a junior Spectator staffer, Alicia Munckton.

The once venerable magazine is now widely referred to as "The Sextator".

Posted by Tim Blair at November 18, 2004 11:03 AM

Sounds like the only spectator was the magazine itself.
British Conservatives really are a breed apart - women with names like Petronella and Allegra. And how about a guy named Alexander Boris de Pfeffel Johnson.
And I always thought British comedies made this kind of stuff up.

Posted by: GoodFace at November 18, 2004 at 11:13 AM

Where do you think they got their material?

Posted by: Andrea Harris at November 18, 2004 at 11:18 AM

Remind yourself that this is the milieu from which Evelyn Waugh got his best material.

Posted by: rick mcginnis at November 18, 2004 at 11:22 AM

Don't forget that Blunkett has been blind since birth - good to know he can still pull birds - even married ones!

Posted by: attila at November 18, 2004 at 11:41 AM

Maybe if they would spend more attention brushing and flossing their teeth they'd have less time to bang each other.

Just a humble suggestion from across the pond.



Posted by: SteveMG at November 18, 2004 at 12:57 PM

I wonder if this is connected to Mark Steyn's
website hiatus? His writing and Robert Thompson's
cartoons were far and away the best thing in
the Spectator.

I'm having serious Steyn withdrawals while he
is away from writing. I hope his issues will
soon be resolved and that he'll be back refreshed
and back writing soon.

Posted by: Stuart Cooper at November 18, 2004 at 02:21 PM

I think the new online version of the Spekkie is much better. They've also improved it by getting rid of the tedious Taki and replacing his column with one by Joan Collins who is surprsingly literate and amusing (not just a bloated shoulder pad).

Now if the magazine could only come out from under the carapace of its adolscent anti-Americanism it'd be an even better read.

Posted by: mr magoo at November 18, 2004 at 02:56 PM

Kinda makes xeroxing 100 copies of your bum seem kinda tame, doesn't it?

Posted by: mojo at November 18, 2004 at 03:04 PM

Maybe if they would spend more attention brushing and flossing their teeth they'd have less time to bang each other.

Maybe if the Tories spent less time banging each other, they might actually get to run the country....nah...

Posted by: Quentin George at November 18, 2004 at 03:24 PM

Don't forget Petronalla's mother, Lady Wyatt (first name Verushka).

Posted by: TimT at November 18, 2004 at 03:28 PM

The really telling thing about the Tories is that their most successful politician in recent times was a grocer's daughter. Can't see their lot improving as long as their focus is on bonking girls with names like Myfwanny Farquhar-Farquharson and squandering daddy's money.

Compare and contrast with the 'typical' US conservative, usually regarded as salt-of-the-earth types whose conservatism has a moral and philosophical basis.

Posted by: GoodFace at November 18, 2004 at 03:46 PM

Perhaps the Conservative Party has simply decided to put an end to these disgusting exhibitions of rampant heterosexuality.Same gender coupling and/or flirtations with alternative species are surely preferable.

Posted by: Lew at November 18, 2004 at 05:19 PM

When did Johnson find time to sleep? According to the article he was not only the editor, he was also:

".. a member of parliament, a witty television celebrity, newspaper columnist and novelist.."

Add on the time taken up by his 'other affairs', and he was one busy guy.

Posted by: Chris Josephson at November 18, 2004 at 06:07 PM

Magoo in so far as Joan Collins goes, I am with you. My alltime favourite Spectator diary column entry was by Joan Collins.

It went as follows, refering to the then recent Clinton/Lewinsky scandal, she stated that from then on, Lewinsky would be known as the count of monti christo, give or take a vowel.

Posted by: Just Another Bloody Lawyer at November 18, 2004 at 08:48 PM

After Bush won, I sent a letter to the Spectator suggesting that Max Hastins could "osculate my hirsute, calypigious American posterior." I had no idea I was dealing with people who would treat that as a literal request.

Posted by: richard mcenroe at November 19, 2004 at 01:46 AM