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When we are weighed down by expectations.

"Think like a human being and sister and not the head of state," Philip urges his troubled wife. But we who have watched all ten episodes of The Crown know it is not as simple as that. Elizabeth Windsor is now Elizabeth Regina; her role as Queen has altogether subsumed her life. Sadly this magnificent series, beautifully acted, superbly written, splendidly produced (I’m running out of superlatives) is only available on Netflix. It should be on the BBC but the BBC could never afford the £100 million production cost. The up-side is that you can view it whenever you want but Jacqui and I resisted the temptation – unlike one-time BBC Royal Correspondent Jennie Bond - to binge watch i

Truth exists; only lies are invented. (Georges Braque)

To mark the victory of Donald Trump in the US Presidential Elections Oxford Dictionaries has declared “post-truth” to be its international word of the year. Actually, that’s not quite true. 15 November was the date for both events- the elections and the press release by OD. The likelihood is (and I haven't the time to check) that this is simply a coincidence, no more. You may have read that yesterday President Obama speaking in Germany sharply criticized the spread of fake news online. Certainly it is something which is exercising the top minds at Facebook. So one fake-news writer, Paul Horne, claims: ‘I think Donald Trump is in the White House because of me.” Often outlandish bu

Here is Leonard's secret chord.

“The older I get, the surer I am that I'm not running the show,” mused the Canadian singer, songwriter and poet Leonard Cohen who died last night aged 82. As it happens only this May I bought “The Essential Leonard Cohen” a career-spanning collection of his songs arranged in chronological order. I must say I enjoyed his unique brand of self-depreciating humour, particularly the “Tower of Song.” https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oiAuXRK3Ogk Moreover, the school choir sang his “Halleluiah” in their carol service last December. “Now I've heard there was a secret chord That David played, and it pleased the Lord.” Here Cohen taps into his Jewish heritage, evoking the stories of Samson

When the court goes against you.

Enemies of the people! So Sir Terence Etherington Baron Thomas of Cwmgiedd and Sir Terence Etherton and Lord Justice Sales get the full Daily Mail treatment this morning. “Fury over 'out of touch' judges who have 'declared war on democracy' by defying 17.4m Brexit voters and who could trigger constitutional crisis.” Clearly when decisions go against you, there is every instinct to demonstrate our disapproval, even tabloid-like – but then you have to remember what it is like when the King takes your vineyard. It’s King Ahab and we are in the year 856 BC. It’s a good year for the King: he has just made peace with the Arameans. So how about making your palace even bigger and bette

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