UKIP party political

It surprises me to say it, but the UKIP’s party political broadcast was rather good. It opened with a fun riff on War of the Worlds, before moving on to the usual extravagant promises about what could be done if only we left the EU. Much of it was bunk, of course, but at least it was optimistic bunk – a stark contrast to the Tory election strategy of the last week or so. And Nigel Farage reminded us all that he’s the only prominent UKIPper with whom you might want to have a pint.

Hatchards – bookshop in the Buffer Zone

I bought a book at Hatchards on Piccadilly the other day. I’m very fond of it – I’ve been going there since I was a kid – but it really is the prime bookshop of the Buffer Zone (that area of wine merchants, hatters, art dealers etc., around St. James’s Palace). If you don’t believe me, take a look at their picks of the season, packed with double-barrelled names and books on gardening. And no Da Vinci Code in sight.

Worrying noises from the Kremlin

Apparently, the breakup of the USSR was the greatest geo-political catastrophe of the 20th century – something of a surprise on Anzac Day, 60 years after the liberation of the concentration camps. In an entirely related point, he’s also said that Russia “will decide for itself the pace, terms and conditions of moving towards democracy”, which has strong echoes of Pervez Musharraf (and every other political strongman in history).