In praise of Richie Benaud

The Northern Echo:

4:03pm Tuesday 14th April 2015

"My mantra is that if you can add anything to what people can see on the screen, then do. If not, shut up.” So said Richie Benaud.

It's not touchy-feely, but Lubitz should never have been allowed near a cockpit

2:21pm Monday 30th March 2015

GERMANS are renowned – and sometimes heavily satirised –for their excessive efficiency and their capacity for obeying orders. So why was a man with a history of mental illness allowed to fly a passenger jet?

Flypaper practice is unfair

3:15pm Monday 23rd March 2015

I’M not a big fan of the radio presenter Paul Gambaccini but I deplore the disgraceful way he has been treated by the police.

Time to face up to the threat before it's too late

12:09pm Tuesday 3rd March 2015

I REALLY enjoyed last weekend. I felt so reassured, so much at peace with myself and the world.

The NHS is the sick man of Europe

12:05pm Tuesday 24th February 2015

WITH less than three months to the election, I’ve been trying to penetrate the parties’ propaganda to locate something solid.

Better the devil you know

5:46pm Tuesday 17th February 2015

I AM delighted to see that the Church of England has decided to pardon the devil and to remove all mention of his Satanic Majesty from modern services.

I prefer nuns to teachers any day

10:51am Tuesday 10th February 2015

THERE was a bigger punch-up on the BBC’s Any Questions the other night than in the whole of the Wales-England rugby match which was going on at the same time.

The madness of being in Europe

2:41pm Tuesday 3rd February 2015

I HAVE long known the EU to be a malevolent institution, but I didn’t suspect before some stuff I read this week that they are absolutely stark staring bonkers and suicidal.

Israel: is surrounded by sworn enemies

10:46am Tuesday 27th January 2015

A Church of England priest, I shall visit the synagogue today and ask if I may be allowed to join their prayers to mark Holocaust Memorial Day.

This is by no means capitalism

12:22pm Tuesday 20th January 2015

A QUESTION from the Archbishop of York last week: "Is it ever right that I should have more when somebody else has nothing?"

Can we face the truth about insurgents?

11:57am Tuesday 13th January 2015

IT’S only a few weeks ago since I said in this column that Islamic State’s barbaric atrocities now witnessed in Iraq and Syria will come to Europe.

Treatment of Ched Evans is an injustice

The Northern Echo: POLICE MUGSHOT: Ched Evans

5:36pm Tuesday 6th January 2015

I CANNOT chart the sequence of distasteful events that took place in the hotel that night, but I do know the verdict of the court: Ched Evans was found guilty of rape.

The coming storm

8:02pm Sunday 4th January 2015

Some words of former prime minister Harold Macmillan come back often at this time of the year. A reporter asked him what he most feared and Mac replied, “Events, dear boy. Events.” This is the week when journalists turn away from the typewriter and peer into the crystal ball in the hope of being able to produce a few words on the subject of what’s likely to happen next year. These predictions nearly always turn out to be wrong. I bear that thought in mind as I intend – for what it’s worth - to tell you what the entrails seem to be telling me.

Only kids understand the true Christmas

11:21am Tuesday 23rd December 2014

THE English are a practical people – unlike the intellectual French, their heads full of theories. There is a true story about when the French magazine Paris Match asked three important men, who happened to be in Paris at the same time, what they would like for Christmas.

We must be able to fight fire with fire

4:52pm Tuesday 16th December 2014

THERE are few things more sickening than to observe the mass media in one of its periodic fits of moral outrage. The US Senate intelligence committee report on the treatment of terror suspects has been described in lurid vocabulary: “Shame of the West…America’s disgrace…intolerable cruelty…”

Coming soon to a European country

1:41pm Tuesday 2nd December 2014

In Strasbourg last week, Your Holiness criticised the immigration policy of the European nations, reminding us that more than 3,200 refugees from North Africa have died trying to reach Europe this year alone.

Don't promise what you can't deliver

11:35am Tuesday 18th November 2014

WHEN I studied philosophy in Liverpool in the olden days, a particular phrase was drummed into us: “Ought implies can.” It means no one has a duty to do something which he lacks the capacity to do. It also means: “Don’t promise something you can’t carry out.”

Social engineering is racism by another name

12:34pm Tuesday 11th November 2014

DAVID CAMERON says he would like to see an Asian become Britain’s Prime Minister. I must say, I am tempted to say: “Then move over Dave and let’s have our Asian Prime Minister next week.” But I couldn’t care less about the ethnic identity of our Prime Minister, her or his colour or sex – I refuse to say gender.

Campaign socialists are hypocrisy

3:03pm Tuesday 4th November 2014

I DO wish red-faced, gin-soaked high Tories from the shires would stop name-calling top socialists as puritanical, dour and sour. For the truth is that many leading Labourites know very well how to enjoy the good things in life – and how!

A reading from the book of Dave: A very taxing issue

11:14am Tuesday 28th October 2014

AND it came to pass in the land which is Inger-land in the days when Dave was Chief Steward of them which are called the Cameroons, there was much murmuring among the people, even them that dwelt in Clacton by the seaside.

Peter Mullen

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