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Columnists
Issue 1382
agri brigade
With Bio-Waste Spreader: "The rise of the specialist arable farmer is an unhealthy system of a reliance on a battery of pesticides that tackle the disease, weeds and insect pests that arise if one cereal crop follows another, or short rotations like “wheat/oilseed rape” are adopted…”
medicine balls
With M.D.: "Obstetric care in the NHS is as safe as it has ever been, and serious harm to mother or baby is rare. But harm does happen, and most of the NHS litigation money goes on compensation for birth injuries. It’s also common for women to say they were left alone for long periods during hospital labour. The NHS is short of up to 4,000 midwives to provide a safe service, and obesity and older mothers are making childbirth harder and riskier…”
signal failures
With Dr B Ching: "Passengers now expect to be able to use the internet while travelling. Wifi connections have been available on the east coast mainline for more than a decade, are common on buses and are appearing on airliners and even First Great Western’s intercity trains. Thameslink’s new trains won’t have wifi…”
eye tv
With Remote Controller: "Although the Digger’s British-based channels are still mainly watched for sport (bought at enormous expense) he successfully continued his cunning policy of undermining the case for the Beeb by showing that his commercial service will run the sort of stuff that is the BBC’s reason to exist. While BBC managers privately laugh at the low ratings of niche channels such as Sky Atlantic and Sky Arts, those services are increasingly screening imports – such as the US historical shows The Knick and Penny Dreadful and the Danish family drama The Legacy – that the corporation would love to have had...
[End of year report, All channels]…”
keeping the lights on
With Old Sparky: "Once again the capacity of power stations that closed this year is greater than that offered by their newly-completed replacements, so the safety-margin of supply over peak demand has fallen to a disgraceful 4 percent (last winter it was an already scary 6 percent) causing the National Grid to take expensive contingency measures to keep the lights on...”
nooks and corners
With Piloti: "The sad truth is that Mackintosh has been betrayed by those who should have known better and by those charged with looking after his work: his practical, sensible and precious building – so often, but so wrongly hailed as a pioneer of modernism – has been gravely damaged by conceptual arts as well as by bad management on top of being demeaned and insulted by Steven Holl’s crude and insufferably arrogant essay in minimalist neo-modernism...”
music and musicians
With Lunchtime O’Boulez: "Of course the Vienna Phil isn’t poor and could afford to pay – but it won’t, on principle. This small protest is creating excitement in Britain where the cost of mounting performances is regularly rendered astronomical by the demand of publishers for music-hire and royalties…”
books and bookmen
With Bookworm: "It is several months since Zoella first mentioned on her vlog that she was writing a novel. What she may have forgotten to add, in all the rush of composition, was that she wasn’t quite writing it by herself…”
in the city
With Slicker: "As the FCA explained to angry insurers, the leak to the Telegraph “had been intended to stop the media misunderstanding the issue, but it had backfired”. This was the very reason some in the FCA had argued against any such Wheatley-boosting briefing…”
Letter from São Paulo
From Our Own Correspondent: "
The reservoirs have literally dried up. In October the main system, Cantareira, hit 2.9 percent of capacity. As the water receded, it revealed dry red rock bed littered with rusty cans that had been sitting at the bottom. There is no more water…”
To read all these columnists and more in full, you can buy the latest edition of Private Eye - or subscribe here and have the magazine delivered to your home every fortnight.

Next issue on sale:
2nd January 2015.
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More From This Issue
Private Eye Issue 1382
private eye Only In The Magazine

Sir Oswald Mosley explains offensive remarks… BBC Theme Park to feature ‘Executive Land’… That leaked James Bond movie script – redacted version (not in full)… Garglebox… BBC Thatcher Murder Outrage Causes House Prices to Plummet… George W Bush ‘denies knowledge’… Russell Brand’s Christmas Revolution, as told to Craig Brown

And also...

- Gnome’s Festive Giftmart: Everything you never knew you needed.
- Log Rolling Special: Books of the Year 2014.
- PLUS: Bumper £250 Prize Crossword
For all these stories you can buy the magazine or subscribe here and get delivery direct to your home every fortnight.
Next issue on sale: 2nd January 2015.

Private Eye Issue 1381
gnitty