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February 23, 1996

Alumni to be proud of nos 32 and 33 are a couple of Scottish politicians. First is Ian Lang, president of the Board of Trade, who had eight days to browse through the Scott report and managed only to notice the sentences which exonerate HM Government. His remarkable reading skills were undoubtedly polished while an undergraduate at Sydney Sussex, Cambridge. Second is shadow foreign secretary Robin Cook, who had three hours to read 1,800 pages and still managed to find most of the passages suggesting precisely the opposite, may have learnt how to extract the essential message from vast and turgid tomes while reading English at Edinburgh.

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