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“Good manners are the cornerstone of civilisation.”  David Fisher/REX

If I ruled the world—and I have to admit I’m surprised and insulted that this is the first time it’s been suggested—I would enshrine in law one principle: that we should all mind our manners.

There’s a line in Tom Stoppard’s play Professional Foul that says: “The history of human calumny is largely a series of breaches of good manners.” It makes complete sense to me. Good manners are the cornerstone of…

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