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Ubuntu 11.10 boot: xhost: unable to open display

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http://askubuntu.com – I've had this papercut for a while now, it's time it was fixed. When I boot up Ubuntu, choosing "Ubuntu...generic" from the grub screen, Ubuntu fails to load. It just sits at the driver/module loading screen. What seems to be the most significant line in this output is "xhost: unable to open display" If I choose "Ubuntu...(recovery mode)" from grub then it loads OK. I don't get why this is. Out of interest I tried enabling boot error logging with #/etc/default/bootlogd BOOTLOGD_ENABLE=Yes but I'm not seeing anything in that file. (HowTos)