Progress, 3 February 2011. A response to Jon Cruddas and Jonathan Rutherford
I participated in a roundtable debate on this issue on Next Left’s website. Read the contributions here.
I debate with Andrew Green of MigrationWatch on BBC Radio 4′s PM programme, yesterday, 29 April 2010. Bizarrely, Green lambasts the BBC for failing to give him airtime and then claims that his extremist anti-immigration group speaks for the majority of the British people. Listen to the clip here.
Though ironically they copied the image from Italy’s Northern League. Hat tip: The Straight Choice
Writing in the FT, Chris Huhne demolishes the Tories’ scaremongering about the perils of a hung parliament: It is demonstrably wrong to argue that sound economics requires single-party government… Of the 14 countries that enjoy the top AAA rating for creditworthiness with all three rating agencies – Fitch, Moody’s, and Standard and Poor’s – 10 [...]
Ken Clarke and the Tories are trying to scare people by claiming that a hung parliament would cause a crisis in the markets that could push Britain into the hands of the IMF. Yet as Cleggmania has swept Britain this week, the pound has strengthened against the euro every day, as this graph from FT.com [...]
Coalition governments are par for the course in many countries in the world – and they often work fine. Bryan Gould points out on the Guardian’s Comment is Free that they work well even in a country with a Westminster-style democracy: New Zealand. The real significance of non-majority government is the change that it brings [...]
Nine out of the top 10 areas for BNP votes actually have a below-average proportion of recent migrants, according to a new study by IPPR, Britain’s top think-tank for immigration research. Read the Guardian report here.
A great article by Bill Emmott, former editor of The Economist, in today’s Times (and not just because he very kindly quotes Immigrants: Your Country Needs Them). As he rightly says: Immigration is an issue on which all three main British parties are on the defensive and hence illiberal. This is an emerging tragedy for a country [...]
Labour’s first election broadcast reminds voters how the Conservatives opposed most of the government’s anti-crisis measures. It highlights how Labour’s re-election pitch echoes the Tories’ in 1992: you might want a change, but can you trust the other lot with the economy? It worked for John Major… But will it work again this time?
On liberalism: A liberal basically believes that what you should be doing, every waking minute if you are in politics, is trying to release potential, create opportunity, remove barriers to social progress, liberate social mobility. On Labour and the Tories: Yes, Labour has “betrayed the progressive cause”, destroyed civil liberties and taken the country into [...]
Why is Labour staking its election campaign on defending a rise in national insurance? It will hurt the pocket of the average voter. It will cost some their job. It isn’t even a “stealth tax” any more. As for Gordon Brown’s Wayne Rooney reference to the need to support an injured economy, how on earth [...]
Hat tip: The Straight Choice
Oliver Kamm at The Times, a man I respect a lot, argues in his blog that banks are not a “vested interest”. But unless I have misunderstood him, I think he is being too charitable to the banks. He argues that “the banks are not some unaccountable lobby seeking to superimpose itself on the public interest: they [...]
Guardian, 9 March 2010. Running Britain in an age of austerity will be a thankless task – Labour might be better off without this poisoned chalice
UK foreign secretary David Miliband has written an excellent piece in today’s Guardian about why the notion of a ‘war on terror’ is inaccurate and harmful. He argues that: The more we lump terrorist groups together and draw the battle lines as a simple binary struggle between moderates and extremists, or good and evil, the [...]
Hat tip: Andrew Sullivan
Progress, November 2008. The banking crisis requires government action but not a return to 1970s state control
Andrew Rawnsley on Britain’s embattled prime minister: More and more critics contend that Gordon Brown’s fundamental weakness is not knowing what he wants to do with power. I disagree. His core purpose is easily stated and could provide a solid theme for his premiership. He believes that it is morally right and economically imperative to [...]