Election Fever?

So, we’re having a general election. Has Theresa May guaranteed her premiership or made a terrible mistake? I can see why she did it: An election will silence those critics who claim she has no mandate, will avoid her having to fight an election midway through the ‘Brexit’ negotiations, preempts any downturn in the economy, … Continue reading

Jeremy Corbyn: First Impressions

The following piece deals entirely with impressions, rather than substance, and is aimed primarily at those unfamiliar with perception in day-to-day British politics. Despite having been in politics for a long time, for the majority of the British electorate their first impressions of Jeremy Corbyn as leader of the Opposition were their first impressions of … Continue reading

PR Disaster

With the election over, Britain has effectively chosen the party that wants to move the deckchairs around as the Titanic sinks rather than the party that wanted to drill additional holes in the hull of the sinking ship. The end disaster will be the same, but the nation will stay afloat a little longer this … Continue reading

Representing England

The Scottish independence referendum debacle highlighted the long-running canker at the heart of British politics – the fact that England, despite vastly exceeding the other British nations in population, is relegated to a junior role in which it (rightly) has no say in issues that only affect Scotland, Wales or Northern Ireland, but the MPs … Continue reading

Time To Take The Blame, Lord Smith!

It is, of course, a triumph of optimism over experience that we should expect a former Labour Minister to apologise for or even acknowledge their mistakes, for the Blairite/Brownite debacle was never one for taking the blame. But, it is especially rich of Lord Smith, head of the Environment Agency, to defend himself by pointing … Continue reading

Thinking Caps…

The arrival of benefits caps¬† is today’s big news and, unsurprisingly, the talk is of what might be done next – regional variation, perhaps, or reducing the cap level further, or specific measures such as limiting child benefit to the first two children of the unemployed and stopping under-25s from being eligible for housing benefit. … Continue reading

The Bedroom Dilemma

So, we have our first official death due to the so-called bedroom tax. Stephanie Bottrill is reported to have killed herself because she could not afford to pay ¬£80 towards her rent on her three-bedroom home. From initial reports it seems that she was already in dire financial straits and that the additional charge was … Continue reading

Enter Stage Right, The Star Chamber…

Merry old England was always a land of liberty until an odious new order took power and began to strip away the rights of freeborn Englishmen, allowing such fundamental injustices as secret trials and imprisonment with trial. That sounds like the Tudor period when the Star Chamber ruled supreme over English law and allowed monarchs … Continue reading

Rusty Politics

It was perhaps inevitable that the death of Margaret Thatcher would bring out the wailing and gnashing of teeth from one side of the political divide and songs of jubilation from the other, yet I cannot help but feel the whole thing is over-egged. It is true that she will go down in history as … Continue reading

The True Welfare Myth

I have just been reading an opinion piece by ‘left-wing writer’ Brendan O’Neill (I’ve no idea who he actually is, but he sees himself as an expert on the welfare-ridden poor). In it, he addresses the way in which the liberal middle classes are bemused at the failure of the poor to rise up and … Continue reading