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Economics Equality Labour Party Politics

Blue Labour, Relationships and Free Movement

I attended a fascinating meeting last weekend arranged by the East Midlands ‘Blue Labour’* group on the theme of ‘How Do We Champion the Cause of the Working Class?’ There was a panel of academics, journalists and local Labour politicians. I am interested in Blue Labour’s approach because they are the only group within Labour that […]

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Economics Healthcare News Politics

Explaining the NHS Crisis: Lies, Damn Lies and Health Spending

Introduction Just how much cash does the NHS and social care need to prevent the distressing stories of patients languishing on trolleys for hours in A&E departments? Can we possibly afford what it needs, or is it really a ‘bottomless pit’ as often claimed? Do we need to lower our expectations of what can be […]

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Electoral Reform Labour Party News Politics

Irrelevant Alternatives and PR

There was little discussion of our electoral system as part of the UK Labour leadership debate. Yet proportional representation has never seemed more clearly essential to avoid the permanent triumph of self-interest politics. Something quite extraordinary happened between the 2010 and 2015 elections that has been extraordinarily little remarked upon. The outcome in terms of […]

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Labour Party News Politics

Why I voted for Jeremy Corbyn as UK Labour leader

I do not, as far as that is a meaningful concept in today’s fragmented politics, consider myself to be of the ‘hard left’. And I am certainly no ‘entryist’, having been a member of the UK Labour party since 1997. In the end, however, I didn’t have too much difficulty deciding to vote for Jeremy […]

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Labour Party News Politics

Why Power is not Enough for Labour

There’s a flavour of ‘What have the Romans ever done for us?’ in the Corbyn-led debate over the Blairite legacy. As someone who campaigned enthusiastically for Labour in 1997 and now feels a somewhat detached member of the party, I think I can articulate why -despite the many achievements of the Blair and Brown governments […]

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Equality Inequality Labour Party News Politics

Beyond Defeat for Labour in the UK

After defeat at the 2015 UK election Labour talks about appealing to the ‘aspirational’ and David Cameron pledges before his cabinet ‘to give everyone in our country the chance to get on’. If we accept the premise that speaking to material self-interest is what politics is now all about, we still need to point out […]

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Economics Politics

Politics and Morality

Politics and Morality – Where Conservatism gets it Wrong Tim Montgomerie wrote an interesting piece a while ago on ‘How the Left went Bad’, which asserted the necessity for Conservatives to ‘take the moral high ground’ from Labour. Now, I don’t think talking about ‘morality’ gets us very far in politics – different morals are […]

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Economics Inequality Politics

Independence is Nominal

Independence is Nominal – long-gestated thoughts given birth to in response to Brian Barder’s blog post on the lack of post Scottish referendum preparedness and the need for the UK coalition government to resign if there is a ‘Yes’ vote. Here I am, up in Scotland and strangely detached from the debate. (For comparison I […]

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Business and Society Economics Equality Philosophy Politics

Modern Thinking: Atomism and Communication

‘Modern Thinking: Atomism and Communication’ – Although written four years ago for an essay competition, I still think this piece encapsulates as well as anything my approach to economics, politics and social institutions. Bertrand Russell, the great British mathematician and philosopher, believed that to be ‘modern-minded’ was to make the error of thinking with the […]

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Inequality Politics

The Callousness of a Conservative

Charles Moore is the official biographer of Margaret Thatcher, former editor of the Daily Telegraph and an Old Etonian. He has nicely epitomised the indifference, evident intentional ignorance and convenient innumeracy of a particular type of Conservative. Writing in his column in ‘The Spectator’ magazine (May 4th) he devotes a mere 262 words to writing-off […]