Lady Thatcher’s governments did indeed achieve something of a renaissance in British productivity. The question is: at what cost was this victory bought?
What effect will her death, funeral and its media coverage have on British politics? Not much, I suspect, despite a tiny flurry of interest in this morning’s YouGov poll, which showed the Labour lead at seven points – the lowest since, oh, three months ago. That is well within the margin of variation you would expect [...]
I wondered last month why deficit cutters tend to be right wing and fiscal stimulators tend to the left politically. This prompted some interesting responses, including a guest post by Martin Hutchison. Since then I have been pointed to a similar argument by Simon Wren-Lewis, who explains the attraction of austerity to some politicians thus:
This just in from Ed Balls: It was a serious mistake for George Osborne to totally ignore the IMF’s calls for a reassessment of fiscal policy in the Budget. They are right to step up their warnings and insist that a change of economic policy is considered right now.
Number 930 in my series of Questions To Which The Answer Is No (QTWTAIN): “If everybody in the US drove west, could we temporarily halt continental drift?” What If?
Two notable quotations about Tony Blair this morning. One from Polly Toynbee, and one from Dan Hodges.
She says that Blair and “other old warhorses – John Reid, David Blunkett and Tessa Jowell – … are like loose horses getting in the way of the riders in the Grand National”.
He says that Blair’s comments in the [...]
I haven’t had time to catch up on good news of one of Britain’s most inspiring exports, namely public service reform. If you haven’t read it already, I recommend Sir Michael Barber’s report of his schools reform in the Punjab, the most populous state in Pakistan, published last month.
The programme started little more than two [...]
I see that Jason Cowley, editor of the New Statesman, has beaten me in trying to answer Tony Blair’s seven questions for the Labour Party (Times, pay wall).
I know longform is just a long way of saying long, but sometimes there is a place for long articles, which they do in America but not here so much. They also do them in Australia. Or, at least, David Hayes does them in Inside Story.
He has written a magnificent 6,000-word essay called “Britain’s military [...]
One of the seminars Jon Davis and I teach in the “Blair Government” and “New Labour in Government” classes at Queen Mary, University of London, discusses the merits of British prime ministers and tries to place Tony Blair and Gordon Brown in the league table, as I mention in The Independent on Sunday today.
YouGov’s poll [...]
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