Section: UK

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Is there room for Nationalism, Patriotism … and Football?

Hadrian Cook

Empire Day (14th March) was celebrated from the death of the Queen Victoria in 1901 until the 1950s when it had to be acknowledged the British Empire was in terminal decline. Schoolchildren were excused lessons and obliged to wave the Union Jack and sing patriotic songs. In the mid-1920s, one group of little horrors (my […]

Trade Tunnel Vision

George Richmond

For the last couple of months I have been immersed in university final exams, preventing me from writing or paying much attention to current affairs. Despite this, I still saw how quickly the Australian Trade Deal went from being publicly debated to being signed off in June with total disregard for the interests of UK […]

LONG READ

The Case for a “Progressive Alliance”

Claire Jones

There is increasing concern that Johnson’s new Tory government is undermining our democracy. Measures such as voter suppression, weakening of judicial reviews and draconian new prosecution laws for everyone from street protesters and asylum seekers to Extinction Rebellion (XR) poster makers and investigative journalists, are all driving us “ever closer to authoritarianism”.  Our sister publication, […]

Consumer “Right To Repair” – Part 2 – Consumer Impact

Colin Thompson

Ed: In Part 1, Colin explored the position the UK government appears to be taking on the Consumer “Right to Repair” legislation and touched on the EU Eco Design Directive. In Part 2, Colin looks at how we have been enveloped in a throwaway disposable consumer market, with a few examples of the impact of […]

Boris Johnson’s Summer of Discontent

Liz Webster

The popularity of Boris Johnson and his Government was boosted by the British people’s gratitude for the vaccine rollout, giving hope that some kind of normality and freedom could be restored.  The British nation, having been imprisoned for months, appeared to suffer some kind of Stockholm syndrome, as the reasons for Britain having the worst […]

Limited Funding for Postgraduates hinders Social Mobility

Sophie Overton

Roman emperor and philosopher, Marcus Aurelius, once wrote that one should endeavour to: “Speak the truth as you see it. But with kindness. With humility. Without hypocrisy”. The “truth” as I see it is that there is a lack of funding for low-income students in England who seek to undertake a Masters degree. As such […]

LONG READ

Consumer “Right to Repair” – Part 1 – UK Legislation

Colin Thompson

Ed: This is the first of three articles exploring what we know about the proposed UK legislation on the Consumer “Right to Repair”, its impact on the consumer and how another country legislates within the EU “Eco Design Directive”. If you belong to my generation (well over 25!), I’m pretty sure you will have at […]

Local Farmers discuss the Australia Deal

Julian Greenbank

The post-Brexit Australian Deal is going to affect the future of British farming, whether you’re a small farmer or a mass producer. Matt and Laura Elliot are two farmers who run the National Trust Sandy Hill Mob farm in Gloucestershire. They are regenerative farmers, which means they use the cattle to regenerate the soil and […]

Liberal Democrats – Stuck in the Past but perhaps not far enough?

Joe Polson

“He’s taking us back to the 1980’s” was a criticism I heard time and time again about Corbyn the man and his policies. Yet in the quagmire of mudslinging that occurs between Government and the opposition there was a party, quietly sat in the middle, bumbling along as always hoping desperately that no one would […]

WITH VIDEO

Let’s Go Change the World – We need Leadership in Opposition

Julian Greenbank

UK Politics has changed a lot since the days of Blair, Kennedy and Major. Right now, we live under a Tory rule where the Prime Minister and his Cabinet Ministers seem to be doing everything they can to remove our rights and change what we know to be British into their own vision of what […]

Taxation without Representation is Tyranny

Bob Copeland

Many years ago, my son, then in the sixth form at Katharine Lady Berkeley’s School, Wotton-under-Edge (KLB) was wondering what he might ask local MP, Sir Geoffrey Clifton-Brown, when he visited the school. My suggestion was that he should ask why he isn’t allowed to vote, adding that it might be necessary to remind him […]

British Agriculture under Threat

Hadrian Cook

As we emerge, cavorting in the sunshine, from beneath the cover of Covid, long-term positivity post-Brexit remains in short supply. Yes, pent-up economic demand may mean that hospitality and tourism will bounce back, as might the housing market. On the down side, according to IHS Markit, manufacturing growth has slowed in the post-Covid world. So […]

Johnson caught out by Racist Tweets

Martin Griffiths

The cricketer Ollie Robinson has recently been suspended when it came to light that, as an 18 and 19 year old, he tweeted comments which were both racist and sexist. On the verge of a promising test career, how should he now be treated and punished for past mistakes? He has offered a full apology […]

Edwin Poots – Is he for real?

Eoin Hughes

The Democratic Unionist Party (DUP), Northern Ireland’s largest party, has been in turmoil for weeks over a change in leadership. The successful candidate, Edwin Poots, seems unlikely to bring the party together

LONG READ

How should we react to Cummings’ Revelations?

Claire Jones

Nothing about Cummings’ six hour diatribe last week seemed surprising. Many already sensed that the recent ‘goings on’ in Westminster in the name of ‘governance’ had levels of transparency, co-ordination and commitment to public welfare that would make Yes Minister and Faulty Towers look like modern, socially committed, streamlined organisations. Cummings’ depressing descriptions of good […]

Cummings opens up Pandora’s Box

Martin Griffiths

Over a year after the start of the pandemic Cummings at last tells us how it was in the Cabinet Office and No. 10. He says they wanted “business as usual” but they should have set up a “War Room.“ But how much can we believe from someone as free with the truth as Mr […]

What the Australia Deal will do to British Farming

The Editor

Ed: This is a placeholder for an upcoming article by Liz Webster, Chair of Save British Farming. The proposed “Australia Deal” has focussed attention of the media, the public and, above all, farmers on the possible effects of such a deal. Yes there will be upsides but the predominant thinking amongst small farmers is that […]

LOST – One LibDems Leader

Martin Griffiths

Editor (not to be confused with Sir Ed): After Martin’s encouragement to the Labour Leader, he now asks where is the LibDems Leader. Police are increasingly worried about the whereabouts of LibDems Leader, Ed Davey, who hasn’t been seen or heard of since the 6 May elections. Even internet searches throw up very little evidence […]

Populism and corruption this side of the Atlantic

The Editor

Ed: After Paul Ryder’s riveting treatment of Populism and Corruption in Trump’s USA, which we featured in March, here is a condensed version of his sequel showing how the UK is equally threatened. A right wing party moves further right When populism rules, and one party in a two-party democracy goes rogue, democracy is undermined […]

Keir Starmer, in terms of Football, what is your Goal?

Martin Griffiths

Leadership is a process of social influence, which maximizes the efforts of others, towards the achievement of a goal. Come on Keir, as the manager and striker of your team you’ve had multiple opportunities over the last twelve months to score plenty of goals. The opposition goalkeeper has sometimes not even been there and has […]

WITH VIDEO

Art Project highlights the £69k Problem facing EU Students

Matilde Converio

As an art student at London College of Contemporary Arts (LCCA), I aim to create a public art project that can speak to as many people as possible through different media. Because I’m Italian my fees have gone up from £9,000 to £23,000 per year. I’ve put together this multi-media project to highlight the fact […]

LONG READ

Challenging Lies and Sleaze: The Echo Chamber Problem

Claire Jones

There is a danger that the opposition narrative is stuck inside ‘Echo Chambers’ of like-mindedness which prevents our chatter, debate, research and critiques from reaching the ears of Tory supporters. Are we talking to ourselves? Can and should we escape these confines? The UK electorate seems deeply perverse. Labour has bombed overall in last week’s […]

Projecting Global British Military Power

Hadrian Cook

Are enormous and expensive aircraft carriers the best way for Britain to ‘make friends and influence people’? The Americans have Route 66, the Chinese have the Silk Road and in the West of England we have the historic A303. The ‘303’ runs between Basingstoke and Exeter. Shortly after you leave Basingstoke, Popham Airfield is visible […]

A Vacuum of Integrity

Peter Burke

It gives no pleasure to witness integrity and professionalism being treated as an optional extra by those in power. Dominic Cummings: ‘It is sad to see the PM and his office fall so far below the standards of competence and integrity the country deserves.’ Lord Kerslake, former head of civil service: ‘The level of toxicity […]

If you put Lipstick on a Pig, it’s still a Pig

Martin Griffiths

I once spent several days grinding the rust of my old Mini car and carefully rubbing down the applied filler before re-spraying it and polishing it. I even vacuumed (not with a Dyson!) the interior and to be fair, it looked pretty tidy when I sold it. However, whatever the cosmetics, it was still, fundamentally, […]

We are all ‘Grimbarians’ now

Jon Wakeham

I have to admit that I hadn’t heard of Lia Nici MP before her tweet regarding Queen and flag brought her to some prominence recently. So, I checked her Twitter profile and found that she represents the constituency of Leave-voting Grimsby and describes herself as a proud Grimbarian. Now, forgive my ignorance but I didn’t […]