Category: “Economy

Good luck to the marchers; and meet a man who may have to enter my Great People list

Posted on 26 March 2011 | 10:03am

Good luck to all the marchers trying to put a bit of sense into the government before the full extent of the cuts programme is felt, and the Big Society becomes more pressured, more fractured and a lot less Big. I won’t be among the vast throng as I have a long planned speech at […]

WPP return a sideshow; the Plan A fundamentals leave Osborne more worried than he looked

Posted on 24 March 2011 | 9:03am

Martin Sorrell’s announcement that he will bring his WPP HQ back to the UK was a dramatic and welcome coup … for Martin Sorrell. To get to the top of the news was evidence of a nifty spin team, and the lack of an obvious ‘Budget Day +1’ talking point to get the chatterati going. […]

Britain least convinced of EU countries of need for massive cuts

Posted on 14 March 2011 | 11:03am

It says something for the insularity of the UK media that The Guardian makes such a big deal of the idea of special reports from our European neighbours. Too often, the editor rightly says, the countries of Europe are reported purely in terms of their relations with Britain. This was something of a bugbear of […]

Fred Goodwin superinjunction underlines need for Parliament not media or judges to decide policy in this area

Posted on 11 March 2011 | 9:03am

A few weeks ago I took part in a discussion at one of the big internet companies on something called ‘the right to be forgotten.’ The notion – which the giants of the web are not terribly keen on – is that information on the web, even if you put it there yourself, can be […]

As Cameron slithers from tactic to tactic, Mandelson and Straw right to defend difficult positions

Posted on 7 March 2011 | 9:03am

I may not have liked much about Peter Mandelson’s book (“‘insufferably self-indulgent’ – Alastair Campbell” doesn’t seem to have made it to the quotes on the cover of the paperback). However, I totally agree with his defence of the Blair government’s attempts to bring Libya in from the cold. He has written a well-argued piece […]

Shirley Williams talking sense on NHS, Philip Hammond talking sense on rail, but Big Society could derail him

Posted on 28 February 2011 | 7:02am

For the second time in less than a week – well done Charles Kennedy on re-election as Rector of Glasgow University – I intend to be nice about a Lib Dem. I did not see BBC Question Time last week, but several people have mentioned to me how impressed they were with Shirley Williams. The […]

Hezza signals discontent at lack of Cameron grip, but Osborne won’t U-turn yet

Posted on 18 February 2011 | 8:02am

I got back from Leicester in time to catch a bit of Question Time and was interested to see that the audience seemed mildly supportive of the government’s U-turn on the sell-off of forests. It was a very different reaction to the one I got at De Montfort University, where students seemed to go along […]

Time running out for Tories’ ‘all Labour’s fault’ mantra

Posted on 17 February 2011 | 7:02am

The Tories have had a very good run with their ‘it’s all Labour’s fault’, but it is slowly coming to an end. With the public, or at least the centre of gravity of public opinion, I think it came to an end some time ago. The media are following on behind. It was a great […]

Big Society relaunch – mais on ne peut pas polir un turd

Posted on 13 February 2011 | 9:02am

Oh dear … poor old Dave has decided not only that he needs a ‘relaunch’ for his ‘Big Idea’, the ‘Big Society.’ … but he is seemingly of the view that the problem is not the policy, it is that ‘we are not communicating it very well.’ Oh dear oh dear. ‘Relaunch’ – he can […]

Gove and Cameron need to start getting into a bit of detail

Posted on 12 February 2011 | 9:02am

Well done to those councils which felt Michael Gove was exceeding his powers when bringing the Building Schools for the Future programme crashing to the ground. Yesterday’s High Court ruling was a victory for them, and even though Mr Gove retains the ultimate power over which schools get rebuilt, hopefully the powerful slap on the […]