Category: “Environment

Whacking public services now a clear political strategy to match economic strategy of cuts

Posted on 24 June 2011 | 8:06am

I was surprised there were no ministers at the Local Government Awards organised by the Municipal Journal last night. It was one of those events at which, if memory serves me right, Labour always tried to ensure a ministerial presence. But I didn’t have to be there for long to pick up the feeling from […]

Lovely weather yes, but litter louts bring out the Grumpy Old Man in me. Big Society please solve

Posted on 10 April 2011 | 2:04pm

Stuart Prebble is a soon-to-be 60 year old TV programme maker of considerable repute. Of the telly things I have done, the ones I felt had the greatest depth and integrity were the ones I did with Stuart’s Liberty Bell company – including a three part series on The Blair Years,  and, best of all […]

A day in Barcelona and a lovely BA crew – better than any chill pill

Posted on 1 April 2011 | 7:04am

Despite the OTT tweet activity yesterday, I can assure you I am not on the payroll of the Barcelona Tourist Board (though I would happily be so if it meant more time spent there). Actually, though I say OTT, if anything my tweets extolling the beauty of the airport, the stylishness of the city, the […]

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 […]

On World Cups, wheelie bags, and the disadvantages of a free media

Posted on 3 December 2010 | 11:12am

First, re the World Cup location announcements, part of you wants to say these are visionary decisions which will help two important countries build a more modern and relevant global identity, and provide two great festivals of football. A bigger part can’t help fearing that from a fan’s perspective it is hard to think of […]

Osborne has Lib Dems pretty much where he wants them

Posted on 24 May 2010 | 11:05am

When George Osborne announced the first public spending cuts today, he did at least have a mandate of sorts. While some of the detail may differ from the ‘efficiency savings’ claimed during the election to be able to deliver six billion pounds, he had been pretty clear about direction of travel, and though he did not get a Parliamentary […]

Four years on, what do we think of Cameron’s leadership?

Posted on 6 December 2009 | 1:12pm

Today is the fourth anniversary of David Cameron’s election as Leader of the Conservative and Unionist Party. I think we should all just have a moment’s reflection, and ask ourselves what we consider to be the most telling moment, thought, image or (honestly, come on, let’s try) ‘policy’ of those four years. For me, I […]

Beware climate change denial dressed up as ‘commonsense’

Posted on 21 November 2009 | 12:11pm

If you need any reminder of the challenge facing Ed Miliband as he works for a deal at the Copenhagen climate change summit, look no further than today’s interview in the Financial Times with the elected mayor in Ed’s Doncaster seat. Peter Davies surprised even himself when he was elected mayor standing for English Democrats, winning […]

Public opinion on climate change – the public might be the problem

Posted on 2 November 2009 | 11:11am

It is one of the golden rules of democratic politics that you are never allowed to turn towards the public and tell them they are the problem. Like many golden rules, from time to time it deserves to be broken. Because when you read a survey which states that only 15 per cent of British people worry […]

On transforned cities, and tales of Princess Di and Laura Bush

Posted on 8 September 2009 | 9:09am

I’ve just been for a longish run along the Newcastle quayside, which confirmed me in the view I tweeted last night – that this area has seen a real transformation since the days of successive Tory governments. I know the people who responded on Facebook and Twitter, being ‘friends’ and all that, are likely to […]