Alastair's Blog

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Galloway wasting police time with his little movie stunt

Posted on 28 February 2014 | 10:02am

George Galloway announced to the world this morning he was on his way to an East London police station to demand the release of the director making his crowd-sourced film, The Killing of Tony Blair. Woodward and Bernstein eat your hearts out. George has become a journalist. Galloway and his acolytes have been using twitter […]

Stand up for the standing up: my Observer debate with Danny Kelly on safe standing

Posted on 16 February 2014 | 3:02pm

Many thanks to The Observer for asking me to debate my pro-safe standing at football stance with Danny Kelly, who says he is opposed, but as you will see, he is actually pretty close to me, and will be a safe stander before too long. If you want to post comments, go to the Observer […]

Cameron’s crisis management skills exposing his usual strategic weakness

Posted on 15 February 2014 | 8:02pm

This is the piece I had in Saturday’s Financial Times… Despite the media addiction to the word “crisis”, real crises for government are exceptionally rare. In the decade I spent alongside Tony Blair, I believe we had five: war in Kosovo; the September 11 attacks, Iraq; and, on the domestic front, foot-and-mouth and fuel protests. […]

Both business and politics struggling to adapt to changed reputations

Posted on 12 February 2014 | 12:02pm

Overcoming my slight fear of heights, I took the lift to the top of The Gherkin today to take part in the launch of Portland’s new document on trust and reputation, Bringing Business Home. Whether me from a left-leaning perspective, City AM editor Allister Heath from the right, FT journalist Elizabeth Rigby or COMRES pollster […]

A tribute to Mark Bennett, staff member who became a friend

Posted on 4 February 2014 | 9:02pm

I would like to add my voice to the tributes which have been paid to Mark Bennett, who died today. Just writing those words – ‘who died today’ – adds to the horrible sense of shock I felt on receiving a phone call from our mutual friend Margaret McDonagh to be told the dreadful news. […]

My blog for World Cancer Day

Posted on 3 February 2014 | 10:02pm

Today is World Cancer Day, where those fighting cancer across the world come together to raise awareness of the disease, and what needs to be done so that the work can go on to beat it. As Theodore Roosevelt said ‘believe you can, and you’re half way there.’ Well I don’t know if we are […]

Miliband party reforms an opportunity to take broader message of change to the country

Posted on 1 February 2014 | 9:02am

If the battles fought by Neil Kinnock and John Smith to change the Labour Party seem like an age ago, that is because they were. It is now more than 20 years since they fought for the principle of One Member, One Vote. I was still a journalist, Paul Dacre was not yet begun his […]

Self interested media/business attacks on 50p an opportunity for Labour (with PS on hypocrite Dacre)

Posted on 27 January 2014 | 9:01am

As the debate over Labour’s 50p tax plans develops, it is worth remembering that a small proportion of people will be affected by it, but that a very large proportion of the small proportion will be writing and talking about it in our national media. This partly explains the well-organised avalanche of business voices wheeled […]

Brilliant debunking of immigration lies from the Dacre Lie Machine

Posted on 25 January 2014 | 7:01am

Just before Christmas, I wrote a blog about the way that media-driven myths were driving government policy and political debate, for example on the issue of immigration. If you need a reminder you can read it here, but first I recommend you read this brilliant expose of one paper’s lies and myths about the so-called […]

Guest blog on the government’s shameful dumping of its alcohol strategy – from a liver specialist who lives with the fallout

Posted on 17 January 2014 | 11:01am

Nick Sheron, a liver specialist from Southampton, unwittingly provided the creative spark that led to me writing My Name Is, my novel about alcoholism, from the perspective of a young woman. When I made a BBC documentary about middle-class alcoholism, he was one of our interviewees, and he made the point that whereas once his […]