Author Archives: Oranjepan

Opinion: The Savile row – why paedophile scandals continue to haunt society

The stunned response that has crystalised around the proposed inquiries into alleged abuse at public institutions following the broadcast of ITV’s Exposure investigation is perfectly understandable/

Yet after decades of scandal, alarm and outrage, controversy after controversy, following numerous inquiries and reports, and despite the best efforts of huge numbers of dedicated staff, one conclusion is inescapable: Britain has created, in the words of Nick Davies, “an elaborate and sophisticated failure, a child protection system which does not protect children.”

Posted in Op-eds | Tagged | 5 Comments

Opinion: Speaking up for Scots – a referendum on independence needs democratic legitimacy

All sorts of scare-stories surround a future Scottish referendum – from practical questions about the debt rating of an independent nation to more emotive fears of a new wave of Highland clearances.

Yet amidst all the manoeuvering by both the pro and anti-unionists seeking to define the framework under which the question will be answered (in particular whether it should be a straight in-out decision) the respective leaders at Westminster and Holyrood retain one glaring blindspot.

Scotsman columnist Bill Jamieson is entirely correct when identifying an “effective disenfranchisement which could undermine the referendum vote as envisaged,” but perhaps not …

Posted in Op-eds | Tagged , and | 19 Comments

Opinion: The Lib Dems need to lead to solve the Eurozone crisis

There are only two possible results to the Euro-crisis: 1) collapse of intra-European trade, or 2) greater European integration. The first has far-reaching negative implications for Britain, Europe and the world. The second indicates a massive area for future growth in our shared economy.

While the current political challenge remains to deliver stability and growth at the same time it’s up to Britain to choose to find the political will and lead on the issue. Why? Because continual continental dithering and endless domestic bickering will mean economic conditions stay in the doldrums until the Eurozone countries wake up to the fact …

Posted in Op-eds | 15 Comments

Opinion: the IFS, the buts and the maybes – questions of fairness and the CSR

Last week Nick Clegg and the Institute of Fiscal studies squared up over the issue of whether the cuts proposed in the Comprehensive Spending Review are fair.

It is a debate which strikes at the heart of Lib Dems in the coalition government and it will determine the shape of politics in this country for next decade.

For the first time ever the Treasury included an impact analysis of the announced changes within the CSR, the effect of pressure from Lib Dems. These were calculated according to the sections of society that will bear the burden of the changes (ie how …

Posted in Op-eds | Tagged , , and | 55 Comments
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  • User AvatarAlex Sabine 1st Feb - 2:37pm
    On the point about the public finances and fiscal retrenchment in the next parliament: - I agree that the deficit is usually best expressed in...
  • User AvatarEddie Sammon 1st Feb - 2:26pm
    This sounds good. Let this be a whistle for everyone connected with the Lib Dems to get into campaign mode. There's too much idle debate...
  • User AvatarJohnTilley 1st Feb - 2:16pm
    Simon Shaw I would be happy to support your policy of removing charges for dentistry. My guess is that most Liberal Democrats and most voters...
  • User AvatarSteve Way 1st Feb - 2:15pm
    He is of course entirely correct that there should be consensus over the NHS but he has absolutely no chance of getting it in the...
  • User AvatarSimon Shaw 1st Feb - 1:58pm
    @JohnTilley "People would vote for a guarantee that the NHS will be protected as a public service, provided free at the point of delivery." "Free...
  • User AvatarAlex Sabine 1st Feb - 1:58pm
    @ Little Jackie Paper "Indeed, it is interesting given the emphasis on free movement that data on how many UK people have moved to other...