Tag Archives: public sector

Next week in the Lords: 8-11 January

Whilst rumours of a list of new Peers swirls around the Palace of Westminster, the Lords returns to work on Tuesday, and a somewhat lop-sided week continues through to Friday in order to fit in the postponed debate on Leveson.
 
Never let it be said though that the Lords needs a gentle warm-up before asking the difficult questions. Tuesday sees oral questions on airport capacity in London, housebuilding in South East England and the effect of the ‘fiscal cliff’ solution on the UK economy, before the Growth and Infrastructure …

Posted in News and Parliament | Also tagged , , and | 1 Comment

In defence of Jeremy Clarkson. Yes, really.

Jeremy Clarkson is an attention-seeking controversialist. That’s his stock in trade. He’s about as close as the British have come to embracing America’s shock-jock cult.

And he was at it again yesterday — seeking attention, being controversial — when he appeared on BBC1′s The One Show and suggested striking public sector workers should be shot in front of their families. Cue VT:

Posted in News | Also tagged and | 73 Comments

Opinion: Why today’s strike action is wrong

Today in England and Wales, tens of thousands of public sector workers, many of them teachers, are expected to strike. Currently public sector workers largely enjoy more generous pensions than their equivalents in the private sector and the Coalition Government has acknowledged the growing difference in approach between the private and public sectors. The private sector long ago realised the rising cost and substantial risk involved in offering final salary schemes, based on years of service and end of career earnings, made them unsustainable.

The Coalition Government has a responsibility to ensure that pensions in the civil service are both fair …

Posted in Op-eds | Also tagged and | 31 Comments

Opinon: Osborne should not belittle public sector workers

As a public sector worker I was extremely disheartened and have to question George Osborne’s analysis of the public sector which he dismissed in an arrogant and superficial manner. This is the organisation that will have to implement the policies of any incoming government and George, for all his political ambition, does not appreciate the sector’s commitment to duty and society.

The ‘low morale‘ that he refers to among 40% of public sector staff is directly as a result of the uncertainty that we are all living under as to whether we will have jobs still in the …

Posted in Op-eds | Also tagged , and | 3 Comments

#ldconf podcast: Vince’s speech

There are now many ways of getting your brain around Vince Cable’s keynote speech. Read it on the party website. Hear our podcast below. See what ePolitix thinks – or the Guardian, for that matter.

vince-speech

There was much that was really important that jumped out at me from the speech – here are my favourite bits:

We should not be taken in by the hysterical nonsense about the country being bankrupt. It isn’t.

The Tories are currently getting a free rein to slash budgets. Tories like …

Posted in Conference and Podcasts | Also tagged , , , and | 17 Comments

Deputy PMQs: Vince tackles Harriet on bankers’ bonuses

Y’know I’ve expressed my general contempt for the pantomime which passes for Prime Minister’s Questions on many occasions: it’s theatre, mirage, insubstantial: all performance, no content. But we discovered today there’s something worse than the usual rowdy PMQs: when there’s both no performance and no content.

It’s hard to remember that William Hague once had a fearsome Commons reputation for being the best, sparkiest, wittiest debater on the block. Perhaps all those after-dinner speeches have dulled his senses – or perhaps he reckons he’s not paid enough to waste all his best lines on Parliament – but today’s performance against Prime Ministerial stand-in Harriet Harman was lame and dull. To put it in context, he made Harriet look actually quite good. She wasn’t – she was anodyne and frequently out-of-her-depth – but the comparison was to her credit, not his. Still, at least Mr Hague was better than Gordon Brown.

Vince Cable rose, as is traditional, to cheers from all-corners of the house. He started with a dry, slightly obscure, joke in Harriet’s honour – “may I express the hope that when she was briefing the Prime Minister for talks with his friend Signor Berlusconi, she remembered to enclose an Italian translation of her progressive views on gender equality?” – but then stuck to the touchstone issue among the public at the moment: how can government ministers talk of the need for public sector pay restraint when they are signing-off large bonuses for executives in banks currently majority-owned by the public? Harriet made a half-heartedly fierce show of sounding tough while committing the Government to nothing.

In a low-scoring contest, Vince edges it both for injecting (a little) humour into proceedings, and (more importantly) for asking a question that matters to the public, on an issue the government can do something about, and where his own party has something distinctive to say. Mr Hague, take note.

Full Hansard transcript of Vince and Harriet’s exchanges follow:

Posted in Parliament and PMQs | Also tagged , , , and | 3 Comments

Why Danny Finkelstein is wrong about the Lib Dems and the public sector

There’s a distinctly odd posting by The Times’s Daniel Finkelstein over at his Comment Central blog today, Our poll and Nick Clegg’s strategy, focusing on the result of the latest Times/Populus opinion poll which breaks down party support according to the public and private sectors as follows:

Lib Dems: 23% (public sector), 17% (private sector)
Labour: 26% (public), 29% (private)
Tory: 38% (public), 45% (private)

Here’s Danny confusing (and confused) analysis:

Nick Clegg’s party does much better among public sector workers than among private sector ones (23 to 17 per cent). This must put a further question mark over his strategy of arguing

Posted in Op-eds | Also tagged | 2 Comments



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    Stephen: I agree with your premise about the nature of Liberalism. I disagree with how you apply it to the debate over Jeremy Browne's book....
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    @Malc. Totally agree with you - great poster and get Charles Kennedy and Alistair Darling out there more. I really hope that Scotland votes to...
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    Michael Moore says - "--Currently, our British forces are strategically structured and positioned, not on an arbitrary national level, but on military logic........" Ah yes,...
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    I would echo what George Crozier says. From the door knocking I have done, when you get to speak to them, people I have met...