Tag Archives: the spectator

Better in Cameron’s Black Book than on the Statute Book

“The Lib Dems have held us back, says Cameron” screams today’s Daily Mail headline. Yes, it’s the Prime Minister showing that he can play the differentiation game too.

If there’s one thing that David Cameron and Nick Clegg can agree on, it’s that the Liberal Democrats and the Tories have divergent views on many issues. Both will take every opportunity to point that out to anyone who will listen.

The Daily Mail quotes Cameron’s interview with the Spectator in which he says that Nick Clegg has stopped him doing all sorts of things he would love to do. None of this is …

Posted in Op-eds | Also tagged and | 15 Comments

A personal guide to the 13 most essential political podcasts

podcastsCommuting is a major part of my daily life, so I find podcasts are an essential way to make use of time I’d otherwise spend staring vacantly out the window or idly refreshing and re-refreshing Twitter. Here, in order of where they appear in my iTunes directory, are the podcasts I listen to most frequently…

The Economist’s podcasts – a good mix of audio recordings of selected articles from the print edition together with brief discussions involving the Economist’s expert correspondents. Slightly irritatingly the sound can vary between recordings, so you …

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4 graphs on Thatcher’s legacy: a richer but more unequal nation.

A generation on, the Thatcher legacy continues to provoke and divide. One of the questions it poses for liberals is one this government is still wrestling with: does inequality matter if everyone’s getting richer?

Margaret Thatcher’s answer was that it did not — as she famously illustrated in one of her last Commons performances in response to a question from Simon Hughes:

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Reasons for Lib Dem cheer — as told by Labour and Tory supporters

Just two things from me:

1) Anyone trying to forecast how the Lib Dems will do in 2015 based on extrapolating mid-term opinion polls on the basis of uniform national swing is likely to be as wrong as they would have been at every general election in modern history.

2) My confident forecast for 2015 is the Lib Dems will a) do less well than I’d like and b) do better than our fiercest critics would like.

Posted in News | Also tagged , , and | 41 Comments

What The Spectator says: ‘Obama the Lib Dem’. (PS: It may even be a compliment.)

Over at The Spectator, Jonathan Jones looks at the US and UK approaches to their forthcoming budgets — cutting the deficit, taming debt, etc — and his fourth and final point concludes:

Obama the Lib Dem. It’s striking how similar Obama’s tax priorities are to those of the Liberal Democrats, even though the specifics differ either side of the Atlantic. Obama wants to extend the payroll tax cut for ‘160 million hardworking Americans’, which he says is worth ‘about $40 in every paycheck’ for ‘the typical family earning $50,000 a year’. The Lib Dems have been pushing to raise the

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Nick Clegg wins Spectator’s Politician of the Year

The Spectator’s annual Parliamentarian of the Year Awards ceremony took place last night.

Nick Clegg was named as the magazine’s Politician of the Year, while Danny Alexander and George Osborne were awarded Best Double Act.

The Mail has the photos, and Standard diarist Olivia Cole reports David Cameron’s topical joke:

Best was his line on the “spectacular” coupling. “I can’t believe,” he said, “that someone middle class, from the Home Counties, could get together with someone so wealthy whose family own a string of mansions.”

Not Kate … he was talking about his beautiful relationship with Nick Clegg. Touché.

You can read …

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Two Lib Dem MPs rebel over VAT

The Guardian:

The coalition faced its first rebellion last night when two Liberal Democrat MPs voted against a budget proposal to increase VAT to 20%.

Bob Russell and Mike Hancock voted with Labour to oppose the increase, which has alarmed many Lib Dems who warned during the election of a Tory VAT “bombshell”.

To shouts of “shame” from the Labour benches, the 2.5% increase in VAT from January was backed by 346 to 270, majority 76. Russell, MP for Colchester, and Hancock, MP for Porstmouth South, had earlier supported a backbench Lib Dem motion demanding a Treasury investigation into the impact on the

Posted in News | Also tagged , , and | 90 Comments



Recent Comments

  • User AvatarHelen Dudden 24th Apr - 9:39am
    There are of course two sides to the situation. This is long standing, and as we celebrate Passover and the land that for some was...
  • User Avatarsfk 24th Apr - 9:28am
    I agree, voter contact and knowledgable local branches beat a centralised automated system hands down. There's a parallel trend in retail banking if you torture...
  • User AvatarTony Rowan-Wicks 24th Apr - 9:18am
    Totally agree with Caron. It struck me as wrong for a party which believes in voter listings in elections being completed 1 2 3 etc....
  • User AvatarRC 24th Apr - 9:13am
    @ Peter Watson A very good question given 20/20 hindsight/wisdom *after the event*. However: 1) All the evidence at the time said it would save...
  • User AvatarAustin Rathe 24th Apr - 8:31am
    David, we have never (in our surveys) asked any questions about the performance of individuals. Lib Dem Voice do ask those questions in their own...
  • User AvatarCaron Lindsay 24th Apr - 8:31am
    I wouldn't be so sure about that, Caractacus. In Scotland, the Lib Dems have been praised by NUS for persuading the SNP Government to minimise...