Saturday 13th and Sunday 14th
As the weekend newspapers pass comment on the student protests of last Wednesday, Liberal Conspiracy reflect on the “militarisation” strategies that may be used to deal with civil disorder in the future, whilst Labour Uncut consider the divides the protest has created.
Women’s Views on News welcome the government’s decision to drop proposals which would have granted anonymity to those accused of committing rape, noting that the proposal was included in the coalition agreement although it appeared in neither election manifesto.
Also scrutinising manifestos are Open Democracy, who consider the pledges broken by the Liberal Democrats.
Meanwhile, ToryDiary cover Gove’s plans for the “voucherisation” of education funding.
Liberal Conspiracy are disappointed to see Alan Johnson’s continued muddle of Labour’s position on the economy.
Mike Smithson at Political Betting believes there is a strong possibility that NUS President Aaron Porter is being lined up as the Labour candidate for the Oldham East & Saddleworth by election.
The Staggers however are yet to be convinced of the NUS “right to recall” campaign. Also on higher education, Left Foot Forward note the rising number of British students applying to study abroad, due to rising tuition fees and limited places.
India Knight at Labour Uncut discusses the transparency of politics which Twitter and other social media can bring.
The Staggers also take a closer look at the problems posed by the coalition’s boundary changes.
Ireland’s debt troubles dominated the blogs today as EU Referendum claims ‘collapse is nigh’, Staggers reminds us that Ireland was once held up by the Chancellor as a model of austerity, and the Adam Smith Institute warns that British taxpayers could be liable for up to £7 billion of an EU-bailout.
Liberal Conspiracy approves of the government’s out-of-court settlement with Binyan Mohamed and other former Guantanamo detainees for wrongful imprisonment and inhumane treatment but worries the decision will let UK security services off the hook.
Nick Robinson reports on the prime minister’s Guildhall speech in which he asserted that Britain is not in decline, praised the City of London and the country’s military and ‘hard-headed internationalism’, a phrase used by Gordon Brown on the same occasion.
After Cornwall was flooded overnight Left Foot Forward predicts that floods will become more frequent and severe due to local authorities and government reducing spending on improving the outdated flood defence infrastructure.
A Yougov Sunday pull puts Labour five points ahead of the Conservatives, reports Staggers, prompting ToryDiary concern that the Coalition honeymoon may be coming to an end as the Conservatives slip between 40% in both the Yougov and Ipsos-MORI polls; but Paul Goodman asks whose party is it anyway?
Next Left worries the Public Bodies Bill– which will abolish a large number of quangos- will give ministers sweeping powers to amend legislation akin to Henry VIII powers.
On public sector job losses: Liberal Conspiracy reports on NHS stealth privatisation of thousands of jobs and Dizzy Reports finds the Border Agency will take on thousands of work experience staff while cutting 7,000 jobs.
Thursday 18th November
John Redwood argues that the UK can’t afford to bail out Ireland, but The Coffee House fears that it may not be avoidable. Ultimately, Robert Preston reports that it is a done deal but highlights many uncertainties. Hopi Sen argues that the Irish bail out exposes the coalition’s economics.
Tribune suggests that David Cameron is running into trouble with growing evidence of NHS staff cuts and Liberal Conspiracy notes that his approval ratings are falling sharply, as The Coffee House notes that he is on the defensive.
The Coffee House also says that Ed Miliband has a choice to make about the unions, as Liberal Conspiracy blogs on the return of the Blairites and the problems facing Labour in getting its core support base out to vote.
The Staggers argues that George Osborne must think again on VAT.
Research by political betting suggests that it will be local council cuts that will hurt the coalition the most.
Oliver Huitson at openDemocracy asks whether Murdoch can be stopped.
The Westminster Blog wonders what has gone wrong with welfare-to-work.
Sunder Katwala at Next Left looks at factionalism in the Labour party.
Mike Smithson at politicalbetting.com gets in early on Lord Young’s comments that the people of the UK “have never had it so good”, as during the current recession. George Eaton at The Staggers says that Lord Young has ‘parted ways with reality’, and Iain Dale reckons that it is a storm in a teacup. Iain Martin at the Wall Street Journal discusses his resignation, later in the day.
John Redwood blogs on the crisis in the Eurozone, now focusing in on Ireland. Mark Seddon at Left Futures says that Britain has avoided Ireland’s woes by not joining the Euro. Wat Tyler at Burning our Money ponders the possibility of an Ireland-style debt default for the UK.
Tim Worstall is not keen on the Department of Health’s proposals for a centralised appointment booking system.
Political Scrapbook charts a Twitter row between CLG‘s Eric Pickles and a Conservative Council Chief Executives £195,000 pay packet.
Martin Stabe at the FT’s Westminster Blog is happy with the government’s huge release of data this morning, but finds that its 200,000 records are a significant technical challenge to analyse and interpret.
Conor Ryan at Conor’s Commentary says that the appointment today of 53 new working peers will add considerably to the expertise of the House of Lords.
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