Thursday

What has Ed Miliband actually proposed in his speech today?

1. Tax on bankers’ bonuses to fund compulsory workfare for long term unemployed for whom 10 out of the 25 hours of work would be training. If the work is not accepted, the workless person would lose benefits. 2. Require … Continue reading

Posted by James Bartholomew Indexed in Housing, Politics, Reform, Unemployment, Welfare benefits
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Wednesday

The Pope and a ‘fair wage’ in Bangladesh

It is sad to see the Pope enter into the political and economic arena. He does not understand the issues and therefore has made wholly misguided remarks which are dangerous for the people of Bangladesh and other very poor countries. … Continue reading

Posted by James Bartholomew Indexed in General, Politics, Poverty and inequality
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Monday

Lest we forget what Maggie achieved

In France, children are taught that the Battle of Trafalgar was inconclusive and that the British admiral was killed. In Britain, of course, we are told something rather different, that it was one of our greatest naval triumphs. History is … Continue reading

Posted by James Bartholomew Indexed in Politics
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Friday

Hobbes and Rousseau may have started from incorrect premises

I have been reading a book by Cacioppo on Loneliness. It is an interesting book on a subject that does not get enough attention. The author emphasises, as you might expect, that, like our close relations among the apes, we … Continue reading

Posted by James Bartholomew Indexed in Off the subject, Politics
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Sunday

The story of the broken window which every politician, political pundit and, come to that, member of the voting public should know

This is the ‘broken windows’ fallacy as superbly described by its originator, the French economist, Frédéric Bastiat. (From the Library of Economics and Liberty website.) 1.6 Have you ever been witness to the fury of that solid citizen, James Goodfellow,*1 when … Continue reading

Posted by James Bartholomew Indexed in Politics, Tax and growth
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Wednesday

When a politician means when he says ‘compassion’

A nice quip from Thomas Sowell: A more positive term that is likely to be heard a lot, during election years especially, is “compassion.” But what does it mean concretely? More often than not, in practice it means a willingness … Continue reading

Posted by James Bartholomew Indexed in Politics, Welfare benefits
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Tuesday

The two people blocking the expansion of charter schools

I was at the Spectator conference about education today. There are two things which have caused the spread of charter schools to be so disappointingly slow: 1. Profit-making companies are not allowed to set them up. 2. Local authorities can … Continue reading

Posted by James Bartholomew Indexed in Education, Politics
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Monday

Cameron’s speech on welfare benefits in full

http://www.politics.co.uk/comment-analysis/2012/06/25/david-cameron-s-welfare-crackdown-speech-in-full

Posted by James Bartholomew Indexed in Politics, Welfare benefits
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Monday

15-Love in the game between rational debate and the Today programme.

It is well worth listening to the interview with Iain Duncan Smith earlier today. Some time during the interview is wasted with a silly, typically Today programme sort of questioning about ‘how come you might do more changes when the … Continue reading

Posted by James Bartholomew Indexed in Media, including BBC bias, Politics, Welfare benefits
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Friday

Changing the definition of poverty is putting the tanks on Labour’s lawn

Tim Montgomery on the desire of some right-wingers, including Ian Duncan Smith, to change the definition of poverty: They aren’t just trying to change the terms of the poverty debate but the whole terms of political debate. Labour present themselves … Continue reading

Posted by James Bartholomew Indexed in Politics, Poverty and inequality, Welfare benefits
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