Week of Aug 26 – Sept 1


Looking at the news and opinion out of London each day.

9-1-14

Barack Obama on Iraq and Ukraine: ‘President Dolittle’ comes back empty-handed

Nato members can expect little help from the increasingly diminished occupant of the White House – so who is going to stop aggression by Putin and the Islamic State, asks Peter Foster

What went wrong with Conservative Party modernisation

The supporters of David Cameron liked to pitch themselves as “modernisers”. The thought was that by the mid-2000s the Conservative Party and its presentation of itself was out of date and had become self-indulgent, preferring internal arguments and recriminations to the compromises necessary to win and hold power. Cameron and his team would change all of that. It might be painful. It might mean giving up some sacred cows. But it would mean becoming an election-winning force again for a party that had been in power for two thirds of the period since it was founded in 1830.

Our manifesto launches today

It sets out a programme for more homes, better jobs and higher savings – accompanied by plans for economic and political reform.

8-31-14

Roll up! Roll up! Play the Great Clacton By-Election Game!

Throw the seat…Go for victory…Fight clean…Fight dirty. The choice is yours. With added and totally consistent commentary from Conservative MPs.

8-30-14

Revealed: The hidden crisis in Britain’s ambulance services

Paramedics are fleeing. Needless callouts are mounting. When will the government notice?

8-29-14

Round-up of the Tory Twitter reaction to Carswell’s defection

A selection of Twitter reactions to Douglas Carswell’s defection to UKIP.

Why Conservatives should now be very nice about Carswell

The Clacton MP may have a part to play in a long-term reconciliation between the Conservatives and the realist element of UKIP.

8-27-14

After announcing his plan to stand for Parliament, his stance on terrorism reveals ambitions to get to No 10

The real scandal of Rotherham is that social work doesn’t work

In 1980, June Lait and I published Can Social Work Survive?, the first critique of British social work aimed at the general public. She was a lecturer in social policy and a former social worker; I was a psychiatrist who had regular and friendly contact with social workers. But we both felt that social work had become vague and grandiose, and we compiled quite a lot of evidence to make our case.

Nigel Farage needs to pick his fights more carefully

How do you fight a man with a twelve-foot spear? Don’t start with a six-foot spear. That old advertising saying sprang into my mind when I heard that Nigel Farage intends to hold the balance of power in the next parliament.

The biggest civil liberties outrage you’ve never heard of

‘Bubble matches’ sound quaint. In fact, they trample all over freedom of movement

If Boris Johnson and Nigel Farage are mavericks British politics is doomed

It says all too much about the narrowing of democracy that those presented as outsiders are the establishment in undiluted form

8-26-14

Breaking: Boris Johnson to stand in Uxbridge

Boris Johnson has confirmed that he is going to apply to be the Conservative candidate for Uxbridge and South Ruislip. His announcement comes on the same day that Nigel Farage is expected to be confirmed as the Ukip candidate for South Thanet, which suggests that the Conservatives are keen to use Boris as their anti-Farage weapon.

Last night’s scrap between Darling and Salmond showed how unsatisfactory this kind of debate tends to be

The two contenders were so intent on tripping each other up that they became deeply uninspiring.

Mackay and Moody controversy: to punish people for their private conversations is a species of tyranny

Last week, two men in the world of football lost their jobs and suffered widespread public ridicule for things they said in private conversations. I can’t be the only person who finds this outrageous. I don’t particularly care what was in Malky Mackay and Iain Moody’s text messages; I care about the Enlightenment-era principle that, in the words of the great 17th century jurist Edward Coke, “No man shall be examined upon the secret thoughts of his heart, or of his secret opinion”.

Cameron moves towards the exit door, but will Britain ever vote for Brexit?

Outers need to do much more to convince people that Britain can flourish as a more independent state.

Scottish independence: don’t believe Alex Salmond’s Nationalist campaign is dead until you see the corpse

The best bit in any action or horror film is the moment when the monstrous villain, supposedly slain, suddenly lurches back into life and takes one last desperate, murderous lunge at the heroes, possibly even taking a few of them down with him into the abyss before finally dying for good. Of course, you know that it’s all show and the story will still end the same way.


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Across The Pond is edited daily by Steve Parkhurst. Steve is a political consultant, a writer at his blog as well as a Senior Editor here at US Daily Review. Follow Steve on Twitter @SteveParkhurst

All opinions expressed on USDR are those of the author and not necessarily those of US Daily Review.

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