Week of Oct 28 – Nov 3

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


Goodnight, Darling – Alistair Darling leaves Miliband’s sinking ship

Alistair Darling has told tomorrow’s FT that he won’t be seeking re-election and is off at the ‘relatively young’ age of 60 to try something new. He backs the also-departing Jim Murphy as leader of Scottish Labour but will do so as a member of the public. Darling’s decision doesn’t surprise me: there were rumours that he was thinking this way ahead of the last election.

We cannot – must not – rely on Labour’s problems to hand us re-election

Tories hope Red Ed, the SNP and the Greens will grant us victory in 2015. Labour hope UKIP will do the same for them. It’s an uninspiring capitulation.

Which part of Manchester’s ‘no’ didn’t George Osborne understand?

“The Chancellor has made clear in a series of speeches that he is in favor of mayors for our great northern cities,” says the Treasury today. That’s funny, because the cities of Bradford, Leeds, Manchester and Newcastle made clear in a series of referenda in May 2012 that they didn’t want Mayors. Wrong answer, it turns out.

Improvement in the German position on UK membership of EU?


A big cut in our membership sub must be part of Cameron’s EU renegotiation

The gross payment for 2013 was £19.4bn

Millions for the Met Office to carry on getting it wrong

The Met Office is a national joke because it relies on computer models programmed to assume that the chief factor determining our changing climate is the rise in carbon dioxide

The Greens should be included in the TV election debates

P.S: They’re unlikely to happen at all, of course.

London’s booming


New jobs for London – now spread the growth

Today’s figures on jobs growth in the South-East give a fresh insight into the shape of the recovery. There has been a sharp drop in the number of painters and decorators, electricians and plumbers, as well as other construction workers, claiming Jobseeker’s Allowance, as the construction sector finally recovers.

Ed Miliband’s bungee jumpers will leave it late

There’s an answer to political trickery as the election approaches – pick local candidates

Grayling to end the “cautions culture”

Chris Grayling is taking a strong stand on the side of the victims against their tormentors.

Getting on in the world

The government’s  economic policy has  allowed the economy to generate many new jobs. Many more families now have at least one income earner. The best way to cut the welfare bill is to help people get a job. The best way to cut  public spending is to help the creation of many more better paid jobs.

Corruption is not the problem with British aid

We should be spending our money on tackling the real problems in the developing world – if we can


Scotland. Labour’s troubles. A Conservative opportunity?

Perhaps. But it’s hard to see where a significant Tory breakthrough is going to come from in time for next May.

Murphy could be Labour’s only hope to halt its decline

The party’s current travails could cost it dearly both at Westminster and Holyrood but the former Scottish secretary offers the best chance of turning things around

The mind-bending politics of drugs

Public and media opinion have shifted while Westminster’s stance on the failing War on Drugs remains the same. How long will the mismatch last?


Watch out, BBC. The political class may come for you next

Newspapers are all only too painfully aware of how we are having to adapt to survive in today’s modern, fast-paced, ever-changing digital media world. But the way I look at it, we have always had to fight to survive, ever since the birth of the mass media in the 1890s – the decade, if I may indulge in a little product placement, in which Alfred Harmsworth launched the Daily Mail.


Gove letter telling Tories how ‘Lib Dems have killed’ EU Referendum Bill

Privately, the Conservatives are probably not particularly surprised about the demise of Bob Neill’s EU referendum bill, this time at the hands of the Liberal Democrats. It was always a Downing Street ruse to help quell backbench rebellion and senior Tories have ever since viewed the progress both of this bill and its predecessor, led by James Wharton, as an opportunity to cheer up the backbenches with bacon butty breakfasts and so on.

The Conservative Party becomes a broad coalition again – or it dies

The text of my speech from yesterday evening’s debate on the future of the centre-right with Matthew Parris.

The rise and rise of the SNP?


The best reason to vote Conservative. Tory reformers are delivering Grown-Up Government.

Gove, May, IDS, Grayling, Maude. Unlike the minnows of Labour and UKIP, these are serious people delivering serious change for serious times.

Only the spirit of Fontainebleau can reduce our soaring EU bill

Pumping more and more cash into an unreformed system is simply unacceptable

How Cameron could make the EU a winning issue (and why he won’t)

No, I don’t really think he’ll campaign for withdrawal. But that doesn’t make Eurosceptics’ options any less clear

Immigration policy. How restrictive? An amnesty for illegals or not? Defy the EU? Take our monthly survey

Among its other questions: would you vote for the Metropolitan Party? And what about that Tory-UKIP Pact?

No wonder David Cameron wouldn’t wear the ‘feminist’ t-shirt when the UK is such a terrible place for gender equality

Today’s World Economic Forum report throws mud on the assertion that Britain no longer has a problem with sexism

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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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