Week of Apr 29 – May 5

Read Time:6 Minute, 1 Second

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



Lord Flight: Boom followed by bust – yet again?

Yes, interest rates are bound to rise. But I am optimistic about the economy – though we still need, as ever, to boost the savings rate.

What does the Conservative Party offer ethnic minorities?

It was the ethnic minority vote that swung it for David Cameron. Had it voted in line with expert pre-election predictions – which foolishly forecast that the Conservatives would scrape a mere 16 per cent of Britain’s non-white English voters – a hung Parliament would have resulted, and he might have been condemned to a fractious coalition with the Liberal Democrats.

As we put everything out there on Facebook and Twitter, have the British lost the ability to be private?

Ukip faces its toughest test yet over the next 12 months

The European election creeps closer and the smart money has switched from Labour to Ukip topping the poll. A Labour win would be spectacular in its own right as it would probably require a doubling of their 2009 vote share. I confess there was an intake of breath in the ComRes office when our ITV News poll results were in showing an 11-point Ukip lead over Labour.


Labour’s policy ghosts stalk the earth again

The Tories have only themselves to blame for discredited soft socialist policies being taken seriously

Ukip aren’t just David Cameron and the Tories’ problem anymore

How the Tory party will react if, as excepted, Ukip pushes the party into third place in the European elections is one of the most discussed topics in UK politics. But overlooked in all this is how Labour will react if Farage’s party beats them on May 22nd.

Ukip: the Asian and ex-Labour voters who could help party break mould

The party once dismissed by David Cameron as ‘fruitcakes and loonies and closet racists’ is on the march – drawing on an ever-widening support base in the runup to local and European elections.


The more hysterical the opposition, the more reform is needed

Hysteria over government proposals is now a badge of honour for NHS workers, teachers and barristers

Political correctness gone mad – and madder – and even madder

In a blog for the IEA the other day Kristian Niemietz looked at the economics of holding politically correct views. Disagreeing with the idea proposed by Spiked magazine that PC is motivated by a loathing for ordinary people, he argues that such views are in fact a ‘positional good’.

Londoners might have been inconvenienced this week, but the campaign #ThingsWonByStrikes highlights why striking can be essential


UKIP thrives because the man in the pub feels it will not be cowed into silence

On the eastern fringes of London, drinkers worried by immigration reckon that Farage speaks for them.

In three weeks’ time the Great Ukip Flying Circus will be in decline

Pharmaceutical giant Pfizer’s pursuit of AstraZeneca is exciting the market but has disadvantages for Britain

Podcast: Britain’s masculinity crisis and Osborne’s Foreign Secretary aspirations

Is the British male in serious trouble? On this week’s View from 22 podcast, the Labour MP for Hackney North and Stoke Newington Diane Abbott discusses the topic of this week’s Spectator cover feature with Isabel Hardman. Why are boys written off more frequently than girls? Are males in trouble because females are doing better? And is it now more difficult to grow up as a young boy or girl?


Revealed: George Osborne’s plan to become Foreign Secretary

Confidence is coursing through Downing Street at the moment. The economy is growing at a good clip and senior Tories feel more optimistic than ever about the result of the next general election. With this belief in retaining office comes more thought about what a second-term Cameron government would have to do. Minds are also turning to the question of how the top team should be reshaped after the general election.

Nigel and Boris, you’re getting boring. Stop flip-flopping and stand for Parliament

So Nigel Farage won’t stand in Newark. He wouldn’t want his single best chance of being elected to the House of Commons – the fons et origo of British democracy, the seat of power which all of us who are Eurosceptic seek to revivify – because it would be a “distraction” from his campaign to win elections to a faraway chamber of which we know little and care less.

Annual rent-increase cap proposed by Labour

A future Labour government would cap rent increases in the private sector and scrap letting fees to estate agents to give a “fairer deal” to tenants.


Missing: Please send on to Nigel Farage if you can

Address: Not via UKIP, Newark branch.

Why Farage isn’t standing in Newark

I always thought that it was unlikely that Nigel Farage would stand in Newark. When I discussed the prospect of a by-election there with him on Monday, he seemed drawn to the idea of a local candidate; pointing out how the Canadian Reform Party had secured their key by-election breakthrough with ‘a completely unknown geography mistress, who lived in the town, who had lots of relations there’.

Labour’s big new education idea? Copying Michael Gove’s homework

I first head about the Labour Party’s “review” of education policy back in 2010, from the party’s last education spokesman but one. Or was it the one before that? They’ve had so many in the last four years it’s hard to keep track. I was expecting something bold and radical – a big announcement – and, on the face of it, thats what we’ve been given.”Labour vows to dismantle Michael Gove’s education reforms,” screamed the headline in today’s Telegraph. Sounds pretty big.

Nick out of time?

Stephen Tall wonders what the future holds for Nick Clegg, and suggests an early exit for the Lib Dem leader


Cameron’s reprieve comes with conditions attached

The plotters may have sheathed their knives, but they’re not exactly happy and that unhappiness could make itself known once again.

Brothers in arms — Ukip and the SNP are singing the same song

You don’t mean a thing if your seat ain’t a swing. As this saying goes, political campaigning in safe seats is usually a thankless task — unless you are Nigel Farage. Last week, he managed to pack out The Sage concert hall in ultra-safe Labour Gateshead for Ukip’s biggest ever-public meeting.

There’s a simple solution to this Euro-elections sham

Westminster politicians are well placed to do a good job in Brussels and Strasbourg

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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

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