Week of July 21 – 27

By Steve Parkhurst, Senior Editor, USDR.

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

7-27-15

Love to hate luxury property in London? This is why you’re wrong

Luxury high-rises like the Aykon Tower, ‘poor doors’ and off-plan sales to the overseas super-rich can all play a role in tackling the city’s housing crisis

Why a Germany of robust debate would be better for Europe

Consensus has smothered the nation’s domestic politics – it needs a dose of reality-based controversy

There is no status quo in the forthcoming EU referendum

Those who have already made up their minds to recommend staying in the EU whatever Mr Cameron negotiates think they can control the referendum for Yes. They aim to run a campaign claiming that Yes is Yes to the status quo, Yes is the risk free option, and that No would mean all sorts of dire futures which they intend to portray by lies and scare stories.

7-26-15

Parliament’s traditions are something to cherish

Mhairi Black is a separatist, and knows what she’s doing when she tries to shame our living links to this country’s past.

Loans to Ireland

Some have raised the issue of the UK’s loans to Ireland, made at the point of transition from Labour to Coalition in 2010. The Coalition decided to lend money bilaterally to Ireland so it was not part of an EU scheme, and offered no precedent for the UK in future having to join Euro area bail outs.

7-25-15

When even the Treasury can’t understand the tax system, it’s time for simplification

If officials are boggled by the system they oversee, what hope is there for the rest of us?

Labour’s leadership crisis has turned into Game of Clones

If I were Tony Blair, I’d be very worried…

I am the Jeremy Corbyn supporter that many will tell you doesn’t exist

Many claim all Corbyn supporters are young, inexperienced and naive. I’m a middle-aged, high-earning professional who believes he could be Labour’s only hope

Labour can rise again, but it must resist Jeremy Corbyn’s siren calls

Reheated Bennism is not the answer – the party has to show that it is on the side of aspirational voters

The politics of identity

I have always assumed that the EU and its core, the Euro, will eventually be swept away by powerful senses of identity in some individual counties and regions of its vast rambling empire. Might it be the UK who tires of EU meddling in its affairs? Will it be Germany, refusing to pay the bills for its expensive currency union with the neighbours? Or will it be smaller countries and regions who want more self government?

7-24-15

May’s review of deaths in police custody is another example of responsible government in action

The Home Secretary doesn’t have to address this thorny issue. That she is choosing to is laudable.

The last thing Labour needs is a leader like Jeremy Corbyn who people want to vote for

Maybe they should change their election rules again, so that anyone who disagrees with Tony Blair is only allowed to stand if they promise to get fewer than eight votes

George Osborne will remember his friends as he closes in on the ultimate prize

The Tory leadership games are the key to understanding the current state of British politics

Why does the BBC ignore England?

When the Culture Secretary gave his statement on the future of the BBC, I spoke for England. I asked if we could have a BBC England to match BBC Scotland? I pointed out that many of us do not want a BBC seeking to split up our country and trying to foster artificial senses of regional identity. As we move towards more England only decision making at Westminster, we need a BBC England news to cover it.

7-23-15

Forget Jeremy Corbyn – Labour should be seizing the chance to reinvent itself

Britain needs a modern Left-wing party that embraces consumerism and individual choice

Of course politicians don’t care about lowering house prices

Nevertheless, the price of property is beginning to define our economy – and it’s a serious cause for concern

Labour can come back from the brink. But it seems to lack the will to do so

In 1983 Neil Kinnock urged the party to unify – and people listened. The mood in today’s smaller, less confident Labour appears more fatalistic

More jobs go thanks to dear energy

Recently the media gave little attention to an important and worrying announcement – more than 700 jobs went in the UK steel industry. You would have thought they would have given that top billing, with interviews of those left without a job, and angry remonstrations with the managers who carried it out. Far from it. Perhaps the reason is that the closure was brought about primarily by EU/UK energy policy. The company made clear it could not longer afford UK energy prices.

7-22-15

Daily catch-up: I think I’d better stop trying to predict the Labour leadership election

This morning’s YouGov poll doesn’t necessarily suggest Jeremy Corbyn will win, but who can say?

Labour’s crisis is Tony Blair’s fault – just not how Jeremy Corbyn thinks

Blair understood instinctively that British politics is a battle between head and heart

How the Party can now make the most of its London Mayoral selection

Labour’s Corbyn troubles open up new opportunities for next May’s contest. A bigger Open Primary than planned offers a means of taking them.

Jeremy Corbyn is the only candidate the public actually likes – Labour or otherwise

No wonder he polled well

7-21-15

David Cameron has given his best speech yet on tackling Islamic extremism

The Prime Minister’s Birmingham speech on radicalisation and Muslim communities in the UK given earlier today is a rather important one. Regular readers will know that I’m not easy to please in this area, but it seems to me that David Cameron has come to understand the real problem of Islamic extremism and has been developing his attitudes towards that problem.

The National Grid must change to stop a new dark age

Ministers must break up the Soviet-style National Grid in order to save Britain from an energy crunch

David Cameron is right to tackle extremist ideas as well as behaviour

The Prime Minister set out an extensive approach to combat extremism, but must not forget to fight poisonous ideologies

Has Liz Kendall’s campaign run out of momentum?

Liz Kendall’s chances of winning the Labour leadership contest appear to be slipping away. On several measures, she has fallen into fourth place. Kendall has just 12 nominations from constituency Labour parties, compared to 58 for Yvette Cooper, 67 for Andy Burnham and 70 for Jeremy Corbyn.

In five years, the Tories have got smarter – and Labour have got more divided

Comparing today’s headlines to those from 21st July 2010 is instructive.

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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.