By Steve Parkhurst, Senior Editor, USDR.
Looking at the news and opinion out of London each day.
If any other party leader’s family was hounded by a mob, there would be talk of a “crisis in democracy”. Not so when it’s Nigel Farage’s. Why is Ukip treated differently?
In a hung Parliament in which the Conservatives are the largest party, he would need the minor parties – starting with the SNP.
Miliband finally got some good media coverage this weekend. Alas, it was David rather than Ed who was on the receiving end. The Labour leader’s brother was branded ‘Celebrity Big Brother’ in a glowing profile in the Sunday Times.
Claims that levels of poverty and inequality have grown worse are demonstrably wrong
What bizarre arrangements have been reached for the election debates. It is hard to see why Ed Miliband agreed to take part in the debate between five opposition leaders, where he is in danger of becoming one challenger among many. One would almost think he wants David Cameron to emerge as the only serious candidate for the prime ministership.
Broadcasters say a deal over the TV election debates has been reached, with PM David Cameron taking part in one with seven party leaders but no head-to-head with Labour’s Ed Miliband.
The housing crisis is already out of control, and no one in politics wants to help
The Royal Navy is the most sophisticated, highly trained and flexible part of the British Armed Forces. Every day, it is on active operations at home and around the world promoting and defending British interests. In a world where value for money and dynamic flexibility are key, the navy provides superb value for money.
Starbucks wants to talk about racism? It will take more than a chatty barista to bring Britain together
Can a cup of coffee kick off such a sensitive topic?
Without his biscuits, homoeopathy and Madonna-like dancing, Britain will struggle. But perhaps it takes a greater nation to appreciate this perennialist sage
Boris Johnson urges Tories to give more people the Right to Buy to show party’s commitment to less well-off
Millions of families should be given chance to own a home, Johnson says
Plus: Two policemen’s child abuse claims. Lamb for LibDem leader. Osborne for the Foreign Office. And: why won’t Waterstones stock more copies of Farage’s book?
Telegraph View: The Lib Dems necessarily compromised their principles when they entered the Coalition. Now their attempts to define themselves apart from the Tories seem empty and desperate
The Chancellor will be hoping voters will act like traders who buy the rumour and sell the fact
Of all the measures talked up ahead of the Budget, the reannouncement of a ‘radical’ review of the business rates was the least concrete in content but the most important in potential impact on the domestic economy, and especially on business investment.
This was a grown-up, skilled performance from George Osborne. But he has ceded key ground to Labour, and the size of the state is still a big concern
Instead of Osborne the hare, we today got Osborne the tortoise. His gambit was to try to grind his way to victory.
So the Chancellor shot a few of Labour’s foxes. First to go was the idea that the Conservatives will take the UK back to 1930s levels of spending. This is Labour’s favourite lie, based on confusing spending as a percentage of the economy with real levels of spending, which are currently nine times the 1930s!
In declaring the pristine oceans around the tiny Island of Pitcairn fully protected, the Chancellor has delivered the single biggest conservation measure taken by any Government ever. And he has done so at minimal cost.
Investors can cut reoffending and end rough sleeping though social impact bonds
As the election looms, the papers are shifting back to their political comfort zones. But the consensus is that Osborne has drawn some of the sting from Miliband’s attack.
“We’re not looking for any sort of deal. The fact is the difference between Labour and the SNP is too big, and the gap has grown.”
The Conservatives have a brilliant economic story to tell, but take it from a former Chancellor – there’s more work to be done
People are less likely to say that the Conservatives share their values, or stand for fairness
People think things are getting better, but that doesn’t always mean more votes for the Tories
Once upon a time there was a libertarian champion, who led a self-styled ‘People’s Army’. He stood up to ‘political correctness’ and was famed for his outspoken views that often got him into trouble with the ‘Establishment’ and the ‘mainstream media’ that he railed against. Yet look how far Nigel Farage has come.
On a recent trip there, I saw first-hand the frighteningly powerful, intrusive state.
– – – – – –