Week of May 9 – 15

London USDR Across the Pond

By Steve Parkhurst, Senior Editor, USDR.

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


Theresa May’s turn to the left can restore faith in markets and see off Corbynism for good

We won’t see the Conservative manifesto until later this week, but we’re already getting a good sense of Theresa May’s thinking on markets and the economy. So far, we’ve been told about a cap on energy prices, more state intervention to increase the housing supply, and now a new slate of employment rights.

Labour’s shadow cabinet – not coming to a town near you

Usually in a general election campaign, MPs in marginal seats invite high profile party figures to their constituencies in a bid to generate interest from the local media and win over swing voters. This is certainly what’s happening when it comes to the Tory campaign — from Theresa May downwards, Conservative ministers have been busy touring the country over the past few weeks.

Labour’s critics are quick to attack John McDonnell over state investment, but they praised the same policies from George Osborne

There are plenty of economic policies in the Opposition’s election manifesto that can reasonably be criticised, but higher state investment spending is not one of them


Why is the Bank of England so mesmerised by Brexit?

The latest report from the MPC of the Bank is as muddled as ever. They record that their February forecast was too optimistic on growth, too pessimistic on unemployment, and got inflation wrong. This time they have boosted their ideas of Uk growth next year and the year after to more realistic levels, but taken 0.1% off this year after big upwards revisions last time.


This election will mark the end of Labour’s Corbyn era – but what will come next?

As Owen Smith learned the hard way last year, however, you cannot beat somebody with nobody

Wind turbines are neither clean nor green and they provide zero global energy

We urgently need to stop the ecological posturing and invest in gas and nuclear

General Election series: What the Conservative manifesto should pledge on… mental health

Mental health conditions are no longer considered a niche issue, whispered about in corridors and surrounded by stigma. Rightly so. A quarter of the population suffer from them each year, with the poorest fifth being twice as likely to suffer. This is a mainstream issue which should take centre stage in the Conservatives’ new manifesto.


Labour’s manifesto policies are popular but they won’t determine who wins the election

The public vote based on leadership and economic management – where the Conservatives poll best.

Jeremy Corbyn is only a pacifist when it comes to challenging despots and terrorists

Jeremy Corbyn is not a pacifist. Today’s denial from the man himself rings true, and any cursory inspection of the historical record will confirm the accuracy of his claim.

What politicians mean by a ‘great response’ on the doorstep

It’s that time of the year when politicians start posting pictures of groups of people smiling eerily while holding party placards and claiming that they’ve just had a ‘great response’ on the doorstep.


The 1970s saw tyrannical bureaucrats and unions run riot. Now Jeremy Corbyn wants to bring them back

You may be laughing your head off but for those of us who lived through the 70s, this isn’t funny at all. Our memories are still too vivid. Britain was another country back then: depressed and defeatist, the population ground into passivity and the acceptance of inevitable decline.

Labour’s draft manifesto is just appalling

With Labour’s draft manifesto out in the open today, politicos and pundits are beginning to cast judgment on whether it offers an innovative set of policies that could transform Britain or if it’s really a socialist disaster just waiting to happen.

Labour’s manifesto takes the voters for fools

Labour’s manifesto is monumentally miscalculated. Here is a full list of all Labour’s spending promises.

Some reality breaks out in the EU

It was good to hear Mr Juncker say the EU had made a mistake in briefing in the way they did about the Downing Street dinner. Just as it makes sense for the UK to be friendly and positive in its offer and dealings with the EU as we prepare to leave, so it makes sense for the EU to be the same. We, after all, are an important market for their exports, a valued partner in many collaborations, an important part of their defence and security alliance, and a frequent ally or coalition partner in international matters. We are happy for that to remain true in the future but expect reciprocal good will.


Good retail sales and no shop price inflation

The April retail sales figures were good. Total sales were up 6.3%. The delayed Easter reduced the March figures and flattered the April ones as I argued at the time of the March release. We can now see the underlying pattern, which is still one of decent growth. Food has been stronger than non food, with the BRC itself saying that taking the two months of March and April together food sales “were up by around 4% on last year, exceptional growth by all recent standards”.

Believe it or not, but the Tories are running an energetic election campaign – you just can’t see it

The party is eschewing high-profile appearances in favour of targeted ads online.


Emmanuel Macron wants a ‘Buy European Act’ to stop UK firms winning EU contracts

Emmanuel Macron wants to stop British businesses from being able to bid for public contracts within the European Union post-Brexit, according to reports.

Mr Macron guides France

There is a lot of nonsense talked about how the election of Mr Macron will lead to a much tougher French stance over Brexit. Mr Macron, after all, was not so long ago a Minister serving the outgoing President, who has not been critical of the outgoing President’s stance on all this. Anyone leading France will of course be putting EU and French interests first, but this does not mean they will wish to punish the UK.

Last week’s Across the Pond

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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.