Politics & campaigns.

This is not a party political site and not very partisan in any way. My emphasis has tended to be on the quality of debate and campaigning, and especially on the need to appreciate represtentative democracy (government through elected representatives whose own views matter), and to be sceptical of the claims of vox pop, "the people", social media, Crowd Wisdom, and "direct action".

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Liberal teachers started these riots in the ’80s

Today's rioters have parents who failed them. So it's worth looking at what was happening to inner city black and white 10 year olds, in the early and mid 1980s. They were the first fruit of a primary school system which decided to abandon the idea of traditional education. You may say that this did not matter much, since they were about to go into a secondary system which was hardly better. But the rot was in. Read more...


09 August 2011

A 2nd defence of Murdoch

The accusations against Rupert Murdoch's empire have always been numerous. But not all of them stack up. Here goes at unpicking a few.. Read more...


17 July 2011

A defence of Murdoch and News Corp

I've had a comment that my review of the revived Hare and Brenton play Pravda (Chichester, 2006) was wrong-headed in its defence of Rupert Murdoch and that I should, in the light of current events, apologise for it. I see my critic's point, I hope, but I don't agree.... Read more...


14 July 2011

House of Lords reform: a turning tide

The House of Lords works pretty well and arguably most recent reforms have made it a little less good at its work. Making it an elected house might well scupper it. Here is a very brief account of the reforms we need, and those we don't... Read more...


23 June 2011

BBC impartiality: three cases

John Lloyd (who is one of my moral compasses) writes in his FT TV review (18/19 June 2011) that the BBC's great prides are "enlightenment values and devotion to impartiality". But, as he defines them, are these compatible? Read more...


22 June 2011

Protest update: Ritz and Fortnum & Mason, 26 March 2011

It's early days, and I've seen no definitive accounts of the mini-riots in the West End of London on Saturday 27 March 2011. But they produce further evidence that the police are being told or are assuming that they should not maintain public order in the face of protest, even if the organisers (or non-organisers) signal that they won't co-operate at all, or much. Read more...


28 March 2011

Fukushima: The UK media scores 4/10 so far

It is only a tiny bit cruel to say that so far (16 March 2011) Jon, Krishnan and Anna (to name just the presenting stars of C4 and Sky) have not done well. Neither have the writers of the headlines and the linking material the talent reads. Luckily, some of the specialist… Read more...


16 March 2011
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