The Meaning Of Trump

When you’ve exhausted your indignation at, and despair of, the people who voted for Donald Trump please read this article by Thomas Frank which goes some way to explaining what’s just happened in the USA, why we’re in the throes of Brexit, and why the likes of Geert Wilders and Marine LePen are looking increasingly bright-eyed and…

A Breath Of Fresh Air

A year ago I wrote that “Labour’s *New* Economic Strategy Makes Me Want To Scream”. With frustration, that is, not delight. Last November John McDonnell, Labour’s shiny new shadow chancellor, was telling us that diversification, innovation and public investment were going save us from the dead-end of Tory austerity. Mr. McDonnell appeared to be as…

Why Do We Suffer Such Numbskull Incompetence?

The media were a-buzz this week with stories of overspending NHS Trusts in England. We’re told that 65% of Trusts and 90% of hospitals ended the financial year in the red with a total combined deficit of £2.45 billion. If you dig into just about any of our governments’ health strategy documents in the UK and…

John Mason MSP Doesn’t Know His Debt From His Deficit

John Mason MSP is a former accountant who is the Deputy Convener of the Scottish Parliament’s Finance Committee. Last month he was the focus of a lengthy conversation on twitter after stating that the “UK deficit (is) £1.5 trillion”. For those of you with time to squander the entire twitter exchange can be found here: https://twitter.com/JohnMasonMSP/status/703699151461203968…

Two Cats Fighting Over A Dead Bird

For most of the last 30 years it looked like socialism had been soundly beaten by its old adversary, capitalism. From the mid 1980s when Margaret Thatcher’s second government defeated Britain’s striking coal miners, until around 2009 when the extent of the banking crisis had sunk in, free-market capitalism was the only game in town.…

Corbyn v. The Deficit Dimwits

Jeremy Corbyn’s unexpected leap to the front of the Labour Party leadership race has inadvertently created a modern miracle: it has united every organ of the mainstream media from the Guardian to the Telegraph, and every politician to the right of Dennis Skinner. They all agree that his plans for the economy are bonkers. If…

Not Enough Money? You Have Got To Be Joking.

Late at night on the 20th of July the Conservative government’s Welfare Reform Bill was endorsed by the House of Commons thanks to the abstention of most of the official opposition’s MPs. The acting Labour leader, Harriet Harman, instructed her party to abstain because she thinks that the Labour Party will be condemned to the…