coffee house

Coffee Houserss

Just get out of the way, Prime Minister

18 January 2008 14:35

Brown’s been in China only a few hours and already I can’t take any more. Unable to match Blair’s slick statesman act, he gabbles on like an over-promoted finance minister… Continue reading


The truth about income inequality

18 January 2008 14:24

A new report from the respected Institute for Fiscal Studies makes the claim that “the outlook for inequality in Britain may depend more on the stock market than on Government… Continue reading


Backing McCain

18 January 2008 14:10

In an excellent post over at Comment Central, Daniel Finkelstein lists the reasons why he thinks John McCain will win the Republican nomination.  Finkelstein’s second point is the most persuasive:… Continue reading

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How hungry for power are the Tories? We’ll soon find out

18 January 2008 11:56

How disciplined Conservative MPs are in responding to two issues coming up in the next few weeks will tell us a lot about how determined they really are to return… Continue reading


The greying labour force 

18 January 2008 10:03

As a follow-up to my post yesterday on the number of new jobs being occupied by the over-50s, I should point out that there’s a good piece on the matter… Continue reading


The children that we fail

18 January 2008 8:56

Camila Batmanghelidj of the estimable Kids Company writes in the Telegraph this morning about how we have got into a situation where children kick a man to death. Batmanghelidj’s argument… Continue reading


Might Ashdown’s Afghan appointment be collateral damage in the row between Britain and Russia?

17 January 2008 18:55

The news that Paddy Ashdown is going to be a reconstruction supremo in Afghanistan, coordinating the military and development work, seems to be announced every few weeks. But it has… Continue reading


Commons Clerks stymie Lib Dem plans

17 January 2008 17:12

The Lib Dems are deeply split on the question of whether there should be a referendum on the European Constitution, as they promised in their manifesto. As Fraser explains in… Continue reading


Vocation calling

17 January 2008 16:34

I was at a lunch this week to talk about the state of further education, in view of the Government’s plans to extend the school leaving age. It was generally… Continue reading


Older generations doing their bit to stave off the credit crunch

17 January 2008 14:54

As Larry Elliot reports in today’s Guardian, a rise in the number of over-50s gaining employment has "helped Britain shrug off the impact of the credit crunch".  Recent figures from… Continue reading

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Leave those schools alone

17 January 2008 12:13

Is there anything more depressing in an age of prosperity, choice and freedom than the spectacle of an old fashioned public sector rationing system doing its bleak work? The criticisms… Continue reading


Walls closing in on Ken?

17 January 2008 11:49

The London mayoral race is entering a bitter period, with most of the invective being directed at Ken Livingstone.  Of course, we shouldn’t be too surprised when the Evening Standard,… Continue reading


Brown’s nationalisation nightmare

17 January 2008 8:49

Iain Martin’s column this morning on the political dangers to Gordon Brown of nationalising Northern Rock is essential reading. As Iain argues, the danger for Brown is that Northern Rock… Continue reading


The Director-General needs to find out how the other 90% live

16 January 2008 19:39

Calling for a sense of "perspective" and "proportionality" in coverage of British youth, the BBC’s Director-General, Mark Thompson, complained on Radio 4′s Today on Tuesday that you could get the… Continue reading


What should be asked of the independent sector?

16 January 2008 17:13

With the Charity Commission recommending that private schools should do more for the "public benefit", public school headmasters are at odds over whether or not they do enough already.  As… Continue reading


Cameron gets the better of Brown in clash over Northern Rock

16 January 2008 14:07

Great fireworks today over Northern Rock. Cameron started with sombre questions about taxpayers’ money involved – Can Brown guarantee the safe return of the taxpayers’ money given Northern Rock? Was… Continue reading


The US elections are about to turn dirty

16 January 2008 13:32

Mitt Romney’s win in the Michigan Republican primary makes this Saturday’s Republican vote in South Carolina all the more important. If John McCain wins there, he should—barring disasters—end up as… Continue reading


Brown tries to shift the blame for Britain’s economic troubles

16 January 2008 12:35

PMQs opened with perhaps the most worst planted question I have ever heard in the Commons and it’s worth a blog on its own. Robert Flello claimed his constituents “concerned… Continue reading


Labour was against presumed consent for organ donation before it was for it

16 January 2008 12:17

Mulling over the organ donations row, and the fascinating posts by Coffee Housers, I went back to the last time the Commons debated the issue properly – which was on… Continue reading


The Wiki Man

16 January 2008 11:58

Anyone who is interested in the wonderful world of Web 2.0 or simply likes great writing – or both – should read Rory Sutherland’s new technology column starting in tomorrow’s… Continue reading


Is a GOAT going to be slaughtered?

16 January 2008 11:28

Sam Coates over at the Red Box has news that suggests Lord Digby Jones has been less than forthcoming about the business interests he retains.


Roll up for Welsh questions

16 January 2008 8:59

For once, PMQs is not the main attraction on a Wednesday. The hot ticket today is Welsh Questions where Peter Hain faces the House for the first time since his… Continue reading


Correcting the narrative

15 January 2008 16:54

Ed Balls was on the World at One, taking a bow for the teachers’ pay deal. He again referred to low inflation and falling interest rates – which will not… Continue reading


Arts Council seems distinctly un-excellent…

15 January 2008 16:25

In Piccadilly Circus this lunchtime, under an apocalyptic grey sky and wearing plain white face masks to evoke the classical symbol of the dramatic trade, a ‘flashmob’ of hundreds of… Continue reading


Ken’s doing a paper round at your expense

15 January 2008 14:35

Anyone wanting proof of the contempt in which Ken Livinsgtone holds the London taxpayer need only read this item on Guido’s blog. Not content with deluging Londonders with dubious, public… Continue reading