Oh Scotland! You’ve really let yourself down. You should be ashamed.

30 May 2014 13:41

Lord, grant me strength. And serenity. Further evidence emerges that supporters of Scottish independence are losing their minds. Yesterday Iain Macwhirter was in full Can we no do anything right? mode; today… Continue reading


Cameron sets out the bounds of Lib Dem assertiveness

10 May 2011 11:48

Our coalition government was forged one year ago tomorrow — and we shall have more on that then. But the Sun has already marked the occasion by publishing an interview… Continue reading


It’s time for Britain to go cold turkey

17 February 2011 15:30

There’s a simple truth underlying opposition to spending cuts: the country is drugged up to the eyeballs in entitlements. Today, IDS, Nick Clegg and David Cameron renewed their assault on… Continue reading


Clegg: Sheffield Forgemasters decision could be revisited

17 December 2010 12:27

In an interview with Prospect Magazine, Nick Clegg has suggested that the decision not to loan government money to Sheffield Forgemasters ‘could be revisited.’ When pressed on whether the decision… Continue reading


The government takes the fight to students

30 November 2010 13:58

The government’s response to the protest over tuition fee hikes has stiffened. Nick Clegg has written to Aaron Porter and David Cameron has penned an op-ed piece in the Standard… Continue reading


Setting the scene for Osborne’s speech

29 November 2010 13:59

George Osborne will make a brief statement to the house this afternoon, responding to the Office for Budget Responsibility’s revised growth forecasts. Reuters reports: ‘As expected, the Office for Budget… Continue reading


A degree of truth

28 November 2010 12:39

Tuition fees work. By the standards that any progressive is supposed to hold dear – higher overall participation rates in universities and higher participation rates among low income groups –… Continue reading


Some early statistical vindication for IDS

28 November 2010 10:35

The Observer has news that will warm the government’s hearts. Ernst and Young have conducted a report that suggests 100,000 public sector jobs will be saved thanks to the savings… Continue reading


The Lib Dems are in quiet turmoil over tuition fees

25 November 2010 12:04

A cruel north wind heralds the Lib Dem’s discontent. In public, the party has withstood criticism of its apparent u-turn on student finance, helped in part by the more puerile… Continue reading


Cameron’s bad news day

4 November 2010 10:41

Yesterday, Nick Robinson set out why the past week may count as David Cameron’s worst in office so far. It’s not a great news day for the Prime Minister today,… Continue reading


IFS: The Spending Review was regressive – sorta

21 October 2010 15:44

The second half of the IFS briefing was all about the distributional effect of the Spending Review. And you know what that means: decile charts – and lots and lots… Continue reading


The ‘progressive’ debate re-opens

21 October 2010 14:08

Busy times indeed for the numbercrunchers and policy wonks. I’m at what is, in effect, the Institute for Fiscal Studies’ third post-Budget briefing of the year: one for Darling’s final… Continue reading


Ten points about the Spending Review

20 October 2010 15:48

In the end, George Osborne didn’t flinch. The Chancellor is a clever political operator – too clever, sometimes – but the result is a cuts package that has surprisingly broad… Continue reading


Cable backs the Browne report

12 October 2010 16:27

The Lib Dem website still says that the party stands for the abolition of tuition fees, so Vince Cable had to draw on all his presentational skill this afternoon. The… Continue reading


A sustainable and permanent solution

12 October 2010 9:12

‘A sustainable and permanent solution’, that was Lord Browne’s refrain this morning. Browne has aimed to fill the £1bn university funding black hole with a system that doesn’t prejudice the disadvantaged… Continue reading


Ed Balls saves the pitch till last

29 September 2010 13:12

Predictable lines from Ed Balls this afternoon. ‘DIY free schools’ are iniquitous; Michael Gove is like the child snatcher in Chitty-Chitty Bang-Bang. Naturally, he made a pitch for the shadow… Continue reading


Vince’s land tax land grab

22 September 2010 15:42

There was one notable bit of kite flying in Vince Cable’s speech earlier, an indication that he wants the next Liberal Democrat manifesto to contain a commitment to a land… Continue reading


Alexander’s no apologist

18 September 2010 18:18

Nick Clegg opened last year’s Lib Dem conference with the promise of ‘savage cuts’. The party shuddered at the idea and they’re unnerved by the reality. Those savage cuts lour… Continue reading


Osborne and Cooper’s knockabout

13 September 2010 17:02

Far more heat than light generated by this afternoon’s urgent question on welfare spending – but a telling spectacle nonetheless. The question had been put forward by a dissenting Lib… Continue reading


Harman tries to bind Labour and the unions even closer

13 September 2010 14:47

Progressive coalition. Those two words haven’t been tied together too frequently since Gordon Brown scrambled for survival in the aftermath of the election. But Harriet Harman invoked them in her… Continue reading


The coalition faces its most important battle of the next five years

13 September 2010 13:01

Strolling through central Birmingham yesterday, I came across one of those brewery advertisements from the early part of the last century. "Unspoilt by progress," it boasted – a slogan that… Continue reading


The government should return the unions’ fire

12 September 2010 11:02

The TUC is mustering in Manchester and its leaders are in bellicose mood. Brendan Barber has called for a general strike; Bob Crow, brimming with the satisfaction of having wrecked… Continue reading


No tax cuts in England’s green and pleasant land

29 August 2010 11:33

Danny Alexander has told the Observer that substantial tax cuts are highly unlikely for five years. Alexander argues that ‘the tax burden is necessary as a significant contribution to getting… Continue reading


How the coalition can develop its case for fairness

23 August 2010 16:20

The coverage in today’s FT is a reminder that one question will pursue the coalition more doggedly than any other: are the cuts fair and "progressive"? This isn’t an issue… Continue reading


Ed Miliband pitches at change

9 June 2010 17:17

Obviously, the Labour party must change and make a clean break with the era of Blair and Brown. I have my doubts if any of these candidates, other than incredible… Continue reading