Notes From the Margins…
Posts for Age of austerity Category
The Return of the ‘Loony Left’

The Return of the ‘Loony Left’

  • February 27, 2012
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You know a government is in trouble when it starts playing the reds under the bed card to distract attention from its own failings.   But there is a real element of absurdity as well as desperation in last week’s accusation by Chris Grayling that corporations were pulling out of the Coalition’s work experience schemes as a result of a defamatory campaign launched by the Socialist Workers Party.

There is no doubt that this is a government in dire need of a smokescreen.  Within the last week a number of major companies have withdrawn from...

We are all Greeks!

  • February 20, 2012
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The ghost of Percy Bysshe Shelley danced across the world on Saturday, draped in a Greek flag,   as demonstrations took place in more than 20 cities  in an international day of action in solidarity with Greece and in opposition to the savage austerity measures that are reducing large swathes of the Greek population to...

A Greek Tragedy for our Times

  • February 11, 2012
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Whenever I listen to economists and politicians talk about ‘austerity’ cuts and fiscal ‘medicine’, I’m always amazed by their complete indifference to the human and social impact of the measures they seek to impose and their arrogant assumption that the victims of these measures will passively put up with whatever is done to them.

Take the...

In the Kingdom of Clarkson and Liddle

  • February 06, 2012
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If anyone had any doubts which sectors of British society are bearing the brunt of the UK government’s ‘austerity’ measures, consider the following developments taken at random from the last month:

On 4 January a survey by Save the Children on the impact of rising fuel costs on low-income families found that ‘Hundreds of thousands of...

The Brave New World of the DWP

  • February 04, 2012
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I love this.  Yesterday’s Guardian reported on the case of Cait Reilly, a 22-year-old Geology student, who is taking the Department of Work and Pensions (DWP) to court because she claims that she was made to work for three weeks at her local Poundland store without pay under the DWP’s work experience programme.

Reilly argues, not...

The Bonfire of the Libraries

  • January 15, 2012
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Libraries are special places.  Jorge Luis Borges once imagined that Paradise would look like a ‘kind of library’.   ‘When I got my library card, that’s when my life began,‘    wrote the American writer Rita Mae Brown.  The tennis player Arthur Ashe once described libraries as ‘the courts of last resort’...

About Me

I’m a writer, campaigner and journalist.  My latest book is The Savage Frontier: The Pyrenees in History and the Imagination (New Press/Hurst, 2018).  The Infernal Machine is where I write on politics, history, cinema and other things that interest me.

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