Notes From the Margins…
Posts for UK politics Category
Cracking Up:  Brexit and the Seven Dwarves

Cracking Up: Brexit and the Seven Dwarves

  • February 19, 2019
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Fans of Titanic and other disaster movies will know what to expect from the genre.   In the first part of the movie the characters go about their business oblivious to what is about to happen.  They might be in an office building, a ship, a submarine, an oil rig or any other structure that the audience knows is going to collapse or break up.

The characters usually don’t know the disaster is coming, but we do – that’s why we showed up.  And so we watch out for the inevitable warning signs: the busting rivets,...

The TaxPayers’ Alliance:  Your Toxic Solutions

The TaxPayers’ Alliance: Your Toxic Solutions

  • February 14, 2019
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It’s been known for some time, for those who want to look, that the lobbying organisation the Taxpayers’ Alliance is not what it says it is.  On its website the TPA presents itself as a ‘non-partisan, grassroots campaign for lower taxes, government transparency and an end to wasteful government spending.

Founded in 2003  by Matthew Elliott –...

All the Devils Are Here

All the Devils Are Here

  • February 09, 2019
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It’s been a hell of a week, hasn’t it?   It’s fine for us to compare the EU to Hitler, the Soviet Union, the mafia, and a dictatorship.  It’s ok to accuse the EU of torturing us by ‘administering punishment beatings’, as the sixth form yob who bizarrely became our last foreign secretary once declared.

It was...

Turning Point:  All the Young (Alt-Right) Dudes

Turning Point: All the Young (Alt-Right) Dudes

  • February 05, 2019
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As we sleepwalk towards the Brexit iceberg on 29 March, we should remember that the hardright ‘populists’  who have been dreaming of this outcome for so long don’t see it as an end, but as part of an ongoing process.

For some of them it’s a famous victory in a wider ethnonationalist assault on the international...

Immigration: Stop Pandering

Immigration: Stop Pandering

  • February 02, 2019
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If there is one thing British politicians always seem able to agree on, it’s that they must respond to public concerns about immigration.

Rarely, if ever, do the politicians who seek to placate these concerns consider their validity.  Is it true that Romanians and Bulgarians are all poor and therefore likely to be criminals – an...

Parliament Passes the Bomb

Parliament Passes the Bomb

  • January 30, 2019
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Some of you may remember the family game called Pass the Bomb.   For those haven’t played it, the rules are simple: You pass a ticking bomb back and forth between the group and try to make sure you aren’t the one holding it when it ‘explodes’.

This is what parliament did yesterday, in a monumental dereliction...

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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