Notes From the Margins…
Posts for UK politics Category

Black Friday Blues

  • November 29, 2014
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It’s safe to say that the last week of November hasn’t really shown Britain at its best.   On the contrary, an almost daily barrage of bad news suggests a society that is gradually   coming apart at the seams.     Last Sunday it was reported that A & E wards across the country were running out of bed spaces – in part due to the rising numbers of elderly and disabled people being injured at home because councils were no longer looking after them.

In a not unrelated development,   the...

National Security: a concept in search of a meaning?

  • November 26, 2014
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It’s National Counter Terrorism Awareness week, and the government and police forces across the country are doing their best to remind the public of the gravity of the threats we face from terrorism, radicalization and extremism.     The UK ‘terror threat’ has been raised to ‘ severe’ and the prime minister has gone so...

Liars’ Ball

  • November 24, 2014
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Even within the dizzying race to the bottom that British politics has become, last week’s ‘white van tweet’ marked a new low point in political dishonesty, stupidity and crass opportunism.   The central role in this farce was played by Ed Miliband, whose decision to sack MP Emily Thornberry constituted a political own goal that...

Saint Tony Ascends to Heaven

Saint Tony Ascends to Heaven

  • November 21, 2014
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It’s been a good year for that jetsetting businessman, philanthropist and peace envoy Tony Blair.   In September GQ Magazine voted him ‘philanthropist of the year.’     Now Save the Children have given him its ‘Global Legacy Award’ at a ‘gala dinner’ in New York attended by various A-List film stars, celebrities, and the...

That Katie Hopkins thing that you do

  • November 20, 2014
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I wasn’t going to write about Katie Hopkins, because I generally think that she is one of those people better off left ignored.   Nevertheless I just can’t help myself, because there are some individuals, who no matter how repellent and inherently worthless in themselves, are symptomatic of certain wider social or political trends, and...

The Strange Cult of Russell Brand Part II

  • November 11, 2014
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I shouldn’t have been entirely surprised that my recent thoughts on the Russell Brand phenomenon have attracted far more comments on this site and on Facebook than my posts usually get – it’s in the nature of the Brand phenomenon that when you speak about him people sit up and listen.   I’ve written hundreds...

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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