Notes From the Margins…
Posts for UK politics Category

Cameron reclaims ‘our borders’ (again)

  • October 11, 2011
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Having failed to win the nation over with his condemnations of Britain’s ‘sogginess’ and lack of backbone at the Tory Conference of the Damned,  David Cameron yesterday delivered  yet another ‘major speech’ on immigration, which  set new standards of populist rabble-rousing.

As always this latest intervention was dressed up  as a courageous and frank attempt to address public ‘concerns’.    What are these concerns?  After the usual homilies about how Britain has benefited economically from  immigration, and  should always be ‘open to those seeking asylum from persecution’, ...

Britain plays happy families

  • October 09, 2011
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There’s a grim article in today’s Independent on  an ongoing survey into work and relationships in Britain by the Working Families and One Plus One charities, called Happy Homes, Productive Workplaces, whose preliminary findings include

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A culture of “downsizing”, where long working hours and job insecurity have become the norm, is leading to...

Black cat’s something May can’t explain

  • October 05, 2011
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It’s the Conservative conference and your government hasn’t got a great deal to offer the electorate or its core constituency except misery, gloom and exhortations to grit your teeth and bear the pain.  OK,  George Osborne has tried his best, promising the conference

together we will ride out the storm.  And...

Cometh the hour, cometh the Miliband

  • September 28, 2011
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Even by New Labour’s standards, yesterday’s speech by Ed Miliband has to be one of the lamest I have ever heard from a politician, let alone from the leader of a party that claims to represent the centre-left.   It was numbingly uninspiring and utterly transparent in its attempts to appeal to everyone and...

Tough decisions

  • September 26, 2011
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I always find it bracing and sort of manly when politicians talk about taking ‘ tough decisions’, as though they’re struggling to repress some inherent sense of decency for the greater good.   Admittedly you don’t feel that with George Osborne. His toughness is the kind of thing one might have expected from some...

The British Army’s war porn

  • September 25, 2011
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There is a rather nauseating but not entirely surprising story in today’s  Independent on Sunday about British soldiers gathering to watch ‘war snuff movies’ at Camp Bastion in Afghanistan for ‘morale boosting’ sessions.  

These’Kill TV nights’ consisted of video clips showing people being killed by Apache helicopters, and were accompanied by a commentary from...

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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