Notes From the Margins…
Posts for UK politics Category

Our Man in Riyadh

  • January 13, 2012
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Today, David Cameron makes his first state visit to that beacon of democracy and human rights Saudi Arabia.     According to the BBC’s ineffable ‘security correspondent’ Frank Gardner

 …the trip is important for both Mr Cameron and his Saudi hosts.   He says Saudi Arabia has been rattled by both the overthrow of its longstanding ally, President Mubarak of Egypt, and the recent tensions with Iran. He adds that both the UK and Saudi Arabia are hoping to forge a new strategic partnership in energy, business and security. A Saudi official says the...

Lights out on planet Clarkson

  • January 09, 2012
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That Clarko’s a card isn’t he? Some of you may remember the truly horrific episode that took place in Morecombe Bay on 5 February 2004, when at least 21 Chinese cockle pickers were drowned after being cut off by rising tides while working at night.

All of them were ‘illegal’ workers from China’s Fujian province and...

The Diane Abbott sharkfest

  • January 06, 2012
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The microblogging site Twitter only allows messages of 140 characters, but politicians who use it would do well to ponder them carefully. If not, they are likely to find even their pithiest observations subjected to a level of attention that they hadn’t bargained for…

My piece for The Week/The First Post on the Diane Abbott ‘race...

David Cameron: music lover

  • January 03, 2012
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As a big Gillian Welch/David Rawlings fan I was surprised to read recently that David and Samantha Cameron attended the concert by the awesome duo in London last November.   On one level it suggests that the Camerons at least have good taste, and that unlike Tony Blair, their tastes are not calculated to...

Are you or have you ever been a member of the underclass?

  • December 22, 2011
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David Cameron’s proposal to create a new Troubled Families Unit is yet another  indication of the authoritarian and reactionary drift of British society over the last few decades – a development that has been dramatically accelerated by the summer’s riots.    According to  Cameron

a relatively small number of families are the source...

Campbellito’s Way

  • December 01, 2011
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The Leveson Inquiry has cast not so much a torchlight as a halogen searchlight beam into the rancid depravity of the British tabloid press and the maniacal public obsession with celebrity that drives its corrupt practices.   The Sun reporter who disguised himself as a doctor in an attempt to observe Charlotte Church giving...

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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