2pm Graeme Archer on CentreRight: "Liberation (from the big state) and honesty (in transparent
government): already these are the primary political objectives of the
Coalition. It strikes me that liberation and honesty may well be the
primary psychological outcomes of Coalition for the parties
and voters of the Centre and the Right also, a change which will surely
be welcome, and a change which Labour will one day regret setting its
Tim Montgomerie on CentreRight: Who are the most influential Right-wing journalists?
Three Local government stories:
- Councils in the Greater Manchester area are planning a by-law that would set a minimum price of alcohol of 50p
- Councils should "do absolutely nothing" on climate change says Nigel Lawson
- Oxfordshire County Council turns off all of its 161 speed cameras
Melanchthon on CentreRight offers his own answer to the question: What is Right-wing?
WATCH anti-AV video made by Tom Harris MP: 'Just because the Liberal Democrats keep losing elections doesn't mean they shouldn't be in government'
Liam Fox reacts to George Osborne's Trident decision
Report on the BBC website
The Tories had a clear policy to fix a cap on immigration, but that is looking worryingly flexible under the Coalition – Telegraph leader
Burkas don’t cut women off from society, says Tory party chairman – Daily Mail
Pakistan president Asif Ali Zardari will confront David Cameron face-to-face over his controversial ‘exporting terrorism’ claims – Metro
Government's "badly designed consultations are worse than no consultations at all"
"Despite tens of thousands of public responses sent to various government departments, not one has shown a willingness to amend policy." – Telegraph
"Simon Burall, director of Involve, a group advising bodies on consultation, said: "You have to give the government some credit for trying to do this, but badly designed consultations like this are worse than no consultations at all. They diminish trust and reduce the prospect that people will engage again. This is a dangerous problem for a government that is going to have to take people with them when they make very difficult decisions."" – Quoted in The Guardian
England has worse crime rate than the US, says Civitas study – Telegraph
Only scientist in Commons 'alarmed' at MPs' ignorance
"The only scientist in the House of Commons has called for all MPs to be required to take a crash course in basic scientific techniques. Julian Huppert, a research biochemist who became the Liberal Democrat MP for Cambridge at the last election, said he was alarmed at the lack of scientific knowledge among colleagues." – Independent
Julian Glover: Scrutiny of cuts will intensify once Labour shadows are in place
"The row over Building Schools for the Future was a warning of what will
go wrong if cuts arrive out of nowhere. The problem lay not just with
the faulty lists of schools, but the failure to get across the fact
that an unfunded programme of immense cost and mixed benefits cannot be
sustained. In his battle, Michael Gove faced a Labour shadow able to
take him on; other ministers have had it easy, so far. Some departments
– business or transport – aren't really being shadowed at all, and
won't be until Labour gets a leader next month. But by the time of the
spending review, everyone in government will be under live fire." – Julian Glover in The Guardian
But the FT (£) reports a poll that should caution Labour against a simplistic 'fight the cuts' message: "Labour’s refusal to spell out the full implications of Britain’s record deficit may have cost it at the ballot box in May, according to an opinion poll published on Tuesday by Demos, the centre-left think-tank."
Public sector unions plan autumn of discontent
"A campaign of national strikes over cuts to spending, pay and pensions involving millions of public sector workers is being drawn up by trade union leaders for the autumn. The plan will begin with a national day of action on October 20, the same day as the spending review when George Osborne will disclose plans to cut £83 billion off public spending." – Times (£)
Defending the banks from George Osborne
"The coalition is being maddeningly inconsistent: it wants banks to retain more capital for every pound lent out, reducing the availability of credit and hiking its cost; it is simultaneously imposing a tax on wholesale financing, forcing an even greater reliance on non-existent savings to finance lending. Then it moans about insufficient credit, forgetting all the while that the bubble was driven by excessive loans dished out far too easily." – Allister Heath in City AM
"To take the Chancellor's two criticisms in turn: there is no surprise that businesses are finding it more difficult to get a straightforward overdraft. The banks have been issued with warnings by both regulators and government to provide more capital safeguards against loans which might default. Since unsecured overdrafts to small businesses are the most vulnerable to default, it follows that the banks have actually been disincentivised to provide them. This leads on to Mr Osborne's second objection: that it is somehow outrageous that companies are being asked for more collateral, not excluding the borrower's house. Is that so very outrageous? Obviously every small business would like not to give any security for a loan; but why should banks risk Mrs Jones's savings to extend an overdraft to Mr Smith's start-up business, if Mr Smith refuses to offer up anything by way of security?" – Dominic Lawson in The Independent
Diane Abbott accuses David Miliband of "buying" the Labour leadership contest
"The latest figures published by the Electoral Commission on 8 July
show Miliband, who helped Abbott win the number of nominations needed
to be in the contest, has raised by far the most money of the five
contenders with £185,265, more than six times the amount raised by the
second highest levels of funds, secured by Ed Balls. In contrast,
Abbott says she has raised just £1,700." – Guardian
In an article for The Times (£) Ed Balls backs a graduate tax and calls for a focus on poorer Britons: "Neither should we fall for the myth that our biggest challenge is to “win back” middle-income voters. They largely stuck with us at the election while we lost the support of too many people on lower incomes who felt we were no longer on their side."
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