Better a localist NHS than a nationalist one
August 18, 2009 11:38 PMYesterday, Health Secretary Andy Burnham wrote an article for the Guardian aiming to set out the clear blue water between Labour and the Conservatives on the National Health Service. In doing so, he inadvertantly demonstrated quite how vapid Labour's vision for the NHS really is. It was summed up in one sentence:
For Labour, it all comes down to defending the N in NHS.
Reforming the NHS : A Local and Democratic Voice
August 18, 2009 10:14 PMBy Richard S. Grayson This article was originally published in Reinventing the State: Social Liberalism for the 21st Centur
A compelling case for a high pay commission? [Vince Cable]
August 16, 2009 8:21 PMWriting on Comment is Free today, Vince Cable argues:
There is now a compelling case for a high pay commission to measure the claims of top earners that their rewards are justified and necessary, even if they offend natural justice and our sense of fairness. Britain increasingly resembles one of those developing countries whose economy and society are dominated by internationally mo
We love the NHS
August 13, 2009 12:36 AMThe debate in the us about healthcare seems to be getting increasingly insane, with Obama being compared to Hitler, Sarah Palin spreading lies about "death panels" and assorted nonsense. A repeat of the debate in the early 1990s when the Clintons attempted to introduce healthcare reforms of their own was to be expected, but this debate is decidely more wacky. One interesting side aspect of this debate has bee
Celebrating 100 years of liberals fighting the 'taxpayers' alliance'
August 12, 2009 6:47 PMYesterday, obscure fact fans, was the 98th anniversary of the first Parliament Act*. The Parliament Act 1911 came about because of Asquith, Lloyd George and Churchill's 1909 'People's Budget' which proposed paying for, among other things, the first state pension with a rise in taxation aimed mostly at the most wealthy - and in particular proposed establishing a land tax. The landed gentry wouldn't stand for that and, having control of the
There is nothing random about local control of public services
August 09, 2009 11:56 AMBoth Sunder Katwala and Grant Shapps are quite wrong: not only is local variation a price more than worth paying for local control, but it would end the phenomena of postcode lotteries. "Postcode lottery" is a
Steve Webb MP to respond to Jon Cruddas at Compass Summer Lecture
August 05, 2009 7:52 AMSteve Webb MP will be amongst those responding to Jon Cruddas at the Compass Summer Lecture on the future of Social Democracy.
On the one hand with the crisis of capitalism and the systemic failure of free markets, coupled with the election of Barack Obama in the United States, centre-left politics is getting far more interesting and it would seem that the opportunity for seismic change is greater now than at any point for a generation, indeed some including Compass have called this
July 31, 2009 2:57 PMDear friend, With Parliament now in recess for the rest of the summer, the Social Liberal Forum is gearing up for the conference season. We are also looking to growing our network, especially outside London. But to do that, we need your help. Would you like a speaker for your local party or student group? Would you like to know if there are any other social liberals living near you? Now is the ideal time to get involved. A Fresh Start – what do you think? The Lib Dems' p
Matthew Sowemimo: don't misrepresent our radical agenda
July 29, 2009 6:18 PMMatthew Sowemimo, Director of the Social Liberal Forum, has written a new opinion piece on Liberal Democrat Voice arguing for the party not to be timid in the way it presents its agenda:
The party’s pre-election manifesto – A Fresh Start for Britain – is based around strong themes and ones that have t