History and Strategy

Towards Federalism? Part Three

Part One Part Two The Politics of a Federal UK While it’s fun to imagine structural alterations to the UK’s constitutional arrangements, there must of course be a point to this tinkering. Aside from rationalising the present devolution settlement and addressing the problem of inadequate local government accountability and provisioning, these federalising changes could go some way towards calming some of the…

Our Times

Mark Fisher’s Ghosts of My Life is an exceptional collection of cultural criticism. As I read it over the Christmas period, I couldn’t think of another writer better able to synthesise so many disparate sources into an overarching argument about our times. The whole book, with its theme of hauntology, had me thinking about ways in which the left interacts with time,…

Our duty on fuel

Far too much centre-left discourse around climate change centres easy targets like polluting corporations, a green jobs revolution and international co-operation. But the bulk of emissions are attributed to individual consumption. Measures hitting most consumers, such as increased fuel taxes, are the best way to make a serious dent in our carbon contributions. We ought to champion them. Going after corporations alone is not an alternative. Behind the lurid headlines about carbon corporate contributions are the consumer choices that drive them; one expert estimatesthat only a tenth of emissions is directly…

The Socialist Case for Electoral Reform

First Past the Post is an archaic, outdated electoral system that has failed its basic litmus test at two of the last three elections. Its proponents claim that it delivers “strong and stable majority government.” Yet the last three elections have produced two hung parliaments and one majority so meagre it forced the Government back to the polls when it couldn’t pass…