Section: Politics

Farming: the great betrayal

Sadie Parker
meme of Boris Johnson against map of North Shropshire and a tractor

Various reasons are given for the Liberal Democrats’ stunning by-election win in Leave-voting North Shropshire on 16 December. In Helen Morgan, they had a strong, local candidate who fought a vibrant, positive campaign and was able to inspire tactical voting by members of other progressive parties, notably Labour. The Conservative candidate, impressive on paper, was […]

Telling tales

Anna Andrews

With the author’s grateful acknowledgements to ‘Louise’ and ‘Don’ (not their real names) for their personal insights into the North Shropshire by-election. “It was as if they had no real concept of democracy in action.” So says Louise, talking about the North Shropshire by-election in which the LibDems (Liberal Democrats) won such a stunning victory. […]

Farewell, Frosty. Please don’t come back.

Mr Rushforth
Cartoon of Lord Frost

What was that he said about Brexit? “I’m very pleased and proud to have led a great UK team to secure today’s excellent deal with the EU. Both sides worked tirelessly day after day in challenging conditions to get the biggest & broadest trade deal in the world, in record time.” Or something like that. […]

Liz Truss: the free market ideologue now ‘negotiating’ Brexit

Tom Scott

This 2019 article is from Tom Scott and Molly Scott Cato’s Cabinet of Horrors blog. It remains extremely pertinent, especially so given Truss’s move to ‘negotiate’ Brexit following Frost’s resignation. That’s the same Brexit Johnson and Frost claim to have got done… It would be easy to dismiss Liz Truss as an intellectual lightweight, and […]

The dutiful and the despotic: a tale of two generations

Dr Pam Jarvis

This would be a powerful piece on any day of publication but coinciding as it does with the anniversary of that law-breaking party in Downing Street and the very day that author Dr Pam Jarvis’s brother died it has additional heft and poignancy. My mother, who died in February, was born into a generation raised […]

The red light is flashing for our democracy

Richard Haviland
Polling station sign fixed to mesh fence

Former civil servant Richard Haviland sets out a chilling and all-too-possible vision of a bleak future for the UK with a hollowed-out faux democracy. Ed With all the red lights flashing at the state of the UK’s democracy, I’ve seen it said we shouldn’t assume the next general election will even happen. The issue, though, […]

Is Boris Johnson being fitted for concrete shoes?

Tom Scott
Boris Johnson as the Godfather

The prime minister may soon have cause to reflect on the lessons of the greatest gangster movie ever made.­ Tom Scott explains the connection. Boris Johnson’s sister, Rachel Johnson, once described her brother as “quite Sicilian” in his attitude towards loyalty. She was no doubt thinking of the Sicilian Mafia, and not just because one […]

The next unelected PM will be chosen according to paranoia

Russ In Cheshire
Johnson cabinet, Number 10

The next unelected Tory prime minister will be chosen by members, and will be whoever most closely matches their paranoia on that particular day. It might be immigrants. Might be taxes. Maybe Europe. The fate of our statues. Uppity footballers. Or gay Santas in Scandinavian Christmas ads. Maybe they’ll vote to lower benefits for poor […]

Remove Clause 9 from the hideous Nationality and Borders Bill

Anthea Simmons

It is savagely ironic that dozens of Conservative MPs are spitting out their dummies over the ‘outrageous’ curtailment to freedom that results from being obliged to wear a mask and to produce a Covid passport to gain entry to various venues and amenities and yet they happily wave through legislation that includes some of the […]

Forget the wallpaper. Follow the money.

Robert Saunders

We are putting this out again in the light of recent developments which appear to show Johnson, once again, lying. This story matters on so many levels. It should be the final curtain for Johnson, frankly. Ed Forget the wallpaper. Forget John Lewis. Forget the curtains and the chintzy sofas. This isn’t a story about […]

“Treating taxpayers like an ATM machine”

Anthea Bareham
Meme of an ATM reads HMRX Self-servatives

Most people seem to think that Dido Harding’s test and trace programme (NHST&T but nothing to do with the NHS) is a disaster. I won’t go into the reasons why; you can read some of it in the House of Commons committee report. Instead, let’s just look at the costs. The government allocated a budget […]

The funny side…

Graham Hurley
Boris Johnson pants on fire

The former French ambassador to the UK, Sylvie Bermann, went into print a couple of days ago to reflect on what remains of her country’s relationship with the Brits.  When she left office in 2017, there was a measure of mutual trust and conversations were conducted in good faith. Since then, Boris Johnson has barged into […]

Now that Brexit is ‘done’, Tories want human rights undone

Jon Danzig
Image of Human rights act cover and SOS

UK SOS: our human rights are under threat The Tories of this century want to abandon the human rights that Tories of the last century championed and established. It was Winston Churchill who, in 1948, advocated a European ‘Charter of Human Rights’ in direct response to the abject horrors of the Nazi regime and the […]

Costa Britannia? Bremaining in Spain after Brexit

Mike Zollo
view of Malaga

Brexit has had a devastating impact on the many British citizens who have second homes on the continent. Mike Zollo explains the work of campaign and support organisation Bremain in Spain. For my wife and me, as for many thousands of British nationals who spend time in Spain and/or have their own properties there, the […]

If protest changed anything, they’d make it illegal…

Tom Scott

… and that’s exactly what Priti Patel’s Police, Crime, Sentencing and Courts Bill aims to do. Tom Scott explains why this is yet another assault on freedom and democracy and must be opposed. In St Stephen’s Hall in the Houses of Parliament, a stained-glass window commemorates the women who fought for voting rights in the […]

Who really controls the political climate? Letter to the editor

Editor-in-chief

Dear West Country Voices, Our PM isn’t very good with gates, actually he isn’t very good at anything – except, of course, at lying; and actually he seems to have lost his talent for that recently. You will remember when he was confused by Bill Gates on how much the UK would contribute towards Bill’s […]

“Last Christmas”: the Boris Johnson Christmas party karaoke version

Tom Scott

Last Christmas, I kept you apartBut the very next day, I partied awayThis year, to save donors from tearsI’ll give them all something special Once bitten and twice shyThat what they say, but it doesn’t applySleaze and corruption, so many storiesBut still you will keep on voting for Tories “Forgive me, forgive me” you all […]

‘Leave the rich alone’ is now official government policy

Richard Murphy
luxury car outside grand house

Over the last couple of years the pretty lame Office for Tax Simplification (OTS) has made a range of recommendations for the reform of capital gains tax and inheritance tax. On 30 November we finally learned of the government’s reaction. As the FT notes: The UK has shelved proposals to raise capital gains tax rates to […]

Will our MPs stand up for the lifeboats?

Mick Fletcher

If any organisation embodies the best of British values it is the Royal National Lifeboat Institution (RNLI).   It is funded by donations and almost entirely staffed by volunteers.  It is a charity independent of government, wholly dedicated to saving lives at sea.  Its volunteers are ready to risk their own life to help others, 24 […]

Social feed 3: the smell of bacon frying…

Babe

A regular satirical commentary on the pig swill served to constituents via an MP’s social media feed ‘Slurping at the swill for everyone in Totnes & South Devon’ – Babe PeppaPiggate may have overshadowed the Paterson and sewage affairs, but Babe isn’t letting Mangnall off the hook… This social feed retrospective tastes disconcertingly familiar. It’s […]