Section: Politics

People’s Covid Inquiry – a report on the recent webinar

Chris Ambrose
doctor in PPE in front of union flag

People’s Covid Inquiry Webinar 7 July 2021 The People’s Covid Inquiry was called by campaign organisation Keep Our NHS Public. The Inquiry heard testimony from many witnesses and took place with support from a wide variety of individuals and organisations. The panel (all members giving their time on a voluntary basis) was chaired by Michael Mansfield […]

We are in grave danger of being boiled frogs

Anthea Simmons
Frog n a bucket

I’m going to repeat the boiled frog analogy (in which no frogs will be harmed…unlike us and our democracy). The unfortunate creature (metaphorically-speaking) is in a pan of cold water which is slowly, slowly being heated up. The frog adjusts his tolerance levels as the water changes from a pleasant coolness to a mildly uncomfortable […]

Clexit

Helmuth Porschen
wooden door, brass paque 'Members only'

Ed: We were sent this glorious piece unsolicited and loved it. The author stresses that any resemblance to current affairs in the UK is purely coincidental…! Some years ago I joined a club. (It doesn’t matter what kind of club it was because the following statements are more or less valid for all clubs.) I […]

El show del Brexit cumple cinco años

Mike Zollo
article in El Mundo/5 years since Brexit. Vote Leave supporters branish union flags

The Brexit Show reaches its fifth birthday Why the Spanish are so pro-EU My Spanish friends and acquaintances, all Anglophiles, have watched bemused and befuddled as the UK has shot itself in the foot in what many have called ‘an act of national suicide’. Hardly surprising that the Spanish are so puzzled by Brexit, Spain […]

Why I won’t stop wearing a mask post 19 July

Clare Knight
toddler in a face mask

Johnson is going to repeat the stunt that briefly had ineffectual Speaker of the House, Sir Lindsay Hoyle showing a bit of backbone, and bypass parliament to tell us all about ‘Freedom Day’ on TV. Freedom Day! The day this government officially frees itself from all responsibility for the health, welfare and financial security of […]

7 ways the Prime Minister has humiliated the UK in 7 days

Sadie Parker
Johnson talking about Westminster bubble

I’m supposed to be on a Twitter break this summer; but every weekend I check to see what the big stories are and I am constantly surprised by how relentless the sheer incompetence, gob-smacking corruption and cavalier wrongdoing of our government is. ‘Flooding the zone’ (with bullsh*t) is a well-known Trumpian tactic to wear down […]

Has it come to this? Agreeing with Baroness Thatcher (over Nissan)?

John D Turner
nissan logo on the side of a building

Baroness Thatcher would have been appalled. She would want to know why a Tory government, yes a Tory government of self-proclaimed free marketeers, was writing out a blank cheque in the name of the UK taxpayer to give to a successful, profitable Nippon car company and a Chinese Communist Party-owned firm. My politics are centre […]

Shock at ‘pre-crime’ attack on peaceful XR craftivists comes ahead of Patel’s draconian bill to suppress dissent

Rosie Haworth Booth
Xr protest placard

Leave our arts and crafts alone and free the press, say local activists. Extinction Rebellion activists in North Devon have been shocked and angered by police action in London ahead of last weekend’s demonstrations by many campaigning groups against the new government bill drawn up by the Home Secretary which, says young North Devon climate […]

The corruption and cronyism box set: volume 1

Editor-in-chief
wads of £20 notes

It’s hard keep up with the new material generated daily by this government, so we thought we’d take a breather in the form of a review of some of the articles we have put out on the subjects of corruption and cronyism in the past year. Check out the dates…it’s depressing to realise that we […]

Serco in Cornwall – a lesson unlearned

Tom Scott

People in Cornwall learned about Serco the hard way more than ten years ago. Yet a company with a record of serial failure and dishonesty has just won another massive government test and trace contract. Some 15 years ago, the Scott household had its worst ever family Christmas here in Cornwall. On the day that […]

Sajid Javid: a safe pair of hands?

Tom Scott

Media outlets have been parroting the line that by appointing Sajid Javid as Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, Boris Johnson is putting the NHS into a “safe pair of hands”. This is no doubt exactly the line that Johnson’s government would like to hear, and it is an epithet that has been […]

Labour – dodging the issues that matter

Eric Gates

The Labour Party has launched a national consultation on policy which runs until 19 July.  As one of those consulted, Eric Gates responds by switching the focus to the important issues the document omits rather than what it covers. Dear Sir Keir, You asked for my thoughts on a number of topics in the recent […]

Covid-19 and schools: an open letter to the BBC

Jane Stevenson

Dear BBC, I am writing to ask you to review the depth of scrutiny in your recent reports on Covid-19 and children in school. A BBC Breakfast report on 23 June explained that large numbers of children are having to isolate.  A concerned parent spoke about the impact on her child’s education. I was hoping […]

The slogan: a dangerous tool in the wrong hands

Anthea Simmons

“You jabber, we jab; you dither, we deliver; you vacillate, we vaccinate” . This was Johnson’s most recent well-rehearsed and grotesquely, offensively superficial response to a question about rape convictions in prime minister’s questions (but no answers…) on 23 June. The tactic has worked well for Johnson whom John Bercow recently described as having “a […]

Discord not development: Robert Halfon’s recipe for the ‘left behind’

Mick Fletcher
young pupil completing exam paper

If further proof was needed that this administration is more concerned to play politics than to govern the country well, the recent report of the Education Select Committee provides it. The committee chose to tackle an important and urgent issue – the failure of our education system adequately to prepare large numbers of young people […]

Two cheers for French citizenship

James Chater

So, the official letter has arrived bearing the good news, I’ve crowed about it on Facebook and the champagne has been uncorked and drunk: I am now, at long last, joyfully, French. Yet in some ways this feels like a Pyrrhic victory, for which I can only summon two out of the three customary cheers. […]

Challenging the NHS data opt-out: letter to the editor

Barbara Hills

A comment from the editor-in-chief can be found at the end of this letter. I am writing in response to your article on the sharing of GP data. I am really saddened by the one-sided argument currently circulating in much of the press regarding the proposed use of our GP data. I am an NHS […]

Cornwall becomes Coronawall

Tom Scott

Ten days after the G7, Cornwall has some of the highest coronavirus infection rates in the country. And the government is attempting to cover up one of the main reasons for this. For the first 18 months of the pandemic. Cornwall felt like a relatively safe place to be. Covid case rates were substantially lower […]

30 June deadline and Brexit’s cruel legacy for EU citizens in the UK

Clare Knight

You can help avert disaster! See below for what to say or write to your MP! It’s been dismissed as scaremongering by the Brexiters, but Brexit really does have the capacity to create a human tragedy that has been described as ‘Windrush on steroids‘. It has already ruined the mental and physical health, lives and […]

Ulrike’s story: the human cost of Brexit

In Limbo

The In Limbo Project gathers and shares the heart-rending stories of people caught up in the Brexit crossfire. Here is one of their most recent testimonies, reproduced by kind permission. It epitomises the senseless, casual cruelty that is just one of Brexit’s toxic legacies. You can sign a petition asking givenment to extend the deadline […]

The Little Black Book of Data and Democracy: WCB author event

Editor-in-chief
Data and Democracy

Join us on 13 July at 18:30 when we will be discussing ‘The Little Black Book of Data and Democracy’ with its author, Kyle Taylor. The event is free and whilst it would be best if you had read the short book before, it’s not a prerequisite. You’ll almost certainly want to read it afterwards! […]

Forget this government’s twisted idea of the ‘people’s priorities’: here are some we can unite behind

Anthea Simmons

In Amersham and Chesham, many who traditionally voted Conservative abandoned the party which has abandoned them and whose leadership, priorities and methods they view with increasing distaste. Instead, they voted for the party most likely to remove the Conservatives from a seat they had held since the constituency’s creation in 1974. In this instance, it […]

Brunel Bridge: “cultural vandalism” in the Cornish countryside

Mick Fletcher
The beautiful Brunel Bridge in COrnwall

In July 2020 and February 2021 we published articles drawing attention to the actions of Highways England Historical Railway Estate (HRE) – a little known body responsible for redundant railway structures. Although operating on behalf of the Department for Transport (DfT) this organisation appeared to pay scant regard to the priority now accorded to sustainable […]

Bring back imperial measures? They must be joking!

David Love
Imperial measurements, wall, plaque, Greenwich

I was astonished to read today that the government is considering yet another Brexit-related backward step, this time on the “reintroduction” of the old imperial system. It’s not as if the old imperial measures have actually disappeared from this country – as one wag (James Felton) put it, he is fed up with having to […]