Showing posts from July, 2015

Blue Labour should be about more than politics

“ The arts are the means by which we can look through the magic casements and see what lies behind .”                                                                       ~ Ralph Vaughan Williams. Blue Labour is the Labour Party’s only hope if it is to win elections while remaining a party of the left. This is my view. This is still a far off vision though. Blue Labour is still quite an inchoate collection of ideas which many in the party don’t understand and others don't much like. Ed Miliband’s ‘One Nation Labour’ project sought to capture some of its narrative but failed to gain much traction and was quietly dropped. So what is it all about? One of Blue Labour’s originators Maurice Glasman explained the idea in 2011, “This is not a politics of nostalgia, as has been claimed ... by some critics inside and outside Labour. It is a claim that practices and values crucial to what Labour is and stands for have either been forgotten, lost or wrongly downgr

Heathrow expansion: the monster which will never be sated

A few questions: 1) What sort of country (and indeed world) do we want to leave to our children and grandchildren? 2) Do we care about quality of life and, if so, what does it mean? 3) Are we serious about valuing our environment and the natural world, or are we happy to keep on despoiling and degrading them? 4) Are we serious about tackling climate change, and if not, are we prepared to face the consequences of it? 5) What priority does economic activity take in relation to these things, and is this priority indefinite or time-limited? These questions seem pretty important and fundamental to me, but they are questions that hardly ever get asked in our mainstream political debate, let alone answered. We have a democratic political system, but it often seems more dedicated to avoiding big and difficult questions rather than confronting them. Ironically perhaps, the latter point is not far from the position of the aviation lobby and its media supporters