Archive | October, 2011

What is the coalition’s ‘great political ideal’?

In a confidential memo addressed to the Prime Minister, an adviser has argued that supporters of the government are ‘increasingly apathetic and disunited’ due to its failure to appeal to the ‘popular imagination’. Beyond tackling the consequences of the economic crisis, most people he argues do not have a clear idea of what the government […]

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Parliamentary nerds! Here be more facts for you!

Last night saw 81 Conservative MPs rebel against the Government, making it not only the largest ever Tory rebellion on Europe in Government, but very nearly twice as large as the previous biggest Tory rebellion suffered by David Cameron in Government. The 81 Conservatives were joined in the aye lobby by 19 Labour rebels, eight […]

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The Conservative Euro revolt: 10 points to note

Oh happy days. Just when we think we’re getting a bit tired of doing this rebellions lark, along comes something like Monday’s Euro rebellion.  We knew it would be big, but we were surprised it was quite that big.  Today’s Sun has a Rebelometer, which points to: Utter Disaster.  That’s going a bit far, but […]

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How to measure today’s rebellion

The first benchmark for today’s vote is 41 Conservative MPs.  That is (as we have explained before) both the largest Conservative rebellion by government MPs against Europe ever AND the largest Conservative rebellion so far during this Parliament.  Should at least 42 Conservative MPs rebel, then this will be the largest Conservative euro revolt ever.  […]

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The European magic number: 41

As the size of Monday’s Conservative rebellion over a referendum on EU membership appears to grow – Newsnight on Friday were talking about 100 Conservative MPs defying the whip – David Cameron might well be wishing that he had led the Conservative Party in the 1950s. There were two sessions during that decade in which not a […]

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Conservative divisions over Europe: we told you so

The parties’ contrasting policy shifts over ‘Europe’ during the last 30 years – Labour moving from opposition to support, the Conservative going in the other direction – is well understood. What is less well appreciated is that the issue is no longer the prime example of party division that it once was. There is still a […]

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Children are the future of … politics

During the course of my research on the history of the party election poster, I have identified some interesting ways in which the parties used children. By looking at a single object – in this case children – we can track the temporal shifts in the meaning of symbols. We can also come to some understanding […]

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Turkey: what kind of a ‘passive revolution’?

Following the June 2011 elections, Recep Tayyip Erdoğan (pictured) stands as the most successful prime minister in Turkey’s history after winning, since 2002, a third successive victory as leader of the Justice and Development Party (AKP). The AKP, having won 50 percent of the parliamentary vote and 326 seats in the 550-member legislature, is poised […]

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Getting Fuzzy: what’s political theory for?

Get Fuzzy is a US syndicated cartoon strip written by Darby Conley. It features Bucky Katt, wise and feline but very nasty, Satchel Pooch, a loyal and rather dumb dog, and their long-suffering owner Rob Wilco, who does what he can to tame Bucky Katt’s excesses.   In this cartoon, Rob recommends Immanuel Kant’s Critique of […]

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Hunting down Tony Blair

Here we go again. Yet another ‘satire’ about Tony Blair. This time from the Comic Strip, those 1980s Alternative Comedians who did so much to stamp out Thatcherism and now spend their time playing benign ogres in Harry Potter films or cheery vicars in winsome sitcoms, endorsing beer or opposing (how ironic) the Alternative Vote. In […]

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