In praise of Warren Morgan

When, a little over eighteen months ago, I moved from Brighton to Cardiff, I decided that I wouldn’t comment on Brighton and Hove politics any more; for all the attachements and friendships formed in my time as a Labour activist and council candidate in the city, the time had come to move on. However, I […]

Corbyn’s Christmas message: notes from a parallel universe

Like, I would imagine, every single other Labour Party member, I have just received an email containing a Christmas message from Jeremy Corbyn.  It is difficult to imagine a more complacent document; it almost appears to have issued from a parallel universe. Corbyn writes about how the Labour Party has signed more new members in […]

Momentum and Lewisham – is the Left blowing Corbyn’s victory on gesture politics?

Faced with an unprecedented assault on local government finances, the Lewisham branch of Momentum is reported to have called on the Labour council in the borough to set a “no-cuts” – i.e. an illegal – budget.  It’s an issue that was bound to come to the surface after Jeremy Corbyn’s victory in Labour leadership election […]

What if UKIP held an election meeting and nobody came?

You could be forgiven for regarding Brighton’s northern suburbs as prime UKIP territory.  In Patcham, with its neat 1930s semis, you’re a world away from the city centre where the Festival is in full swing.  It’s a suburb whose apparent prosperity hides the fact that it has been hit hard by austerity: many of its […]

How the Green Party just surrendered Brighton to austerity politics

The decision of Brighton and Hove’s ruling Green administration to hold a referendum on a 4.75% Council Tax increase  is being hailed by many – most of all outside Brighton – as a bold blow against  austerity.  It is nothing of the sort.  By failing in its duty to seat a budget and instead to […]

Gridlock for Christmas: a Brighton transport tale

Working as a transport policy-maker in Whitehall and Brussels over many years, I saw some calamitous transport policy decisions.  However, it is difficult to think of any – with the possible exception of HS2 – that, in terms of counter-productivity, irrationality and sheer political perverseness, tick quite as many boxes as last night’s vote by […]

Mental health and Brighton and Hove politics

I blogged a piece earlier today about the report in the Brighton Argus that the Brighton and Hove Green Group of councillors has called in mediators to resolve differences between Group members – and I argued that this was an essentially political failure, brought about by trying to operate without rigid structures; and that the […]