Theresa May and the Great Repeal Bill – a massive misconception?

It is widely reported today that Theresa May intends to announce a Great Repeal Act, to be included in the Queen’s Speech, which would repeal the 1972 European Communities Act under which the United Kingdom gained membership of the European Union. Inherent in May’s comment is a fundamental misconception about how EU legislation is applied […]

How one interview destroyed the economic case for Brexit

On this morning’s Today programme on Radio 4, Mishal Husein interviewed Employment Minister and Leave campaigner Priti Patel, following Leave’s pledge to match all the EU funding lost as a result of Brexit for every region of the UK.  In a masterclass in political interviewing, Mishal Husein effectively  destroyed the Leave campaign’s case, by asking […]

Brexit and the politics of irrationality

A few miles from where I am sitting, something altogether disturbing is about to happen.  There appears to be every sign that, in the South Wales valleys, thousands of people in one of the most deprived areas of the UK – one whose Less Developed Region status under EU rules means that it is a […]

2016 could be a great year for Labour – if the Party lets it

As the year turns, the political commentators are preoccupied with Labour’s apparent difficulties.  It’s hard to remember that in any normal times it would be the Tories that would be on the ropes.  There are three key issues on which the Tories are, potentially, in the most serious trouble: On Europe, the Tories remain as […]

Cameron’s referendum: a weak leader sleepwalking to EU exit

It is widely reported that David Cameron will today announce his intention to renegotiate Britain’s membership of the EU and hold an in-out referendum, assuming the Tories win a majority after 2015. I intend to blog at greater length about this later, but it is important to understand the implications of what Cameron has conceded. […]

The EU Budget: deconstructing Parliament’s vote

Unsurprisingly, the first major Commons defeat for the Coalition reflects the Conservative Party’s dysfunction over Europe, as Labour MPs join the Tory Eurosceptic fringe in the lobbies to vote down the proposition that the EU’s Budget should be frozen in real terms, demanding real-terms cuts instead. Much of the subsequent comment has focussed on Labour’s […]

Ignorance and human rights

The purpose of tabloid newspapers, it seems, is to spread ignorance and to foment prejudice.  And on many subjects they’ve done an astonishing job – on crime levels, the EU, single mothers, speed cameras.  It’s made all the easier when the political class, as a symptom of its failure to engage with reality, is quite […]