Leanne Wood, UKIP and that Progressive Alliance

The last time Neil Hamilton was national political news was in 1997 when he lost his Tatton Parliamentary seat to Martin Bell, following the “cash for questions” affair.  Nineteen years on, he is headline news again; elected to the Welsh Assembly for UKIP, rapidly gaining the UKIP leadership in Wales and – if reports are […]

Why a Green-Plaid-SNP alliance is neither progressive nor practical

Yesterday’s Independent carried a report that the Green Party, the SNP and Plaid Cymru were in discussion about standing down candidates at the 2020 elections in order to create a “progressive alliance” to defeat the Tories. It’s a nice idea in some respects, but it doesn’t stand up to scrutiny.  To understand why, you need […]

After Corbyn

Labour’s leadership campaign has turned into a far more fundamental debate than many would have predicted.  The intervention of Jeremy Corbyn – nominated by, among others, a number of MPs who would not under any circumstances vote for him, in order to ensure a genuine debate – has turned what could have been a bland personality […]

Rebuilding the broad church: why Jeremy Corbyn’s candidacy is vital to Labour’s future

Jeremy Corbyn getting on the ballot paper for the Labour Leadership is the best news the Party has had since the election. Not because he stands a realistic chance of winning (although early indications are that he commands a substantial level of grass-roots support), but because of the effect that he will have on the […]

The choices before the Labour Party

Countless gallons of cyber-ink have been spilled over Labour’s unexpectedly disastrous performance in the 2015 General Election.  A leadership campaign is now under way – one that so far has produced, in my view, little that is positive.  Among much muttering about Blairism, aspiration and were we too left-wing, there is little suggestion that we […]

Scottish independence and the potency of nostalgic mythology

As an Englishman with strong Scottish connections I have watched the debate over Scottish independence with interest and no little frustration.  It has not been an edifying affair – apart from that moment of weakness from Salmond, when his utter inability to provide intelligent answers about a Scottish currency laid bare the fact that there was […]