Now that we are in the year of the election (despite the fact that the parties have essentially been campaigning for over a year now) and the official start, with the dissolving of the House, is only a month and a half away, the usual deluge of leaflets and slogans will soon begin coming through the letterbox.
The last few days have been shown us the cold reality of the state of modern Britain, one that has seemingly stretched into No. 10, as demonstrated in yesterday’s revelation that David Cameron had asked the cabinet secretary, Sir Jeremy Heywood, to talk to The Guardian.
Since the publication of the Trident Alternatives review, there has been surprisingly little debate on the Left. Perhaps it is a sign of the demonization of this Liberal Democrat contribution to the political debate this Parliament.
There was a time when the ambition to make progress in disarmament was considered a sign of naivete in international affairs. Thankfully this is no longer true.
There is an assumption that the Tories speak for the military. Tory MPs and spokespeople have a habit of assuming that they understand the military and defence issues better than other parties. Partly this is because there are more Tory MPs with military experience than in the other parties.
Seeing Johnny Rotten on Question Time, I braced myself for an infuriating hour of television. But I needn’t have worried: he turned out to be one of the more well-rounded individuals on the panel, expressing views that you wouldn’t usually expect of a punk rocker (albeit through the medium of interruption and occasionally incoherent rambles).
417. That is, at time of writing, the British death toll for the Afghan war. The latest victim was Pte Gregg Stone. He was 20. To put it another way, he was 9 when the planes hit the World Trade Centre.
After over a decade, the victories of the Western Alliance in Afghanistan are hard to spot.
Any argument for school reform motivated by a sincere desire to increase social mobility deserves to be taken seriously. That’s why the debate started by Ben Mitchell’s advocacy of grammar school expansion is one that belongs on Shifting Grounds.