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2 weeks ago @ http://www.conservativ... - Andy Street: Yes to HS... · 0 replies · +1 points

Perhaps it's déja vu, but I recall having read this article before...

Either that or it is indistinguishable from any other of the multitude of proclamations from our "senior leadership" class who have climbed to the top of our institutions by virtue of their enthusiasm for every passing political fashion, and despite the fact that their mediocre talents and ignorance of any quantitative method make them singularly unsuited for putting into practice the "visions, values, and strategies" they inevitably profess.

2 weeks ago @ http://www.conservativ... - Gareth Bacon: 149 peop... · 0 replies · +1 points

The questionable competence of Mayor Khan aside, I'm not sure that it is reasonable to blame him for a problem created by primarily by immigration.

5 weeks ago @ http://www.conservativ... - Duncan Simpson: Three ... · 2 replies · +1 points

I thoroughly agree with these well-made points.

The astonishing thing is that conservatives should have to beg a Conservative government to behave in a conservative manner.

9 weeks ago @ http://www.conservativ... - The Withdrawal Agreeme... · 2 replies · +1 points

Those "fools" were in fact calculating saboteurs, and rather successful ones given the extent of the confusion, delay, and sense of hopelessness they managed to impose.

There may be a few less of them in the parliamentary party, but there are yet to be any consequences for those many individuals in the media, civil service, and our institutions who for three years conspired to subvert a democracy.

9 weeks ago @ http://www.conservativ... - Tania Mathias: The Gov... · 0 replies · +1 points

We've heard it all now.

10 weeks ago @ http://www.conservativ... - WATCH: Queen's Speech ... · 3 replies · +1 points

I shall play Devil's Advocate by observing that even with an unassailable majority, the government proudly intends to:

- Increase the "National Living Wage" (instead of explaining how damaging and counterproductive this is).
- Enshrine in legislation ever more NHS funding (instead of making the case for the structural reform that would make such funding unnecessary).
- Accept that micro-managing the housing market is the responsibility of the government.
- Further increase the "powers" of the unaccountable and unregulated "security services" at the expense of every citizen, rather than the particular communities that need supervision.
- Further increase school funding (despite previous increases being wasted on an army of 'classroom assistants', 'attendance officers', etc).

I'm aware that this is an unbalanced and excessively pessimistic assessment of the legislative agenda (and an assessment I don't entirely agree with despite advancing it here).

But isn't the fact that such an assessment can be made confirmation that there is a kernel of truth to Corbyn's claim that "the terrain has shifted"? Would a Conservative government with a large majority be advancing this agenda had it not abandoned ground on the right?

10 weeks ago @ http://www.conservativ... - The Politics of And. S... · 1 reply · +1 points

It is always the case that the party returning the largest number of MPs requires the lowest number of votes per MP (consider that a party winning a particular seat with N votes gets one MP per every N votes, whereas the second place gets zero MPs for anything up to N-1 votes).

In 1997 the number of voters per party required for each MP was:

Labour: 32341
Conservatives: 58188

FPTP neither benefits nor disadvantages any particular party, it merely has no runners-up prize for the party that the electorate does not select.

10 weeks ago @ http://www.conservativ... - The Politics of And. S... · 1 reply · +1 points

Regarding the question of the reduction in seat numbers; the framework of the 2018 review explicitly requires the commission to produce a recommendation consisting of 600 constituencies.

The reduction in the number of seats is not an optional component of an adjustment to boundaries, it is the foundation on which the whole review is based, and is the prerequisite for the many other desirable changes which the review contains.

Notable among these is the harmonisation of voter numbers between constituencies so that every seat comprises roughly 75000 electors. This means that each vote, irrespective of where it is cast nationally, may be said to have the same "weight" and is a strong counterargument to advocates of PR.

The need for a review was acknowledged across party boundaries and applying the September 2018 proposal is now not only eminently politically practicable, but is a manifesto commitment: "oven ready" so to speak!

10 weeks ago @ http://www.conservativ... - A revolution has taken... · 0 replies · +1 points

That argument assumes that the media anointed this small clique of grandees as their spokespeople for "Conservatism" because they represented that movement's most talented individuals.

An alternative theory is that this group was given their visibility by the media, along with the rank and influence that comes with it, precisely because they shared the media's perspective on "Conservatism" and could be trusted to influence it in a direction of which the media approved.