Here’s a fun game for anyone mad about politics. Cross reference anti-Jeremy Corbyn Labour MPs (including those in the shadow cabinet) with constituencies which nominated him as leader. If an anti-Corbyn MP is presented in the media as a serious player but his or her Constituency Labour Party (CLP) voted for Corbyn then the MP.. read more →

Today’s Sunday Times contains (paywall) an article about the UK Union by three decent, semi-retired politicians: Peter Hain, Menzies Campbell and Robert Salisbury. The chums are kicking off a new ‘Constitution Reform Group’ which will bring various experts together to save Scotland. It’s a bit blah, to be honest, but at the true core of the piece.. read more →

11 Sep 2015
September 11, 2015

Sgt Blackman


I once sat as a member of a 7-officer General Court Martial which convicted a serving soldier of murder and sentenced him to life imprisonment (unlike jury members, court martial members decide on the sentence too). At the appeal, the judges noted: “We do not know whether the verdict of the Court Martial was unamimous.. read more →

10 Sep 2015
September 10, 2015

Why Cooper overtook Burnham


A week or so ago, a few folk noticed the bookies’ odds putting Yvette Cooper in second place in the Labour leadership stakes, in front of Andy Burnham, and wondered if maybe this meant she could catch Jeremy Corbyn. This very movement might well have encouraged some to have a punt on Yvette, so the odds.. read more →

UK Chancellor (Finance Minister) George Osborne, seeking to cement his position as UK prime-minister-in-waiting, has suggested that the UK should bomb both sides (insofar as there are only two) in the Syrian conflict. Perhaps he feels that a bit more bombing will help reduce the flow of refugees running away from all the bombing that’s going.. read more →

The Tories – having decided Corbyn really is going to win the Labour leadership – and more than a few Labour folk are going for Corbyn not on economic policy but on foreign policy. It was odd to hear even Gordon Brown giving up on an economic critique of Corbynomics to implicitly (for God’s sake).. read more →

Liz Kendall’s campaign was always aimed not at winning, obviously, but at creating space for an ultra-Blairite party within a Labour party under the leftish leadership of Andy Burnham or Yvette Cooper. Things have moved on a bit since then…. Kendall is fighting away doughtily, though. It is almost funny, the way Burnham and Cooper.. read more →

Gordon Brown has made a veiled attack (Daily Telegraph, but ‘veiled’ is used across the media including in the Guardian) on Jeremy Corbyn. So that literally means the ‘attack’ was intentionally hidden from most people who don’t obsess over the daily papers, right? Why the studied ambivalence? Well, the former pm is seeking to provide tokenistic.. read more →

Jeremy Corbyn is in Scotland and tomorrow the new Scottish Labour Party leader will be named (polls closed today at lunchtime). Kezia Dugdale, until now touted by many (including herself and Ian Murray, the Shadow Secretary of State for Scotland) as a New Labour figure, has made no secret of her thorough disapproval of Jeremy.. read more →

So Jeremy Corbyn looks set to become the new leader of HM opposition. Today’s comments from senior Labour folk along the abc (anyone but Corbyn) lines seem likely to simply help Corbyn. After all, which Corbyn supporters are going to listen to Alistair Campbell, for goodness sake? And this doesn’t apply just to the 53%.. read more →

I blogged yesterday and a few days before that that the current Labour party leadership race provides the perfect opportunity for Labour and the SNP to kill off the House of Lords and replace it with something less ridiculous. Today, The Scotland on Sunday today reports that the SNP’s Angus Brendan McNeil is now pushing.. read more →

There’s noisy chat that Jeremy Corbyn is 20 points ahead of his Labour-leadership rivals on first-preference votes. His rivals seem to agree; they’ve turned their main efforts to competing amongst themselves for second and third preference ‘stop-Corbyn’ votes. But could any of them really close such a huge gap? Let’s take this Daily Mirror report as.. read more →

If Labour’s Left needs fresh material in its eternal search for new ways of abusing Blairism, and of course helping Jeremy Corbyn to victory, it simply needs to distribute this new Spectator piece. It’s John McTernan, former political secretary to two prime ministers (Tony Blair and Julia Gillard the, er, anti-Blairite pm) having a political breakdown on.. read more →

Reflecting the view of millions of shocked people across Scotland and the UK, a resident of Maryhill, Glasgow, was yesterday overheard uttering the following current affairs commentary: “If ah’m still gakkin’ massell mental aff’ ae burds’ tits when ah’m 70, ah’ll regard that as ma’ crownin’ lifetime achievement”. Whether or not you agree with that profound.. read more →

23 Jul 2015
July 23, 2015

The inexorable Labour/SNP deal


In the Labour leadership election, Scotland has more ‘constituency’ nominations that actual parliamentary constituencies. That’s because Labour in Scotland organises around the Holyrood constituencies, and these in turn are the ‘old’ UK parliamentary constituencies (with Orkney and Shetland split, too) and are therefore smaller and more numerous (73 instead of 59). In the olden days.. read more →

The leader of the House of Commons says it would be wrong for English MPs to be over-ruled on England-only matters, while ensuring the Scottish Affairs Select Committee has a majority of, er, English MPs. Wait for SNP campaigners turning up in English constituencies and arguing that the local MP is out of order dominating Scotland-only.. read more →

I’ve just read The Wired’s gripping Joshuah Bearman’s ‘Untold Story of Silk Road’ (part 2 is flagged at bottom of part 1). I can’t wait for the book (and the movie too, I hope), but for now Bearman’s piece (with others credited) is more than worth spending an hour on, along with the other super.. read more →

29 May 2015
May 29, 2015

Sepp Blatter – only an excuse?

1 Comment

There’s a strong scent of fish around the Sepp Blatter ‘schlock’. Football fans seem pretty unmoved. It’s not like no-one knows how grubby international football is and, frankly, most people just want to watch decent football. Most folk don’t seem that bothered about the dodgy-ness and if they want ethics they’ll go see a priest/Imam/Rabbi. The.. read more →