July, 2008

Obama take note: noble goals can have unintended consequences

Leni Wild  |  31 July 2008

Barack Obama has made much of his hopes for a renewed approach to common challenges, should he succeed in his bid for the US presidency. He advocates a new ‘Marshall Plan', which would see the US and Europe united with other key players around the world to confront the common threats that now affect us all. And in the race for the presidency, it is likely that Obama and McCain will go head to head in setting new targets for foreign policy, whether for climate change, troops in Iraq, ending US oil dependency or overseas development spending.

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Time for a new attitude to the state

Richard Olszewski  |  30 July 2008

There's no shortage of new thinking going on about how to deliver public services. And as we try to find ways forward after our defeats in Crewe and Glasgow, there will be even more suggestions for policy changes. Yet it seems that every time someone proposes new ways of providing healthcare, education or welfare benefits, the cry goes up that we're betraying our principles or engaging in creeping privatisation.

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After Glasgow East: challenging the rise of nationalism

Kevin Bonavia  |  29 July 2008

Last weekend I was in Glasgow East to help with Labour’s byelection campaign. This is the area that my mother’s family had come from, a combination of Scots Presbyterians and Irish Catholics for whom the shipyards provided reliable work and a half-decent living.

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Military tendency

Murray Rowlands  |  29 July 2008

Dannatt's speech reminded me why the left's relationship with the army is both uneasy and important

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What should Labour do now? Change

James Alexander  |  28 July 2008

Decreasing polls and approval ratings, a general view of doom and gloom, being blamed for everything - sound familiar? Well, if you are in the Labour party and you are currently active, you probably know what I am talking about. So what do we do to turn this around? A lot of people have written about what they think the party should do and I would like to put my two pennyworth in.

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Helping the poorest through the credit crunch is an important test for Labour

Rachel Reeves MP  |  28 July 2008

The financial turmoil means trouble for all. Banks are restricting lending and withdrawing products and confidence in mainstream finance has been battered. But it is those who are financially excluded who are at greatest risk from the credit crunch.

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The Obama effect

Sunder Katwala  |  25 July 2008

Labour can emulate his success by rediscovering its sense of mission

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Obama, Emerson and the future of democracy promotion

Alan Johnson  |  25 July 2008

We face an assault on the idea of democracy. Take Sergei Lavrov, the Russian foreign minister: ‘For the first time in many years a real competitive environment has emerged in the market of ideas between value systems and development models'. As some authoritarian states have done well economically they have sought - tentatively at first, then with more confidence - to ‘giv[e] new life to the old idea that dictatorship is better than democracy at producing socio-economic development' says democracy-promotion expert Thomas Carothers. And, of course, radical Islamism rejects democracy tout court as sacrilegious.

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After Glasgow East: Labour needs a message of hope

Judith Fisher  |  25 July 2008

So, last night we lost one of the safest seats in Scotland. The Scottish Labour campaign was well organised. Activists turned out to do the work. We had a great candidate. And we lost.

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Of buckets and balanced tickets: choosing the right veep candidate

Will Straw  |  24 July 2008

John Nance Garner, Franklin D Roosevelt's first vice president, described his position as ‘not worth a warm bucket of piss'. But Garner's objection to bedpans was more sour grapes than an indictment of the office since he had been a rival for president in 1932 and was frequently overruled by FDR.

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