Best of 2011

Adam Harrison  |  23 December 2011

It’s been a busy year for Progress as we seek to contribute to the debate about Labour’s future through our magazine, website and events series.

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Put childcare at heart of Labour’s agenda

Graeme Cooke  |  21 December 2011

Britain faces a major fiscal sustainability challenge over the coming years, exacerbated by the chancellor’s failure to secure growth and get unemployment down. This means all political parties will be faced by the reality of significant fiscal constraint. However, one way they will signal their differences is in the choices they make about how to …

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Scottish Labour has to find its mission

Danny Phillips  |  21 December 2011

I was asked to write some advice to Johann Lamont MSP and Anas Sarwar MP, our new leaders of the Scottish Labour party. To be honest it’s not been an easy article to write. In fact the more I thought about it the more I am convinced getting elected as leader and deputy was the …

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Getting back on track

Judith Fisher  |  21 December 2011

I had planned to begin this article with the words, ‘We have a new leader’, but as I typed I realised that it would be more accurate to write, ‘We have a leader’. Johann Lamont has been elected, with 51 per cent of the vote in a three-way contest, as the first leader of the …

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No need for jitters

Luke Akehurst  |  21 December 2011

In the last couple of weeks we’ve had an outbreak of panic on Twitter and blogs caused by one good joke by David Cameron at PMQs (unlikely to be remembered by any voters by 2015)  and an uptick in the Tory poll numbers following Cameron’s ‘veto’ at the EU summit. The polls need looking at …

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Resistable force V moveable object

Frank Spring  |  20 December 2011

The GOP primary next month may not feature the classic campaign conflict of momentum versus organisation – indeed, it could well descend into a case of inertia versus disorganisation. Organisation and momentum are not mutually exclusive, of course; in tandem, they are incredibly powerful (witness Obama 2008). Some campaigns never have much of either (wave …

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Egyptian army jails more than Mubarak

Denis MacShane MP  |  20 December 2011

Just imagine the footage: Israeli soldiers faced with a peaceful protest pull a woman from the crowd, drag her painfully along the ground exposing her breasts, and a brutal soldier stamps his booted foot on her chest. The world would have exploded with anger and rage. There would be demonstrations outside the Israeli embassies of …

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The long campaign

James Valentine  |  20 December 2011

How do you campaign successfully for three and a half years? That’s the task facing candidates and local parties that are part of Labour’s ‘early selection’ programme. The contest is unlikely to take place before May 2015. Since the Lib Dems have already been prepared to ditch key policies on electoral reform and Europe, it’s …

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Fighting fuel poverty in Wales

Nick Smith MP  |  20 December 2011

Carwyn Jones has provided Christmas cheer in Wales this month, by tying up the Welsh government’s budget for next year and providing financial stability in Cardiff Bay. After last year’s National Assembly elections Labour were left with 30 seats out of the total of 60. So initially the budget vote was tied with Labour’s 30 …

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On the death of Kim Jong-Il

Hopi Sen  |  19 December 2011

When a life ends, perhaps it is worth reflecting on its beginning.  Kim Jong-Il was, according to the North Korean government, born at the summit of one of Korea’s most beautiful mountains. His birth was announced by swallows, a double rainbow, and the sighting of a new star in the heavens. In reality, he was …

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