We’re all economists now (part three)

by Ben Mitchell.

Parts One and Two appeared earlier this week. Once in office, the coalition has decided to run roughshod over the economic reality. For the last 21 months or so they have pursued a series of tough austerity measures: aggressive cuts combined with huge reductions in public spending, believing that this is the only way to […]

We’re all economists now (part two)

by Ben Mitchell.

Part one appeared yesterday. In order to make sense of the UK’s debt and deficit figures they need to be put into context. In historical terms, the UK had the largest budget deficit since 1945, and the biggest since the early 1990s. Its current debt stood at the highest levels since the late 1960s. History […]

We’re all economists now (part one)

by Ben Mitchell.

The British/ European/ global economic downturn/ credit crunch/ crisis/ recession from 2008, and now making an unwelcome return in 2011/12, seems to have piqued many peoples’ interest in all things economic. You don’t need to fully understand what exactly a hedge fund does, or what is meant by derivatives or naked short selling (if only […]

The £32bn Great Train Robbery

by Ben Mitchell.

The lure of high speed rail travel has proven too much for ministers to resist. Seduced by the chance to finally emulate its European neighbours, Britain will have its very own TGV in the not so near future. In a 2006 major review of Britain’s transport needs, the former head of British Airways, Sir Rod […]

The EU: Getting Harder to Defend

by Ben Mitchell.

Defending the EU is unlikely to win you many votes nowadays, if it ever did. It’s a bit like immigration: even the most blinkered could probably force themselves to see its benefits, but it’s just a lot more convenient and safe to rail against both, whilst politically of course being a sure vote winner. David […]

The case for elected mayors

by Ben Mitchell.

Isn’t it about time people knew who was running their towns and cities? If directly elected mayors achieve anything, it will surely be to make local government, and the people who run it, more visible, and therefore more answerable. It will catapult regional politics from something that takes place, away from the public gaze, in […]

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