Fifteen for 2015: Jess Asato

Jess Asato is one of the Prospective Parliamentary Candidates (PPCs) profiled in the new Young Fabians pamphlet 'Fifteen for 2015'.

You can read the pamphlet here.  

The Young Fabians are proud to call Jess Asato one of our own. A long-standing member of the executive committee and Chair in 2003/04, Jess continues to support the organisation that became her first political home to this day- speaking at events, writing for Anticipations, and flying the Fabian flag as a member of the senior society executive.

Young Fabians Fifteen for 2015: Foreword

Today the Young Fabians launch their new digital pamphlet, 'Fifteen for 2015', profiling fifteen Labour Prospective Parliamentary Candidates (PPCs) standing for election across the country.

Each day, Anticipations will publish one of the profiles online. First of all, though, find below the pamphlet foreword written by Iain McNicol, General Secretary of the Labour Party.  

Forging a Progressive Coalition

If you can't beat 'em, join 'em.

It's hardly the most inspiring mantra in politics. But in an election of deadlocked polls and scattered swings it’s one Labour may just have to swallow if Ed Miliband is to walk into Number 10 on May 8th.

First 100 Days Series: regaining credibility on the international stage.

First 100 Days Series.

International Network: regaining credibility on the international stage.

It is extremely difficult to predict what foreign affairs matters will be crossing the desk of the next Prime Minister in his first 100 days. Much of foreign policy is reactive and most crises, even epoch-defining ones, are unforeseen. Who would have predicted the War on Terror on 8th September 2001? Any number of currently under-the-radar conflicts could flare up, such as the situation in Darfur, or the Rohingyas in Myanmar.

First 100 days series: what is State Education For?

First 100 Days Series.

Education Network: what is State Education For?

Taking office in May, the new leader of the Department of Education will have to take the lead in responding to a number of critical questions. What is the role of academies and free schools within the English state education system? How do you close the gap in educational achievement? How should you assuage a workforce which feels overworked and disgruntled? Though these issues are pressing and deserve immediate responses, they all implicitly presume that we know the answer to a more profound question: What is state education for? This critical question has rarely been on the political agenda, resulting in a state education system bloated with inadequate responses to these urgent issues. This piece seeks not to provide any answers, but rather argue that even just careful deliberation of the question could be catalytic for positive radical transformation of the English state education system.

First 100 days series: Mainstreaming Mental Health

First 100 days series.

Health Network: mainstreaming Mental Health.

Mental Health is often considered ‘the Cinderella’ service of the NHS. Mental health is chronically under-funded, given a lack of priority and there exists a huge disparity of esteem in comparison to physical health. So, the question is: will Ed Miliband be the fairy Godmother who finally ensures that mental Health patients receive the services that they deserve?

First 100 Days Series: Adapting to a financial revolution

First 100 Days Series.

Finance Network: adapting to a financial revolution.

At the time of the 2010 election, the financial sector was still at a critical point post-crisis. The hoped-for global economic recovery was stuttering, international regulators were drafting a slew of new rules, and fundamental questions were being asked over the social cost of the bank bailout.

States of morality

If there is one question which haunts the hearts of those of us on the left with an interest in international relations it is this: is there a place in foreign affairs for morality? In a field where Bismarkian realpolitik has long reigned supreme, where anarchy and the infamous security dilemma are the ground states of being, does morality matter?

Blue Labour Returns

Of all the half-baked ideologies the opposition has flirted with over the last five years, none is more repellent than Blue Labour. Yet like a particularly stubborn brain-chewer from The Walking Dead, it shambles onwards in the face of every adversity, gobbling up column inches and spawning forth platitude after platitude- hectoring, moralising, criticising, sniping, compromising and equivocating.

To put it Bluntly

If you’ve seen the news recently, you’ll have noticed a row has flared up between two of the most unlikely people, namely Labour’s Shadow Minister for Culture, Chris Bryant, and James Blunt. The latter was angered by Bryant’s remarks that our media needs to be more diverse and gritty to better reflect contemporary Britain, and that currently it is too dominated by public-school elites and Downton Abbey type programming. This caused Blunt to lash out with a surprisingly vitriolic display resplendent of Thatcher-era rhetoric. He accused Bryant of being motivated by ‘the politics of envy’, stating “Mr Bryant's populist, envy-based, vote-hunting ideas” [are] more likely to hold the country back than "my shit songs and my plummy accent". He then continued to declare that his “boarding-school education had perhaps protected me from your kind of narrow-minded, self-defeating, lead-us-to-a-dead-end, 'remove the G from GB thinking' which is to look at others' success and say 'it's not fair'”.

Lucy Powell MP: into the breach

Lucy Powell was perhaps the candid choice for taking on the role of Shadow Cabinet Office Minister and vice-chair of the election campaign. Despite being relatively new to the House, having become MP for Manchester Central in 2012, she is a staunch ally of Ed Miliband. She previously ran his leadership campaign in 2010, and worked as his Deputy Chief of Staff after that. 

Now, however, she seems to be more in demand than ever. Her schedule already fully packed only three weeks into the job, we caught up with her about how it was all coming along.

Will a picture of Nick Clegg's face be enough?

An overview from Neil Coyle on his campaign strategy.

It is presumptuous to suggest we will beat the Lib Dems in Bermondsey and Old Southwark in May, given Simon Hughes’ majority and 30-year record. But we won a majority of councillors in the constituency this year on a 12.5% swing that would win us the seat if replicated again. Additionally, there is hope in that Lord Ashcroft’s local polling puts us neck and neck.