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'”.Read more
The Better Together campaign may have limped over the line in the Scottish Referendum, but in no sense was this an enthusiastic endorsement of the Union. A recent poll declared that a majority of Scots now favour independence, and there have already been mutterings from the SNP of another independence referendum in the near future. Meanwhile the bad-tempered devolution debate in the House of Commons on the 14 October was dominated by the West Lothian question and ‘English votes for English laws’. It seems that the Union is destined to fragment further, and questions surrounding England and Englishness will be become increasingly pertinent in the years ahead.
The Scottish referendum revealed just how powerful a force nationalism can be in politics. Many of the discontents expressed by the Yes campaign were no different from those felt across the UK but draped in the flag of national identity, they captured imaginations and inspired people on an emotional level which has been so conspicuously absent from the contemporary political arena.
Growing up as a Muslim in this country means facing a unique combination of challenges. The Muslim identity is often seen in a negative light, thanks to the actions of extremists and a perception that Muslims isolate themselves from wider society.Read more
David Cameron was once asked, “What’s your favourite joke?”
“Nick Clegg” came the reply.
That was a long time ago, before the 2010 election and before the “coalicious” government came to power. Now Nick and Dave are the best of friends.Read more
This is a guestpost by Scarlet Standard blogger Emma Burnell as follow up to our writing workshop in February
Why I started blogging
I felt that I had something to say that was missing from the debate. I wanted to be helpful and offer my advice and expertise to the Labour Party but no one was banging down my door. Because I am a little bit gobby, I decided to create my own space and hope something came of doing so.
The following is a guestpost by Left Foot Forward Editor James Bloodworth as follow up to the Young Fabian writing workshop in February
My top 10 tips for writing and pitching:
1) Find out the name of the person you want to pitch to. Not ‘Dear Editor’ or ‘To Whom it May Concern’. Emails which begin like that will (and should be) deleted.Read more