Is Ideology Back in British Politics?

The central message from Labour’s conference in Brighton is that “ideology is back” in British politics.

Emphasising differences on the economy, the financial crisis and public spending, Labour has sought to depict an ideological gulf between themselves and their Tory opponents. Labour is the party of public service – the Tories of markets. Continue reading “Is Ideology Back in British Politics?”

The End is Nye: Religion and Soft Power

Professor Joseph S. Nye (Harvard) spoke this morning at the Maxwell School (Syracuse), where I am currently a guest. Nye is famous for coining the phrases ‘soft power’ and ‘smart power’ – both of which have slipped into the political lexicon. Continue reading “The End is Nye: Religion and Soft Power”

Rage in the USA

I am in the USA for two weeks, and am amazed by the vitriol of the political debate. We get only mild echoes in the UK of just how polarised American politics has become and how much rage appears to be about. CNN is even running a series next week entitled “Mad as Hell” about this popular resentment. Continue reading “Rage in the USA”

Cuts – still a phoney war with more heat than light

At last Gordon Brown has uttered the “c” word – cuts. Although everyone knows that some level of cutback in public spending is going to be necessary, all attention has focused on the “will he, won’t he” question of whether the Prime Minister would use the ‘cuts’ word. Continue reading “Cuts – still a phoney war with more heat than light”