The commentators 18-03-15
...on UK politics
If big-name brands marketed themselves the way political parties run campaigns. Fast-food chains would denounce each other as pedlars of fatty poison. Car manufacturers would publish dossiers showing how other vehicles were prone to crash. Supermarkets would arrange for economists to sign letters to the FT claiming that shopping elsewhere was a guarantee of personal ruin. There are regulations to stop competing companies fighting too dirty, but there is another unwritten constraint: a shared interest in not trashing the industry as a whole.
- Rafael Behr, The Guardian
Today could be a big moment. If the Chancellor can show that the economy is going in the right direction it may help him. The economy may well determine the election result. But today’s measures will not be the decider.
- Daniel Finkelstein, The Times
With Mr Osborne’s Budget over and Mr Miliband’s response delivered, the Opposition should seize its last chance to prove that it should drive Britain’s economic future. Unless Labour can win the battle of the chancellors, then it cannot hope to win the election.
- Mary Riddell, Daily Telegraph
Voters must decide between a government led by a Labour Party once again seen as well-intentioned but lacklustre, and a Conservative Party whose shortcomings are as familiar as its strengths. Paradoxically, the fact that the voters find the choice so uninspiring has given rise to the most exciting general election I can remember.
- Michael Ashcroft, Independent
We will look back on the coalition years fondly. This political marriage of convenience is coming to an end after five years. The budget today is the last joint endeavour before Tory and Lib Dem aides start packing their bags, handing in their Downing Street passes and heading to their headquarters or battlebuses for the election campaign.
- Alice Thomson, The Times
At the moment everyone is focusing on tax cuts. Everyone expects George Osborne to use a traditional pre-election hand-out to set his party on the road to victory in May. But if he uses that windfall to build himself a political time machine, then where he’s going, he may not need any roads.
- Dan Hodges, Daily Telegraph
Having restored some dignity to the victims, we have yet to learn not to glorify the killer - most particularly by not according him an identity that might secure him a place in folklore. That also means avoiding describing Emwazi as Isis's "star executioner" or saying that he "features" in the group's videos.
For six months we have been providing propaganda for Isis, and sprinkling words such as "evil", "vile", "depraved" around doesn't mitigate that failing.
- Emwazi is not a folk hero, let's stop treating him as if though were
Comment archive, 2015
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