The commentators 23-09-15
The accusation of impropriety in giving Ashcroft a peerage after his £8m donation to the Conservative party is a different matter. At the time Cameron vigorously denied any knowledge that Ashcroft was non-domiciled. Since everyone knew that Ashcroft’s home and fortune were based in Belize, which is not part of Hampshire, this does not ring true. A simple question would have elicited the truth. It was generally accepted that non-doms should not be made peers.
Cameron’s use of the House of Lords to reward aides, cronies and donors might leave even Tony Blair astonished at his own moderation. But in truth it is British politics itself that is on trial, yet again. It cannot be right in a modern democracy for seats in its parliament to be such blatant rewards for donations. Such chicanery degrades the entire constitution.
- Simon Jenkins, The Guardian
Whatever his views, Corbyn has never wielded the levers of power in government, and has never done more than put forward ideas. Yet if we look to the icon of conservative politics and "keeping Britain safe", we have someone with a well-documented history of being a terrorist sympathiser. During her time as Prime Minister, Margaret Thatcher openly called a terrorist a "true friend", invited a terrorist into her home for tea, and personally lobbied against a terrorist's prosecution for war crimes. Thatcher's support for Chile's former torturer-in-chief General Pinochet is no secret; it was something she was proud of - Simon Gardner, The Independent
Whatever its content, next week’s speech will be the definitive guide to Mr Corbyn, just as Tony Blair’s offering told voters all they needed to know about him. Though it is still lauded as a masterpiece, his 1995 oration also contained the seeds of the forces that would destroy him. The seigneurial pitch and quasi-religious fervour foretold the ultimate downfall of a leader warped by power. Mr Corbyn’s disloyal disciples hope that whatever nemesis awaits him will not be long deferred. They should beware. Labour is facing a phoenix moment, just as it did two decades ago. If Mr Corbyn is instead dismissed as a dead duck, those who speeded his demise will perish with him.
- Mary Riddell, Daily Telegraph
Barely a week into his leadership and already Jeremy Corbyn’s Labour shadow team is in open rebellion against most of his key policies but far more extraordinarily an unnamed general says the Armed Forces will mutiny if Corbyn ever wins power then takes Britain out of Nato and scraps Trident. The rank and file have never threatened revolution in recent history let alone the top brass. Imagine a coup d’état in Britain – the last place on earth where you would even dream of such a thing. But could it be justified? Corbyn claims he has a huge mandate for change but that’s laughable.
- Peter Hill, Daily Express
Corbyn needs to get to grips with the mainstream media. Shunning Andrew Marr and the Sun is not a strategy that will lead to electoral success.
But the Press, too, must rethink. If people are offended by Corbyn's singalong choices or dress sense, it is fair that they are reported. If his oratory leaves something to be desired, it is fair that that, too, is commented upon. But let's get this into perspective. Those are side issues; the first job of the Press is to report the news, so when a new leader makes his first important setpiece speech, it would be good if newspapers told us what he said rather than what they thought
- Editor's blog: All singing from the wrong hymn sheet
Comment Awards, 2015
Thursday 17 September, 2015 The Financial Times and The Times again lead the way in this year's ei Comment Awards, with eleven nominations apiece in the shortlists announced today.
Sathnam Sanghera is responsible for four of those Times nominations - featuring in the media commentator, diversity, technology and individual comment piece categories.
Freelance Yomi Adegoke who founded Birthday Magazine for black teenage girls, is among four writers shortlisted in two categories - in her case young commentariat and media commentator.
George Monbiot of the Guardian completes the media line-up and is also nominated as science commentator and Gillian Tett of the FT is listed in both business and economics.
Her colleague Janan Ganesh is shortlisted for political commentator and the big prize - commentariat of the year, where he is up against the two most recent winners David Aaronovitch (also nominated for comment piece of the year) and Caitlin Moran.
SubScribe is honoured and surprised to find a place on the individual blogger shortlist, and fully expects to come third behind Barrister Blogger Matthew Scott and Stuart Forster of Go-eat-Do.
You can see all the shortlists here.
Comment archive, 2015
Virginia TV shootings
Boris Johnson, Greece
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