The commentators 21-10-15
...on UK politics
The respected, and independent, Institute for Fiscal Studies argues that 13 million families will lose an average of £260 a year as a result of the freeze in benefit rates, while three million of those families will be another £1,000 worse off from cuts to tax credits. Surely Mr Osborne can’t stick his head in the sand. Almost no one believes his assertion that most people will be better off as a result of the changes he announced in July’s Budget. Does he any longer believe it himself?
- Stephen Glover, Daily Mail
A competent Prime Minister would have seen the tax credits fiasco coming and found a political way to reverse the policy. He didn’t and he hasn’t. A strategic Prime Minister who wants to save the steel industry (and see a way to further claim the centre ground from Labour) would have found a rescue package. He hasn’t
- Matt Forde, The Independent
Just as China’s rigid growth target undermines trust that President Xi Jinping is acting in his nation’s interest, therefore, so does Mr Osborne’s surplus target. In place of the fiscal charter, he should set policy according to government priorities and allow the independent OBR to assess the sustainability of public finances according to measures of its own choosing. The body is far better able to make those judgments without a specific charter now that it is an established and respected institution
- Chris Giles, Financial Times
The Tories do not need to convince the English that they are on their side. While David Cameron’s UK-wide majority is just 12 it is a massive 104 across England only. That might explain why rather than enshrining English votes in law, today’s plan will only involve amending instantly reversible Commons standing orders. Tory devolution to England would be as easy to sweep away as chalk on a blackboard. Labour, in contrast, is not trusted in large parts of England
- Tim Montgomerie, The Times
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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