The Great Debate UK
– Mark Kobayashi-Hillary is the author of several books, including ‘Who Moved my Job?’ and ‘Global Services: Moving to a Level Playing Field’. The opinions expressed are his own –
After thirteen years, it’s all over. The New Labour project is dead. Or is it? Tony Blair brought British politics to the centre-ground and ensured that a single party could support free-market economic policies as well as social justice.
And that’s what most people want today, a government that can help the citizen without hindering the economy through the dogma of dated ideology. The old notion of socialists waging war on small-government-right-wingers feels somehow quaint. Clearly Tony Blair knew that David Cameron would be his successor in the New Labour project, but nobody told Gordon Brown.
Now the back room deals have been done between the Conservatives and Liberal Democrats, and the cabinet post announcements are being released from Downing Street, the real work has to begin. I don’t just mean the public sector cuts. Any new government would have to cope with the deficit, though many in Labour are probably grateful that it’s the Tories who are going to be seen slashing public services.
– Laurence Copeland is a professor of finance at Cardiff University Business School and a co-author of “Verdict on the Crash” published by the Institute of Economic Affairs. The opinions expressed are his own. -
Could there have been a worse outcome to Britain’s General Election?
The result was disappointing for all concerned. The three main parties all did worse than expected, as did the nationalists. On the lunatic fringe, only the Greens have reason to rejoice – none of the others were anywhere near winning a seat.
– James Saft is a Reuters columnist. The opinions expressed are his own –
To look at sterling and gilts, you would hardly know that Britain is sailing into a general election which will likely deliver a weaker government with a diminished ability, if not will, to grapple with high debts, an uncertain role in the global economy and an aging population.
– Hugo Dixon is a Reuters Breakingviews columnist. The opinions expressed are his own –
Breaking up the banks is no silver bullet. Politicians on both sides of the Atlantic — including two of the party leaders fighting the UK election — want to separate so-called casino investment banks from utility lenders. But such simple rules would create arbitrage opportunities and rigidities without curbing excess risk-taking.
from Matt Falloon:
If a car slams into a bus stop just yards away as you launch a last-ditch election offensive, you might be forgiven for thinking that the gods are
not on your side.
But even after the nightmare week British Prime Minister Gordon Brown has had, such portents of doom have little visible effect on the self-proclaimed underdog in this, one of Britain's most closely fought parliamentary elections for 25 years.
- Mark Kobayashi-Hillary is the author of several books, including ‘Who Moved my Job?’ and ‘Global Services: Moving to a Level Playing Field’. He is participating in the Reuters Election 2010 politics live blog during the leaders’ debates and on election night. The opinions expressed are his own. -
A pensioner, Gillian Duffy, complained to Gordon Brown about the number of immigrants coming into the UK – amongst other things. It’s a familiar complaint the prime minister will have heard many times before, but this time he made a private comment about her in his car just after the event – calling her a ‘bigoted woman’ – and Sky News had left their radio microphone on his suit … so the private comments were recorded and replayed to the world.
– Neil Collins is a Reuters Breakingviews columnist. The opinions expressed are his own –
Since Labour came to power in 1997, it has pursued a policy of expanding the numbers employed by the government or its agencies. The result is that today 6.1 million people are on the state payroll, an increase of about 900,000 in 13 years.
from UK News:
Election day is fast approaching and with the poll gap narrowing between the Conservatives and Labour, there is a very real probability that the UK will end up with a hung parliament. For the first time since 1974, the UK may be left without clear political leadership.
- What will this really mean for British business?
- How will the markets and sterling react?
- Will a hung parliament scare off international investors?
- Could the economy survive a second general election within a year?
– Peter Thal Larsen is a Reuters Breakingviews columnist. The opinions expressed are his own –
Britain’s bankers were already braced for an uncomfortable election. But the U.S. fraud allegations against Goldman Sachs, combined with the rise of the Liberal Democrats, have given bank-bashing renewed impetus. The popularity of the attacks means they could resonate well beyond the current campaign.
– The author is a Reuters Breakingviews columnist. The opinions expressed are his own –
Fears of a hung parliament following the UK’s general election may be overstated. With Nick Clegg, leader of the Liberal Democrats, Britain’s third largest party, performing well in the first prime ministerial debate, sterling has received a mild knock. Investors do not like the uncertainty that goes with a hung parliament. While many European countries are used to coalition government, the UK is traditionally a two-party system – with government swinging between Labour and the Conservatives.