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Don’t buy a house! Just say no.

   Negative equity.  It’s not something we have been hearing much about since 2008, when UK property prices started falling.  Prompt action by the Bank of England and the government halted the crash in real estate prices.  But the underlying problem is as serious now as before:  British house prices are just too high. First … Continue reading

Trident: Fox says four, no less no more. Someone tell the LibDems.

                  One of the very few achievements of the Liberal Democrats in the UK coalition has been the decision to review the replacement of Trident.  Nick Clegg said during the election campaign that he was opposed to renewing the weapons system.  But someone seems to have forgotten to tell … Continue reading

Tony Blair, Col Gaddafi and Osama bin Laden.

 Now we know.  That handshake in the desert wasn’t just about oil and al Megrahi.  Tony Blair and Col Gaddafi, shoulder to shoulder in the war against Osama bin Laden.   Of course we gave him arms – he was one of the good guys.   How fitting that now, in his desperation to cling on … Continue reading

Selling democracy in the desert – a Marshall Plan of the mind.

  If as seems increasingly likely,  the day of the dictator is drawing to a close in North Africa and the Middle EAst, what should we be doing to hasten the sunset?  No fly zone in Libya?  Perhaps, if Gadaffi continues to use aircraft to kill his own people.  Suspend exports of arms?  Absolutely: it is … Continue reading

And so farewell Wendy Alexander, resignation queen of Holyrood.

Wendy Alexander has walked out again, resigning her Paisley seat and citing the oldest and lamest excuse in politics,  “to spend time with her family”.  She leaves the Scottish Labour leader, Iain Gray, and fellow career women in the lurch.   Though somehow, I don’t think this is the last we have heard of Wendy. … Continue reading

Libya, Egypt, Bahrain – they just want to be like us.

  It is hard not to be inspired by the example of the young people of North Africa and the Middle East who have launched and sustained the most dignified, principled and peaceful democracy movement since the fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989.    In Lybia, Bahrain, Morocco, Yemen, Algeira they have taken to … Continue reading

SNP are back. Bad day for monkeys.

It was a bad day for monkeys. It has long been said that, in large parts of Scotland, you if you put a red rosette on a monkey it would still win in most Labour constituencies, especially when there is a Conservative government in Westminster. The old rule certainly appeared to be holding following the … Continue reading

Hasta la vista Jeremy. The end of the car is nigh.

  A hundred pounds to fill a tank. At first I couldn’t believe it – staring at the pump in disbelief.  Ok,  my VW campervan has a slightly larger tank than most cars.  And yes, I was up north where fuel prices are higher.   But still – a ton just to fill up!  How did … Continue reading

Let’s close Glasgow University. Who needs degrees anyway?

    It’s called the “bleeding stumps” strategy.  How managers of publicly-funded organisations resist cuts in their budgets.  They propose cuts in the most painful and visible services in the hope that the media firestorm forces the government to back down.  Aberdeen City Council did it by saying it was considering closing all the city’s parks … Continue reading

Because of Iraq we have no role in Egyptian revolution.

  I have been bad tempered all day.  It’s because I had the misfortune to listen to Tony Blair on Egypt – sticking very much to the line that Mubarak is our bastard, who has delivered “stability” to the Middle East and we should be wary of any attempts to remove him.  So much, so predictable. … Continue reading

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