UK Politics

UK Politics

A very British sporting success

Britain tends to be even worse at the Winter Olympics than in most other major sports championships. We don’t have much snow, we don’t have many ice rinks, and hence we don’t get many medals. Women’s curling is normally about as fun as it is supposed to get. But today […]

UK Politics

Brilliant! UK will get a smoking ban

Having spent time in Sweden that has such a ban already, and having recently been repulsed by too much smoking in public in Austria, it’s with great joy that I heard the news this evening that the UK will get a full smoking ban in pubs and restaurants. Further, MPs […]

Libya Map
UK Politics

Ethical foreign policy, only all wrong

The row over the Muhammad cartoons in Jyllands Posten shows no sign of going away, and Libya has today announced it is closing its embassy in Denmark and will aim to cut economic ties with Denmark as the Danish Government has refused to criticise the newspaper – see the BBC […]

Whale Fin Small
UK Politics

Whale solidarity

Sometimes a certain story just manages to capture the public imagination. This weekend, London has been lucky enough to benefit from such a story – the Thames Whale. See the coverage from The Observer here, The Sun here, and then it even reached Dagens Nyheter and Spiegel. Saturday was a […]

Credit Card Debt
UK Politics

Brits with an American-style debt problem

The Brits have apparently reached the point where their credit card debt is starting to decline, but according to this interesting article in USA Today, we still have an average of $5188 of credit card debt per person – about ??3000! Remarkable that is the average figure! Further, one in […]

Cigarette butts
UK Politics

Excellent news: all of the UK might get a smoking ban

After months of nasty wrangling, it looks like the UK will finally get a full ban on smoking in all public places. The government has decided that MPs will be give a free vote on any proposals that go further than the previous botched compromise proposals that had advocated allowing […]

George Galloway ducking
UK Politics

The George Galloway, erm, phenomenon?

He managed to beat Oona King in the East London constituency of Bethnal Green and Bow in the 2005 election, standing for his ‘Respect’ party. There were plenty of strange stories of what his activists managed to get up to. But then he managed to win a massive libel case […]

Police Car
UK Politics

British obsessions: police sirens

Barely a day goes past in London without hearing one: the wailing sound of a police siren. You hear the sirens so often that it becomes a bit like Peter crying ‘wolf’ – it is such a normal sound that people just tend to ignore it. This also applies to […]

UK Politics

UK voters are like grumpy teenagers

Downing Street policy analysts reckon that the UK electorate is presently behaving like a grumpy teenager: wanting responsibility, but not ready to handle it. They tend to view any attempts by the state to cajole or force them to do things as unwelcome authority, with the newspapers further fostering the […]

Elton John
UK Politics

Britain being liberal: civil partnerships

All I seem to ever feel in the UK is that there are crackdowns on this and that in the name of security. So it is with some pride that I can today write an excellent and positive story about the UK: from today civil partnerships are legal in the […]

UK Politics

Excellent ruling against the fundamentalists

A federal judge in Pennsylvania has ruled that it is unconstitutional to teach so called Intelligent Design in schools – read the articles from the Seattle Post and BBC. This is quite a landmark ruling, as Kansas and other states have pioneered the teaching of religious ideas about evolution and […]