First thoughts on coronavirus in the UK

To deal with the coronavirus crisis, the Govt. wants more powers and it wants them for a long time. I wonder why because they don’t seem to be making any decisions and they pretty much have the powers they need. They have a page on Gov.UK describing what they think they need, and Big Brother Watch have published their take on it. We should consider their failure to offer security to those in work who may lose their jobs, fall sick or have to stop work to look after children or elderly relatives. This will also highlight the appallingly low levels of statutory sick pay and redundancy payments, not to mention the 2 year employment longevity requirement for redundancy payments. No-one is talking about those living on savings who will be hurt by the reduction in the BoE interest rate to 0.1%, by the collapse in the stock market (the FTSE 250 is down by over 40% in the month), and even their business support programme is based on loans and not grants. Continue reading “First thoughts on coronavirus in the UK”

New Labour’s Regional Policy

Part of the argument about the election results has become whether Corbyn’s Labour should have pitched itself more profoundly against 40 years of Thatcherism. I have my own critiques of the New Labour governments, but I hadn’t seen a failed Regional Policy as one of them. Here are my notes. … Continue reading “New Labour’s Regional Policy”

Analysing the 2019 Election Results

In order to answer the questions I want answered I need the election results in spreadsheet form. I have previously got this from the Electoral Commission; it took ’em 18 days to get it out last time, wonder what the delay is this time. However the Democracy Club claims to have them available via a REST or REST like service. Here are my notes. … Continue reading “Analysing the 2019 Election Results”

DataPraxis and the Results

One of the first commentators on the General Election was a new outfit called DataPraxis, anyway new to me. The report, Tory Landslide, Progressives split is published as a tightly defined .pdf and is behind a use once cookie controlled access scheme. It’s very hard to share, navigate & mine. Here’s what I have done to try and make my access easier. …

I mirrored the .pdf and bookmarked it in diigo. I then used https://www.pdftohtml.net/ to make an html version which can be found here.

This article has a SURL: https://wp.me/pauVx4-1dL

Class Wargames

I have been/am still reading Richard Barbrook’s book, “Class Wargames”. Among its many fascinating themes is his study of the collapse of democratic military forces into dictatorship.He name checks Napoleon, Toussaint Louverture & the Russian Revolution. I wonder why he didn’t start earlier with the English Civil War, it would seem to me to be another failure of a democratic military. To him, Guy Debord’s “Game of War” is critically important, partly because of the way it abstracts large elements of military conflict, but they adopted different rules, using miniatures for both the Haitian and Russian Civil War scenarios. How easy would it be to find or adapt some ECW rules? Here are my notes … Continue reading “Class Wargames”

Criminality and the Referendum

The story of the criminal cheating on the Vote Leave campaign is long and complex, and there seems to be a ground rush effect as the election approaches. The issues are breach of personal privacy laws, over spending, covering up the overspending. It is possible that there have been breaches of the transparency rules, and that some money came from prohibited foreign sources. Here are some links and notes. Continue reading “Criminality and the Referendum”

Consitituencies: Leave or Remain

One of the most important issues in the 2019 general elections will be Brexit; that’ why its been called. Polls are proving inaccurate so the only data we have is the 2016 Referendum which was counted and results released at Local Authority level. I am deeply interested in knowing how consitiuencies votes and I am not alone. Here are my notes. Continue reading “Consitituencies: Leave or Remain”

Multiple Choice Voting systems

So as the rerun of the referendum becomes more likely, some people are considering a multiple choice; the problem is how to weight and count the votes. It’s interests me that instant run off is people’s first port of call, and I have some links that refer to it. To me, the problem is that instant run off fails to weight people’s commitment to their 1st vs. 2nd choice. This problem is what Parliaments are designed to solve; the polity can negotiate 1st, 2nd and 3rd choices and negotiate the importance of each packages features, this may be impossible in an instant run-off election. I have written more … Continue reading “Multiple Choice Voting systems”

On Presidentialism

While writing and thinking about the democratic legitimacy of the Referendum, I discovered the work of Juan J Linz. On, my article, Dictatorship and plebiscites I had been pointed at Problems of Democratic Transition and Consolidation: Southern Europe, South America, and Post-Communist Europe a review by Fukiyama of Linz & Stepan’s revised work on Autocracy, which was also referenced by Qvortrup, Here is a mirror, on this site. The Fukiyama piece is very short and more of a plug than a review. I found the Linz paper, and here are further notes on Presidentialism and Parliaments. Continue reading “On Presidentialism”