Soundings

Articles from No. 51, May

A Popular Environmentalism: Making the Connections between Nature, Place and People
There is a widely accepted maxim that in times of economic hardship people stop caring about the environment - it's the economy, stupid. The evidence offered to support this is that people relegate the environment to a lower place on their list of...
Don't Wait until Tomorrow
Autonomy, Solidarity, Possibility: The Colin Ward Reader, edited by Chris Wilbert & Damian F. White, AK Press, 2011, [pounds sterling]18 Tomorrow never comes. This might be the guiding principle which informed the life and work of the British...
Editorial
The issue opens with a discussion between Douglas Alexander and Gerry Hassan, in which they tease out some of the more interesting questions that lie behind what Gerry calls the loud voices and self importance of each camp in the battle between unionism...
Financing Growth: Private Portfolios and Public Investment: What Is the Best Form of Public Investment in Industry?
In a few short months in late 2008, as UK private sector output dropped by a post-war record, the public sector's resilience could be seen as a stark contrast to the catastrophic instability of the private sector. The public sector was able to make...
Roll over Mick Jagger: A Roundtable Discussion
David Floyd Why generational politics? Clare There's always been tensions between generations and their different views on society. They've got different deals from society as policy has changed. But recently I think there has been a crunch point...
Scotland, Nationalism and the Left: Can There Be a Politics That Embraces Both Equality and Identity?
Douglas to Gerry Before we get to where we're going, I think it makes sense to be clear where we come from ... My mother worked as a doctor in the NHS. My father was a Minister in the Church of Scotland. Both of them were inspired by their Christian...
The Case for a National Investment Bank: Public Sector Borrowing for Investment Can Play a Major Role in Securing Private Growth
Since the crash of 2008, bank lending has not merely proceeded at a slower pace; outstanding loans have fallen, and continue to do so. In fiscal year 2010-11, bank advances to the UK private sector were some [pounds sterling]2008 billion. In 2011-12...
The Great Transformation in the Global Labour Market: The Global Auction for Jobs Means That Many University Educated Workers Are Finding Themselves in a Competition for Cut-Priced Brainpower
The continuing fallout from the great recession and the western debt crisis has led to much debate about public sector cuts, the 'squeezed middle', executive pay and the behaviour of 'vulture' capitalists. Much of the debate is predicated on the assumption...
The Larger Socialism
Paul Salveson, (2012) Socialism with a Northern Accent: Radical Traditions for Modern Times, Lawrence & Wishart 2012 The Labour Party's response to the 2010 general election defeat contrasts markedly with what happened after the fall of the...
The Tories' Ten Commandments: How the Tory Party Keeps Its Grip on Power
Political scientists are supposed to retain some semblance of objectivity. But it's hard not to admire the way the Conservative Party manages to hold on to power. The Tories, generally speaking, aren't that good at opposition. The fact that they managed...
Venezuela: Another Good Example under Threat: The Bolivarian Revolution Has Massively Improved the Lives of Ordinary Venezuelans
In Sandinista revolution were undertaken in order to destroy the threat of a good example. (1) She is right. Nicaragua is a tiny, extremely poor country, with no oil and no major natural resources, and yet it attracted the empire's wrath for having...
Waking the Green Giant: How Can We Nurture a Stronger Sense of Connection to Our Environment and Local Spaces?
The focus groups will tell you that there's no votes in green issues, stated Ed Miliband in his leadership acceptance speech, though his point was to argue that true leadership means doing what is right, rather than merely what is popular. But are...
Why Young People Can't Get the Jobs They Want and What Can Be Done about It: Joblessness among Young People Stems from Problems in the Economy Rather Than the Education System
Youth unemployment remains alarmingly high, and one of the biggest issues confronting government. Based on the April 2012 Office for National Statistics figures which cover the period December 2011 to Feb 2012, youth joblessness is running at well...
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