Solidarity

Solidarity

So English votes for English people isn’t going away. Over the weekend and while considering this when it first came up, and considering the Unionist’s offer to Scotland, I decided to look at what powers have been devolved. Having looked at them I really can’t see which of these powers it makes administrative sense to devolve further, although the Scots clearly have an appetite to take greater control of their tax and fiscal policy. The devolved Scottish government have shown how devolution can be used to deliver public services, or at least have them accountable to the political consensus.  …

Congratulations Scotland

Congratulations Scotland

The British Parliament must keep the promises its leadership made in the last week of the Scottish referendum on independence. However, it would seem, that no matter which way you voted, it’ll cause problems for the Tories. Some are now saying they want to guarantee English votes for English laws; let’s see how far that goes. Some say they want to solve the West Lothian question which they allege becomes more acute if Holyrood gets more devolved powers. Some talk of an English parliament which is a crude attempt to entrench their majority, and this is the party that sank House Lords reform. Some may also seek to hold devo-max hostage to some sort of ‘English’ revolution. …

DE HQ Reunion Barge Trip

The Reunion barge trip is over, we travelled on the Stourport Ring, to and from Tardebigge, via Worcester, Stourport, Wolverhampton and Birmingham.

I have started to upload and convert the images and videos. I used a Nokia phone, and a Sony camera and Handycam so there’ll be some mucking about to make a video/slide show for youtube, laptops and the ipodtouch. The rest of the pictures are on flickr in a set called Barge Trip 2011. …

Are the English giving up with foreign languages?

Earlier this week, the Guardian reported that Cambridge University had finally dropped the requirement that undergraduate students have a language GCSE (16+). I remarked that I thought it a shame, and that the English education system should teach foreign languages, but it was pointed out to me that the national curriculum no longer mandates a language at GCSE and so Cambridge’s previous policy would in future conflict with their and the government’s goal of opening Oxbridge up to more state sector applicants …