Opinion

  • Public Finance
    9 Jan 09
    PETER RIDDELL | Is big government on the way back? Next to the length and depth of the recession, the central question in British politics this year will be about the role of the state.
  • Public Finance
    19 Dec 08
    MIKE THATCHER | Christmas cheer is in very short supply at the moment. Unemployment is up, inflation is morphing into deflation and the pound is heading inexorably towards parity with the euro.
  • Public Finance
    19 Dec 08
    COLIN TALBOT | I was in Croatia a couple of weeks ago advising their government on how (not) to do public management reform and discovered that they had cancelled Christmas!
  • Public Finance
    12 Dec 08
    MIKE THATCHER | There might be clear blue water between the Conservatives and Labour on the economy, but on welfare reform there appears to be a strong consensus.
  • Public Finance
    12 Dec 08
    PHILIP JOHNSTON | The parliamentary Christmas recess, which starts next week, cannot come quickly enough for Michael Martin, the embattled Commons speaker.
  • Public Finance
    5 Dec 08
    MIKE THATCHER | Who’d be a social worker? Damned if you do intervene, damned if you don’t – and now, thrice damned for the systemic dereliction of duty that culminated in the horrific death of Baby...
  • Public Finance
    5 Dec 08
    MELISSA BENN | This week’s announcements of stringent welfare measures have just a whiff of Groundhog Day about them. Those ministers with longer political memories, including the prime minister...
  • Public Finance
    28 Nov 08
    MIKE THATCHER | So, it’s back to politics as normal. The Tories have even revived their ‘tax bombshell’ poster campaign – credited with helping them to win the 1992 election – following Labour’s...
  • Public Finance
    28 Nov 08
    PETER HETHERINGTON | Invoking yet again the late environment secretary Anthony Crosland’s warning to the nation in 1975, one of the larger management consultancies specialising in local government...
  • Public Finance
    21 Nov 08
    MIKE THATCHER | So this is it. The die is cast. The battle lines have been drawn. By ripping up his pledge to match Labour’s spending plans, David Cameron has apparently opened up clear political...
  • Public Finance
    21 Nov 08
    PETER WILBY | What George Osborne, the shadow chancellor, is really saying is: ‘It’s not fair.’ Look at it from his point of view.
  • Public Finance
    14 Nov 08
    MIKE THATCHER | We’re all tax cutters now. All the main political parties are united in their support for a tax reduction to help the country deal with what is likely to be a very deep recession.
  • Public Finance
    14 Nov 08
    DAVID LIPSEY | Barack Obama’s victory in the US presidential election was a personal triumph, but it was also a triumph for the centre-Left.
  • Public Finance
    7 Nov 08
    MIKE THATCHER | It was a no-win situation for the health secretary. On the controversial issue of top-up fees, Alan Johnson knew he would be upbraided by the unions if he said ‘yes’ and pilloried...
  • Public Finance
    7 Nov 08
    PETER RIDDELL | Lower interest rates, definitely. Even the cautious members of the Bank of England’s Monetary Policy Committee accept that.
  • Public Finance
    31 Oct 08
    MIKE THATCHER | Those who feared that the government was about to embark on a reckless spending spree may now sleep safer in their beds.
  • Public Finance
    31 Oct 08
    HELEN DISNEY | This US presidential election has attracted a higher profile in the European media than ever before.
  • Public Finance
    24 Oct 08
    MIKE THATCHER | In the long run, we are all dead, Keynes famously remarked. As a justification for pump-priming an economy out of recession, it still has considerable appeal.
  • Public Finance
    24 Oct 08
    TONY TRAVERS | Many public service finance officers will have thought about ‘risk’ a great deal recently. In the past, the management of local authority, housing association or university reserves...
  • Public Finance
    17 Oct 08
    VICTORIA MACDONALD | For weeks now there has been nothing but unremitting gloom. The collapse of the markets, the failure of Fannie Mae, Lehman Brothers, Icesave, etc and inflation soaring to its...
  • Public Finance
    16 Oct 08
    MIKE THATCHER | It seems that councils, police and fire authorities, charities and universities will be disappointed in their calls for the government to guarantee deposits totalling more than £1bn...
  • Public Finance
    10 Oct 08
    MIKE THATCHER | The cherished fiscal rules lie in tatters as the government embarks on a borrowing bonanza aimed at stabilising the turmoil in the UK’s banking sector.
  • Public Finance
    10 Oct 08
    MELISSA BENN | It could be the biggest political news story of the autumn: the return of the Prince of Darkness, or the Prince of Sleaze as one newspaper unkindly called him.
  • Public Finance
    3 Oct 08
    MIKE THATCHER | Responsibility was the name of game at the Conservative party conference in Birmingham.
  • Public Finance
    3 Oct 08
    NICK COMFORT | Governments get tired, and so do ministers. That is why prime ministers are tempted every so often — as Gordon Brown has so publicly been — not just to reshuffle the pack but to...

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