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Tag: Society

Macron, Brexit and the bankruptcy of so-called ‘centrism’

Macron, Brexit and the bankruptcy of so-called ‘centrism’

I’ve tried not to give a blow by blow account of the Brexit negotiations. But with riots against Macron in their fourth week in France, our negotiations at an impasse and our government (perhaps) on the brink of collapse, it seems appropriate to draw some of these strands together. Macron Why talk of the riots though? Well, for the simply reason that Macron is the darling of the Establishment, that same coalition of multinational business, highly educated metropolitans, academia, big…

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Five Questions Meme

Five Questions Meme

With thanks to liv for posting the meme and for setting me the questions below. For those not familiar, the way it works is that anyone who would like questions can ask for them; they then get set five questions – potentially about anything at all – that the original poster thinks they would find interesting to answer and others would find interesting to read. So without further ado, the questions I was set: 1. Would you rather be notable…

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Conservative Home: We Must recapture the commanding heights of society from the left

Conservative Home: We Must recapture the commanding heights of society from the left

In my latest article for Conservative Home, I discuss how the right has ceded the core ground of society’s opinion formers and thought leaders to the left, and what we might do to reclaim it. Read the full article below. Iain Mansfield: We must recapture the commanding heights of society from the Left

Postmodernism and the Devil

Postmodernism and the Devil

“Roper: So now you’d give the Devil benefit of law! More: Yes. What would you do? Cut a great road through the law to get after the Devil? Roper: I’d cut down every law in England to do that! More: Oh? And when the last law was down, and the Devil turned round on you — where would you hide, Roper, the laws all being flat? This country’s planted thick with laws from coast to coast — man’s laws, not…

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Some Thoughts on the Culture Wars

Some Thoughts on the Culture Wars

It’s hard to imagine now just how controversial and offensive Monty Python’s Life of Brian was when it first came out. BBC and ITV refused to show it, it was banned by a number of town councils and cinemas were picketed by angry people who felt it shouldn’t have been made. For someone like me, who grew up seeing it as irreverent, slightly rude humour, not particularly different to Fawlty Towers, it can be hard to see it this way….

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A Social Policy Trilemma

A Social Policy Trilemma

There is a trilemma in economics that states that a nation can only have two of the following three things: – Free movement of capital – A fixed monetary exchange rate – An independent monetary policy. All three of these are things that a country would sometimes quite like to have; however, the trilemma states that if a country has two of them, the third must in consequence be given up – it is not possible to maintain all three…

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Happy Birthday, NHS

Happy Birthday, NHS

Happy Birthday, NHS! I’m proud to celebrate the 70th anniversary of one of Britain’s best and most brilliant institutions. The NHS is absolutely fantastic. I’ve personally been fortunate enough in my health that I’ve not needed much from the NHS beyond childhood vaccinations and the mending of a broken finger, but every other member of my immediate family, and many of my friends, owe their lives to it. I don’t normally talk about my family on this blog, but I’ll…

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Gay Cakes and the Concept of a Legitimate Customer

Gay Cakes and the Concept of a Legitimate Customer

For some reason, bakeries have found themselves at the forefront of the culture war between gay rights and freedom of religion activists, with cases in both the UK and the US recently ending up in their respective Supreme Courts. Fortunately, the last person I know who opened a bakery was a senior and highly capable lawyer. These two points may be entirely unconnected. In this post I will be focusing more on the UK case as I am more familiar…

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Conservative Home article: Tranferrable Tax Allowances and Free Child Care

Conservative Home article: Tranferrable Tax Allowances and Free Child Care

My latest article on Conservative Home argues that families should be offered a choice between the 30 hours of free childcare or a transferable tax allowance, to enable a more genuine choice between whether they should both return to work, and to allow more parents who wish to to care for their own children. The full article is here: Iain Mansfield: To bring greater fairness to families, free childcare should be linked to the transferable tax allowance

Against Means-Testing; OR, I Agree with Tony Benn (on this issue)

Against Means-Testing; OR, I Agree with Tony Benn (on this issue)

Means testing(1) is everywhere these days. It’s in maintenance grants and child benefit, job-seeker’s allowance and housing benefit and much more. Sometimes it seems that almost every new policy proposal involves means-testing. So how did it get to this stage, when means-testing should be anathema to both left and right wing? For those on the left, opposition to means testing has its very roots in the Labour party. Attlee’s government swept to power in 1945 after campaigning to abolish what…

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