Cheap Talk

We’re not all economists at the Continental Telegraph, but some of us are. We’re one. Of course, we don’t have the stature of Tim. But we’re having a go at commenting on recent developments we spotted in the news. This headline from the Financial Times amuses:

McDonnell rejects capital controls under Labour

For those of you who don’t come from the august shores, you have to understand that John McConnell is our (former, on his own admission, like a reformed alcoholic) Marxist shadow chancellor and is promoting alternative economic policies under Labour, the major opposition party that is panting for an election and getting to form the next government.…

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Labour’s Tom Watson: Journalism Subsidies Are The Will Of The State?

Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn is addressing the Edinburgh Television Festival today in regards to reforming British media. Tom Watson, his deputy was on BBC Radio 4’s Today programme to discussing the plans, which centre around ‘digital licence fees’. The proposal would mean charging internet companies such as Google, Facebook and Netflix to subsidise the BBC Licence Fee.

The idea, if implemented would effectively be erecting up a huge sign over Britain addressing to companies like Google “we don’t want your jobs or your money”.

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At last, a brave Labour MP

Siobhain McDonagh, Labour MP for Mitcham and Morden, is running a brave campaign to build homes on the non-green parts of the often poorly-named Green Belt.  At a Westminster meeting in Tuesday, she risked the ire of the Labour whips by sneaking out of one of the votes on the Lords;’ amendments to the Brexit Bill to make the case for more homes.

She urged her audience not to prioritize public housing, social housing, shared housing, private housing, or any other type of housing.

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Taxation and the Student Vote

One of the oft-discussed questions of politics is the degree to which people who do not pay tax themselves should be able to vote for others to pay tax.  Part of the deal between monarch and aristocracy was that Parliament would vote taxes on themselves.  The monarch could not impose taxes without the consent of Parliament.  This worked to some degree when taxation was related to property, but the extension of the franchise to those without property, plus the degree to which wealth derives from income rather than property has changed the equation.

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The Anti-Semitic Elephant

Several explanations have been offered to account for the anti-Semitism that plagues sections of the Labour Party.  More than one of them might be valid.  For example, there is within the Labour Party an element characterized by a visceral rejection of all things Western and capitalist.  Since Israel is both of these to some extent, they reject what it stands for, and equate pro-Jewish as pro-Israel.

Similarly, support for the aims of the Palestinian peoples is seen as supporting the underdog against the might of an oppressive capitalist predator bent on conquest and oppression.

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Hydra of Labour: Is Russia the beginning of the end for Corbyn?

So there we have it, we finally know what it’ll take for Labour back-benchers to move on Corbyn. They’ve drawn a line in the sand and now they’ll brace for the inevitable consequences of breaking hive rules. Corbyn’s historic affiliations with the IRA didn’t spark sufficient outrage amongst modern born-in-the-90’s Labour supporters, but an attack here and now, on British soil from an unscrupulous superpower has united not just the government, but the British public.

Corbyn and select loyalists on his front bench stand alone in defending Putin, and maybe, just maybe; this time he’s gone too far.…

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