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The Sewage Rebellion

A decade ago, around 80% of Britain’s bathing waters were rated excellent; over the last 10 years, that has fallen by 20% to around 60%. And of course, the downside is not limited to reduced access to bathing: the environmental consequences of this pollution are severe. The Lords agreed an amendment to the Environment Bill which […]

Time to Change Track

The UK is a rich country with a proud democratic tradition. We have produced some of the world’s greatest scientists and a number of world-leading companies. We are strong in the Arts and our sporting heroes are world-class. Many of us have been (generally) proud of our past and optimistic about our future. And yet […]

Amending the Health and Care Bill

  This article is a distillation of the paper produced by the 99% Organisation NHS Project team, which included former NHS consultants, management consultants, social workers and patients with extensive experience of the NHS. The full paper is available here: https://99-percent.org/wp-content/uploads/2021/09/NHS-Fact-pack-v1.6.pdf. There is a petition to sign here: https://petition.parliament.uk/petitions/592557   Executive Summary Without significant amendment, […]

Malice in Plunderland – a New Kind of Government?

In British politics, the Left is traditionally associated with ‘big state’ policies and Right with ‘small state’ policies. Recently, several commentators have suggested that Prime Minister Johnson is pioneering a new kind of ‘big state, one nation Conservatism’ – and in effect stealing Labour’s clothes. For example, the FT, under the headline Johnson’s £12bn tax […]

How Does Our Government Stack-Up?

Comparing government performance across countries is notoriously difficult: they all have different starting points, and under normal circumstances, they are all tackling different challenges. The year 2020 is an exception because of COVID. Every government faced the same challenge, and they all had essentially the same starting point. So, in 2020, every government had the […]

99% on ‘The Jist’: Podcast

Article by Heather Smith Here is Mark being interviewed by The Jist’s founder, Josh Hamilton,  for his The Jist Podcast of political chatter. Click here to watch the interview or here to listen to the podcast.   Here’s a summary of the interview, which had some really interesting observations from Josh, particularly from his perspective […]

The View from Outer Space

    We have all had the experience of being so deeply immersed in something that we could not see the wood for the trees. And there is nothing we are so deeply immersed in as our own lives. So it is worth a little thought experiment: imagine that visitors from a distant galaxy were […]

Who Governs Britain?

There is an obvious and simple answer to the question: the UK has regular general elections; at each election, a party led by a proposed prime minister is elected; the new Prime Minister selects his cabinet; they govern the country on behalf of the electorate. But in reality, it is not clear that this process […]

Mythbuster Video: Tackling The Biggest Lie

  The Johnson government’s propensity to mislead the public has been widely documented, for example in this video by Peter Stefanovic. After the video achieved 25 million views and was mentioned in Parliament by Dawn Butler, the accuracy of Stefanovic’s commentary and the inaccuracy of Johnson’s claims was confirmed by Full Fact. There is no […]

NHS Inc?

At the time of writing (15 July 2021), the Health & Care Bill has just received its second reading in the Commons. The government claims that the Integrated Care System created by Bill will fix the country’s health and care problems and should be welcomed by all sides. The Bill has, however, been strongly criticised […]

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