Monthly Archives: March 2013

A duty of candour

Ah, the NHS. Hit them when they’re down. It’s not enough that this eternal, infernal winter is driving sickness to horrible new levels. Now nurses will have to train in basic care (I thought they already knew all that) and it looks like there will be a new legal duty of candour imposed on NHS […]

Malala and the Three Million Dollar Slap

There will no doubt be people who will feel that Malala (the subject of one of my earliest posts) has somehow tainted herself by signing a $3m book deal. There will be people (like this guy, probably) who see it as yet another celebrity muscling in on writers. They couldn’t be more wrong. She’s a […]

Professor Nutbrown’s Magic Numbers

Professor Cathy Nutbrown, childcare guru and by turns adviser to and critic of the Government, has a problem. You and I know what that problem is. Everybody knows what that problem is. Well-meaning friends and colleagues must have told her, over the years, must have dropped it casually into conversation and hoped it took hold. […]

The Economics of Banking

Back when I used to work in a bank, there were a whole bunch of different teams putting together complicated structured debt products, and dozens of people working in each of those teams, but they all had one thing in common: they were good at what they did. Some had come in straight from university […]

“Tax Cuts for Millionaires”

I posted recently about overuse of the phrase “hard-working” by politicians of all hues, and noted that with luck this would go the way of the little-mourned “ideologically-driven”, which enjoyed a brief spell at the tip of every left-wing politician’s tongue before someone realised it just wasn’t catching on. They’ve gone for something new, now, […]

Why I quite like politicians

No, you didn’t misread that. Yes, I am the same person that is frequently rather ruder than perhaps I should be about our elected representatives. Yes, Messrs Balls and Milliband (E) and Osborne and Cable have aroused my ire all too frequently. But the truth is, I quite like them. Even now, just a couple […]

Hard-working? Hard-working my a*se

I was struck this week by the comments of one of the protestors against the HS2 rail project. In case you’re not following this story, a number of challenges were made to the proposed high speed link we’ll all be paying for until Judgement Day. The government won most of them, lost one, and both […]

The Great Bank Robbery

I always thought that when you got into trouble, as a country, the deal was something like this: tighten your belt, screw your economy for the next few years, and the international community will see you good, rearrange your terms, stop you from defaulting, and maybe start lending to you on something like acceptable terms […]

The Day of the Minimum Price Triffids

The sun is shining, the sky is blue, and today Court sits outside. The King lounges, only half-awake, on a magnificent golden throne. Courtiers and advisers gaze absently at one another, at their nails, at the array of house-plants scattered around the field at five minutes’ notice after the King decided this morning that the […]

Islands in the Eye of the Storm

It’s all become rather silly, hasn’t it? Argentina rattles sabre; Islanders react with predictable fury; Britain sits impassive, her own position determined only by the will of the Islanders. Positions have become so entrenched it seems there’s no hope at all of getting any kind of agreement. But I’m not so sure. And whilst it’s […]