Mayor of London

The bus test

The PM and the Mayor, political futures, ,jobs and more

Transport of delight?Transport of delight?

It's not a good time for UK plc. Take the threat to UK prestige by the 'adjustment' of the sovereign debt rating. Actually it's a downgrade, adjustment sounds rather bland and it is serious. Also typical of our media you have to dig deep to see that the UK is not alone; perhaps they would prefer it that way? The full list is -

- Austria: outlook on Aaa rating changed to negative
- France: outlook on Aaa rating changed to negative
- Italy: downgraded to A3 from A2, negative outlook
- Malta: downgraded to A3 from A2, negative outlook
- Portugal: downgraded to Ba3 from Ba2, negative outlook
- Slovakia: downgraded to A2 from A1, negative outlook
- Slovenia: downgraded to A2 from A1, negative outlook
- Spain: downgraded to A3 from A1, negative outlook
- United Kingdom: outlook on Aaa rating changed to negative

For many people the difference between the grades is still hard to fathom but the 'shame' of it all is tempered by the fact the UK is not alone. For example why does Ireland not appear on this list, and what happens next? The latter is easier to answer in that Cameron & Co will attempt to spin any bit of good news as hard as they can, nudge us towards the sunny uplands. The nuclear pact with France is typical. But for all the jobs Cameron claims will be created there's the nagging doubt that more military alignment with France is not such a good idea, see HERE .

So you want to be PM?

Ed Miliband and Ken Livingstone would like you to vote for them

Red Ed and Brown friendRed Ed and Brown friend
We wrote about one aspect of the Labour leadership battle here, suggesting it was about to get interesting. About time too! Several Labour people, David Blunkett for example, have admitted that it was a dull thing. It was wrong to imagine that anyone other than the political anoraks of the left would welcome such a long drawn out stunt. No doubt there will be a lot of thought as to what the result might have been had a more compact time frame been in place. In particular, did this mad marathon help the trade unions dominate the whole thing? It's about to become interesting as Ed Miliband has won the leadership battle and has done so with help from the trade unions. This contest and its outcome must be seen alongside the other winner, Ken Livingstone, now the Labour party's official candidate for the Mayor of London elections. These will be held in 2012. So the result, like the campaign, will watched by those looking for indicators as to how the general election, scheduled for 2015, might turn out.

Waking up to crime

24/7 - if you can afford it

Thorough borough map.Thorough borough map.
Well how amazing, an article in the Evening Standard, 29th April 2008, explains how a 24 hour approach to policing in one London Borough, Hammersmith and Fulham, has brought forth positive results. It seems that 31 extra officers have had a valuable impact on crime levels. The article carries the following quote from Greg Smith, Hammersmith and Fulham's cabinet member for crime and anti-social behaviour,

Golden good-bye?

Easing the pain of loss

Big tent Big tent

It is not only mathematicians who look for patterns in events to find solutions to problems, we can all do it. Those of you who can bear to think back on the Northern Rock saga (it hurts) will recall that our Chancellor Alistair Dalek, the safe pair of eyebrows, had a cunning plan. He was to sell bonds to raise money to sort it out. But just in case of the unlikely event of this not working out, Ron Sandler was to head up the nationalised rump of this once glorious company. And look what happened. Well old clever-stick Alistair is at it again.

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