After over 20 years existence, instead of extending the principle of devolution within Scotland, the Scottish Government has not only retained all the transfers from Westminster but also taken away functions from Local Government: writes George Thorley
“Cross-party calls for a culture of ‘kindness’ deserved to develop into a movement to rebuild civility and public trust. Amidst the Paterson controversy, such hopes looked very distant again – but perhaps the furore will in time spur recognition of the need for deeper cultural change.”
In more than 20 years, Scotland has produced no Black MSPs, as we prepare for the most important election since devolution, Agnes Holmes reflects on her own experience as she explores obstacles facing Black candidates.
‘..with so much promise offered by new economic democratic agendas such as new municipalism, communities can have a key role as partners with the state against the cosh of market liberalism and declining public services.’
No PR system would have been likely to produce a workable majority for any sustainable coalition, but that is a reflection of the highly fragmented multi-party political system in the UK.
A selection of five poems for this general election in hard times. To shine a light on our better nature, to remember how many different people are responding to the urgent issues of 2019 with human kindness, concern, and courageous conscience.
The recent procedural manoeuvres against Tom Watson should cause those who applauded the abnormal proroguing of parliament to pause for thought, argues: Rob Sharp
‘The Labour councillor’s passion resonates all the more because it is non party political. Voting for cuts to vital services, which will hurt those who most need them, ‘should give none of us any joy or pleasure…from any side of the chamber’.
Brexit is not necessarily best viewed as an English project. Daniel Wincott says it’s time for politicians and commentators to face up to complex multi-national realities of the UK.
Carol Craig finds reasons for hope in an upsurge of Scottish grassroots activism and cross-party collaboration. It offers a chance of rebuilding local democracy – as long as it remains free to challenge central government.