Centre Write
Centre Write
The motivations underpinning the Autumn Statement yesterday have roots deep in 19th century Conservatism; roots that should encourage all those who want to see the incomes of the poorest rise. The Chancellor’s Autumn Statement drew predictable cries of horror from the left. One theme stood out amidst the subsequent 140-character-condemnations – that George Osborne’s reduction in the proportion of state spending is unparalleled in modern political history and marks a return to an older, more uncaring political tradition. Gordon Brown…
British politics has a serious problem with voter apathy, especially amongst the young. We need to act soon to correct this. Electoral turnout, historically between seventy and eighty percent, was 59.4% in 2001 and in the mid-to-low sixties at the past three elections. The numbers make for depressing reading and betray a society with sharp divides between the politically disengaged and regular voters; the turnout was 56% amongst BME voters, 43% amongst 18-24 year olds and 78% amongst 65+ voters.…
Increasing the number of graduates is vital for the UK economy. As the recent higher education (HE) green paper demonstrated, the Government believes that, in the years to come, increasing productivity will be the principal driver of economic growth. Improving the skills of workers is an essential part of this. And over 50% of the 14.4 million jobs expected to become vacant between 2012 and 2022 are in occupations which are more likely to employ graduates. Trends in the HE…
Bright Blue held its Energy and Climate Change Forum last week at Westminster’s Old Star pub. Ben Caldecott, an Associate Fellow with Bright Blue and author of ‘Green & Responsible Conservatism’, started the discussion. He suggested that liberal conservatives had a real opportunity to make a practical difference to the energy debate, as they possessed both an understanding of climate change science and a predilection for solutions that worked with rather than against human nature. A number of policy proposals…
Friday, 30 October 2015 11:06

Coordinate a Bright Blue forum

Bright Blue are currently looking for new forum coordinators. Our forums are informal spaces in which to discuss policy and politics. Currently Bright Blue runs two forums – the Education Forum and the Energy and Climate Change Forum. Both forums take place in a pub on a weekday evening and attract likeminded individuals. The role of the forum coordinator is to organise the event and chair the discussion on the night. Bright Blue provides assistance in both of these regards.…
Jeremy Corbyn has repeatedly called for the renationalisation of Britain’s railways, a policy endorsed (according to the polls) by a majority of voters. However any temptation to return the railways to public control would make little sense and must be resisted. The first argument against renationalisation is the success of privatisation, which has seen the number of journeys undertaken rise year-on-year to 1.5 billion; under British Rail, it dropped from one billion in 1948 to 750 million. Safety has dramatically…
The Welfare Reform and Work Bill currently passing through Parliament proposes to repeal the four income targets under the Child Poverty Act 2010 (relative poverty, absolute poverty, persistent poverty, and combined low-income and material deprivation), and to introduce ‘life chances’ measures in four areas: children living in workless households in England; children living in long-term workless households in England; the educational attainment of children in England at the end of Key Stage 4; and the educational attainment of disadvantaged children…
Held just months after a surprise general election victory, and weeks after the Labour Party voted to dive down the policy rabbit hole, Conservative Party Conference 2015 was always going to be quite an event. It didn’t disappoint. With Manchester basking in autumnal sunshine, delegates enjoyed a policy filled, clearly focused and noticeably busy conference. Busy also for Bright Blue - we held a record 18 fringe events and 4 invitation-only roundtables with a range of panellists speaking to packed…
Thursday, 01 October 2015 19:31

Bright Blue at Conservative Party conference

The evenings are drawing in, the leaves are starting to fall and the scent of autumn is in the air – it must be party conference season! Having hosted events at Labour Party conference and Liberal Democrat Party conference, Conservative Party conference in Manchester now beckons for Bright Blue. After the roaring success of last year’s Drink Tank with the Rt Hon Ken Clarke MP we are delighted to confirm a Drink Tank for Conservative Party Conference 2015 – on…
Wednesday, 30 September 2015 12:50

Sam Bowman: Time to build on the green belt

The case for building on the green belt seems to be winning. The housing problem in London and the South East is not going away – prices are not just high, they are rising rapidly. Although politically the problem can be deferred with policies like Help to Buy, pledges to build on ‘brown field’ land, or the Housing Minister’s recent announcement that the government will raise its ‘target’ to build more houses, none of these things will actually do much…

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