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Queen Elizabeth. Lessons from a life well lived.

Queen Elizabeth. Lessons from a life well lived.

One of the striking features of the national grief is how personally affiliated people felt towards the late Queen. A frequent comment from mourners in The Queue and similar vox pops was “it was like losing my granny”. Queen Elizabeth certainly had life well lived, and died peacefully aged 96 surrounded by her family, at home and having kept maintained good health until the last year of her life, and her mental sharpness to the very end. Barring immortality, that…

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Sleepless Knights of the Shires

Sleepless Knights of the Shires

Political maps of England, whether parliamentary or council, often resemble multi-coloured archipelagos in a sea of blue. While urban areas are battlegrounds contested by all the larger parties, rural areas tilt strongly towards the Conservatives. This reservoir of seats on which the Cons have been able to rely for multiple electoral cycles gives them a solid base from which to reach for a majority, and leaves the opposing parties – Labour, LibDems and Greens – hoping for an occasional edge….

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Could more Tory MP defections be in the pipeline?

Could more Tory MP defections be in the pipeline?

From ex-LAB MP Nick Palmer The style of the cartoon here will be nostalgic for longer-standing PBers – it comes from Marf, whose work often used to adorn PB columns. She’s flourishing and pursuing other careers, but I asked her to do one for my local CLP for old times’ sake. We’re using it to recruit new members from among “things are awful but what can one do?” people, who are really rather a large slice of the electorate these…

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Why Ukraine was particularly vulnerable to Putin’s ambitions

Why Ukraine was particularly vulnerable to Putin’s ambitions

1) MACKINDER AND THE HEARTLAND Between 1909 and 1943 geographer Halford John Mackinder outlined the Heartland theory which goes like this. You can split the world into three parts: The World-Island (Europe, Asia, and Africa combined), the Offshore Islands (British Isles, Japan, etc) and the Outlying Islands (North America, South America, and Oceania). The World-Island can in turn be split into three: the Heartland (approx the Soviet Union), the Southern Heartland (basically Africa), and the Rimlands (the bits between the…

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Seat by seat the Northern Ireland Assembly election-

Seat by seat the Northern Ireland Assembly election-

With just over a week to go until the Northern Irish Assembly Election [2022] commences, The chips are down, the heat is on and the pressure is truly immense! With Sinn Féin [SF] making significant gains within the 2017 Assembly Election, The polls since October 2020 have SF as the largest party. As we are all aware [Needless to mention], anything can happen in an Election (Specifically within Northern Ireland). I will be doing separate predictions within this topic. I…

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The Ukraine war as seen from Estonia

The Ukraine war as seen from Estonia

From PBer Cicero close to the Russian border (This was posted on the previous thread from a longstanding PBer) Greetings from a weary but determined Estonia. The official outlook is that we are likely to have a pretty “challenging” summer, and the latest expulsion of all Baltic diplomats in St. Petersburg and Pskov underlines the total collapse of relations with Russia. It is quite probable that the border will be closed soon. The entry of Finland into NATO before the…

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TACTICAL VOTING AT THE 1997 GENERAL ELECTION

TACTICAL VOTING AT THE 1997 GENERAL ELECTION

I recently looked at Labour/Lib Dem tactical voting since 1983 and noted that the analysis didn’t work quite so well for 1997. In 1997, the Lib Dems won 46 seats. This was up 26 on their total of 20 in 1992 and was achieved despite their share of the GB vote falling by 1.2 percentage points (pp). To what extent was this made possible by tactical voting? Boundary changes for the 1997 general election make this a little tricky to…

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The French election: Mélenchon to make the runoff looks a value bet

The French election: Mélenchon to make the runoff looks a value bet

A look over the odds and latest polls All he needs to do is to make Jadot a nice offer and he will be in a strong running. On the assumption he accrues all the Jadot vote share (and none of anyone else’s, such as Poutou’s), he will be 5% ahead of 3rd-placed Le Pen (Ipsos), 0.5% behind her and 2.5% ahead of 4th-placed Pécresse (Ifop), and 2% behind her and 3% ahead of Pécresse (OpinionWay). Zemmour and Pécresse would…

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