How many people have to die before we start talking responsibly about immigration?

Last week’s deaths in the Mediterranean were directly linked to xenophobic politics in Britain.  

openDemocracy.net - free thinking for the world

How many people have to die before we start talking responsibly about immigration?

Last week’s deaths in the Mediterranean were directly linked to xenophobic politics in Britain.  

openDemocracy.net - free thinking for the world

The British syndrome: an abdication of responsibility

There are glaring absences at the heart of the UK elections contest. The new preface to his ‘Essay on Britain, now’ - by one of Britain’s leading political thinkers tells us why. Remarkably, it suggests ways in which to free ourselves from the trap we are in.

The BBC Trust: a work in progress

A chorus of critics is calling for the abolition of the BBC Trust. Yes, it may be flawed but this body could yet be reformed to fulfil its public service function.

Ten ideas to transform our economy

As the General Election approaches, we desperately need to expand our discussion of 'the economy.' Here's a start.

How many people have to die before we start talking responsibly about immigration?

Last week’s deaths in the Mediterranean were directly linked to xenophobic politics in Britain.  

A fork in the road for Labour

Rather than clutching at the straws of what is clearly a rapidly deteriorating two-party structure, Labour should reconnect with its radical politics in a ‘progressive alliance’.

Democratically controlled, co-operative higher education

Higher education is disintegrating under misguided neo-liberal reforms. Could co-operative universities, member-run and member-led, be the answer?

Bradford West: politics comes alive

A fusion of history, politics and personality gives the electoral contest in one British constituency a unique flavour.

From castle to cage: what to do about the housing crisis?

Spiralling house prices are trapping people in lifelong debt while politicians ignore the root causes. Even the United Nations is alert to the Britain's growing housing crisis.

Britain started the fossil fuel age. Now it’s our chance to end it

The Welsh Assembly is due to vote on a cross-party motion which, if it passes, will cease all new fossil fuel extraction in the country.

Scrutinising the Scrutineers: part 3

UK media coverage of EU issues is frequently superficial and plagued by basic errors. The BBC, and others, must work to change this.

Rebecca Omonira-Oyekanmi, openDemocracy writer, shortlisted for Orwell Prize

Reporter who takes time to listen acutely to people at the sharp end of government policy is one of six shortlisted for political journalism prize.

Why access to Justice is not yet an election issue and must be debated

The evidence suggests that people care about access to justice. Politicians should listen to the people.

If parliament be hung...?

What do coalition governments around the world tell us about the possible logistics of a hung parliament after 7 May? 

When is a democracy not a democracy? When it’s in Britain

Democracy is supposed to protect the interests of the people. In Britain, it does the exact opposite: routinely working against the interests of the many, in favour of the few.

The plurality deficit: public service broadcasting and institutional competition

Is institutional competition the answer to the ‘plurality deficit’ in public broadcasting? The evidence suggests no.

Bring back the NHS - a night hosted by Sir Ian McKellen

This Friday 24th April, Sir Ian McKellen hosts an array of celebrities and people from the front line of the NHS, calling for a new government to bring the NHS back to its founding principles. 

'Regret' and 'delay': when will Britain end the exile of the Chagossian people?

If rhetoric about Britain "standing tall" is to mean anything at all, supporting Chagossians long-denied right to return home must be an absolute priority for whatever Government is formed after May 7.

Who benefits from benefit?

The UK "benefit" system is about ensuring that people play the part alloted to them by economic and political elites.

Can we afford to ignore what Katie Hopkins says about migrants drowning in the Med?

The Sun columnist's violent words about the refugee crisis in the Mediterranean are indefensible. They should be condemned as hate speech. 

In the UK, public discourse undermines support for human rights

The UK media does not do justice to the phrase, “human rights”. Rights activists must shift their framework to earn the public’s support. A contribution to openGlobalRights’ Human Rights: masses or elite movement debate.

Tory plans to deny patients the right to refuse treatment are an assault on human rights

The Conservative manifesto has announced that people on benefits who refuse treatment may have their benefits cut - but will professional ethics stop such a repellent policy?

Tenants in danger: the rise of eviction watches

Collective resistance to the erosion of housing rights is growing. We need to turn this into a national movement.

Against ad hocery: we need a more democratic approach to UK devolution

We need a process for determining devolution that is more considered, democratic and which tackles devolution in the context of the wider failings of the UK state.

Servitude: the way we work now

Exploitative work contracts have become the norm. Casual, ill-paid or unpaid work creates servitude. In such a climate actual slavery, though illegal, flourishes.

Why £8bn is a zombie figure that won't save the NHS

As the former boss of the NHS slams politicians for not addressing the financial 'black hole', will the pledged £8bn merely be used to pump prime further privatisation and cuts? The introduction to a series examining the parties' NHS manifesto pledges.

Universal Credit: the fantasy of a tidy world

The coalition presents its benefit reforms as fair, rational and efficient. For many, however, the world is not as ordered as those in power seem to imagine.  

Foreign aid is not dispensable. It’s the condition for a fairer future

UKIP among others treat foreign aid as if it were inconsequential charity. Cutting this budget, however, effects us all - rendering the world a more unequal place. 

NHS pledges - do even the politicians making them, believe them anymore?

Recent history suggests NHS pledges are there to be broken - or subverted. Perhaps voters would prefer less manifesto, and more information on the financial interests driving policy making. 

So much for free speech: Southampton University and the pro-Israel lobby

If our universities can’t stand up to the Israel lobby and uphold free speech, how will the international community ever stand up to the state of Israel and uphold international law?

Good Friday and the wait for a new politics in Northern Ireland

Northern Ireland's peace process may be upheld as an international "model", but it still has a long way to go in shifting identities away from tribalism and towards mutual recognition. 

BMA backs principles of NHS Reinstatement Bill to save NHS from destruction by market forces

As politicians squabble over NHS funding figures, the British Medical Association's Council has backed the principles of radical legislation which would get the costly 'market' out of the NHS.

What Dave, Vince and Ed don’t tell you about zero-hours contracts

Zero-hours contracts have existed for decades, so why are they suddenly a hot topic? Instead we need policies that tackle the wider problems of employer control and working-time insecurity.

OurKingdom rolling election blog

Asking the questions and covering the stories most media won't.

Scrutinising the Scrutineers: part 2

Infuriated by the BBC’s lack of coverage of its work, The European Scrutiny committee is at the centre of a discussion about the ‘limits’ of the corporation's independence. 

Scrutinising the Scrutineers: part 1

The European Scrutiny Committee has locked horns with the BBC, repeatedly accusing it of a pro-EU bias. Is the corporation’s editorial independence under threat? 

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