This raises the question of why it’s always “grade inflation” we hear about and never “grade growth” or “educational productivity improvement”. A while ago I responded to this Chris Cook piece about The One Where They Decided To Downgrade Everyone To Match Their Class Except For Subjects Only Rich Kids Do – remember that? it’s…Read More looking back on an omnishambles
We keep getting news stories about contact tracing call-handlers with nothing to do. The Guardian is especially keen on these and seems to either think they are just idle and need scolding, or else they should be laid off for reasons of economy, as there’ll be no problem bringing them back in future. Strangely, it…Read More How bad is the contact tracing – really?
This is fantastic and it reminded me of a book: Every single #BorisJohnson speech – so you never have to listen to him again. #extendlockdown pic.twitter.com/UiJ2EIu7df — James (@seebsouq) May 7, 2020 Heinrich Böll’s 1955 novella Doktor Murkes Gesammelte Schweigen/The Collected Silences of Dr. Murke, a classic of postwar German literature, was written and is…Read More Erm
So we’re having a moment about John Boyd: The really interesting thing about the Dom Cummings appointment is that we now have someone in charge of No10 who is a devotee of Col. John Boyd, whose central thesis was to confuse your enemy and do the opposite of what they expect (1/4). — Damian McBride…Read More Round and Round the OODA Loop: Folk Boyd and the Brexiters
I originally drafted this post as the second on Tim Shipman’s book last autumn. Having found and re-read it I have revised it, among other things to go with Jonathan Portes’ appreciation for Sir Jeremy Heywood, the signing of a Brexit agreement, and the outing of the American Friends of the IEA An interesting thought…Read More #AllOutWar On the Institutions
A quick thought on the famous Tory letters. If you want to spill the Tory leader, you need a set percentage of the Tory MPs to write to the 1922 Committee chairman. The current trigger level is 48, and the current chairman is Graham Brady MP. There is a lot of mystery about the process,…Read More How many letters?
Stephen Bush in the New Statesman makes an argument I’ve heard from a few people. The young’uns are furious and therefore Corbyn, but they’re also “Thatcher’s children”. So the Tories can solve all their problems by offering something about “getting on the housing ladder”. It looks like they’re going to implement this. I am not…Read More Weak sauce
That Tory after-action report (one, two, three) is quite the thing. Something that sticks out for me is that the 2017 election might have been the moment when the shrinking Tory membership finally caught up with them. This is something that has been promised for getting on for decades, but if it can’t go on…Read More 2017: The ultimate development of the modern British campaign
So I read Tim “Not the Doctor” Shipman’s All Out War instabook on the referendum campaign and after. Shipman argues strongly for the continued importance of the old 90s Tory Eurosceptics in the whole thing – this is partly a consequence of his method, writing down stuff MPs tell him, but I think also a…Read More #AllOutWar: One, We’re Agin It
Reading the Institute for Government’s report on Universal Credit, I was struck by two related things. First of all, the project was powered forward by people who didn’t bear any responsibility for its implementation. Whenever it ran into people who needed to care about how it would work, it hit opposition. Lord Freud’s original skunkworks…Read More Universal Credit: the history of an IT project failure