When is £14,000 more than £50m? When one’s in a press release and one isn’t

High-impact campaigning organisation the Taxpayers’ Alliance are in a right old tizz about EU flags. Yes, those bits of cloth with the blue and gold are an outrageous affront to the British taxpayer, costing £14,003 over five years – an outrageous £2,800.60 per year.

In case you are wondering, £2,800.60 per year is 0.00002% of the UK’s annual budget deficit.

But of course it’s the thought that counts, and in this case the thought is the usual mystical mishmash of Churchill complex, free market dogma and nationalism that could be called “Euroscepticism”, if sceptic weren’t a word that implied rationality and logic.

If the Taxpayers’ Alliance were really serious about European-level financial waste, they might look into the question of how much it costs the British Government to appease the Daily Mail by staying out of the Schengen agreement and maintaining our internal border with other EU countries.

Lunchtime list for June 18th

Here are the articles and web pages the Talk Issues team recommend today: Govt skunkworks planned for November – Plans for internal experiments – but just on process, or more widely? A sudden lack of clarity – What's happening to the English regions? Abolition? More consultation? It's not entirely clear. Experts and plebs – Tne […]

Lunchtime list for June 17th

Here are the articles and web pages the Talk Issues team recommend today: Commons needs to be more ‘box office’, says Sir George – Sir George Young has given a speech on how to make the role of Parliament better-known and increase coverage of Parliamentary debates. L’Europe attend les architectes – Jacques Delors (of Up […]

Heffer on the EU: Nostradamus he ain’t

It’s always enjoyable to come across a hysterical prophecy that has been disproved by the passage of time. How much more enjoyable it is when the author is as self-righteous and opinionated as Simon Heffer. The prophecy in question comes from the Daily Mail in 2003. In an article entitled without irony, Europe: Who’s telling […]

The Talk Issues Thinktank Roundup

Welcome to this week’s Talk Issues ‘Thinktank Roundup’ – your one-stop review of all the best publications, research, commentary and events from leading UK think tanks. Not surprisingly in the week of the Queen’s speech various thinktanks responds to their fears & hopes from the government legislative programme for the next 18 months. Reports, Publications […]

It’s a very different election in Scotland

David Cameron didn’t win last night’s final TV debate for Scottish viewers. In fact if Nick Clegg had announced a new compulsory programme of bestiality in primary schools and Gordon Brown had broken down in tears and lay in the corner shaking the consensus of opinion at workplace coffee machines this morning would be “But […]

We need an informed discussion on our voting system

Whatever the outcome on 6th May it looks like electoral reform will be a major issue in the next few years. In fact there’s only one outcome – a working Conservative majority – under which it’s not immediately on the table and if the Liberals increase their vote significantly anyway it’s hard to see how […]

Kill Klegg: the roundup

Image by lewishamdreamer via Flickr The weekend polls are in, and it looks like Thursday’s ferocious attack on Nick Clegg hasn’t shifted the Liberal Democrats‘ high polling significantly. The sudden shift from attacking the Government to attacking a hitherto-ignored party has not gone unnoticed. Here’s Kevin Marsh, executive editor of the BBC College of Journalism, […]

REVEALED: Media agree, it’s not about issues, it’s #nickcleggsfault

Showing the maturity that they are famous for, the press has launched a full-scale assault on Nick Clegg. It’s largely not about the issues but a range or other things including doing a bit of investigative journalism discovering Google can find them things they think will embarrass the Lib Dem leader. The Daily Mail accuse […]

Do Tory Central office write all this paper?

Image by Getty Images via Daylife As Nosemonkey has spotted, the Daily Mail‘s “Debate 2010” site is currently entirely devoted to attacking the LibDems. But what’s this – has the peasants’ revolt spread even to the hallowed right-wing halls of the Daily Mail comment box? Their plea for Britain not to sleepwalk into disaster has […]