The commentators 14-11-14
...on Labour and Ed Miliband
Ed Miliband's problem is a lack of substance, as well as a lack of show. He is very good at highlighting problems of inequality, and ones that raise awkward questions for Conservatives. But an Opposition party is expected to come up with workable solutions – and this is where the case for Miliband collapses.
- Fraser Nelson, Daily Telegraph
Part of the problem for Miliband is that a country in a determinedly anti-political mood sees him as yet another Westminster suit full of bugger-all. Born in a family obsessed with politics and reared at Brown’s knee, very many people dismiss him for never having done a proper job and suspect him of empty ambition. Before he can stand any chance of cutting through on any of the policy detail, he needs to challenge this damning verdict, and the fightback speech did that well.
- Tom Clark, The Guardian
It is hard to imagine a more perfect storm of good fortune for the Labour party and for Mr Miliband. No, if they cannot win with the help of that lot, then they really should not be in the business of politics at all. Labour is about to throw away a winnable election because its leader cannot fathom that he needs to convince us he will take care of our money and because he is convinced, whereas nobody else is, that the crash of 2008 created a market for his bromides about equality. This is not a mess that has been visited on Labour from the outside. This is a mess of its own devising.
- Philip Collins, The Times
I winder if Ed Miliband believes hedge funds and energy companies are turning the public and most of his back-benchers against him. Does he think their agents are plonking Romanian beggar girls in his path, so that the world can watch him make a fool of himself? Does he reckon they’re slipping amnesia-inducing drugs into his diet Coke, to make him forget to mention immigration or the deficit in his speeches?
- Tom Utley, Daily Mail
It is hard to believe that, a mere eight weeks ago, the SNP’s reason for existing was decisively defeated in a referendum. Since then the SNP has behaved like the political victor, while the winning parties, Labour above all, have been in confusion and accelerated turmoil.
- Martin Kettle, The Guardian
We're in the mood for looking back, so let's recall those primary school arithmetic problems and apply them to this situation:
If it takes 8,000 volunteers three months to assemble and plant 888,246 poppies, how long will it take a similar number of volunteers to pick them and pack them away ready for cleaning and despatch?
There is no set answer, but you can bet it's not 24 hours. The poppies won't disappear by tomorrow night. The Telegraph suggested last month that it would take a couple of weeks. In other words, politicians and the Press have delivered to a sentimental public a bonus that it was going to get anyway.
Editor's blog A last post for the poppies SubScribe Poppymania
Thursday 25 September Judges for the Editorial Intelligence comment awards announced their shortlists today, with ten nominations for the FT, nine for the Times, five for the Guardian, four for the Independent - and two for SubScribe.
The Times and Sunday Times scored a clean sweep in nominations for the main award of commentariat of the year, which will be decided between David Aaronovitch, Camilla Cavendish, Daniel Finkelstein and last year's winner Caitlin Moran.
Guardian's Jay Rayner was shortlisted in the food writer category, but said that he did not wish to be considered as that award is sponsored by Tesco.
The awards will be presented on November 25.
See the full shortlists here
Please sign up for SubScribe updates
The Labour Party
Midterms and UK politics
Britain and EU
Isis and UK politics
War on Isis