Is the term ‘localism’ used by government to promote outcomes that contradict its original meaning?

A thoughtful appraisal of localism by Ekklesia’s staff writers was brought to our attention by James Robertson’s December newsletter. To read it in full click on this link.

A new research project, Localism Watch, examines the impact of the coalition government’s ‘localism’ initiatives, which they say have helped to privatise local services, weaken local . . . → Read More: Is the term ‘localism’ used by government to promote outcomes that contradict its original meaning?

A different economic model: 2 – a constant, stable,‘steady state’ economy

George Monbiot suggests that it is time for a government commission on post-growth economics which would invite contributions from those already investigating the possibility of moving towards a steady state economy: one that seeks distribution rather than blind expansion; that does not demand infinite growth on a finite planet.

Localise West Midlands is dedicated . . . → Read More: A different economic model: 2 – a constant, stable,‘steady state’ economy

Devolution: 1854

“We hate to have laws made for us at a distance. We wish people would allow us to right ourselves, instead of continually meddling, with their imperfect legislation.

“We stand up for self-government and oppose centralization”.

‘North and South’, Elizabeth Gaskell.

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Localise Birmingham? A lead from India

The sheer size of the city was brought home to the writer who accidentally travelled the 49’s circuitous bus route which crossed many city wards. With the exception of glossy Longbridge – a ‘revolution in regeneration’ – it was clear that there was a great deal to be done in several rather neglected and . . . → Read More: Localise Birmingham? A lead from India

Has Secretary of State (Elizabeth Truss) visited the LWM site?

A Lancashire farmer sends news of a ministerial statement made by the new Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, Elizabeth Truss.  On 21st July she launched “A Plan for Public Procurement of Food and Catering Services”, which includes an emphasis on Government procurement opening up the public sector market to small . . . → Read More: Has Secretary of State (Elizabeth Truss) visited the LWM site?

Calls for a living wage

Andrew Lydon writes that, over the last year, probably the most radical proposal made by Labour leader Ed Miliband is about the Living Wage and Living Wage Zones:

“Living wage zones would work for everyone – the people who get decent pay, the employers who get a more committed workforce and the government that . . . → Read More: Calls for a living wage

True devolution? Has localism merely meant passing power to unelected micro-quangos?

Professor Richard Batley, University of Birmingham (School of Government and Society) writes in the FT: “Constitutional devolution, convincingly argued, could be attractive in England, as well as Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland . . . Westminster seems not to appreciate that irritation at the centralisation of power and wealth in London is not confined . . . → Read More: True devolution? Has localism merely meant passing power to unelected micro-quangos?

A message from Delhi about growth blindness: a manufactured disease

An economic system created by and for moneyed interests:

Analyst Devinder Sharma writes about universities, educational institutes and business schools which are churning out graduates and postgraduates who are made to believe in the magic potion of growth. Newspapers are full of reports and quotes about growth. Finance ministers everywhere in the world . . . → Read More: A message from Delhi about growth blindness: a manufactured disease

The Green Deal: why it has not taken off and what we can expect in the future

A “must read” from Phil Beardmore for all interested in Green Deal & Green New Deal: . http://birminghameastside.com/2014/03/25/green-deal-whats-wrong-and-future/

In this article – first posted on Birmingham Eastside – Phil Beardmore describes why the Green Deal scheme has not taken off and what we can expect in the future.

. . . → Read More: The Green Deal: why it has not taken off and what we can expect in the future

Political and economic devolution

The vision of Birmingham’s council leader

The prospect of a powerful city region level of government administering economic development, transport, skills and housing across the West Midlands has been raised by city council leader Sir Albert Bore, who used his annual budget speech to set out his vision of a “new . . . → Read More: Political and economic devolution