Life: Left of Centre

Archive for March 2012

So the dust has settled and George’s Osborne’s 2nd Budget has been universally panned – particularly by the Press. No surprise there. Indeed in recent years this has become the norm. He himself said that Britain should expect a long period of economic pain, in order to gain somewhere down the line – post-2017. A long way off.

But the most interesting facts of the budget are these: 8.7% unemployment is to be the expected peek this year. Yet economic growth is to reach only 0.8%. This looks like a ‘No Pain, No Gain’ economic policy to me. Where everyone suffers and only those best equipped to survive – the richest 1% – will.

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I started this blog because I wanted to share my experiences and my thoughts on a range of issues: travel, the arts and sport, on occasions. But most of all I wanted to talk politics: my politics, left-of-centre politics, and (simply put) why I think the world would be a better place for everyone if more politicians, and aspiring politicians, eschewed selfish and sectarian motivations to pursue the ‘Good Society’. For all.

Here I give 3 of my reasons why I’m Labour: why I believe the UK Labour Party is the best vehicle in British society and politics to achieve the positive social change for the future that we all need today: the home of Britain’s social and economic progressives.

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Welcome to Part 2 of my ‘Travels through Argentina’ series, that takes the reader back to January 2011, when I spent a hugely enjoyable 3 weeks travelling solo across Argentina, meeting a selection of fascinating people, experiencing the wonderful culture (that is oh so different to the typical Western European or even the North American way of life) and seeing the sights.

Part 2 introduces the part-German part-Argentine airline passenger Paola, the grandmother figure of Matilda Alvarez and the beautiful city of Cordoba, its ‘old town’ setting and desert-like climate!

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The view from Time Square

Anyone that knows me knows that I love Musical Theatre – for that is its original name. More popularly, and certainly since the dawn of the 20th Century, simply called ‘musicals‘. Now this isn’t going to be a history lesson – but rather my take on the phenomenon that is the musical, and how simply put, it makes our lives that little bit more entertaining and enjoyable.

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Ahead of ‘Super Tuesday’ in the US Republican Presidential Primary season, where 10 states are holding ballots to select their preferred Republican in this ongoing beauty (or not-so-pretty, as I prefer) contest, I profile the last remaining challenger to Mitt Romney’s path to his party’s nomination: Rick Santorum. It’s well worth the read!

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So if you’ll indulge me to take you back to January 2011 I hope I’ll have an interesting tale to tell. I spent 3 weeks travelling across Argentina, travelling solo to fulfil a bit of personal challenge and long-held ambition of mine to begin to travel through South America – albeit sadly only too briefly – meet the people, experience the culture and see the sights. I wasn’t disappointed.

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ImageIt’s coming up to 6 months since my Mum, Carol Ptashko, passed away after a short but terrible illness. It’s been a busy 6 months, and in many ways one to forget, but for the support of friends and family, too numerous to thank here.

But while it has been a difficult time it is the memorable moments ahead that help us to think back to the good times we’ve all shared with loved ones. For anyone with which this resonates, this post is for you as it  is for her.

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What I’ve been saying…

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