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We must have a real EU exit, not a fake one


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This weekend, we relaunch the expanded European Research Group (ERG) of Conservative MPs, which I chair. I am proud that ERG Vice Chair Suella Fernandes MP has taken the lead. For the Telegraph,  Suella writes ‘Britain must untie itself from EU shackles by using Brexit to leave the customs union’. Sixty Conservatives, plus colleagues from the DUP, Labour and UKIP have united behind her, agreeing on the statement, “The UK must leave the European Economic Area (EEA) and the Customs Union”, the […]

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The EU: what next? Presentation to MHA Maclntyre Hudson


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On 21 October, MHA Maclntyre Hudson High Wycombe kindly invited me to present ideas on our exit from the EU to a large group of their clients, many of them our local businesses. My slides were as follows: Some of the documents on which I drew may be found here: Business for Britain: Change, or Go Road to Brexit, report of a conference at All Souls College, 9 September 2016 Trade Tools for the 21st Century I am most grateful to MHA Maclntyre Hudson and to all […]

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Now and always, zero tolerance for hatred


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In the past ten days, several constituents have reported being increasingly subject to hateful abuse over their race or nationality in London, Oxford and Wycombe. Recently, I attended a conference where UK Christians described acts of persecution they had suffered after converting here at home. Hateful abuse like racism and religious persecution is and always will be intolerable. As this website has set out for years, I believe in equality before the law and freedom, including freedom of religion. Every […]

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Junior doctors’ strikes reveal the fragility of patient-doctor relationships


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Today and tomorrow, junior doctors in our NHS are on strike. This action neglects taxpayers who expect world-class treatment around the clock, every day. Unlike previous occasions, this strike includes emergency services in hospitals across the UK. It is the BMA’s right to call this action, as a trade union representing those who work tirelessly to keep us healthy. The strike nevertheless rejects the fundamental principle that doctors are there to care for patients. Negotiations between the Government and the BMA led to agreement […]

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Social justice is back – David Cameron’s magnificent conference speech


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David Cameron has once again set out a magnificent vision for a Conservative programme to make Britain greater. I am delighted our poverty-fighting social justice ideas are back at the forefront of Conservatism. I may have entered politics over the Lisbon Treaty, but the journey taught me the calamitous extent of the welfare state’s failures under Labour. That’s why I helped the Centre for Social Justice before the election: we must succeed to a far greater extent in our fight against […]

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A better way to engage with patients about health choices?


Via the doctor in the house, this video from James McCormack, Choosing Wisely: Could a little entertainment be what is missing from contemporary health education?

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How departmental spending has changed this Parliament


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ConservativeHome has charted the change in departmental expenditure limits since 2009-10 in a “To The Point” article, How the departments have fared in this Austerity Parliament: Health spending is up. Communities and Local Government has been cut in half. I recommend this good summary article.

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The enduring curse of easy answers


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Political radicals are in the news, especially in Greece and now Spain. In the midst of tragic suffering, people are being seduced by the curse of easy answers. State socialism has always aimed at a spectacular improvement in the average person’s standard of living. It is a noble intention which I share. The problem is that the methods chosen by state socialists to achieve their aim cannot succeed. And, tragically, in the course of trying, state socialists have all but […]

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Labour’s spending chaos


Via Share The Facts: Labour’s spending plans are in chaos – with Ed Miliband and Ed Balls spending the money from their proposed homes tax over and over again. Last week Balls said the tax will fund the NHS and nothing else: ‘All the money we raised from the mansion tax will go the National health Service’ (LBC, 21 Jan 2015). But now Miliband says the tax will pay for reducing the deficit: ‘A plan to pay down the deficit […]

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The ECB’s bond-buying programme – “a grave menace to our civilisation”?


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The European Central Bank has announced a programme of bond-buying of €60 billion a month, to be carried out at least until end-Sept 2016. Monetary policy around the world remains in the midst of a remarkable experiment: money creation is expected sustainably to solve real economic problems. It is possible that there is something dangerously wrong with mainstream economic thought. Hayek’s conclusion to The Pure Theory of Capital is a spectacular rant against those economists who consider only the short-run, surface […]

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