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Tuesday 4th Apr: First Tuesday Current Affairs discussion

Discussing First topical issue (Mark Iddon) and Second topical issue (Simon Belt)

Articles for 4-Apr-17

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First Tuesday Current Affairs Forum
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News Reviews from 2012

Is our greed to blame?

Pay Restraint and Low Ambitions

by Simon Belt

 

Is society losing its historic drive to create more wealth? From Radio 4 and her Majesty's loyal opposition, to the front benches of the Conservative-Liberal government, there seems be widespread support for restraining bonus payments to top executives. It may sound radical and fair on behalf of working people, but coming alongside campaigns to increase the prices of low cost food items - the high point being demands by Ed Milliband to see W H Smith increase the prices of chocolate oranges. Giving up chocolate for lent may have been a personal test of faith once, but to impose it on ordinary people for their own good is another thing altogether. Are we all becoming too meek and mild as we approach Easter?

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News Reviews from 2012

Schools: what are they good for?

Schools: What are they good for?

by Jane Turner

 

As the Christmas decorations get removed and packed away carefully for another year, the school uniforms are retrieved from the back of the wardrobe in readiness for a return to school this week and parents quietly breathe a sigh of relief as they have just about reached the limits of their energy and patience.

 

But wait! Is it still wise to pack young people off to school anymore - as it's now widely recognised as an institution that's failing? Is it really worth investing around 36 weeks of the year for over 11 years in a place where little of any worth is actually taught or learned?

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News Reviews from 2012

New Year, New Optimism?

New Year, New Optimism?

by Ian Betts


Yes, yes… we are all aware of the current financial difficulties. Britain’s economy is made of mashed potato and the Greeks might as well use yoghurt as currency. It’s been a year of riots, strikes, sit-ins and vetoes; assassinations, super-injunctions and celebrity divorce woes, and no-one feels any better for it. At least Prince Philip is still alive… and yet somehow the gloom remains and deepens.

 

Writing for Spiked last week, Frank Furedi declared that 2011 was the year when the progressive movement of the left ‘lost its capacity to believe in the future’ because of the ‘the utter estrangement of the left from the idea of progress’; he portrays a nation of deficit-obsessed zombies enthralled to camps of politically illiterate anti-capitalism protestors, with neither able to conceive or articulate a manifesto for wider social change. It’s depressing stuff.

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News Reviews from 2011

FIRST TUESDAY News Reviews from 2011

The First Tuesday discussions on current affairs aim to provide attendees with a way of developing and testing their understanding of a range of current affairs topics; improving their journalistic capabilities so that they can write opinion or comment style articles for the regional or national media or blogs, respond with a thoughtful angle on radio chat shows, TV talk shows or maybe just have an interesting angle to respond at work with.

 

The topics discussed in December 2011 were:

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News Reviews from 2011

30 November Protest

Reflecting on the #N30 Strike (Dec 2011)

by Mark Iddon

 

On November 30th the TUC organised a strike for the public sector Unions where estimates say that 2 million people abstained from work that day with many taking part in demonstrations in major cities throughout the UK. At the end of Wednesday, the Unions said that the day had been a success because of the number of people who had abstained from work that day. David Cameron said that the action had been a ‘damp squib’ because the anticipated disruption had failed to materialise and the event passed peacefully without any rioting or skirmishes with the police.

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