Author: Martin Waller

Martin Waller worked for The Times as a financial writer for some three decades. He is now retired and living in Suffolk

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From baby boom to baby bust

Martin Waller
From baby boom to baby bust

It is not hard to understand why people here are having fewer babies. The Foundation quotes an OECD estimate that the typical working couple in the UK spend 22 per cent of their income on full-time childcare, about double the average rate for Western economies.

An end to human rights?

Martin Waller
Will Raab end human rights?

Late last year the UK agreed that, despite Brexit, it was still a participant to the ECHR. Now the government would like to go back on that pledge, replacing it with an ill-defined British Bill of Rights.

The end of the line for rail privatisation?

Martin Waller
Renationalising British Rail

The rail industry is already, de facto, in UK government hands. Last September, in the face of the pandemic, the government accepted that the system was irretrievably broken and announced the planned end of the franchise system

Another Eye-Catching Initiative

Martin Waller
spacestation: galactic Britain

I wrote here the other day how the current government is operating by Eye-Catching Initiatives, things it says will happen which give the impression that action is being taken but which never come to anything. And having it reported by a compliant media.

Angela Rayner, and so-called Tory “scum”

Martin Waller
Angela Rayner calls Tories scum

Angela Rayner, the deputy Labour leader, is in trouble for describing the Tories, in a fringe event at the party conference in Brighton, as “scum”. She has defended it as the sort of language used by people like her, brought up desperately poor on a Stockport housing estate.

And the eye-catching initiatives just keep coming

Martin Waller
Boris Johnson's eye-catching initiatives

One of Boris Johnson’s more eye-catching initiatives, a bridge or tunnel connecting Scotland and Northern Ireland, has been quietly laid to rest this week. The plan would have got around the problems Brexit has caused for trade across the Irish Sea, but the Treasury has apparently decided it is too expensive. Or stupid. Or something.

Culture wars, Nadine Dorries and the BBC

Martin Waller
Culture Wars, Nadine Dorries And The BBC

To express an opinion that you will not find much here or elsewhere in the media, I think the appointment of Nadine Dorries as Culture Secretary is a masterstroke. Boris Johnson could not better have signalled his and his Cabinet’s utter contempt for those on the other side of a culture war they have largely created and inflamed.