Posts Tagged ‘digital’

How does Labour secure a majority in 2015? Reheat the “white heat of technology”

03/02/2014, 11:13:29 AM

In the run up to tonight’s Progress event , we have been publishing a series of pieces on what is required for Labour to secure a majority in 2015. Here, Jonathan Todd looks at how Labour can re-calibrate it’s economic message to reflect the changing times.

Back in October, Uncut noted the trends over 2013 for a narrowing of Labour’s poll lead and rising economic optimism. We ran regressions on these trends that indicated the Conservatives would take a poll lead when a quarter of the electorate described the economy as doing well.

On 9/10 January, 15% of voters reported the economy as doing well. A small rise on the 14% that had done so in the last three polls of 2013. Then 18% gave this verdict on 16/17 January. This reached 20% by 23/24 January.

At the same time, Labour’s polling lead has further narrowed. Three out of four polls reported in the YouGov tracker between 22/23 January and 28/29 January gave Labour a poll lead of 3%. Less than it has tended to be throughout this parliament.

Looking at the trend toward rising economic optimism and Labour’s further diminishing poll lead, it seems plausible that another bump in the optimism tracker to 25% would secure the Conservatives a poll lead. Consistent with this, the regressions implied that for every 1% increase in the proportion of the electorate that think the economy is doing well, the Conservatives would close on Labour by 0.6%.

Sadly, therefore, things are playing out as the Todd thesis – as Lewis Baston called the regressions – indicated. Labour has two options. First, hope that the trend toward increasing economic optimism abates. Second, act to prevent this trend translating into a shrinking Labour poll lead.

The first approach is a “something will turn up” strategy. It rarely does. And even if it does, it – persistent economic gloominess – is not something we should be hoping for. Instead, Labour should appreciate the context in which we now operate – one of rising economic optimism – and adopt an approach that allows us to get on the front foot.


Facebook Twitter Digg Delicious StumbleUpon

Our parties and politicians don’t understand how the world is changing

14/03/2013, 08:08:28 AM

by Peter Watt

There doesn’t yet appear to be an existential crisis at the heart of our political establishment but there quite possibly should.  Right across Europe from Germany to Greece and Italy there has been a rise in new, fringe and occasionally comic parties.  They are all benefiting from a sense of disenchantment with the established parties.

In the UK it was traditionally the Liberal Democrats that farmed the protest ‘none of the above’ votes but the advent of the coalition appears to have put a stop to that.  The result is the rise of other smaller parties – Respect in Bradford, UKIP in Eastleigh or a whole series of independents.  In fact increasing numbers are choosing to either not vote or vote for whichever other party or candidate is best placed to deal the establishment parties a bloody nose.

The political assumption appears to be that this malcontent has at its heart the prolonged economic crisis.  Financial uncertainty combined with an already rapidly changing world has meant that people are looking for an answer to an increasingly complex set of questions.  Where we used to assume that we would be better off in the future we now expect to be worse off and we worry for the economic plight of our children.  Following this logic through and when the economy upturns, then political business as usual will resume.  Labour and the Tories will battle it out for supremacy with Lib Dems battling for scraps or possibly further coalition.

The result of this assumption is essentially conservative; it is the politics of no change in how we do our politics.  The countdown has begun to May 7 2015 and the only question is which of the big two will be the largest party the day after.   Whilst others may be suffering from the economic situation or the rapidly changing world, the world of politics appears unaffected.

Candidates are being selected from those who have most faithfully played the traditional political game within each of the parties.  And the political cycle of conferences, budgets, parliamentary rebellions, briefings and gossip has not been interrupted one dot.  The political elite may feel a little battered reputationally but they are certainly not unduly concerned; patience will be rewarded with the maintenance of the status quo.


Facebook Twitter Digg Delicious StumbleUpon