As Gary Younge wrote earlier this month, the upcoming British election has moved from a projected rout for the Conservatives to a toss-up. Voters are giving second thoughts to Labour, and to the feisty party to Labour’s left–the Liberal Democrats. The Liberal Democrats are surging in the polls thanks to a strong populist message and a buoyant performance in the first televised debate by a friend of The Nation–Liberal Democrat party leader and ex-Nation intern Nick Clegg. Clegg, who worked in journalism for several years after interning with The Nation in 1990, has campaigned on a platform that would reform the tax code, reform the financial sector, invest in green collar jobs and crack-down on corruption.
As John Nichols wrote this week, the election in England is proof that opening up debates to third parties can make a difference. But perhaps more importantly, the election in England could provide a model for some wavering Democrats in 2010 and 2012. The Liberal Democrats are running as true progressives, promising to reform the political process and to deliver on a robust package of investments in England’s future. By running to the left, instead of the center, they may hang the election, and force Labour or the Tories into a coalition government.
If you want to be the head of a surging political party in England some day, we’re starting our search for Fall 2010 interns now. Apply here.
Also this week:
Earth To Congress …
As the threat posed by climate change has grown, The Nation has scaled up its coverage dramatically of global warming, conservation, energy, green jobs and the environment. Our redesigned website will have a whole section on environmental issues, and our print edition this week is devoted to Earth Day, and the debate of what we do now about climate change. In the issue Mark Hertsgaard and Johann Hari look at the repercussions of "climate-gate," while Christian Parenti argues that Congress needs to hold strong on the one position that may actually make a difference: preserve the EPA’s right to limit carbon emissions. You should also check out our lead editorial, where we raise the serious possibility that the current climate legislation could do more harm than good.
You should also see our slideshow, which examines the threat posed by climate change.
The Breakdown with Chris Hayes …
Could the Massey Mine disaster have been prevented? And could it be a catalyst for change before the next Massey happens? In this edition of The Breakdown, The Nation‘s Chris Hayes is joined by renowned Charleston Gazette reporter Ken Ward Jr. for a primer on what went wrong, and how to fix it. Listen here:
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Jonathan Schell on Obama’s Nuclear Agenda …
Earlier this week, President Obama met with more than forty of the world’s leaders to launch a new global effort to prevent nuclear terrorism. Jonathan Schell joined WNYC’s Brian Lehrer on Tuesday to discuss the threat of loose nukes and the efficacy of President Obama’s diplomacy. Listen here:
Finally this week: Did you get your Media Fix? The Nation’s new blogger Greg Mitchell will launch his new blog on media & politics, "Media Fix" next week, but in the meantime you can get a sneak preview on Twitter.
Thanks for reading.