Daily Archives: February 8, 2017

The process of Brexit: what comes next?

The Constitution Unit Blog

me 2015 (large)

In a new report published jointly by the Constitution Unit and the UCL European Institute, Alan Renwick examines what the process of Brexit is likely to look like over the coming weeks, months, and years. Here he summarises five key lessons.

wp2_arenwick_front_coverThe phoney war around Brexit is almost over. For months, two immediate questions have dominated discussions: How can Article 50 be triggered? And what sort of deal will ministers seek? The Supreme Court’s ruling on 24 January answered the first question. We know much more now about the second through Theresa May’s Lancaster House speech and last Thursday’s white paper. The Article 50 bill is being debate in parliament. By the end of March – if the government gets its way – we will be entering a new phase in the process.

The question is: What comes next? Can the government deliver on its wish list? Can parliament…

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Why satirists can’t touch Trump

Nick Cohen: Writing from London

Standpoint November 2016

“Are you not entertained?” boomed Alec Baldwin as he played Donald Trump on the US comedy show Saturday Night Live. We ought to have been. Baldwin’s Trump was a puffy-eyed pervert. He loomed over the actress playing Hillary Clinton like a rapist stalking a victim. He was entitled, bigoted and stupid. Baldwin’s satire appeared so good that the real Donald Trump tweeted: “Time to retire the boring and unfunny show. Alec Baldwin portrayal stinks. Media rigging election!”

It seemed the ultimate compliment at a time when comedians appear to have replaced poets to become Shelley’s unacknowledged legislators of the world. No novelist, let alone a mere poet, can fill stadiums as he or she delivers a take on current affairs. After a scandal breaks no one thinks, “I must hear what Zadie Smith has to say.” Not the way they think, “I can’t wait to see how…

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How Economic Populism Works…

Mostly Economics

Prof Andrew Velasco cautions against rising economc populism. He says though there are no immediatesigns of stress post Brexit and Trump against expectations but in long run things will turn around for worse. How long is anybody’s guess:

In the United States, academic economists repeatedly warned that Trump’s economic plans were little short of lunacy, and in the aftermath of his shocking election victory, some prophesied immediate economic catastrophe. Since then, the stock market has reached record heights, commodity prices have recovered, and forecasts of US economic growth keep rising.

Have the pundits been smoking something? Or have Trump and pro-Brexit leader Nigel Farage abrogated the principles of introductory macroeconomics?

Nothing of the sort. But to understand the effects of populist policies, one must first understand their logic. In a classic paper, Sebastian Edwards of UCLA and the late Rudiger Dornbusch of MIT define economic populism as “an…

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Remembering Hans Rosling

Michael Sandberg's Data Visualization Blog



It is with great sadness I blog today about the passing of Hans Rosling at the age of 68. Mr. Rosling was a World-famous Swedish statistician know for his famous TED talks. He was a Professor of Global Health and a true pioneer in his field, acclaimed for his creative use of data to help in his research of health-related issues.

The unassuming professor was put into the World spotlight after he gave his famous TED Talk, ‘Stats that reshape your worldview.’ The various postings of his YouTube video have been viewed by millions of people around the World. His entertaining and easy to understand presentations won him the title of “the man in whose hands data sings.”

“Fame is easy to acquire, impact is much more difficult.”

Time magazine included him in its 2012 list of the world’s 100 most influential people. When asked about his celebrity status, Rosling said: “Fame…

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