It was right to be here at the March for the Alternative (http://marchforthealternative.org.uk/) today, but this was not the moment when the tide turned. There were too many subtexts; too fragmented an agenda for that.
A wide range of controversies have followed the 2011 census, which is supposed to be completed on 27 March or shortly thereafter. Perhaps the largest is the involvement of multinational arms producer and dealer Lockheed as the main processing contractor. There are also fears for the security of the data, which government lawyers have failed fully to address. And there has been strong criticism around the 'religion' question.
The strongly pro-government sections of the UK media, not least the Mail and Express, will by tonight - in all probability - be fulminating about the "thugs and trouble-makers" who have taken to the capital's streets to show that the alternative to a massive delayering of the national and local state and swingeing cuts in public services is... well, hooliganism. This will be the case even if it is tiny handful who misbehave, and in spite of the fact that hundreds of thousands will peacefully join the TUC-led march against the cuts, and their impact on the poorest and most vulnerable in society.
The Institute for Fiscal Studies (IFS) cannot be accused of being a radical think-tank, but its probing of the government's economic policies since May 2010 has been shaped by a social and environmental awareness (it has cooperated with businesses and researchers on a 'green budget') and by a determination to move below the surface of political posturing to examine what the data is and how it is being used. The picture it offers is rather different to the coalition's spin.
The 2011 Budget offers useful cover for the central deceit of the government’s economic strategy, says Simon Barrow – which is that massive cuts in the public sector and in the local and national state are “unavoidable” and “necessary” to eliminate Britain’s massive deficit.
Do not be fooled by the scraps from the table in Chancellor Osborne's 2011 budget, says Urban Forum chief executive, Toby Blume, analysing the implications for charities, enterprise, environment, planning and poverty. Sadly, the real damage has already been done.