As we enter an election year perhaps the real issues may be smuggled onto our television screens via comedy and entertainment, whilst the news media which is supposed to inform us simply keeps the debate within certain parameters.
Following an appearance at the Edinburgh Festival this year, Jeremy Paxman remarked that it was “almost impossible to exaggerate the public’s contempt for politicians.” This is probably true and much of that scorn is of politicians' own making.
#CameronMustGo - the hashtag trended on Twitter across the weekend, beginning in the aftermath of Mark Reckless' victory in the Rochester and Strood by-election and continues to date (26 November 2014), having collected over 400,000 contributions from politicians, celebrities, journalists and citizens.
Tomorrow (19 September 2014) it will be exactly eight months until the United Kingdom general election. It is also the day on which the provisions of the new Lobbying Act come into force, imposing significant restrictions on how charities, NGOs and other non-party organisations are seen to campaign for their causes and concerns during this designated pre-election period.
Good science-based predictions are powerful, says Graeme Smith, Reader in Public Theology at the University of Chichester. But given that politics is a human activity, he disagrees with Rorty that those in the humanities cannot do it as well. Turning humanities-based soothsayer for a moment, Dr Smith sets out the reasons why he thinks that the Labour Party will (just) form the next government at Westminster, concluding: "you read it here first."
Neither fundamentalism nor functionalism offer a way forward for the churches today in terms of their public witness and political engagement, says Simon Barrow. The different stances taken by church bodies in the 2010 general election suggest important lessons for the future.