Friday, 21 December 2018

Brexit – "Why I don’t, never have, and never will trust the people"

Matthew Parris, writing in the Spectator magazine, 15 December 2018:


This is his reason for supporting those politicians of all parties, civil servants and media persons who want to ignore the Brexit referendum result.

Mr Parris has done us a great service, as he always does, by being so clear and open. And amusing – he quotes Arthur Balfour: "I have the greatest respect for the Conservative party conference, but I would no more consult it on a matter of high policy than I would my valet".

Tuesday, 18 December 2018

Brexit – cast your mind back 212 years to Napoleon and the continental system

According to today's Times newspaper:


2½ years late, as they say in the accompanying article, "Colin Clark, a Scottish Conservative MP, has said contingency planning should have started immediately after the vote in 2016", but better late than never.

Mr Clark is not alone in his views, several respectable people believe that is and always has been the obvious approach ...

... but the Chancellor of the Exchequer, Philip Hammond, is quoted elsewhere as saying that "what they were doing must be seen as a precaution, not a policy challenge. He warned that the idea of a managed no deal was a ‘unicorn’ ...".

Who's right?

The respectable people or the Chancellor?

Thursday, 13 December 2018

RIP IDA – LSE Prof sells CGD a pup

No need to say it, it goes without saying, it should be obvious to all but,
just in case it isn't obvious to all,
IDA is dead.

IDA, now known as "GOV.UK Verify (RIP)",
is the Cabinet Office Identity Assurance programme.
And it's dead.

"If Verify is the answer, what was the question?"

The Law Commission: "Verify does not currently ensure that the person entering the information
is in fact the person he or she is purporting to be;
rather it focuses on verifying that the person exists" (para.6.67/p.119)


May 2013, and Alan Gelb and Julia Clark of the Center for Global Development publish a report on biometrics. Not so much a report as an uncritical re-hash of the marketing material used by the biometrics industry. The industry that owes so much to astrology.

It is possible that you had forgotten.

November 2018, and the CGD publish an odd report on GOV.UK Verify (RIP) with a preface by the same Alan Gelb. At least, one assumes that it's the same Alan Gelb.