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The political magazine of Caterham School

Spring 2016

Cover photo: Stefan Rousseau/PA

Ladies and Gentlemen, welcome to Preview 2016! Since its inception in 1999 as a means for pupils to openly express political views, Preview has developed into Caterham School’s most renowned publication, growing year on year. Preview is run entirely by students, with our team of Sixth Formers working diligently since October to bring together the finished project you hold in your hands! This year, we feel that we have taken Preview to the next level, creating a magazine that is bigger and better than ever! We have more articles and artwork than ever before, and some of our most high profile contributors to date. Even Nick Clegg follows Preview on Twitter! Today we face a world more divided than ever. From East to West, the mentality of us versus them is more prominent now than it ever has been, turing neighbour on neighbour and splitting nations in two. In America, political parties have evolved into “alien tribes”, and even here in Britain, there is an impeding left wing purge of the Labour Party and the developing schism in the Conservatives between Europhiles and Eurosceptics, even round the cabinet table where collective responsibility has been abandoned. Arguably, neither nation has experienced partisan divisions to this extent in living memory, and perhaps even in history. Let us not forget of course, that the Russia-Ukraine crisis continues to rumble on, with the looming spectre of ISIS in the Middle East raising new security concerns daily and on a global scale. Oh, and the greatest migration crisis Europe has ever experienced to boot. These are truly turbulent times we live in. Perhaps then, in the face of such adversity, it is more important than ever to remember the values central to Preview. The principles of freedom of speech, freedom of expression and open, full, free and frank debate are perhaps more crucial than ever as our generation looks to shape the future, particularly when there are those at large who would seek to deny us these rights. It has been a pleasure and a privilege to have headed up such a fantastic and enthusiastic team, and my sincere thanks to all for all their extremely hard work and effort. We do hope you enjoy! Jack Medlock, Editor

CONTENTS STARS & STRIPES 8 The Right Thing The Wrong Way? Jack Medlock 11 Scalia The Legacy Of A Conservative Bulldog Mr Toby Cooper 12 America’s Deadliest Weapon: Propaganda Leyla Gimalieva 14 Top Trumps 16 How Much Does It Cost To Become President Of The United States? Angus Whitfield 18 The Appeal Of The Donald Mr Toby Cooper

GLOBETROTTING 22 Erdogan - From The Sidelines To Centre Stage Dan Davidson 24 Why Do Opinion Polls Sometimes Portray The ‘Wrong’ Opinion? Charlotte Kail 27 How Much Longer Can Jacob Zuma Last? Hasan Moosa 30 Ideologs Mr Tom Murphy 32 Albania: Corrupt To Correct Edona Kurti

CONTINENTAL SHIFT 37 The Powerful and Unaccountable Mr Douglas Carswell MP 38 Why 2016 Needs To Be The Year EU Leaders Stand Together In Solidarity & Compassion Eleanor Maskatiya 40 Paris The Truth Behind The Tragedy Melissa Berry 42 The Economic Case For Leaving The EU Ruth Lea CBE

QUEEN & COUNTRY 46 Trident - The Ultimate Insurance Policy Ollie Locket 49 George Osborne Cares 50 Why Are Religious Minorities Unrepresented In The “Fair And Democratic” UK Political System? Clare Wandless 52 Less Spoonfuls Of Sugar? Sophie Edmunds 54 Snowden’s Stigma A Case For Modern Surveillance Matt Lee 56 The Lack Of Help And Reduction In Funds To The NHS Mental Health Care Service In The UK. Nadine Greenhalgh 58 The Tax On Justice Lucy Etheridge 62 Why Are The Majority Of Rapists Not Convicted? Gabby Criscuolo

HEARTS & MINDS 66 Should James Bond Be Black? Dan James 68 In Defence Of Liberalism Lord Verjee 70 A Little More Conversation, Please Tom Gardner 72 The Politics Of Fear Tom Sherlock 74 Is Music The Most Powerful Form Of Rebelion? Annabelle Van Dort

STARS & STRIPES “There is nothing wrong with America that cannot be cured by what is right with America” Bill Clinton

President Obama & Gun Control





e all thought that President Obama’s legacy of controversy was to be centred on Obamacare, that $1.207 trillion expansion of the federal Mediacare budget that has proved so contentious and divisive. However, in January 2016, the Obama Administration went one step further with the announcement of Obama’s landmark executive orders on gun control and gun safety, with second amendment rights having become the most partisan and hotly debated in America today. The President issued the latest of his 227 executive orders in order to attempt to combat violent gun crime in the USA, with particular focus on the infamous ‘gun show loophole’, which has seen numerous previous attempts to combat fail, with watered down gun legislation dying on the floor of the Senate in 2013. The President has ordered that all ‘in the business of selling guns’ will have to carry out mandatory background checks on customers, or else they will lose their license to sell guns. In practice, this means that any vendor of weapons, be it an online salesman, an individual at a gun show or a gun store on the high street will have to inspect criminal records

and mental health records before issuing a gun. Common sense. Background checks will also be introduced for those buying the most dangerous weapons through corporations and trusts, which will greatly reduce criminal access via phoney corporations. Nobody can doubt that the measures suggested by Obama are entirely appropriate and necessary. Those who accuse the President of ‘trampling’ on second amendment rights must surely be regarded as delusional and indeed in a state of denial. Nobody can back a ‘free-for-all’ in the gun trade. Not when over 33,000 Americans die every year as a result. To condone this would go against every citizens right to life, and directly against the duty of care any government has towards its people. In fact, inaction by the government can go so far as to be considered nothing other than gross negligence. This is particularly relevant when compared to Australia, a nation with a history not dissimilar to that of the US. In Oz, after the massacre of 35 tourists at Port Arthur in 1996, the government, led by conservatives no less, decided to act in the face of the worst mass shooting the nations history. Just 12 days later the

government enacted sweeping gun reforms, an unparalleled success, with gun crime negligible and homicide incidents involving guns below 300 a year. Contrast this with the sorry state of affairs in the US. In 2013 the gun lobbies mobilised, and even the most basic expansion of background checks was voted down by Senators addicted to gun lobby cash. And this following the murder of innocent schoolchildren in Newtown. If congress refused to act in such a tragedy, then surely the President would be legitimised in bypassing an ineffective Congress in the interests of the people? He supports this by claiming the authority of the weight of public opinion across the nation. His insistence that 55% of Americans favour stricter gun laws, in his eyes, gives him the authority to bypass the peoples elected representatives. Obama claims that America simply cannot afford to wait “until we have a Congress that’s in line with the majority of Americans”, an understandable assertion. But by the same principle, should the president not be issuing executive orders to make the death penalty compulsory nationally, with the death penalty even more popular at 60% in favour, with



no Congressional action? Public opinion can be no excuse for flouting democracy. The Constitution itself was designed specifically to prevent such waves of popular opinion from corrupting the political system through its complex system of checks and balances, as well as the difficulty in achieving constitutional amendments. Executive orders themselves are by no means a controversial tool. Republican criticism seems somewhat ironic in this respect, with President Obama looking positively sparing in his use of executive orders, with the count (at the time of writing) standing at 224, compared to the 291 used by George W Bush and the mammoth 381 utilised by Ronald Reagan. But it is the nature rather than the quantity of Obama’s latests set of orders that make them so divisive and controversial and ultimately so wholly inappropriate. Despite describing the gun issue as “our shared responsibility”, Obama has decided to act unilaterally and alone, defying the very notion of “we the people” outlined in the Constitution. By isolating his actions the President has failed to build or advance consensus on the issue of guns. Rather than creating co-operation and bipartisan agreement, Obama has merely heightened partisan divisions and intensified the propaganda and lobbying of groups such as the NRA. Just when we thought it was impossible, the President made guns even more political by creating questions over democracy and the legitimacy of gun law. Ultimately this will make his legislation far less effective due to a lack of consensus and agreement, and has compromised any future chances of reaching a comprehensive, common sense agreement. Perhaps even more damming is the fact that just 35% of Americans approve of Obama’s handling of gun policy, with even the number of Democrats standing at a lowly 56%. A clear indication that the President has simply exacerbated the political divide, rather than introducing an effective policy or process. But are Obama’s actions really that damaging? Do they even matter? Executive orders are not a powerful long term legislative tool by any stretch of the imagination. Any of the measures passed by Obama could simply be overturned by the next president who, with an election looming in November, could be highly likely to be a Republican with a gripe to grind. Donald Trump has already pledged to overturn every single executive order issued under Obama. And Obama himself is no stranger to the process, having overturned President GW Bush’s



executive order 13233 in 2009 which had restricted public access to former presidents papers, showing the process to be easy and simple, with temporary measures easily overturned. A legal challenge is also entirely inevitable, which potentially would have the same outcome. The Supreme Court has shown a willingness to overturn executive orders in the past, for example in the case of Alexander v Sondoval, President Clinton’s order 13155, was overturned by the court. However, the importance of a potential legal challenge can not be overstated, as a failure would set a dangerous legal precedent. Should the Supreme Court rule the presidents actions legal, then their very nature would change forever. Future Presidents would be encouraged to act far more independently, and hugely undermine the democratically elected Congress as a legislative body, weakening the prevention of tyranny as the cornerstone of the US constitution. In 2008, Obama campaigned under the banner of ‘change’, declaring “for that is the true genius of America - that America can change”. Perhaps his latest actions are a step too far.

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The Legacy of a Conservative Bulldog Mr Toby Cooper


he death of Justice Antonin Scalia on 13th February 2016 was almost instantly followed by partisan bickering over his replacement on the American Supreme Court. Yet, in the rush to replace him, many are overlooking his contribution to American jurisprudence and the lessons that can be learned from his legacy. As Dean of Harvard Law School, Elena Kagan said of Scalia ‘he is the Justice who has had the most important impact over the years on how we think and talk about the law’. Kagan was referring to Scalia’s reintroduction of textualism and originalism as a means of interpreting the US Constitution. This is often seen as a conservative philosophy, which in many ways it was, coming as it did in reaction to the activism of the Warren and Burger Courts. Scalia was avowedly a conservative and his rulings in many cases, such as Bush v Gore and DC v Heller, show this, but his own philosophy meant he was not always as clearly conservative as people tend to think. While Scalia spent his later years touring America proclaiming that the Constitution is ‘dead, dead, dead’ his philosophy of originalism

still required interpretation as the original values were applied to modern situations. That is why, in Texas v Johnson in 1989, Scalia joined the opinion of the Court written by the liberal hero William Brennan and joined by Thurgood Marshall, in striking down various bans on flag burning. Rather than mimicking the Hungarian or Israeli Supreme Courts, who see their job as simply to decide what is right without any other limiting factor, or the liberal activism practiced by Brennan, Scalia believed that originalism was essential in restricting the power of the judiciary, even when he disliked the ruling; Scalia did not approve of flag burning, but he accepted a person’s right to do so under the first amendment. The revival of textualism as a judicial philosophy is likely to be one lasting achievement, even if it does not continue in the way Scalia envisaged. In more recent cases, Scalia wrote opinions that showed a more liberal side. In US v Jones in 2012, Scalia wrote an opinion stating that the government could not attach GPS tracking devices to a suspect’s car without a warrant. In 2013, in

Florida v Jardine, Scalia wrote an opinion, joined by Thomas, Ginsburg, Kagan and Sotomayor, that stated the police could not march a sniffer dog up to a house without first obtaining a warrant. When it came to the first and fourth amendments, Scalia was as much a liberal as anyone on the Court. This should be the major concern for those who support a liberal agenda in America. With Scalia’s death, originalism as an active philosophy is in decline, but it is infinitely more preferable than the legal realism of Alito, who makes rulings based on his personal preferences, rather than on the original values of the constitution. Finally, in the partisan world of modern politics, perhaps Scalia’s most lasting legacy is the idea that you can reach across the aisle and be friends with those with whom you disagree. Scalia may have actively disagreed over constitutional interpretation with Ginsburg and Kagan, but he would also go to the opera with Ginsburg or duck hunting with Kagan. In the modern partisan world of politics in Washington, showing that political adversaries can still be friends, is the most important legacy of the life of Justice Antonin Scalia. PREVIEW


“Reality exists in the human mind, and nowhere else.” George Orwell, 1984

t s America e i l d a ’s de weapon: propaganda Leyla Gimalieva


n the age of atomic bombs, when an entire population can be wiped out in seconds, one might think that no deadlier power exists. Propaganda, however, can be a far more powerful weapon if it is used correctly. American politicians have long since realised that real power is “in tearing human minds to pieces and putting them together again in new shapes of your own choosing” (Orwell, 1984). If an atomic bomb can kill thousands, propaganda can make millions



forget about those killings. Take the murder of 300,000 Japanese civilians in Hiroshima and Nagasaki with the sole purpose of showing off in front of the Soviet Union. No official apology followed, no compensation was paid, no condemnation expressed. Even the doctors sent by the U.S. merely arrived in the affected area to document the effectiveness of the bomb, to note down just how much of a child’s body was burnt by the explosion and to nod with satisfaction. The 6th and 9th of

August marked the anniversary of the war crime, yet no one saw Barack Obama catching a flight to Japan to attend the memorial. Even at the memorial itself, no one dares to mention the name of the country that elicited so much suffering on innocent civilians, because, oh, that would imply that America is a perpetrator of a major war crime. No, we can’t have that. Unfortunately, Hiroshima and Nagasaki weren’t the only atrocities committed by the U.S. On 16th

March 1968, American Charlie Company killed 504 Vietnamese civilians in the village of My Lai, including 17 pregnant women, 173 children and 60 elderly persons. The massacre was part of the bloody war waged by America in Vietnam, as a result of which, during the year 1966 alone, 130,000 million bombs were dropped, 80% of which fell on the civilian population. No means were spared, with U.S. army using chemicals to destroy forests and plantations and helicopters razing whole villages to the ground with machine gun ridges of 200 bullets an hour. The epitome of the war, however, became the mass murder of 504 civilians in the space of four hours performed by America’s best and brightest (or more precisely “the best company in the battalion”as noted by Captain Medina). Babies were torn apart from their mothers, teenage girls raped and mutilated, a toddler thrown into a ditch and shot. Proudly one of the soldiers exclaimed: “From shooting them to...cutting out their tongue, I did it”. It took a whole year for the news of the massacre to reach the media, and, with great unwillingness, Lt. William Calley was tried and sentenced. No one else was held accountable under the doctrine of command responsibility, but even Calley was released just threeand-a-half years later. Three-anda-half years for the murder of 504 people-reasonable sentence, is it not? If victims of My Lai were at least fortunate enough to receive some sympathy from the public, those of My Khe were not. On the same day as My Lai, another massacre took place not very far from the the My Lai village. In My Khe, American Bravo Company slaughtered more than 90 women and children. Two massacres in

one day would surely be too much for the American public; so, out of paternalistic concerns, the government decided not to release the story. Only a few decades later, pictures of American guards shamelessly abusing Iraqi prisoners in Abu Ghraib prison somehow found their way into the media. It was later discovered that Muslim prisoners were fed only pork and alcohol during the month of Ramadan, inmates were made to crawl on their fours and bark, they were beaten, stripped naked, raped, and sodomised with phosphoric light to name only a

However, we live in a time worse than that imagined by George Orwell in 1949 as a dystopian future. Nowadays, he who controls the present controls it almost universally, and not simply in the imagined land of Oceania. He who controls the present can make several million people completely unaware of what is going on in a neighbouring country. For instance, we still know nothing about who shot down MH17. By this I mean facts, not allegations cast at Russia while the plane was still in the air. Why is the investigation taking so long? Why isn’t America providing its satellite images? Where is the air traffic controller who was navigating the plane? Can the American propaganda machine really be so powerful as to suppress the wishes of the relatives of those who died in that terrible accident to know the name of their murderers?

few. One of the prisoners recalls that when he enquired after the time to do his prayer, the guard handcuffed him and hang him up on the iron bar so his feet could not touch the floor and left him in that position for five hours. The guards collected a whole disk of trophy photos which they circulated around the prison until Joe Darby exposed the scandal. Had it not been for his desperate efforts, the public would never have gained an insight into the life at Abu Ghraib. The pictures might have made a lot of noise at the time, but by now it seems to have evaporated from the minds of the public. Again, the Orwellian principle of “He who controls the present controls the past” holds true.

It has been counted that America has started at least seven wars since World War Two, but all accounts forget to mention the information war that has been continuous ever since, and probably even before, the Cold War. No number of tanks or nuclear warheads can help a country win this war or even prevent itself against the attack; rather, the opposite is true. The more powerful a country is militarily, the more likely it is to become the subject of a media attack. It is a war in which all of us are casualties, victims of an informational blockade, held behind a wall of lies about our fellow human beings. Parts of history just seem to have been erased from people’s minds, leaving those who still remember feel rather like Winston from Orwell’s 1984, wondering whether it is you or the rest of the world that has gone insane. PREVIEW





National profile: Wife of Bill


Wealth: Shhh…


Crowd Pleaser: Old women


Special Ability: Secure email server

surrender your card

National profile: The American Lord Sug


Wealth: ‘Huuuuge’


Wealth: Wealth is a capitalist deception


Crowd Pleaser: Those who have felt the Bern


Special Ability: The Bern

Special Ability: Prov ocation


eliminates all

National profile: Good looking Republican


Wealth: Backed by the corporations


Crowd Pleaser: the establishment


Special Ability: Repetition

National profile: Donald Trump but Cuban


Crowd Pleaser: Draw s 100 depends who your aski 0’s but ng

defeats outsiders

National profile: Mar

crowds to please Crowd Pleaser: No sibility

Special Ability: Invi

Wealth: American opportunity!

7 7

Special Ability: Bible bashing


National profile: (Whispered) He’s a Bush



Wealth: PACs a punch



Crowd Pleaser: “Please clap”


National profile: Neurosurgeon lacking a brain


Wealth: of knowledge Crowd Pleaser: First time voters

Tie with Jeb


betters Bush


Crowd Pleaser: Tea Party evangelicals

Special Ability: Peaking too soon


ws? Wealth: Who kno

eliminates all



tin O’who?

National profile: Grandpa down with the kids

Special Ability: Losing

Tie with Carson



* * * * *

N O I L L I 1B


? N I A G R A B L A I


How much does it cost to become President of the United States? Angus Whitfield


he most powerful man in the world. Is this a title that can be bought? In Western societies where leaders are elected many believe we have fair democratic systems, however when scrutinised in greater detail it becomes clear that the US system of electing a president is in desperate need of reform. The most significant flaw in the US system of elections is the simple principle that if you have a larger ‘war chest’ than your opponent you will win your respective election. Obama and Romney in the 2012 presidential 16


race in total raised over two billion US dollars, with Obama raising 1072 million dollars and Romney a mere 992 million dollars. In order to become a congressman the honest minimum requirement is a couple of million dollars and if you want to become a senator? 20 million spare dollars? Without that, forget it. The simple fact that large sums of money are required to be successful in U.S politics undermines the idea that America is the land of opportunity. A land of opportunity would be one in which anybody has the capability of succeeding on a political scale as opposed to a small minority

of wealthy individuals. With the Supreme Court removing limits on the quantity of cash corporations, individuals and unions can spend during election cycles money has become the cornerstone of US elections. US elections are exclusively open to the wealthy and higher end levels of society, which flies in the face of the premise behind a democratic system, which is that it includes every member of society regardless of race, gender, sexuality or religion. In congress 54.7% of the members are protestant and 30% are catholic.

Only 27 representatives and one senator do not have a degree from a university, furthermore a tiny percentage at 9.5% of Congress being African American. The United States is said to be the land of the free and home to ‘The American Dream’ where anything is possible, and despite the former most wealthy nation on the planet making leaps and bounds in terms of racial and sexual segregation, it remains evident that within the USA, being a white middle aged man is still seen by many as the desired stereotype for a representative, senator or president, hardly setting the standard for an effective representative democracy, where hard work can achieve any goal. It can be argued that the current system decreases the choice for voters. The inaccessible two party system means in almost every single presidential election the choice is between two candidates who have got to that stage of the election process with the help of big money backers and huge fundraising efforts. The most effective example of a candidate failing due to a lack of funds is Scott Walker. Walker was seen by many as the front runner in the Republican Party for the nomination in the 2016 election. Trip Gabriel from The New York Times described Walker as having “quickly vaulted into the top tier of likely candidates in the Republican presidential race”. After being a front runner, Walker dropped out on September 21st 2015, due to falling financial support. Walker

was seen by many as the best suited candidate for president and yet due to the lack of financial backing his campaign was quickly thwarted, simply unable to compete with wealthier rivals. In the USA there are some of the best and most direct forms of democracy that many praise. Initiatives in particular are very popular, with 94 proposed in the state of California alone in 2015. These are petitions which once have received a certain number of signatures can force a public vote.

What can be an extremely useful way of communities uniting to raise certain issues can also be impossible for a group lacking the finance to try and promote issues affecting them. Firstly, initiatives are not in place on a national scale, only a state scale. In Maine, one initiative failed regarding the banning of bear hunting. The supporters of the initiative had a relatively large amount of financial backing and had confidence in the passing of the initiative yet simply not

enough money was available to gain sufficient backing. In contrast to this ‘wild west’ state of affairs in US electoral spending, around 45.5 million pounds was the total spending for the 2015 UK General Election. In the 2014 midterms, not even a general election proper, 4 billion US dollars were spent. In the 2012 election over $7 billion were spent in an attempt to gain the presidency. Many argue that these larger spending levels should be expected from a country which is around 38 times larger, but despite the 2010 Supreme Court ruling in the case of Citizens United vs FEC allowing unlimited spending by super PACS the huge rising price of presidential races has been an ongoing situation for many years. The emergence of potential candidates such as Republican Donald J Trump with a net worth $4.5 billion has only compounded the issue. A man with no political background whatsoever is in a serious position to win the republican primaries, a man described on Wikipedia as an “American business magnate, investor, author, television personality” but not a politician. At the time of writing Trump holds a 10% lead in the Republican polls and we should not be surprised if on the 1st of January 2017 Trump is one of the most powerful men in the world. All because of money. PREVIEW





atching the Backbench Business Committee in the UK Parliament debate a petition to ban Trump from the UK, I was reminded of Trump’s assertions that people use him to gain the media spotlight for themselves. Why else would so much media attention be given to this debate? Perhaps because 579,348 had signed an online-petition to ban Trump from the UK? Trump clearly inspires visceral hatred across the UK. He is not even well supported by the party he is running to represent in the USA. So why is he proving such as hit with voters in the American primaries and what can explain the anti-hero popularity of the Donald? The most obvious explanation is his appeal as an outsider. With many American’s frustrated by the seeming inability of Washington to get anything done, with wealthy interest groups lobbying for special perks while the average American suffers, it is no surprise that outsider candidates should be doing so well in the early primaries. Unlike the other leading ‘outsiders’ Sanders and Cruz, Trump has not been serving in the Senate and as a billionaire is funding his own campaign. This removes him from the taint of corruption and the general antipathy to Congress. The bad news for the Republican party is that Trump is drawing his support from across the Republican factions, not just a small committed faction, like Ted Cruz. In a recent WSJ/NBC poll, 46% of centrist Republicans could see themselves voting for Trump, rising to 59% of evangelicals, 64% among Libertarians and 71% among fiscal conservatives and Tea Partiers. So while the other candidates are targeting support from just one of these groups, Trump is reaching out and appealing to all of them, which explains why he is able to pick up such a large share of the vote.

With such broad appeal across the Republican Party, surely the Donald’s success must be the result of his policies? Here Trump offers a selection of tasty morsels which may not satisfy anyone, but at least offer something pleasant for everyone; Trump deflects on abortion but wants to overturn Obergefell; he wants to reduce general taxation but increase taxation on the super-rich and eradicate loopholes; Trump wants to balance the budget but at the same time massively increase spending on the military and leave social security as it is; Trump wants to decentralise education but improve spending on mental health whilst also

fracking across New York state; and of course, he’s going to have that big wall built across America’s southern border and ban all Muslims from the USA. As a coherent plan, this policy list has some flaws, but it makes sense if you understand a general mood of unhappiness and discontent across America and the feeling that their once great superpower is being overtaken and outshone. Of course, Trump’s policies mean he plans to eliminate a trillion-dollar deficit, whilst lowering taxes and actually expanding the two biggest government expenditures. How on Earth can he make this work? In this, Trump is remarkably candid: he doesn’t know, yet. Unlike other candidates, he does not claim to have the solutions, but as a prov-

en businessman, he knows how to find them; lock the right people in a room until they come up with the right answers. To the politically minded, this seems ridiculous, but to pro-business America, Trump’s continuing analogy of the USA as a business that needs an ‘executive in chief’ has a certain appeal. As a businessman, he points to his many building projects around the world (helpfully listed at the back of his book) and explains how he cut costs and increased profits whilst maintaining standards. If you can do it with a golf course, why not with a country? This simple analogy helps Trump reach out to many ordinary Americans who do not care about politics or the broader issues, but want simple solutions to the problems they believe are afflicting America. Trump’s slogan ‘Make America Great Again’ taps into this mood of anger at the current situation many American’s find themselves in and helps to explain his appeal. The key to the appeal of the Donald is a combination of these factors: a committed outsider, independently wealthy, a media star with a strong image, offering something to all American’s, with simple analogies and the promise to make America great again. This is very similar to Reagan’s appeal in 1980, but while Reagan was the polished actor who rose above the fray, Trump’s anger and scorn have made him a pantomime villain in the current narrative. That is why, even if he does win the Republican nomination, Americans are unlikely to elect him as their next president. While the Republicans’ cannot win with Trump as their candidate, their candidate cannot win without Trump’s supporters. If the Republican’s hope to win the Presidential election, they need to find their own way of tapping into the appeal of the Donald. PREVIEW


GLOBETROTTING “Everywhere that freedom stirs, let tyrants fear” George W. Bush


s 2015 passes, it can be safely said that the eyes of the world were firmly on the Middle East and, at the heart, Syria, with its civil war and the ensuing refugee crisis. The media has reported on all the principal actors in the conflict, from Assad to Putin, but one man has largely escaped the limelight. Turkish President Recap Tayyip Erdogan, a man whose influence over this situation is rather concerning, has been almost entirely ignored by the media.

and the crucial leaving point for refugees venturing into Europe. Turkey is also a NATO member and aspires to join the EU.

Turkey sits on the natural border between Europe and Asia, straddling the Bosphorus straits and neighbouring Syria on its southern border. It is made up mostly of Sunni Muslims except for the lower part of the country, with its not-so-insignificant Kurdish minority, a fact that I shall return to later. Turkey has also become home to 2 million Syrian refugees

Erdogan’s support of the Islamic State (IS) is an accusation that has been alluded to many times, though no Western leader has been bold enough to confront him directly. These suspicions have been underpinned by the fact that Erdogan has willingly allowed weapons and belligerents destined for IS to pass through Turkey unopposed. It is truly con-



During the last few years, the Turkish President, Erdogan, has shown a real contempt for the democracy that his predecessors fought to attain, with numerous allegations of corruption and electoral fraud. Despite his many failings, for the purpose of this article, I shall focus solely on his unsettling involvement in Syria.

cerning that Turkey, as a NATO nation, condones a terrorist group like IS. There have also been numerous accounts of the Turkish government aiding IS in different ways, from supplying ammunition to bombing IS enemies; perhaps the most condemning of which has been the text messages between an IS commander and Turkish intelligence agents. The evidence is overwhelming that Turkey has been assisting IS; the real question is why? Some say that Erdogan shares some similar beliefs with IS, whilst others suggest he sees them merely as a means of oppressing the Kurdish people. We cannot be sure, but it is clear that his support of this group is dangerous, and the fact that he has not been confronted by the West is shameful. Previously I have referred to Erdogan’s distrust of the Kurdish

ERDOGAN From the sidelines to centre stage

Dan Davidson

people, a fact that he does not hide. Seven pro-Kurdish rights parties have been banned and some of their MPs arrested for treason. Erdogan and his party, AKP, fear that any growth in the strength of Kurdish forces in Iraq and Syria could spill over into Turkey and cause a renewal of calls for independence. These fears are not completely unjustifiable, for Turkish Kurds have been demanding freedom from Turkey for decades, even fighting a war in an attempt to gain it. It therefore came as unwelcome news that the US and its allies would be directly arming Kurdish forces in Iraq and Syria, thus suggesting that the West supports the Kurdish belief in self-determination. So in July in an attempt to limit the growing strength of the Kurds, Erdogan launched savage bombing raids on them, killing scores of civilians. It should be of concern to all

Westerners that Erdogan has attacked our closest allies, and the only group that share our principles of freedom and democracy in Syria and Iraq; something that arguably Erdogan does not even share. If at this point you are asking yourself why the West has not intervened to stop his behaviour, you may be astounded to hear that in fact the West actively supports him. He recently received €3 billion euros from the EU and a promise of a speedy ascension into the EU. In part, the EU has become supportive of Erdogan as an attempt to ensure that the Syrian refugees currently housed in Turkey do not try to venture across the Bosphorus Straits. In recent years there has been a definite rise in support for anti-immigration parties in the EU and the refugee crisis has become a flash point

that has been jumped on by these parties. Therefore EU leaders, fearing refugees in Turkey will join the migration to Europe, thereby exacerbating an already awkward situation for them, have given their support to Erdogan and have looked the other way when it comes to his transgressions. This hence shows that our leaders consider homeless refugees fleeing conflict more dangerous than the man inflaming the crisis. Erdogan, for most of the Syrian civil war, has been in the wings, influencing the war from behind the scenes, though encouragingly in the last few months the global media has begun to shine a light on his actions. We now need to continue to scrutinise his role as a principal actor in the drama and hold him to the high standards that we would expect of a NATO ally and a potential EU member. PREVIEW






itt Romney would have been victorious in the US Presidential election in 2012 according to his campaign polls amongst others, which placed him ahead of Barack Obama. Despite the fact that the 5-point margin separating ‘Moderate Mitt’ and Obama was slim, it highlights how the results of opinion polls can present us with a prediction that does not always match the final results. Similarly, a largely incorrect poll result occurred with the 2015 UK General Election result with the Conservatives achieving what appeared to be a surprising victory over Labour and sweeping clean the widely proclaimed vision of a second coalition government forming within the decade. Although seemingly the Conservatives according to the exit poll would fall short of an overall majority, the end result came as a ‘shock’ to pollsters and the media alike when the Conservatives emerged from the election with a 12-seat majority, with an unforeseen landslide victory for the SNP in Scotland leaving the Labour Party feeling rather miserable and the whole affair making the Liberal Democrats wish they hadn’t wasted their time apologising. There are several reasons for the possible inaccuracy of opinion polls surrounding election results and some of which could prove rather worrying for future elections. The inaccuracy of the 2012 US Presidential election can perhaps be explained by a final change of heart from some voters

or an overestimated turnout for the Republicans. However, the UK General Election in 2015 was so far from the Exit Poll prediction that we can start to doubt the basis from which this result was collected. There is a chance that the Bradley effect, the discrepancies between opinion poll results and voting patterns when a black candidate and a white candidate run against each other, came into play during the 2008

Democratic race between Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama at the New Hampshire Primary. After Obama’s victory at the Iowa Caucus, which involved a public nature of voting, the polls predicted that he would see a landslide victory at the New Hampshire Primary. Clinton’s victory at New Hampshire by 3 percentage points greatly contradicted the poll result and immediately raised questions over whether Obama’s support had dwindled in New Hampshire due to the voters’ ability in contrast to Iowa, to cast their vote privately and therefore could vote for their clear prefer-

ence candidate rather than voting in the way that they felt they should vote to avoid controversy or accusations of voting on the basis of race. This theory in itself has been seen as rather controversial however, and many have claimed that Hillary gained some votes due to her name being the first on the New Hampshire ballot paper- this however seems rather unlikely to have determined her unexpected victory. Another theory for unexpected poll results is the Boomerang theory, which is far more likely to have lost Obama the delegates from New Hampshire. According to Boomerang, if a candidate has a significant lead this can deter potential voters as psychologically there is that belief that their preferred candidate will secure a win with or without their vote and therefore on a larger scale, can knock a front runner from their seemingly predetermined first place position. Obama’s secure victory at Iowa therefore could have perhaps disengaged voters in New Hampshire where the race for their delegates seemed less of a race and more like a one man sprint. All American voters unsurprisingly want to feel like their votes count for something and therefore one big victory could have been responsible for stumping pollsters after the New Hampshire Primary. During the run up to the Scottish Independence Referendum on the 18th September 2014, the polls, although predicting the correct end result of a NO vote, predicted that it would be an incredibly close race for the YES and NO PREVIEW


campaigns with a 5% lead for the rejection of Scottish Independence. Yet when it came to the actual results, the NO campaign came out with a far larger lead with 10.6%. The theory that voters are more enticed to vote when there is a heavily competitive race is supported here, however other factors similar to the public and private voting with Obama and Clinton could reside with the Independence vote. Perhaps, voters were generally pressurised in public polls to portray a want for Independence when actually they privately desired the opposite. Therefore when it came to voting, voters were able to cast for their true preference and this resulted in the overexcitement of a close race predicted by pollsters. Evidence from a new working paper by Neil Malhotra (Stanford’s Graduate School of Business) and David Rothschild (Microsoft Research) highlighted that typically voters show a pattern of

Lydia Self



generally ‘switching sides in an effort to feel accepted and to be part of a winning team’. Although this evidence undermines the theories behind the Obama loss in New Hampshire, there could be some merit to this seen from what has been labeled the ‘Summer of Trump’ where Republican nominee hopeful Donald Trump has soared ahead of his more politically experienced rivals and there he has stayed. It is quite plausible that the media hype stemming from his candidacy is down to the support portrayed in the recent polls, causing more potential voters to reconsider him as a credible candidate. It is equally likely however, that due to the growing controversy surrounding Trump’s outrageous comments, particularly since the IS attacks in Paris, that voters are increasingly cautious in declaring their allegiance to his campaign and in this case, for some, this could cause serious alarm when the idea materialises that Trump’s

lead in the polls might actually be underestimated as people in the primaries, if his support persists can vote in the safety that they remain anonymous. The front runner candidate in this early stage of the election has not always succeeded in gaining the nomination as seen in 1991 for the Democrats when Cuomo led the early polls, however Clinton went on to win the nomination. When therefore answering the question why do opinion polls sometimes present the wrong opinion, it is more down to the changing opinions of voters and also the tendency of voters to remain secretive and therefore deceive the polls into portraying a seemingly exaggerated or wrong result. Based on this, it is anyone’s guess whether the polls will continue to produce surprising results, however this simply makes the process just that bit more exciting.

He’s had 3 Finance Ministers since December, threatened the Tripartite Alliance, and criticised dog walking





he good news for South Africans is that under their constitution Jacob Zuma can’t serve another term. Unfortunately, having won the election in 2014, unless he resigns or is impeached he will be in power until 2019. For many South Africans, this goes to prove the old adage that “no news is good news”. This is a man who is ranked as South Africa’s least favourite person amongst the country’s government leaders, while less than half of South Africans have faith in his decisions according to a survey in December 2015. So can a man so deeply unpopular serve out the rest of his term or will the increase in pressure yield a change before then? For many, the final straw was during the first two weeks of December in 2015, where due to the rapidly decreasing rate of the Rand against other major currencies 28


Zuma fired popular finance minister Nhlanhla Nene replacing him with the relatively unknown David Van Rooyen on the 9th of December. However, after facing a severe backlash for his decision, by the 13th of December Zuma was forced to cave in to the pressure and replace Van Rooyen with the finance minister from 2009 to 2014 Pravin Gordhan, the third minister within a week. Zuma’s error was magnified by the fact that the Rand was sent to record lows and caused the stock market to tumble. Having already been in a poor position on the 8th of December where one Rand equated to twenty two Pounds, within three days that same amount was at twenty four Pounds or sixteen Dollars, at one stage even increasing by 5.4% in a day, the worst figures in over ten years. In the last month at the time of writing, the Rand has stayed be-

tween twenty four and twenty five Pounds, but this still represents an all-time low for South Africa. This has resulted in the prices of basic foods and household products increasing while consumers have been told to limit spending. The man people are blaming for this? Jacob Zuma, with many blaming his decision to fire Nene for making the markets nervous and reflects the faltering way the economy has been managed. South African resident Zambile Sambo said “Here in South Africa we are suffering. We are really suffering. People on the top are playing with people’s lives”. There is no doubt that Zuma has handled the economy very poorly and the decision to fire Nene in a completely executive decision has resulted in his popularity lessening to an even larger extent, so the pressure is certainly building.

Zuma has also been accused of dividing and threatening the Tripartite Alliance. The Alliance was formed in 1990 in order to oppose the apartheid era and Nelson Mandela worked alongside it during his time as President but now Zuma has disconnected the Alliance in a way South Africa has never seen previously. The Alliance is formed between the Congress of South African Trade Unions (COSATU), the South African Communist Party (SACP), and the African National Congress (ANC) which has been the party of every President. Currently the ANC holds a majority in parliament while COSATU and the SACP have not contested any elections in South Africa. However on the 13th of January 2016, Zuma signed the Taxation Laws Amendment Bill which affects the withdrawal of pension funds and have been met with heavy criticism as a result. COSATU says the ANC now run the risk of losing their support in future elections while COSATU spokesman Sizwe Pamla said “By signing this law, the ANC has divided the alliance and isolated workers.” Similarly last year the SACP felt that Zuma had failed to lead the alliance properly and made the ANC weak with the SACP provincial secretary calling the ANC “unstable”. This demonstrates that Zuma has weakened an alliance which was once at the crux of the South African government and threatens to end the Tripartite Alliance completely, only emphasising his incapabilities as leader of South Africa.

still trying to move on from the stereotype of the apartheid era. For example, in 2012 Zuma accused white South Africans of caring more for their pets than humans while also saying that owning, walking and taking a dog to the vet were examples of white culture so Africans should not do these things. This was understandably met with huge uproar, especially after he was quoted as saying “Even if you apply any kind of lotion and straighten your hair you will never be white”. One popular feeling amongst South Africans is that Zuma and the government do not seem to be taking any forward steps but keep addressing the white population with too much focus on the past. There can be no doubting that white South Africans continue to control the majority of the land which has lead to animosity between cultures but the past twenty years were supposed to have brought change to South Africa and move the country alongside other great nations. While the reign of Mandela and Thabo Mbeki saw the country progress, it seems the opposite has occurred under Zuma, and many are calling out for change. Whether this change can happen in the near future is doubtful, especially as the government in South Africa is still highly corrupt, but it seems the country has

experienced enough mishaps in recent years and the people are intent on pushing the country in a new direction as quickly as possible. In conclusion, it is likely that Zuma will at least see out the rest of his term until 2019. While the calls for him to step down have increased, he is still quite safe as President and will remain to be so for the foreseeable future. However there can be no doubt that the country is in need of reform and a new direction to take them forward in the way their people deserve, unfortunately for them it just does not look like that time will come soon. The people have realised that change is necessary. Riots have occurred over universities, the economy is poor, prices will increase and factions are appearing to be larger than ever. For South Africans, their honeymoon period is over, they realise that to take their country forward change is necessary. Hopefully change is coming, but for now it looks like South Africa must endure a few more years with Zuma at the helm before this will happen.

Finally, many South Africans feel that Jacob Zuma attracts negative attention towards their country as they are PREVIEW


Mr Tom Murphy


uccessful politicians rarely do exactly as they wish or say exactly what they feel. They tread a fine line. They must pander to the needs of the ideologs who constitute the core of their support, fund the party machine and provide the willing foot-soldiers who make the thing run. But they cannot forget the ‘soft’ support; those who are inclined towards their views but whose vote is by no means guaranteed, and who are as easily alienated as they are charmed. Pure ideology has generally been best represented by factions within the party such as the Militant Tendency or the Blue Dog Democrats, or by single-issue pressure groups working outside the party but in conjunction with it. It has been the political wisdom that to be successful parties have to be broad churches, and their leaders have to be ecumenical evangelists, as adept at persuading the doubters as enthusing the converted. These politicians are skilled in offending only those whose votes could never be won and who are so unpopular with so many that attacking them is a vote-winner.

western world has thrown all of those certainties into the melting pot. The success of Syriza in Greece, Alex Salmond and Nicola Sturgeon in Scotland, Jeremy Corbyn in Britain, Trump and Sanders in America and Marine Le Pen (favourite to win the first round of the 2017 presidential

their opponents took a leaf from Thatcher’s playbook. Sadly they had fewer cards in their hand. But can this narrow brand of ideological politics really work? Many think it can. I recently had dinner with a group of liberal intellectual Corbynites who really believe that Britain under JC would work. Austerity over, big business put in its place, de-nuked; we would all be in a better place. When I asked how a Greekstyle default or bankruptcy would be avoided with Corbyn and McDonnell at the helm and the purse-strings thrown away, the reply was simple: ‘Borrowing is the answer. Debt isn’t real. It doesn’t matter’. And here we have the issue in a nutshell. The silent minority have become fed up with being sidelined and dictated to by the moderates. Leaders have emerged who have thrown away the rule book and given voice to the cry of the hearts of their core supporters, and the core is really excited. After generations of being continually disappointed in their leaders they are now finally being heard. They don’t want to be cautious. It isn’t about personality. Tsipras, Varoufakis and Sturgeon may be bright lights, but Corbyn and Sanders aren’t. Their

“Politics is the art of the possible, the attainable the art of the next best.”

The recent political revolution which has engulfed much of the 30


Otto von Bismarck

election) in France suggests that the taste for extremism is growing and that ‘one nation’ politics may be on the wane. A throwback to the days of Thatcher? Perhaps. The Corbynite determination to purge the disloyal moderates from the shadow cabinet and even to de-select them if possible is reminiscent of Thatcher’s purge of the ‘wets’. The determination of Tsipras and Varoufakis to take on

popularity is entirely due to their beliefs, not to their personality. And the ideologs are committed, and deaf to opposing arguments. It must work because it’s right. So what do we make of all this? Are we set for an era of politics where we swing from one extreme to the other, with the middle ground becoming an irrelevance, as the fate of the Lib Dems at the last UK election suggested? I doubt it. The problem for the ideologs is twofold. Even if the voice of the moderates can be silenced and ignored, their votes can’t be, and when it comes to a real crunch the moderates wake up and vote in their droves. And hard economic reality will not go away. Debt and the economy are real. They do matter, and they scare people. The numbers have to add up; you can’t bully the bankers. Scotland might vote in numbers for the SNP, but it didn’t vote for independence. Syriza might have won the election, and even the referendum, but they couldn’t change the hearts of Merkel and her bankers. Trump or Sanders might win a nomination (as Corbyn has effectively done) but they won’t win the election that matters. No one should have been surprised that the Tories

won the last election, or that the Scottish referendum came out against independence. In crucial votes with a strong economic undertone the ‘safe’ vote is often understated in the polls. Ultimately, neither the SNP or Labour persuaded the moderates that their hands were safe enough to be entrusted with their country’s economy and future. The ideologs essentially appeal to protestors; to the disenchanted. Their critique of the present is often sharp, but their vision of the future is blurred. The ‘Brexit’ campaigners may satisfy themselves and their supporters by pointing out the many weaknesses of the EU, but they will not satisfy the moderates whose votes they need unless they can present a watertight case that Britain will be safer outside the EU than within it. If they hope to win it’s the future, not the present they need to address. Although the polls may look bad for the ‘stronger-in’ campaign, they need not panic. Finally- Trump, Sanders, Le Pen, Corbyn and the like will not govern, but they have changed the political landscape. The voters are no longer going to be won over by blandness and a flash smile. They want substance; style alone will

not do. As Andy Burnham found out to his cost too late in the day, the radicals have woken up and must be heard; paying lip-service to their demands will no longer do. And as Liz Kendall’s campaign showed, Blairite centrism pleases far too few nowadays. To be successful, parties will have to remain broad coalitions, but the task of the leader will be tougher than ever for the next while. How to keep the hard-liners in the ship without chucking overboard the moderates? They will need exceptional political skill. Cameron is much vilified, but he has shown himself to be very adept at keeping his party together. He will probably steer the Tory ship safely through the EU referendum storm. And when he goes, I suspect that Boris or George, neither of whom are ideologs, will prove much better at it that Jeremy. Politics will remain the art of the possible for a while yet, and the power to persuade, not ideological purity will remain the key quality of a leader. I suspect, though, that the next generation of leaders will need to sharpen their ideological credentials if they hope to survive for long. PREVIEW


Corrupt to Correct Edona Kurti


lbania, a hidden treasure in the Balkans, has rarely been one for gaining a significant place in the global arena of politics. However, its deep and complex political history of communism and corruption proves Albania’s political complexity and paves the way for a more politically correct and fair future. Albania is located in the Mediterranean, neighbouring Greece, Montenegro, Macedonia and Kosovo, with a population of 3.2 million, offering idyllic beaches and a colourful vibrant capital of Tirana whose historical remains give the country that special sense of tradition and patriotism. So why has such a picturesque country suffered so much in having a stable and democratic government like every other western democracy? Communist Albania, initially led by Enver Hoxha, which lasted 32


between the years of 1944 to 1992 came into power when the Albanians elected a new People’s Assembly. However only one party (The Democratic Front) appeared on the electoral list, as the communists utilised propaganda and terror threats to paralyse the opposition, which allowed a guaranteed win of 93% of the votes for Hoxha, with 92% of the electorate turning out to vote. The reign of Hoxha saw political adversaries killed in order to stay in power and the re-shaping of Albania following the Stalin regime as a framework. The population lived in a harsh time of poverty and lack of freedom, as Hoxha ruled Albania with an iron fist. The leader developed good relations with Russia and China during his reign, causing the country to be more globally recognised, and Hoxha released figures suggesting that Albania’s national income

was 29% higher than the world average and 56% higher than the European average during 1960-1970. These figures must be taken with a pinch of salt, as it is important to remember that a controlling, communist leader like Hoxha may not have produced the most credible figures, as economic success over other countries was a priority. After ruling for four decades Hoxha’s death in 1985 saw the continuation of communism by Ramiz Alia, where a little liberalisation was introduced, such as the freedom of travelling abroad, granted in 1990. By 1992 Albanians wanted change and more freedom so elected Sali Berisha of the Democratic Party, who had a vision of creating a more liberal and democratic Albania. Berisha’s vision of liberalism in theory seemed to be perfect and just what Albanians were yearning for and needed, however Berisha’s

plan was poorly executed. Corruption and criminality funded and controlled the government, where the executive ruled every branch, whilst ruining the education system, in which Berisha allowed money laundering within universities which allowed students to buy diplomas instead of fairly earning them through hard work and studying. Under Berisha’s ruling the judiciary became heavily corrupt and unfair, with people being given the opportunity to pay a certain sum of money to remove any crimes they may have been accused of, allowing criminals to gain freedom for a price. Legitimate? I think not. Ironic, isn’t it? How Berisha, leader of the Democratic Party, failed to enforce any democracy in Albania. Change began in 2010 when Edi Rama, leader of the Socialist Party, was elected as Prime Minister with a landslide victory. Rama promised to free the education system of corruption, to reform the judiciary, decrease unemployment, reform the police force, enforce the laws of the constitution and remove any corruption from government. Alongside him stood a very influential figure, Erion Veliaj. Veliaj, who has a degree in Political Science from the Grand Valley State University of Michigan, and a Msc in European Studies from the University of Sussex, proves to be a breath of fresh air for Albanian politics.

At only 36 years old, the youngest influential politician, Veliaj has utilised his experience from studying abroad to bring Western ideologies and modern ideas into Albanian politics. Elected as Mayor of Tirana in 2015, Veliaj has created a work force of well educated young people. It is clear that Veliaj believes the future of Albania rests in the hands of the younger generation, hence why he has put so much effort into reforming the education system and attempting to increase the number of job opportunities for university graduates in Albania.

This political figure has revitalised professional schools, where courses and apprenticeships are now more widely available for those not wanting to attend university, in addition to organising concerts and activities for the youth in Albania to get involved in politics and have their say about their government. However, Veliaj is not only focusing on young adults living in Albania, but also the young Albanian professionals around the world, which has allowed him to create a strong link with Albanian professionals in the UK, who have created their

own UK branch of “FRESSH”, which is an Albanian acronym for “Albanian Euro Socialist Youth Forum”. The FRESSH group, led by 29 year old Elson Bajrakurtaj who is the UK Advisor to the Albanian Minister of Foreign Affairs, has three main targets: to bring together young Albanian professionals in the UK, in order to exchange positive experiences and in turn strengthen their ideas and ambitions, to encourage involvement in the politics of the UK and Albania, and finally to promote Albanian historical, cultural and touristic values, considering the Albanian youth in the UK as the best ambassadors for the country. This group has successfully encouraged Albanian professionals to work closely with Veliaj to share their opinions and influence how the Albanian government is positively developing and modernising, with the next generation in mind. Albania’s political future is looking bright, with all the recent positive changes made by Rama and Veliaj. Although Albania has a long, bumpy road ahead, the country appears to be on the right track to a democratic and accountable government. Albanians remain hopeful that positive change has finally arrived and will transform the country for the better. PREVIEW


CONTINENTAL SHIFT “Nobody in Europe will be abandoned. Nobody in Europe will be excluded. Europe only succeeds if we work together” Angela Merkel

Caterham Rotary Club We are proud to support Caterham School’s 2016 edition of Preview As well as providing a service to the community in Caterham we are also actively involved in raising thousands of pounds for local and international projects

Coming soon

Friday 1 April “The Trumpet & Friends Shall Sound” Woldingham Girls School An evening of short well known pieces from a wide aspect of genres – classical, jazz and popular music presented by musicians who have graduated from the Royal Academy of Music in the last 12 months st

Sunday 3rd July The Caterham Rotary Half Marathon & 10K Redhill Aerodrome and surrounding area. The race will be held under UK Athletics rules and carries a UK Athletics licence


Rotary - Preview B5-2.indd 1



17/02/2016 11:36:18



he European Court of Human Rights has decreed that employers now have the right to read their employees’ private messages. This is a major change to UK law: why is it being made by unelected, unaccountable foreign judges? Whether or not employers should be able to see employees’ personal messages that are sent during work hours is an arguable point. Of course employers expect employees not to use work time for private purposes, or use a private messenger account for work – just ask Hillary Clinton. But employees can also justifiably claim that allowing their boss free access to their personal messages is a direct violation of their private property. There is a case both ways. What can’t be justified is that this is being decided by a handful of unelected officials in Strasbourg. Step back and think about this for a second: the decisions of a foreign court now take precedence over those of both our Parliament and our judges. We have simply surrendered our sovereignty. And for what?

The European Court of Human Rights was set up in the wake of the Second World War. It was meant to protect the people of Europe from appalling persecution by tyrannical governments. But instead it has been co-opted to do the opposite. By overriding national democracies and judiciaries, it has eroded the rights and liberties of the peoples of Europe. We don’t need an international court to determine the relationship between employers and employees. In fact, we don’t need a uniform relationship at all. The solution is freedom of contract: individual employers and employees should have the right to work out their own terms and conditions through bargaining. Restricting that freedom doesn’t preserve our rights, it violates them. If we meekly give up our democracy, sovereignty, and liberty to an unaccountable administrative elite we have learnt nothing from the last century. The ECHR is no different from the EU: it’s time we leave both, and take back our rights





ast year saw the acceleration of the worst humanitarian crisis since the second world war, affecting more than twelve million people. 2016 must become a year of cohesive action - EU leaders can no longer turn their backs on refugees. As long as brutalist regimes remain in place, people will continue to flee countries ravaged by war and violence; Europe’s fortified



borders are putting the most vulnerable people in terrible danger. August 2015 saw the completion of Hungary’s razor wire fence along its 175 kilometre border with Serbia that French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius described as ‘not fit for animals’. Instead of the government assessing asylum claims, the fence either forces refugees to turn back or cut the feet of anyone desperate enough to climb over. With

the completion of the fence and illegal entry being made a criminal offence, refugees became trapped at the Serbian border and were met with tear gas and violence from the Hungarian police. Actions such as these cannot and must not be tolerated and in the coming year the EU’s attitude towards refugees must change, safer routes to Europe must be created. However, not even this shocking incident

pushed EU leaders to take a strong standing on the issue, but instead it was the photo of Aylan Kurdi; in which the three-year-old boy lies dead, face down in the sand on a Turkish beach. As horrific and saddening the image may be, Aylan is just another statistic in the conflict that has killed over 300,000 and forced 4,000,000 Syrians to flee their country since 2011. It should not have taken the tragic death of a young boy to force both governments and citizens to finally open their eyes to the crisis which has been building up over the past four years. The announcements in September 2015 that the EU would begin to take in quotas of refugees was a step forward in addressing and solving the issue, and also reflects a much needed change in thinking. However, the ability to which these quotas will be able to effectively deal with the huge numbers of refugees is questionable. The number of refugees that the EU have agreed to take is far too small, and will be not be sufficient to solve the crisis, considering that the plan is to resettle 120,000 people over two years when, as of September, almost 480,000 had arrived in Europe by boat. The decision made by the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Hungary and Romania not to impose the quotas shows that there are divisions within the EU and this threatens to feed further resentment against the refugees. Moreover, according to figures released in January 2016, nineteen EU countries have not yet relieved Greece or Italy of any asylum seekers. Europe’s response stands in stark contrast to the accelerating nature of the crisis as the daily

arrival of refugees to Greece is now eleven times higher than it was in January 2015. This slow process is compounding the problem. The EU’s September agreement should have given a semblance of order, but instead has only added to the chaos. In 2016 the EU must work as a united body to combat this crisis, and a solution that every country agrees on must be found. 2016 needs to become the year when sustainable and coordinated political solutions are created in order to tackle conflicts in Syria, Libya and the Middle East. Islamic extremism such as Islamic State must be fought with determination and the scaremongering and backlash on refugees and migrants for terrorism must come to an end.

This scaremongering is not just in Europe but across the world, particularly in America where high profile politicians such as Ben Carson have called on Congress to “extinguish” funding for Syrian resettlement programmes. Similarly, Paul Ryan called for a ‘pause’ to the refugee plan when speaking at Capitol Hill in November 2015. He announced “our nation has always been welcoming. But we cannot let terrorists take advantage of our

compassion”. While there may be a chance that the influx of refugees to Europe and America could increase the threat of terrorism, it does not give anyone the right to turn their back on the millions that are in a genuine desperate need of help. 2016 needs to be the year when governments stop blaming refugees for social and economic problems, all forms of racial discrimination must be combatted. There are several strategies that the EU could follow in 2016 in order to solve this serious humanitarian crisis. Perhaps most importantly should be the creation of safe, legal routes into the EU to slow down the spiralling number of refugee deaths. Furthermore, a comprehensive, common European asylum policy which ensures all asylum applications are processed in the same way needs to be produced so that the EU will be able to respond in a coherent fashion. The appalling figures released in January that revealed the slow process of the resettlement of refugees suggests that quotas need to become binding on countries; as well as creating a fairer distribution of refugees, Germany cannot be relied upon so heavily. However, tackling the refugee crisis must not come down to the EU alone. With the enormous number of people needing aid, this is an issue that needs to be addressed by the whole world and therefore routes to countries such as the USA and Canada must also be produced. 2016 has to be the year where compassion and understanding comes before fear and prejudice if we are to find a meaningful situation to this unacceptable and tragic crisis. PREVIEW


PARIS The truth behind the tragedy Melissa Berry The growing presence of the so called ‘Islamic State’ has led to an increased terror threat worldwide, however nowhere more so than France, and more specifically, Paris. In 2015 Paris fell victim to the Charlie Hebdo attacks, and then in November they suffered 40


another serious terror attack, killing 130 people. This raises the question ‘Why Paris?’. What have France done to make themselves the main target of ISIS? Arguably the attacks on Paris were in retaliation to the French attacks on the Islamic State and

its territory. Since September 2014 France has made 283 attacks on Islamic targets in Iraq (at the time of writing) and in October 2015 they broadened their strikes to include Syria. France has been far more active in trying to combat ISIS than any other EU

member state, and so it is easy to understand why ISIS would target Paris above any other western country if revenge was their motive. However, ISIS stated France as one of their main targets before the air strikes began, so revenge can not be the sole cause of these multiple terror attacks. France’s feud with Islamic State goes back further than the air strikes, and so it is possible ISIS are still aggrieved by France’s other interventions. In 2013 France committed armies to Mali, where their involvement was seen to reduce the power of the Jihadi group. It is possible ISIS are still seeking revenge for this. In addition, France supports the attacks on Muslims in central Africa, demonstrating the issues and divisions that exist. There are clearly long running tensions between France and the Muslim community, and it is possible that this tension is responsible for both of the major attacks on Paris. ISIS could be seeking revenge not for what France has done to their own territory, but for what France has done to Muslims worldwide. This tension is not only an issue with Muslims outside of France. Muslims in France are far less integrated than in other Western countries, such as the UK, and feel far more unwanted. This issue is reflected in prison communities; in France Muslims make up 70% of inmates, compared to 14% in England and Wales. The divide is also a major issue for employment, and of the 4.7 million Muslims in France, the majority live in poverty. Many of these live in Parisian banlieues, which has now become a derogatory word, not helping relations. This lack of integration and the clear divisions

in French society could have been the trigger for the attacks as it highlights the major racial tensions which exist between the French and Muslims, and ISIS could be acting to enforce greater integration for fellow Muslims. French authorities have heightened these divisions in recent years by passing legislation that has been interpreted as targeting Muslims. Whereas in most countries there is freedom of religion, in France there is freedom from religious expression, so Church and State are kept entirely separate. As a result of this in 2004 legislation was passed banning headscarves in school, and in 2010 the wearing of burqa face veils in public was banned. This approach is starkly different to Islam where the Sharia is strictly upheld (no separation of Church and State) and so predictably these opposing views have led to rifts, as Muslims feel they are being directly targeted and discriminated against by French authorities. Therefore ISIS may have targeted France above other countries due to their differing cultures and France’s perceived lack of acceptance of their religious practices. The final, more obvious, reason for the targeting of Paris is the comparative strategic ease for ISIS to successfully carry out attacks there. The other most probable target would be the US, due to their heavy involvement in the middle-east, however it is far easier for ISIS to carry out an attack on nearby France than the US, which is protected somewhat by its location across the Atlantic and its incredibly tight security and intelligence. In addition, it is relatively easy to smuggle the resources needed for attacks into

France. Belgium has been struggling to control illegal arms for a long time now, and it is believed this is where the weapons used in the Charlie Hebdo attack originated from. So whilst France may have done a number of things to aggravate Islamic State and create hostility, the reason it has fallen victim to so many attacks above other targets is probably largely due to its geographical convenience. Whilst elements were beyond Frances control, such as geography, in many aspects France brought the tensions upon themselves. The laws passed both in 2004 and 2010 undoubtedly aggravated ISIS, something which could have been considered and foreseen before the laws were passed. Also, it was predictable that eventually ISIS would strike back at France for relentlessly attacking and interfering with their territory. However, this does not mean France were wrong in any of the actions they took. Separation of Church and State has long been in their culture, and they should not have to suppress this on their own soil to please others. In the same way there is a right to freedom of religion, it is fair to have freedom from religion and France should not have been targeted for this. In addition, whilst it was predictable that they would became a target following their attacks in Syria and Iraq, they were right to not hold back through fear of retaliation. France did the right thing, and a commendable thing, by standing up to ISIS and it is incredibly unfair that so many of their citizens were killed as a result. PREVIEW


THE ECONOMIC CASE FOR LEAVING THE EU Ruth Lea CBE Economic Adviser, Arbuthnot Banking Group


n a few months’ time there will be a referendum on our membership of the European Union. This is one of the most momentous political decisions of our time. Those on the “remain” side will doubtless argue “better the devil you know rather than the devil you don’t know” and warn about the “uncertainties” following a possible “Brexit” (Britain’s exit from the EU). But, truth to tell, there are many fundamental “uncertainties” arising if we stay in the EU. The bloc is currently faced with major crises, not least those associated with its ill-designed currency union and its dysfunctional migration policy. It is quite impossible to know how these crises will be resolved and how Britain will be affected in future, situated, as we are, at the periphery of EU decision-making. Those on the “leave” side, and I am one of them, point to the EU’s relatively declining position in the world, emphasising the need for Britain to take control of its destiny and reprioritize our global links in a rapidly changing world. When Britain joined the EU (or the EEC as it was then) in 1973, and I remember it very well, the world was a very different place. It was a time of shattered morale in this country. As a country “we had lost an empire and not yet found a role.” And as a young civil servant I was told that government was all about managing the country’s decline. Joining the EEC seemed to be the modern, go-ahead thing to do, not least of all because the western European economies were doing better than we were at the time. They looked dynamic and our economy was 42


struggling. And we hoped some of that dynamism would rub off on us. Suffice to say, it didn’t and it took Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher to tackle our deep-seated economic problems. But in the last 40 years, the situation has changed beyond recognition. Britain has recovered its pep, albeit with more than a few bumps on the way. Meanwhile Europe, as already said, is in relative decline. As chart 1 shows the 28 countries now comprising the EU accounted for over 30% of world output in 1980. By 2014 the share had fallen to 17% and the International Monetary Fund (IMF) expects it to continue falling. Interestingly enough, the unjustly neglected Commonwealth looks buoyant and robust. Further out the EU’s share can only shrink further reflecting its adverse demographic trends. Unsurprisingly, therefore, UK exports to non-EU markets are growing more buoyantly than to EU markets, despite the much vaunted “attractions” of EU membership. Growth opportunities clearly matter more. The proof of the pudding is in the eating. A mere decade ago more than half of our exports of goods and services went to EU. As chart 2 show this is no longer the case. Erratic blips apart, our EU exports share is in secular decline. Britain’s future will increasingly be with the wider world, where the growth markets will be. The economic costs of EU membership, why we should leave The EU was “the future once”, but it clearly isn’t now. Worse, EU membership acts as a

Shares of world GDP (Purchasing Power Parities), % Source: International Monetary Fund (April 2015), GDP in Purchasing Power Parity (PPP) terms gives the best measure of the internal, domestic “purchasing power” of a country.

UK exports of goods and services, share of total (%), to EU & non-EU, 2003-2014 Source: Office of National Statistics.

costly economic restraint. Firstly, we are major net contributors to the EU Budget with gross payments (net of the rebate) amounting to over £13bn in financial year 2013-14. Given our gaping budget deficit and growing demands on the public purse, repatriation of these payments would be more than welcome. Secondly, we cannot unilaterally amend or repeal regulations emanating from Brussels, about which business endlessly complains, whilst a member. Following Brexit we could. Granted we would have to comply with the EU’s product regulations as we would continue to trade with the EU, but many of these are agreed globally and so little would change.

Ah, I hear you say, but there must be a downside to Brexit. There must be a catch. To be honest, I can’t think of one. Of course, many on the “remain” side fret about the potential threat to Britain’s exports to the EU (and associated jobs) if Brexit. But they shouldn’t.

Thirdly, as an EU member we cannot negotiate our own trade deals with favoured partners, but have to rely on the Brussels machine. Currently few trade deals have been negotiated with Commonwealth countries, for example. These are lost opportunities which could be remedied on Brexit. And, fourthly, EU membership means we have to discriminate in favour of EU nationals at the expense of non-EU nationals in our immigration policy. Given the reach and global significance of the Anglophone world, this is quite simply absurd. On Brexit we could adopt a non-discriminatory policy.

Added to which key Articles within the Lisbon Treaty (that comprises the EU’s rules) make it quite clear that the EU “shall develop a special relationship with neighbouring countries…characterized by close and peaceful relations based on cooperation” (Article 8) and “negotiate and conclude an agreement” with the “withdrawing” Member State (Article 50). So, commercial interests aside, the EU would be obligated by the Lisbon Treaty to treat us fairly.

There are also other costs and restrictions and, on Brexit, we would be able to take control of agriculture, fisheries, regional policy, competition policy, energy policy and have full control over our aid budget.

At the very minimum we would trade freely with the EU under the World Trade Organisation (WTO)’s non-discriminatory rules. But I have little doubt that German exporters, for example, would press for a favourable trade deal with the UK, such is the importance of our market to them. And note we run an enormous trade deficit with the EU. The notion that “they” (the EU) would “lock us out” and “not trade with us” makes no commercial sense at all.

Finally, some in the “remainers” accuse the “leavers” of having no vision for Britain after “Brexit”. This is, of course, nonsense. We have a vision of a Britain trading with the EU, trading with the rest of the world and having control over our own destiny much like the vast majority of the nations on earth. It’s the EU that is the oddity. PREVIEW



“We have the character of an island nation: independent, forthright, passionate in defence of our sovereignty� David Cameron

TRIDENT The Ultimate Insurance Policy Ollie Locket




ritain’s nuclear deterrent, while certainly reduced since the end of the cold war, still remains in place today and is a cornerstone of both Britain’s defence and foreign policy and has gained Britain a much greater say in global issues throughout history through until the modern day. Today in Britain there is a call for Nuclear Disarmament, just as there has been throughout the existence of a deterrence. I hope to either persuade or reaffirm to you why Britain should always retain a permanent nuclear deterrent and why this is better for Britain and its security. Firstly I would like to begin with the suitably fitting motto of the Royal Navy; ‘si vis pacem, para bellum’, “if you wish for peace, prepare for war”. Britain’s nuclear deterrent embodies this lesson and the very fact that it has never had to be used clearly shows that it has worked throughout even the most strained of tensions during the Cold War. When Britain became only the third nuclear power in 1952 there was a great feeling of national and scientific pride that reaffirmed that Britain was still a major power and would remain so throughout the second half of the 20th Century. Our first nuclear deterrent was provided by the Royal Air Force’s V-bombers, including the famed Vulcan. Today however it is Trident which carries on this duty of securing Britain’s security, and this comes in the form of a 59 tonne ballistic missile launched from one of Britain’s 4 Vanguard class submarines, each capable of carrying up to 16 of these devices. At least one of these submarines is on a Deterrence Patrol at any one time providing a credible defence that sends out a strong message to Britain’s enemies and secures its citizens’ safety. It is this that makes Trident so necessary to the United Kingdom and why it should be revered in the same regard as the NHS or National Insurance in that it is one of societies key components upon which we all rely and under whose umbrella of security we all live. In terms of foreign policy, maintaining a Nuclear Deterrent is certainly invaluable and has allowed Britain to receive a greater say on the subject of global issues than it would otherwise be entitled to.

For example the United Kingdom is one of only 5 Permanent Members of the United Nations’ Security Council, all of whom possess a nuclear capability. If the United Kingdom were to lose its Nuclear Deterrent, then this might call into question whether it deserves a permanent seat on the Security Council and so Britain’s capacity to influence global events would be severely reduced. Furthermore, recently Phillip Hammond has represented Britain in Nuclear Talks with Iran and his words were given far more weight with the help of the United Kingdom’s nuclear deterrent and its role to play in ultimately helping to protect and preserve global security. Some people might say that the pure existence of nuclear weapons is a threat, however we cannot un-invent this complex technology and now it has been introduced to the world, it is important that it remains in responsible hands. The UK is currently a signatory of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty designed to prevent the spread of nuclear weapons and ensure that they remain in the position of only stable governments. Through this therefore the United Kingdom and other countries are able to use their own nuclear weapons to prevent the use of ones from potentially hostile countries. This can most clearly be seen with countries such as North Korea actively pursuing their own nuclear programme and it would be a threat to our own National Security to abandon our own defence while the DRPK develops nuclear weapons with much more deadly intent. One argument against Trident is that it is outdated and a relic from the Cold War Era. While it is certainly true that most of Britain’s recent conflicts have been of an asymmetrical nature against insurgent forces, the turbulent political climate across the world may change the situation at any time and it would be better to possess the means to deal with these in as best a fashion by retaining our deterrent. This can be seen in more unstable regions across the globe such as the Middle East where a turbulent political climate means that one day it may be necessary to deter potential enemies using the highest of threats to ensure our own secuPREVIEW


rity. It is important to note that British conventional and nuclear forces are designed for fundamentally different roles and that one cannot always perform the same duties as another. Therefore you are perhaps correct to say that Trident could not deal with an insurgency conflict against an enemy such as the Taliban, but to the same extent conventional forces are unable to deal with greater threats such as rouge governments or despotic dictators. All we can do is to prepare for the unexpected and therefore we must consider Trident as an extension of our own National Insurance in that it covers all potential catastrophes, regardless of whether they occur or not, and that we must prepare for the worst so that we are best equipped to deal with it. It is unrealistic to think that all countries can simply get along and therefore we should arm ourselves to deal with any disputes that will inevitably arise. It is also important to note that the maintenance of Trident also has many additional domestic benefits. For example the BAE facility in Barrow-in-Furness where nuclear submarines are constructed for the Royal Navy secures approximately 7,000 engineering jobs alone, while the nuclear submarine bases in the Clyde secure 6,500 military and civilian jobs in this



region. Maintenance of the nuclear warheads takes place at the Atomic Weapons Establishment in Aldermaston and this also provides jobs in incredibly complex scientific fields and it is of great importance that the country promotes jobs such as these to aid the national economy and supply it with these experts and technology that can ultimately be useful in the civilian nuclear energy sector as well. Therefore I would urge you to support Britain’s maintenance of a nuclear capability to allow Britain to maintain a position of global importance in Foreign Affairs, promote global stability and support engineering and scientific jobs in the United Kingdom. Trident is a necessity to our security and we would be endangering ourselves if we gave it up. We live in a constantly changing world and it is important to future-proof our country to protect ourselves for the worst of times. I urge you to support our Nuclear Deterrent and the people who maintain and operate it, so that we may all live in safety under the cover it provides against potentially hostile countries and governments, and to preserve global peace by ensuring that this nuclear capability remains in the responsible hands of the Her Majesty’s Government, for the security of British interests, property and people.

George Osborne Cares Dear George, Great news: I got my dream job a few months ago! It shocked everyone (including me honestly: I’ve never had that great a relationship with my boss). But since then, I’ve had some problems. It’s a management position, and lots of the people I’m supposed to be supervising just don’t like me. I think it’s because I’m so different to the last few managers, and they wanted someone a bit more like them. There’s a guy called Andy who everyone thought was a shoo-in, until I came in out of the left field. I don’t want to change my style, but I also don’t want everyone to keep challenging my credentials. Any tips for making some more friends? Jeremy, 66

Dear George, I’m having a bit of trouble at work. I only took over my company about a year ago, but it had to go through some severe downsizing just before I did (our old boss annoyed a lot of shareholders by breaking some of his promises). The problem is that because we’re now much smaller, none of the other business leaders are taking me seriously at our conferences. We used to have such a strong voice that bigger companies were doing anything they could to get us on their side, and I’m worried that my employees are going to blame me because we aren’t as influential anymore. Help! Tim, 45

Dear George, Bountiful salutations, my old boy! I’m entrenched in a spot of bother at the moment, but I have great credence that you will proffer some masterful counsel for me. A dear friend of mine has been playing the leading roles of our Dramatis Personae for quite some time now, while I’ve been playing, to the best of my ability, the role of the fool. But he has recently promulgated his resolution to leave our merry band, and well, if the opportunity arose to assume his role, I certainly wouldn’t repudiate the proposition, if you follow my drift. Now, I certainly wouldn’t want to be reputed rash or bumptious, but it is my feeling that I might be a bit of a frontrunner for the part. My Gordian knot, so to speak, is that I’m well aware of others in our troupe that would be more than elated to snag it from me, but I’m reluctant to be too ostentatious in my taking the role, for fear of angering those plebians. Any advice for me, perchance? Alexander Boris de Pfeffel, 51

Dear George, I’m feeling a bit odd at the moment. You see, the last two years have been some of the best years of my life, and I’m on a bit of a downer at the moment. Things started going downhill towards the end of last year: my friends started calling me a bit thick-skinned and unpleasant, and I seriously considered leaving my

job at one point. I just don’t feel like I’m having the impact I used to have anymore! People just aren’t taking notice of me the way they used to. My wife thinks it’s a bit of a mid-life crisis, and maybe she’s right- I am 51 after all. Any ideas on how I might be able to make myself more exciting again? Nigel, 51

Dear George, Sorry if this is a bit heavier than you’re used to, but I needed to get it off my chest. I’ve been stuck in the same relationship for almost all my adult life. When we first met he was great: kind, wealthy, willing to help me in my time of need. But as the years have gone by he has become more distant and angry: he’s very protective of what he calls “his” money (I’ve told him that Barnett lawyer of his is trouble, but he never listens), and he keeps insisting on keeping a cane “just in case” he needs to punish the kids. He calls it deterrent, I call it unnecessary cruelty. I’ve come to the conclusion that I want a divorce, but my family keep saying that I need to stay until the kids are old enough to understand it: I’ve tried to talk to them about it, but I don’t think they understand just how bad the situation is for me. Any help at all? Nicola, 45



Why are Religious Minorities unrepresented in the “fair and democratic” UK Political System? Clare Wandless


he UK is well known for being an ethnically, religious and racially diverse country with over 33.2 million people of Christian faith, 2.7 million of Islamic faith and vitally, 14.1 million identified as Atheists (according to the 2011 census). More recent records of religion in our country have seen a 20% drop in Christian faith and an increase of motive to remove religious figures from politics. Not only is this a significant concern for the religious community, but now with the threat of ISIS within our society, this presents concerns for the potential misunderstanding of religion in politics. Events such as the Bataclan shootings in Paris and the constant terror threat from ISIS suggest that our need to understand the religions of the world is at its greatest, but that our knowledge of world religions is at its lowest. The UK political system aims to be democratic and fair by trying to represent all parts of society proportionately. There have been efforts to increase representation for ethnic minorities and women in Parliament, but religious representation has been excluded. Within the House of Lords, there are 26 Anglican bishops automatically assigned to be a Peer. However, this is the only Christian denomination heard in Parliament and there is no similar representation for senior figures of 50


any other church. This is the most common stage for religious views, whether they are Christian or not, on political policy to be heard, but hearing the views of any other Christian denomination or any other faith cannot be guaranteed. The House of Lords Expulsion and Suspension Act (2015) has caused great concern, as these figures are set to be reduced by half, due to an increasing desire to separate religious and political matters. Of greater concern is that within the House of Commons, religious profile is mainly overlooked. Many MPs choose to not disclose their religious or non-religious preferences. Abortion and gay marriage are a common moral issue in our society and most people who may or may not be religious have a view on these issues. If the representation of religious views are significantly reduced, this will leave the 55% of Christians within the country unrepresented, as it is not guaranteed that your MP will make a political decision reflecting your religious views. A lack of representation for other religions is also present within UK politics. No other faiths are given automatic Peerage in the House of Lords, so 2.7 million Muslims are left unrepresented. In the 2015 General Election the Scottish National Party gained 56 seats in

the House of Commons, with 1.5 million votes. How can our political system be labelled as representative with these figures? As British society has become more secular over the last 15 years, an argument has arisen to reduce the representation of Christian and specifically Anglican representatives, but given world events being of a religious nature the need for religious representation for other faiths could be beneficial to allow a platform for these faiths. We cannot rely on the internet’s misrepresentation that distorts and does not accurately portray religious views and has little understanding that our constitution will be developed on.  Movements towards teaching the younger generation religious values was taken by the UK Government in the 2002 Education act, whereby Religious Education must be studied in some way up until the age of 18. It is clear that this political policy has failed to provide a good grounding in religious belief, as 77% of people now identify as not believing, or practising a faith. Whilst it is expected that not everyone will adopt a religious way of life, this figure clearly indicates that this policy is failing to maintain a decent level of religious understanding, without which it will be impossible to properly understand history, literature and art. Schools have the option to either integrate religious education through Citizenship lessons or to decide their own course of lessons, following guidelines set through the Local Council. Therefore, I present this question to you: how can we rely on MPs to make moral decisions concerning our laws, based on a lack of religious representation and education over religious matters that threaten our society today? The education of our future generation is crucial in maintaining a coherent and successful society and in this regard, the Government is failing every new generation. If there was a better moral education taught through religious education, it would lead to more cohesive communities and there would be a better, moral multi-faith understanding between people. In today’s society, there is

much confusion over the Islamic faith in relation to ISIS and radicalisation. I believe that there should be reform in the Education Act to be more substantive regarding the religious education in our schools. Over the course of British history, religion has played it’s role in causing political crises. From the Protestant-Catholic Arguments from Tudor times, to the Irish troubles that still splits politics today, we now have an urgent, ever present religious crisis playing on our political system – ISIS. We need to have some sort of moral and ethical education to equip ourselves before we make decisions to bomb places such as Syria, or to commit people’s lives to trying to defeat them. A clear example of how wrong it can go through misunderstanding of religion is shown through ISIS itself. The British public cannot decide to vote to bomb a country on the basis of internet articles suggesting that we can discriminate bombs to target ISIS. The reality is that war is war, and along the way innocent civilians will die without the guarantee that ISIS will be defeated. Basing moral judgements on mere internet article statistics is not enough to maintain a moral basis to our political system. Having more religious representatives in Parliament would ensure the insights into what scripture, history and society all have to contribute to these issues, which would surely benefit our political policy decisions for the better.  A fair democracy should represent all people including the religious people in our society as well as provide information and insights that assist good decision making generally. Their voice should therefore be prominent in UK Politics. Religious issues are still hotly debated within society and the House Of Commons, emphasising the argument that MP’s of the future should have a basic understanding on the religious views, not an interpreted moral ethic that has been misinterpreted through the many years of decline of the importance of religion that society faces. I want my MP to have the capability to represent religious beliefs accurately from the origins of  our educational system, not through propaganda articles where the religious understanding of moral issues is misinterpreted.



Less spoonfuls of sugar? Sophie Edmunds


he “nanny state”, a concept of British origin, is where the government is seen as overprotective or as interfering inappropriately with the publics personal choice. This phenomenon was first coined by Tory politician Iain Macleod in his article “What I like to call the Nanny State”, published in the Spectator during the 1960s. In fact, it could be argued, that the Second World War was the beginning of this paternalism, due to the new idea of “cradle to grave” social provision, leading to the development of the welfare state as we know it today. Over the years a variety of “nanny state” style legislation has been injected into the public domain, albeit subtly. Since 1983 it has been illegal not to wear a seat belt in a car and one can be fined up to £500 for not doing so. There are many arguments for why this type of legislation is necessary. There is no doubt that, since its introduction, seat belts are said to reduce serious crash-related injuries by about a half. However, 52


is it necessarily the governments place to inform the public on what they should or should not do to stay alive? It is not government legislation to limit the time spent in the sun despite its links to skin cancer, so is it right that it takes a more in-depth interest in motoring mortality? Despite this, government safety legislation has been effective, for instance, in reducing motor cycle fatalities by riders wearing crash helmets. However, perhaps there are cases where the government has gone too far. For example, in 2013 there was rumour of a ban on pack lunches for school children as parents were apparently incapable of providing their children with a balanced diet. Even outside formal legislation, the public are constantly harassed by government campaigns on tubes to drink more water in hot weather or to watch out for slippery surfaces at stations during rainy days. It begs one question: has the government become too solicitous? This type of paranoia has sprung from our

litigious society imported from America with their ambulance chasers and perpetual fear of being sued, but should this fixation be subjected to the British public? One prime example of “nanny statism” is the current smoking laws. As a consequence of the 2006 Health Act, a smoking ban came into effect in 2007. Though this ban did not completely wipe out smokers, it did give many a gentle helping hand to quit smoking all together. However, sceptics wonder when the ban will end. Now, the Welsh government have banned e-cigarettes from public places due to its desire to “create the conditions which enable people to live healthy lives”. Many argue that the Welsh Assembly needs to readdress its priorities as it is the very same government that “allows” rampant drunkenness on their streets. This brings me onto a new government proposal: a sugar tax. As a result of an e-petition, “a tax on sugary drinks in the UK to improve our

The obesity crisis is costing the NHS £6 billion a year children’s health”, started by celebrity chef Jamie Oliver and signed by over 151,000 people, there was a debate in the House of Commons in November. Debates on e-petitions help to raise the profile of campaigns and could, potentially, influence decisions, however, they cannot change the law or bring about an automatic vote. If a good has a negative externality there is a strong case for the government to tax it and make consumers pay the full social cost. There are multiple arguments for a sugar tax, the first and most important being how sugar is a major cause of health problems and how some members of the public are unaware of the personal cost of sugar consumption. Another leading argument is that having a tax earmarked to fund spending in a particular area makes it more palatable for customers, thus meaning revenue is raised to deal with the current obesity crisis which is costing the National Health Service £6 billion pounds a year.

The arguments for a tax are certainly compelling but would they make a genuine impact on the obesity levels in the UK? A major argument against it is how the tax is unfair to low income groups, especially as those preaching over food are, generally, too wealthy to be affected. There’s already a tax on sugar, VAT, and obesity levels have not gone down as a result. Furthermore, is a tax really the best policy and will it make an effective change to anything on its own? Surely a huge factor in obesity is the advertising industry that bombards the public with commercial messages on a day to day basis, from MacDonald’s sponsorship of the World Cup, to Coca Cola’s ever present red glow during the Olympic Games. Some opponents of the tax say the government should not be making judgments on lifestyle, and modern politics assumes people should live their lives free from moral judgement by the government, with libertarian ideology dominating the political climate. However, in reality,

the idea of a “free” society is completely alien to us due to the presence of advertising, which subtly brainwashes people into wanting, mostly, inconsequential items. Therefore, perhaps government intervention is in fact needed to convey a general, unbiased message to the public based on factual information on what is right and wrong. The issue of a sugar tax has got many thinking about whether the idea of a “nanny state” is a good one. In my opinion, government guidance can be helpful as, occasionally, people find it difficult to do what is in their best interests, and need a small push in the right direction. After all, the nanny used to be known as a beloved figure, not an injurious one and Macleod’s use of the phrase may not have been negative. Perhaps being “free” should not invariably mean being left to ones own devices and, just like children, society needs guidance from certain paternalistic strategies. PREVIEW


SNOWDEN’ S A Case For Modern Surveillance Matt Lee


lthough the international intelligence revelations of 2013 suggested that America and their National Security Agency were the major proprietors of global surveillance following such events as 9/11, the role of Britain and our GCHQ intelligence service was also key, leading more and more people to become suspicious of the almost Big Brother state. But as much as people are concerned with the so called ‘Snooper’s Charter’, one must understand that it is essential for legislation such as this to pass if Britain would like its intelligence agencies to reach their maximum effectiveness. Since 2012, Theresa May has been trying to pass the Charter, or to give it its full title, the Draft Communications Data Bill. The bill would firmly enshrine in law that mobile carriers and internet service providers must make available to the government (and related agencies) the data of



individual customers, including such records as internet browsing history, voice calls, and mobile phone messages for a year. Time and time again we have seen the prevention of potential terror attacks through the interception of communications data. Moreover following recent terror atrocities, most notably the November 2015 Paris attacks, I would argue any bill that can benefit both domestic and international security is one that should be looked at incredibly seriously. Those that argue against the bill and its perceived ‘spying’ agenda must understand that the majority of the data retention laws stem from Part 11 of the Anti-terrorism, Crime and Security Act 2001, to which the Snooper’s Charter would simply be an update. Fifteen years after this crucial piece of legislation, it is critical that we update the guidelines for collecting an increasing amount of data in a rapidly changing world. This

is the conclusion that the Joint Committee who were assigned to scrutinise this bill in 2012 came to but argued that “it goes further than it need or should”. I wonder if they were really taking into account the rapid change in technology when they said that there was “a case for further access to communications data”. In the last two years the Western world has seen the rise of ISIL, a ‘modern’ terrorist group for lack of a better word. Unlike Al-Qaeda, they don’t use couriers to deliver computer discs on which there are messages. They communicate via encrypted services such as WhatsApp, Snapchat and PlayStation Voice Chat, services which aren’t explicitly defined in current legislation. Whilst the main proponents of the bill argue that it would help curb terrorism, it has many other applications in stemming serious crimes, from sexual assaults to large-scale robberies. Although the leaks provided by former NSA

N’ S STIGMA contractor Edward Snowden suggested that intelligence agencies were wire-tapping anyone who picked up the phone, the number of people subject to full NSA surveillance was very limited. The so-called PRISM, Tempora and Muscular programs served as evidence that GCHQ had no trouble intercepting telecommunications data along with their friends in Maryland at the NSA, but in addition that they had no trouble storing it securely. Whilst many people worry that their decrypted personal data will be spread all over the internet, the fact that no-one was even aware of these intelligence programmes, let alone of any failures surrounding them, highlights the expertise of GCHQ. Although some cite the alleged reckless behaviour of NSA employees in regards to some confidential data, the latest bill under the Snooper’s Charter umbrella (the Draft Investigative Powers Bill) rigorously ramps up the

levels of oversight to which intelligence agencies would be subject. One of its key features, to put the Wilson Doctrine on a statutory footing has long been called for in order to prevent the police from tapping the phones of members of both Houses of Parliament. Whilst various multi-billion dollar technology companies, including Apple, Google, Facebook and Twitter, are joining together to try and prevent the bill from getting passed and stating that they “reject any proposals” where they would have to decrypt data for government access, would they really feel the same if we find out that a future terrorist atrocity could have been prevented if intelligence agencies had access to the insurgents’ communications data? And although the defence industry

argue that the bill “would be out of date in five years”, would it really be better to do nothing and rely on legislation passed fifteen years ago to combat the war on terror which is happening right now? If the brutal killing of journalists by a British citizen and terror attacks on our neighbours don’t compel MPs to allow this crucial component of security to take place, there will unfortunately come a time where we ask why we didn’t do it sooner and prevent the preventable.



The lack of help and reduction in funds to the NHS mental health care service in the UK. Nadine Greenhalgh



t any one time, one in six adults suffer from one or more forms of mental illness. In other words, a mental illness is as common as asthma. These conditions range, more commonly from depression to schizophrenia, which affects less than one person in a hundred. In this sense, mental health is not being given the attention it requires, especially with the modern day stigma which is attached to it, making it a ‘taboo’ topic within society. The funding pressure on the NHS mental health trusts has contributed to the closure of in-hospital patient beds. The Royal College of Psychiatrists has said that the lack of acute beds available to mental health patients has left the system at breaking point. In April 2011 more than 2,100 mental health beds closed amounting to a 12% decline in the number available. This dramatic loss leaves mental health patients alone in the time when they are the most unstable and led to acutely unwell adults and children being sent to out-ofarea hospitals for care, which is not only thousands of miles away from their homes but also costs them a huge sum to pay for this private care. Many patients are unable to pay for their treatment and it has been found that seven people have taken their own lives since 2012 after being told there were no hospital beds for them. Surely, the government cannot ignore the consequences of cutting NHS mental health funding, especially when patients are committing suicide because they cannot get the help they need? It’s simply unprecedented. Over the past 5 years the government has cut the NHS mental

health funds by 8.25%. The growth of technology and media in the 21st century is a factor which has increased the number of mental health cases within society. The media gives off false perceptions of what young men and women should look like, which is why there are more cases of anorexia nervosa and bulimia nervosa now than ever before. 17.6% of the English population between 16-64 year olds meet the criteria for one or more mental health disorders. This great disparity between the level of funding for mental health services and the impact of mental health problems makes it impossible for those who are vulnerable to be treated.

Why are they cutting mental health funds when it is evident that the number of cases within society is increasing? In our present climate, the government is looking at ways to reduce the total NHS budget. Many patients with mental health problems go on to develop clinical problems which not only need treating in the short term but can go on to become long term issues. From 2014-15, 1,835,996 people were in touch with mental health services, an increase of 4.9% from 2013-14. The seriousness of the situation at hand is quite clearly obvious and the fact that our government is taking a path to reduce the flow of money into something which should have the biggest spotlight emphasises the disparity in the governments priorities. In David Cameron’s campaign he repeatedly stated that his main focus was the ‘NHS’, however he has eviden-

tially contradicted himself through the total reduction of £800 million to the NHS over four years, which links to the pressure on beds for mentally ill patients. David Cameron is more focused on whether the UK should leave the EU than the health of his own population. Surely it is the sole responsibility of a government to look after their population, but this mass slice in the funds to the NHS has definitely articulated who Cameron is and is not showing responsibility for. Moreover, there is evidence of far-reaching sub-standard care with an increase of patients who report a poor experience of community mental health care. Only 14% of patients say they received appropriate care from the NHS in a crisis, showing the immense consequences of cutting its funds. The fact that 86% of patients are unhappy with their stay shows the NHS’ inability to protect the population without the money from the government, resulting in a lack of beds and doctors available to treat their patients. We need to integrate good physical healthcare for people with a mental disorder and to start building mental health and wellbeing services and pathways for people with a physical disorder in the UK. The problem is that the mental health care policy is becoming a topic where little happens, with the Prime Minister standing on the sidelines talking about what should happen, whilst local services are not seeing an increase in funding but quite the contrary. The Prime Minister should take a step back and rethink his actions as ultimately he is engineering our downfall in society by reducing the funds to the NHS. PREVIEW



Why the introduction of the Criminal Courts Charge was not only morally wrong but a waste of time and money. Lucy Etheridge


n April 2015, the Prosecution of Offences Act of 1985 was amended to include the Criminal Courts Charge. This is a compulsory charge imposed on criminals to pay towards the costs of their own prosecution. Advocates of the Criminal Courts Charge promote its advantages of reducing the reliance on the taxpayer to fund the judiciary system. Chris Grayling, justice secretary at the time, believed the charge would force criminals to ‘pave their way’ and contribute more to the cost of the legal process of their conviction. Surely the guilty should have to cover more of the costs instead of the innocent taxpayer? When over-simplified, this question seems trivial, and this was a key reason why the charge was successfully passed in the first place. At a glance, the legislation seems to be a very reasonable and fair approach to raising funds but the charge provoked a furious backlash from the legal profession and various legal charities. Despite its deceivingly logical appearance, the criminal courts charge was fundamentally unfair. Firstly the charges weren’t progressive. This meant that the taxes were imposed at an equal rate regardless of the income and means of the criminal. The implications of this are serious and highlight the social injustice of the policy. The effects of the financial punishment vary according to the income of the accused. In simple terms, the punishment for an equally serious crime would be worse for someone of lower income than for a wealthy individual. Under this policy, charges of over £1,000 would be common for cases heard at the crown court. The fine could have devastating effects on a family of low income, whereas to a wealthy individual losing this sum of money could simply be an inconvenience. Surely the punishments for the same crime should have similarly damaging effects regardless of the criminal’s income? Another issue is that the charges are compulsory; the judges are therefore not able to

consider other fines that the accused may already face as a punishment for their crime, undermining judicial discretion. The judges have no power to alter the charges, meaning that they are often unreasonably enforced on top of fines, compensation orders and defendants’ own legal charges. Secondly, the imposition of these charges poses a serious threat to the entire legal process as they encourage defendants to plead guilty to a crime, even if they may be innocent. The charges were at a starting rate of £150 for cases where the defendant pleads guilty. Although if the accused pleads not guilty to the charge, and therefore a trial is necessary, and is subsequently found guilty the charges are dramatically higher. This means the charges actually incentivise a guilty plea, which is a key legal injustice of the policy. The decision to plead guilty should be a decision of conscience and a consid-

Surely the guilty should have to cover more of the costs instead of the innocent taxpayer? eration of the evidence against you; the charges undermined this fundamental principle. Although it may seem inconceivable that someone would decide to plead guilty to a crime that they never committed, to a defendant of low income, pleading guilty to a minor crime but paying less in court charges may be the less painful option. In many cases, potentially being faced with a charge of up to £1,200 poses a risk they aren’t willing to take. Also, due to the lack of consideration of the means of individuals, this effect is more significant for defendants of low income, another way in which the policy disadvantages the poorest in society. After looking into the flaws of this policy in more detail, it soon becomes clear why the charge became so controversial. Under mounting pressure

from the legal profession and various legal charities, the new Justice Secretary Michael Gove agreed to repeal the charges from December 2015. The magistrate’s association described the move as ‘tremendously welcome’ and there was little opposition to the U-turn. After a chaotic few months, the reckless legislation with the purpose of raising funds for the justice system came to an end. Its only legacy being a hopelessly ironic financial burden, not caused by a costly criminal trial but by this careless piece of legislation and the valuable time it occupied. The processing of this legislation was clearly a monumental waste of time and money as here we are, eight months on and back to where we started. After looking into the legislation in more detail, opposition seems inevitable. However, controversy only really surfaced after the passing of the law. This begs the question: how was this damaging and unfair policy initially allowed to pass? The answer to this lies in the technical nature of the legislation. The amendment was passed as a ‘Statutory Instrument’ and not an Act of Parliament. The issue was considered to be of relatively little importance, meaning that a debate in the Commons wasn’t legally necessary. In simple terms, the cabinet minister for each department has some powers to amend legislation without needing to pass a new bill through the commons. This enabled the Department for Justice, led by Chris Grayling, to quietly pass this legislation without thorough scrutiny from Parliament. This method of passing legislation is intended for ‘non-contentious issues’- a phrase which clearly doesn’t describe this charge. It seems inconceivable that this legislation, after sufficient scrutiny by Parliament, would have ever been passed. If this were the case, huge amounts of time and, ironically, money would have been saved.








As defined under the Sexual Offences act of 2003: ‘rape’ is the act of non-consensual penetration. As such a key determinant of rape cases focuses on whether there was consent by the victim. It is also important to note that the law does not require the victim to have resisted physically in order to prove a lack of consent.  Both men and women, young and old, are victims of rape. 62



he statistics for rape make for very poor reading. According to RAINN (Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network), 46% of rapists get reported to police, only 12% lead to an arrest with 9% leading to a prosecution and only 5% leading to a conviction. Just 3% of assailants spend a day in jail. Recent figures from the Ministry of Justice estimate that 60,000 to 95,000 people are victims of rape each year in England and Wales. From this, only 15,780 of these offences become police recorded crimes and only 3,850 of these offences a year become ‘detections’ that proceed to court or to an out-of court disposal. Furthermore, only 1,070 people are convicted of rape a year, the equivalent of 1-2% of rapists receiving a custodial sentence. So why are figures for such an abhorrent crime so low?  The process for reporting sexual offences including rape starts with the police, who are responsible for investigating the allegations of rape and gathering the evidence.  If they decide that there is sufficient evidence to charge the offence of rape they then refer the case to the Crown Prosecution Service, who will make a decision to charge based on the evidence provided. The CPS must be satisfied that there is sufficient evidence to provide a realistic prospect of a conviction against the defendant. If the case does not pass the evidential stage then it will not go ahead. One of the predominant reasons for the majority of rapists not being convicted is the lack of evidential proof. Typically, sexual abuse occurs in private, in a location where there is unlikely to be any witnesses to the crime. As a result of the workings of the legal system, unless the rapist pleads guilty, without some form of witness presentation or evidential providence, prosecution is a very difficult outcome. Since a conviction can only result through proving the defendant’s guilt, and the majority of circumstances provide difficulty in explicitly doing so, often cases may not proceed. The CPS must be certain that there is enough evidence for the jury to draw a conclusion from the statements of the victim and defendant, and as such sufficient available evidence to pass the

evidential stage of the Code test. It is essential therefore that all possible forensic and scientific evidence is obtained immediately; the earlier a rape is reported, the higher the chances of significant and valuable evidence being produced in order to build a strong case. However, the emotional trauma experienced by the victim usually increases the period of time between the event occurring and the reporting of the event, therefore reducing the possibility of obtaining useful evidence and decreasing the chances of conviction. The legal process of conviction tends to put victims off reporting sexual abuse. In an IPSOS Poll 56% of victims refrained from reporting an act of rape to the police due to feeling young and powerless against the legal system. What is more, there is a huge delay in successfully prosecuting a rapist. If the defendant pleads not guilty, it takes almost a year to bring about charges and an average of two years to reach a final verdict. There

56% of victims refrained from reporting an act of rape is also a huge backlog of untested DNA evidence from open rape cases, lengthening the time it takes for evidence to be produced and analysed in order to close a case. This is why a large number of victims drop out of the criminal justice system between reporting the incident and it reaching court. From the perspective of a victim of rape, entering into the process of conviction in order to bring about justice would inevitably prolong such an overwhelming, poignant pain that to many it may not seem worth the ordeal. 78% who took part in the IPSOS Poll asking ‘how victims feel about having reported sexual assault to the police’ felt either abandoned or devastated about the reporting experience. Consent is an important aspect of conviction; whether or not consent was given determines whether or not a person was raped. The word ‘consent’ is defined under the Sexual Offences Act of 2003 as the agree-

ment of a person who has the freedom and capacity to make a choice. It is a defence if the defendant believed that the victim was consenting, and whether this acts as an effective means of defence is a matter for the jury to decide. Having looked into any steps to show that the victim consented, there are certain presumptions where the victim could not consent: unconsciousness, abduction, threats and fear of serious harm as well as drugs or alcohol. As such, proving the absence of consent is usually the most difficult part of a rape prosecution; without evidence of injury and struggle or other supporting evidence such as CCTV or eyewitnesses as corroborating evidence it makes the case more difficult to prove.    The Telegraph recently published the results of a survey stating that 83% of victims don’t report rape or sexual assault. This, coupled with the fact that 90% of victims knew their rapists prior to the assault, is another off-putting factor. Numerous victims are under the impression that simply knowing or having been in a relationship with their rapist gives implications that consent was given, and therefore there is no way to prove that they were raped.  Let’s not forget that there are many vulnerable people, including children, the elderly, people with learning difficulties or mental health issues, as well as those from ethnic minority groups. The statistics tend to show that these groups are less likely to report a sexual assault or rape. Those victims that do report rape face an uphill struggle to bring about a successful conviction. Overall, the statistics appear distinctly negative about reporting rape and are heavily stacked in favour of the rapist. The media portrays the process as an uphill struggle for victims to bring their assailants to justice. As such, the public perception is that the process is lengthy and painful and unfortunately this results in a spiral effect; indicative of why there is a distrust in reporting rape in the first instance. So perhaps these articles are in part self-fulfilling, leading to the misconception that rape is not worth reporting as the probability of a successful conviction is extremely low. PREVIEW



“A man may die, nations may rise and fall, but an idea lives on” John F.Kennedy





ociety has dramatically progressed socio-politically in the past three decades. The effect of Barack Obama’s accession to presidency in 2008 and figures such as Loretta E. Lynch following suit, ethnic minorities have begun to flourish in the 21st century. Ethnic minorities have begun to ascend in all areas of society, music, literature and of course, sports. However, they may still arguably be restricted in particular fields. Is this due to unconscious bias in society, which has been embedded in the psyche of the older generation? Or is it merely an impediment, which ethnic minorities utilise in order to sympathise with one’s self? Irrespective of the truth, there is still progression to be made in the so-called democratic society we inhabit today. Furthermore, the fictional ongoing series ‘’ James Bond’’ has become infamous in western society, holding a special place in my heart. Speculation about a black James Bond played by Idris Elba, both captured the staggering progression that the public has made and the great issues accompanying it. Social media is more prevalent than ever, which has caused a global debate about this issue. Should James Bond be played by a black man?  The first black villain in James Bond, Dr Kananga played by Yaphet Kotto expressed his dislike for the idea, arguing ‘Black men should stop trying to play roles created by whites. These roles are not written for black men.’ This quotation acts as a microcosm for greater political issues. ‘Political Correctness’ may have gone mad, causing the public to unnecessarily strip the characteristics of

James Bond away. ‘His race isn’t specified’, ‘He is only a spy’ ‘Sean Connery was Scottish!’ they claim. Yes, this is true but an actor that embodies Bond in both personality and physical appearance is necessary. This would have the same effect if Leonardo Dicaprio was to play Nelson Mandela, his acting would be second to none but the audience would not be captivated by his physical appearance. Furthermore, the idea of a female Bond was quickly discarded by Pierce Bronsan and others. Bronsan claimed that ‘James Bond could be black but definitely

not female’. The idea of a female womanizer, drinking martinis and driving an Aston Martin DB9 didn’t quite fit into society’s idea of Bond. Why should a ‘black Bond’ be more socially acceptable than a female Bond? Do all female characters in the Bond series merely have to be the product of Fleming’s misogynistic imagination? Society has decided not to highlight this issue but the race of James Bond himself instead. Again, ‘Political correctness’ may have gone mad. However, it has been argued that a black James bond would help ethnic minorities to find lead roles in large-scale motion picture films and could possibly end unconscious bias. The reveal

of the Oscar nominations in January 2015 caused worldwide concern. ‘Straight Outta Compton’ an urban film which holds the record for quickest take of $2 billion domestically was nominated for one Oscar, for a white man. It is not that Paul Giamatti is not deserving of his Oscar nomination, nor am I arguing that ethnic minorities are deserving of such a prestigious award, but his supporting cast were just as fantastic. Ethnic minorities may be searching for roles not ‘written for black men’ as Kotto delicately put it, due to the lack of demand for black actors. Thus, a ‘black Bond’ could accelerate this process and cause further Oscar nominations to not be so one-dimensional. In conclusion, we must praise society for the outstanding progression it has made. The fact that this debate has come to fruition highlights an improvement in rights for all members of society, not just ethnic minorities. The fact that the general public is willing to push the boundaries of the confined norm is exciting. This would have never been done 50 years ago and should always be advocated. However, we must not forget to focus on other issues. Sexism still remains in pop culture but we choose to ignore the ‘classical role’ of the bond girl and choose to uproar about James Bond’s race. One issue should not take precedence over another.  Whether it is Idris Elba, Daniel Craig or Sean Connery, we should do our best to enjoy Fleming’s creation, without suggestion, irrespective of whether we agree or not with the actor who is portraying James Bond. PREVIEW






It has been a very difficult year to be a Liberal Democrat. My party took a mighty beating on election night last year and was reduced from 57 MPs to just eight in one fell swoop. Lord Verjee


n such crushing and heart-breaking circumstances it can be difficult to put your finger on what went wrong – especially in a world as complex as politics. As the morning of May 8 broke, I simply could not understand why we had been punished so spectacularly at the ballot box by the voting public. The country had prospered and stabilised under the coalition government and many people had expressed this to me. Yes – there had been mistakes along the way but there were also great successes. We helped to create a record number of jobs, put mental health on the agenda, delivered gay marriage and cut taxes for the poorest. The Liberal Democrats in government visibly put country first and party second. Surely this would count for something. But then I watched Nick Clegg’s resignation speech. Despite being awake for 24 hours and without doubt personally devastated by the result, he delivered the most eloquent assessment of the General Election I have heard yet. Liberalism is losing and the politics of fear is winning, he said. Not just here but across Europe too. Nick told us that years of tough economic and social hardship had led people of all backgrounds to reach for new certainties: the politics of identity, nationalism, and ‘us’ not ‘them’. And it is hard to disagree with him. Those, like me, who believe we are stronger together and weaker apart are simply being overrun by those who put forward simplistic arguments, wrapped in

grievance and division for their own benefit. And seen through this prism, the General Election of 2015 makes perfect sense. Liberalism in Britain was swept away in this seemingly unstoppable tidal wave last May. While constituency after constituency north of the border fell to the beguiling appeal of Scottish Nationalism, fear about what this meant for the United Kingdom strengthened English conservatism south of the border too. This toxic mix bulldozed the moderate voices who favoured compromise, nuance and plurality, and rewarded those who pushed disunity rather than harmony. The cruellest irony now is that despite the Liberal Democrats results, we need the values of liberalism, ones of opportunity, fairness, and tolerance, more than ever before. These ideals are so important to all of us because there is no path to a fairer, more compassionate, greener, freer society without them. You cannot build a better society by turning on our neighbours and believing our lot in the world would be better only if the prosperity of others, be they migrants, the unemployed, or those on benefits, were made worse or treated like “scroungers” in our society. You only need to have lived in a place where these ideals have been lost or never been found to understand just how precious these liberal values are. And I should know. I arrived in London nearly 50 years ago after being forced to leave with my family from my home in Uganda. These values

were in short-supply under the rule of Idi Amin but I re-discovered them here in Britain. Britain welcomed us and gave us immigrants an opportunity to prosper and to restore our dignity and I do think that in no small way we have contributed to the country we love and call home. We must now not abandon the values that helped create our open, free and pluralistic society. I hope that our leaders realise the disastrous consequences for our way of life and the integrity of our United Kingdom if they continue to appeal to grievance rather than generosity and fear rather than hope. It’s not exaggeration to say that in the absence of strong and statesmanlike leadership, Britain’s place in Europe and the world and the continued existence of our United Kingdom itself is now in grave jeopardy. It is easy to imagine that there is no road back and that hope has lost for good. Europe, after all, is struggling to cope with the largest migrant crisis in half-a-century, with many Government’s resorting to playing the Fear Card, while our own EU Referendum threatens to become an argument reduced to whether immigration is good or bad. But I am an optimist. And the flame of liberalism – although diminished – still burns. This is a very difficult hour for our party and for liberals everywhere but we cannot and will not allow decent liberal values to be extinguished in our country. We will all continue to fight to defend these values. will all continue to fight to defend these values.







h, the Prime Minister. The most powerful man in the country. A role of indescribable importance, and one contested only by the best and brightest minds, attempting to gain power to implement their particular philosophies and, in their own way, try and make the country a better place to live. So naturally, in the last two years, the media has run stories about candidates being unable to eat bacon sandwiches properly, not singing the anthem, or forgetting which football team they support. Shine on, journalists of the world, you truly are a beacon for the common man on what we need to know about our politicians. Put simply, political discourse in this country is hopeless. Personality matters infinitely more than policy, and while we aren’t tied down by religion like certain other countries I could Americ- I mean mention, we’ve replaced that with our own special ties. Let’s look at last year’s candidates. Whether it was Miliband looking like Wallace, Farage like Parker from Thunderbirds, or Nick Clegg looking so invariably glum that an entire website was made dedicated to his dejected demeanour (, in case you were wondering), the British media showed a bizarre fascination with what our potential leaders looked like. And while some may defend this as trying to humanise the candidates, the fact that these comparisons were some of the most popular stories last year tells you that it went too far. Ed Miliband even mentioned it in a 2012 speech: “if spin doctors could design a politician, I suspect he wouldn’t look like me.” When we’re at the point where our politicians are forced to take ownership of the jokes about their appearance, our obsession with attractive politicians is getting a little bit silly. And then there was “Bacon-gate”, for my money the second most popular “political” news of 2014, behind only the Scottish referendum. Let us never forget that the Independent has run the front page headline “Ed Miliband fails to look normal while eating a bacon sandwich”. The photograph of him looking uncomfortable is so popular, it has it’s own Wikipedia page. The

Evening Standard even considered it damaging enough to be a “gaffe”. The Sun clearly agreed, as their front page on election day 2015 ran with publishing the photo yet again, along with the caption “Save Our Bacon”. When the most popular newspaper in the country thinks that reminding everyone that Miliband can’t eat bacon in a dignified manner will swing more votes to the Tories than any of their policies might, we know there’s a serious issue with debate and discussion in this country. And what’s more, the timing of the “scandal” makes the media’s inability to care about actual politics even more obvious: the photos were published on the 21 May, the day before the European Parliament elections, as well as local elections up and down the country. Let’s just think about that for a moment: the day before the election that made everyone realise that UKIP

“if spin doctors could design a politician, I suspect he wouldn’t look like me.” Ed Miliband actually were legitimately popular, 3 papers with a combined readership totalling over 7 million decided that instead of informing the public of the vote, or the positions of any of the parties, they would run with a photo informing us that the Leader of the Opposition is a bit of a messy eater. To put that readership in context, it’s almost half the number of votes actually cast in that election. Imagine the impact if they had focused on the election. They could well have increased the turnout from its dismal 35% simply by reminding people it was going to happen. I admit, when the Labour leadership election rolled around, I was quietly optimistic at the prospect of having a Leader of the Opposition of average looks, if only for the fact that the Prime Minister wouldn’t be able to attack them for looking a bit odd. My optimism drained away faster than the colour from Cameron’s face when

he realised he’d left his kid in a pub, as Jeremy Corbyn swept to victory, a man who looks strangely like “The Man from Del Monte”. But, I still had a tiny amount of optimism left. “He’s a very divisive character”, I told myself, “the media will be too busy talking about his inability to unite Labour to focus on the man himself.” But alas, sadly not. While there certainly have been plenty of stories about the broken party, the Times decided to describe his bicycle as “Chairman Mao-esque” (as opposed, of course, to Boris Johnson’s, which has more of a George Bush style to it, in more ways than one), and the Daily Telegraph ran a full story on how at one edition of Prime Minister’s Questions, Corbyn wore a full suit and managed for the first time to look more smart than Cameron. Just let that sink in for a moment. The Daily Telegraph, a 161 year-old newspaper with a heavy political focus, turned into Hello! magazine’s Parliament edition just to tell us that Corbyn had worn a matching suit. And the Daily Mail decided that, since attacking the ancestry of one Labour leader had gone so well for them, they’d do it again, viciously attacking the “despotic” business management of his great great grandfather. And speaking in defence of the Mail, I’d just like to say that it’s ridiculous that Corbyn and Miliband didn’t have the common decency to nip back in time and reprimand their respective relatives about their disgraceful behaviour. It’s time for a change. It’s time for some politics that actually focuses on the politics, and not on bacon sandwiches, bicycles, and cartoon characters. Let’s start caring about policies, debates, and ideas. Yes, I know it can be a bit tedious at times, and yes, it is helpful to bring the pompous ones down to earth now and again. But it has fast outgrown its helpfulness, and I think we could use something a bit more sensible. Or, you know, we could just stay where we are, and look forward to the 2020 election being decided thanks to Jeremy Corbyn being unable to properly pronounce “antidisestablishmentarianism”. PREVIEW



Tom Sherlock


ear. It’s funny the things it makes people do. Today we have an awful lot to be afraid of: fear of terrorism, fear of the migrant crisis (not helped by a certain prime minister calling them a ‘swarm’) to name but a few. Fear can cloud judgment all too easily, aided and abetted by certain politicians, a wholly negative idea. When people are afraid or just suspicious they look for someone to protect them, the ones that look



the toughest, for the purposes of this article I’ll call them ‘knee-jerk’ politicians or parties. Here we have UKIP. People see the high immigration figures, some people worry, Farage then adds fuel to the fire claiming immigrants are apparently single-handedly responsible for most of the UK’s problems (along with the EU, of course). Thus in recent years when immigration has become more and more of a concern of

the electorate UKIP, which has a tough approach to immigration, has become more and more prominent. This can be seen in the 2013 European elections where the electorate ‘knee-jerked’ into voting for UKIP mainly due to other parties’ seemingly reluctance to actually tackle the issue of immigration and Euro-scepticism, which by definition is based on fear. Fear has essentially made UKIP and UKIP then spreads fear,

in the fashion of the age-old case of the chicken and the egg. This is not limited to the UK, look at the alarming support for the National Front in France especially following the Paris attacks last year. ‘Knee-jerk’ parties thrive on fear, without which it’s unlikely they’d get anywhere. The growth of support for such ‘knee-jerk’ parties then leads to mainstream parties trying to appear tougher and adopting some ‘knee-jerk’ policies. Look at Angela Merkel’s response to the migrant crisis. After German public opinion shifted following the all-too tragic drowning of a child trying to reach Europe she adopted a very lenient policy as suddenly the electorate feared the consequences of not helping refugees, and then after the events in Cologne public opinion has gone the other way, back to being more sceptical of refugees, and Merkel’s gone tough. Add to that the growth of right wing anti-immigrant Alternative for Germany party, which recently polled at more than 11%, another ‘kneejerk party’, support for which is putting a lot pressure on Merkel’s government. This is not a good thing, whilst of course mainstream politicians have to listen to public opinion some consistency is needed, especially on such an important issue. It is wrong to suppose that dealing with the electorate’s fears is only a problem for mainstream politicians. Au contré. Main parties exploit fear just as much as the far right. Look at Project Fear, a plan used by the Better Together campaign to create fear of what would happen to an independent Scotland during the 2014 Scottish

Independence Referendum, so much for a positive campaign. No doubt we can look forward to Project Fear 2 in the EU referendum. The Conservatives used fear to great effect in the 2015 election to discredit Labour (who doesn’t remember that photoshop triumph of Ed Miliband in Alex Salmond’s pocket), and low and behold they won. Fear wins, which is not necessarily a good thing for democracy. Of course the influence of fear isn’t limited to Europe. Across the pond the Republican Party practically bases all its policies on fear, seen with its presidential candidates, take Donald Trump. Trump thrives on fear; everything that deep conservatives fear he attacks, be that Mexican immigrants, extreme Islam (which he in the throes of Islamophobia evidently decided meant all Muslims) or Obama’s liberal policies. And what do you know, in the Republican primary he has a large lead in the polls. His support is a triumph of fear-mongering and ‘knee-jerking’ as he creates this image of the ‘tough guy’ standing up against all the fears of American conservatives, who are all the supporters he needs to win the primary. Naturally Trump isn’t alone in doing this, to quote Rick Santorum in the January Republican debate: “they’re [Islamic terrorists] attacking us as we speak. They’re attacking us all day every day.” Thanks for that Rick, I’m sure comments like that won’t help the growth of Islamophobia and intolerance at all. The media are just as guilty. FOX News’ reaction to the San Bernardino shootings in December last year was, and I do not kid:

“Get a gun!” Great. That’ll make people far more afraid than they would be otherwise. Fear-mongering is rife in (mainly the right wing of) American politics and worryingly it seems to be working. To balance things out I should point out that Jeb Bush hasn’t been seen to do this kind of fear-mongering often, but where is he in the polls? Laughable though it is that we have reached the stage where a Bush would appear the safest option. So what can be drawn from all this? I look at the fear-mongering of the right wing, especially in America, and I worry. Ironically enough I fear the outcome of fear-mongering. Fear can be manipulated, as proven by the Conservatives and Project Fear, and the far right capitalises on that: look at UKIP, look at Trump, look at the Alternative for Germany party. Now I realise that fears naturally come into debates over the EU or Scottish Independence or Ed Miliband as Prime Minister, but they shouldn’t define them. The forthcoming debate over the EU should be about whether being a part of it is beneficial for the UK, not over fear of immigration or fear of an apocalypse should we leave. As every good debater knows exaggeration, to deliberately encourage fear, is the weakest form of argument. We need to calm down and think, and think carefully. There are clear things to fear in today’s world, but we cannot let that fear define our decisions, or the likes of Trump really will get elected. As the old quote goes: “There is nothing to fear but fear itself”. PREVIEW


Annabelle Van Dort


he eclectic style of the Malian musical collective Songhoy Blues captivated worldwide audiences in 2015, yet the tumultuous backgrounds of Garba Touré, Aliou Touré,Oumar Touré and Nathanael Dembélé greatly contrasts to the euphoric melodies that is found in their music. In March 2012, members of the Islamic extremist group Ansar Dine seized Northern Mali. The organisation sought to convert the country into a rigid theocracy governed by Sharia law under which the composition of music was outlawed, with the militants threatening to cut off the hands of any musician who continued to play. Forced to flee from their homes, the band members were later discovered by Blur and Gorillaz frontman Damon Albarn who propelled the band from obscurity outside the southern Malian capital of Bamako to the international mainstream, giving the group a platform to use their artistry as a means of actively defying oppression through creativity. It is testament to the power of music as an instrument of rebellion that the Malian jihadists were so fearful of its power to influence the masses that they attempted to eradicate all secular music, as has been consistently attempted by autocrats throughout history. The trials, tribulations and mistreatment of minority communities throughout the



world has been historically detailed in song for many years. They form a means of expression when battling against the destruction of culture by the social majority. For example, songs such as ‘Wade in the Water’ and ‘Go Down Moses’ are synonymous with the strife of the early African American community during the era of slavery. The use of music by the slave community as a medium to rebel against their brutal treatment is accurately articulated by Allison Savicz who stated that ‘Negro spirituals… served as socio-political protests veiled as assimilation to the white American culture’ and is further emphasised by former slave Frederick Gougass who claimed that ‘every tone was a testimony against slavery’. Both of these accounts highlight the implicit rebellion contained in every verse of each, making it clear that music was a crucial unmonitored outlet to the slaves as it expressed their yearning for freedom from the whites who held dominion over their lives. As is still seen today in the music of Songhoy Blues, music has forever been a fundamental part of African culture. Thus the act of the slaves continuing to sing despite being forcibly uprooted from their homes is a poignant act of rebellion as they are holding onto fragments of their culture by masquerading it as songs of Christian Praise. A more modern example of African American rebellion through music is seen in the

New York group Public Enemy. The band produced politically and socially conscious hip hop throughout the 80’s and 90’s, often furiously commentating on the omnipresent racism and injustice that was experienced by black Americans through rap music. Chuck D’s confrontational and aggressive lyrics found on 1989’s ‘Fight the Power’ such as ‘Most of my heroes don’t appear on no stamps / Sample a look back you look and find / Nothing but rednecks for 400 years’ explicitly signifies the cultural bias towards the white population demonstrated by the lack of black representation. Importantly, through the repetition of the revolutionary rhetoric ‘we’ve got to fight the powers that be’ the band is actively encouraging the black community to overcome discrimination in order to achieve equality. ‘Fight the Power’ has become a revolutionary anthem in times of turmoil for the African American community, recently blasted through loudspeakers during the Ferguson protests in Atlanta which occurred as a response to numerous instances of police brutality towards African Americans. It is in times of such frustration that the music of Public Enemy communicates the pain and hardship experienced by the black minority as their lyrics have almost universal applicability, with many listeners able to relate to the statements and messages within their songs. Therefore the music of Public Enemy works as a perfectly apt soundtrack to the continuing black struggle and attempted rebellion to the ingrained racism of the United States. Although far less violent in sound compared to Public Enemy, the works of Bob Dylan are just as, if not more so, stinging in content. The lyrical fury of ‘Masters of War’ details the anti-war sentiment held by many at the time of the songs

writing, with Dylan’s fearless exposé of the grotesque realities of war serving as the songs subject. Dylan crones ‘You hide in your mansion/ While the young people’s blood/ Flows out of their bodies/And is buried in the mud’, shaming the corruption of war waging governments and emphasising the devastating impact that war can have on society. America, with its strong tradition of nationalism was consistently prowar up until cultural revolutions 60’s and onwards. Dylan also composed numerous other protest songs such as ‘A Hard Rain’s A-Gonna Fall’ and ‘Blowin’ in the Wind’

all of which contributed to both the Pacifist and Anti-War movements which began to form under the backdrop of the Cold, Vietnam and Korean Wars. The congregation of American citizens of differing ethnicity, class, age and gender united in rebellion against the forced partaking in war by governments is a scenario that could foreseeably end in violence. Yet due to the peaceful nature of the movement, the release of protest music by artists such as Dylan or Pete Seeger was seen to be the most effective form of revolt. Accessible throughout the United States and

to government, these anthems of peace articulated opposition to war through the brute power of words and not physical demonstrations, symbolising the pacifist movement as a whole. The decision of ISIL to deliberately target the Bataclan Theatre in November 2015, massacring innocent audience members of an Eagles of Death Metal concert demonstrates the inherent fundamentalist fear of contemporary music and youth. The targeting of a band that attracts a young demographic, who sing about sexual revolution and prostitution brings added gravitas to the omnipotent revolutionary power of music. The fact that the terrorists were so terrified of rock ‘n’ roll that the they took it upon themselves to forcibly mute the hedonism encouraged by the music of Eagles of Death Metal exemplifies musical power. Although the heinous acts of the terrorists horrified the world, music was not silenced as two months later the Eagles of Death Metal sold out a gig in the Paris Olympia in less than 30 minutes. The numerous attempts to silence music will always fail, for music has always been central to human society. A single line of song can be digestible and comprehensible to every single human being, inducing varying emotional responses from anger to happiness. Therefore it is no wonder that tyrannical leaders fear music, as they desire to manipulate masses in the way that only music can. As stated by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow ‘music is the universal language of mankind’ and it will forever continue to motivate rebellion and change like no other medium. PREVIEW




THE PREVIEW TEAM 2016 Charlotte Kail

Eleanor Maskatiya

Tom Sherlock

Dream dinner party guests? Nelson Mandela, the Queen, Colin Firth

Dream dinner party guests? Stephen Fry, Caitlin Moran, John Lennon

Dream dinner party guests? Douglas Adams, John Oliver, Winston Churchill

Political Crush? Young Joe Biden

Political Crush? Michelle Obama

Political Crush? Monica Lewinsky circa 1997

Favourite political soundbite? “Faith is taking the first step even when you don’t see the whole staircase” - Martin Luther King

Favourite political soundbite? “Politics is not a bad profession. If you succeed there are many rewards, if you disgrace yourself you can always write yourself a book” - Ronald Reagan

Favourite political soundbite? “Democracy is the worst form of government apart from the others that have been tried” Winston Churchill

Preferred 2016 candidate? Bernie Sanders

Preferred 2016 candidate? Hillary Clinton

Leyla Gimalieva

Libby Lewis

Dream dinner party guests? Noam Chomsky, Jeremy Corbyn, Jeremy Paxman

Dream dinner party guests? Martin Luther King Jr, Stephen Hawking, Mary Berry

Political Crush? Sergey Lavrov

Political Crush? Mitch McConnell for sure

Favourite political soundbite? “A man who stands for nothing will fall for anything” - Malcolm X

Favourite political soundbite? “I am not worried about the deficit. It is big enough to take care of itself” Ronald Reagan

Preferred 2016 candidate? Hillary Clinton

Jack Medlock Dream dinner party guests? David Brent, Usain Bolt, Malcolm Tucker Political Crush? Governor Schwarzenegger Favourite political soundbite? “Change will not come if we wait for some other person or some other time. We are the ones we’ve been waiting for. We are the change that we seek.” Barack Obama Preferred 2016 candidate? Chris Christie

Preferred 2016 candidate? One that looks like Scott Walker, acts like Clinton, thinks like Sanders, and has the same view of Putin as Trump!

Tom Gardner

Milly Berry

Dream dinner party guests? David Bowie, Aristophanes, Quentin Tarantino

Dream dinner party guests? Clarence Thomas, Princess Diana, James Corden

Political Crush? William Hague

Political Crush? Nick Clegg

Favourite political soundbite? “Anyone who is capable of getting themselves made President should on no account be allowed to do the job” Douglas Adams

Favourite political soundbite? “An empty stomach is not a good political advisor” - Albert Einstein

Preferred 2016 candidate? Bernie Sanders #feelthebern

Preferred 2016 candidate? Probably anyone but Ben Carson

Preferred 2016 candidate? John Kasich



OUR THANKS TO: Mr Toby Cooper Mr Tom Murphy Mr Matthew Godfrey Miss Iona Mackay Bulger Miss Marie Crick Article Contributors Preview Team Stefan Rousseau External Contributors Ruth Lea CBE Douglas Carswell MP Lord Verjee Cartoonists Amelia Claringball Edward Shambler Lydia Self Sponsors Caterham Rotary Club Rockpool Investments Charles Russell Speechlys Mrs Sophie Locket

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“This is our time, to reaffirm that fundamental truth - that out of many, we are one; that while we breathe, we hope, and where we are met with cynicism and doubt, and those who tell us we can’t, we will respond with that timeless creed that sums up a spirit of a people: Yes, we can.” Barack Obama, President of the United States 2009-2017

The Preview Team, Caterham School, Harestone Valley Road, Caterham Surrey CR3 6YA Telephone: 01883 343028 Email:

Preview Magazine  

The annual magazine from Caterham School's A Level politics pupils, launched this year in the heart of Whitehall by Crispin Blunt MP.

Preview Magazine  

The annual magazine from Caterham School's A Level politics pupils, launched this year in the heart of Whitehall by Crispin Blunt MP.