Robert Skidelsky
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House of Lords

Debate on Higher Education
Robert Skidelsky
Hansard | Wednesday, June 14, 2000

 
 
My Lords,
 
Debates in Parliament on the state of the public services usually revolve round a single topic: money. Whatever the service is, it gets too little money, its problems would be solved if it got more money, the government of the day, be it Labour or Conservative, is iniquitous in denying it more money.
 
In the case of higher education, this threnody for impoverishment is usually coupled with another: the lament for vanished independence. Universities and their teachers complain of a growing weight of regulation. They are constantly being assessed for their research and teaching capacities often, it seems by methods borrowed from the archives of STASI, but which in reality are the methods of bureaucracies the world over.

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Kosovo Unstarred Question
Robert Skidelsky
Hansard | Tuesday, February 01, 2000

 
My Lords,
 
The occasion of this unstarred question is the publication on 6 December 1999 of the Report on Human Rights violations in Kosovo compiled by the OSCE verification mission. The Report covers three periods: from 1 November 1999 to 21-24 March 1999; from 21-24 March to 10 June (the period of bombing) and the post-bombing period till October. In the first and third periods, monitors were in place on the ground; during the bombing period, the evidence is taken from Serb refugees and expellees. It is by far the most authoritative account of human rights’ violations in this period.
 
Comment on the Report by the media was conspicuous by its absence. Publication was noted and a few extracts given from the Executive Summary. . This was

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Position of the Conservative Party
Robert Skidelsky
Hansard | Wednesday, November 24, 1999

 
 
1. Nothing said below is intended to reflect adversely on Lords Strathclyde and Henley. They have carried us through a very difficult period with great resourcefulness and aplomb.The fact that it is not intended to be critical of either makes it easier to broach the matter below.
 
2. There is an increasing and regrettable tendency of the Conservative leadership in the Commons to treat the Conservative peerage in the Lords as its poodle. The most recent instance is the report in the press that ‘Mr. Hague withdraws Conservative whip from Jeffrey Archer’. The issue is not whether or not Lord Archer deserved to have his whip withdrawn. It is the assumption that it is the Leader of the Party who decides and announces who receives the whip

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Queen’s Speech - Debate on the Economy
Robert Skidelsky
Hansard | Monday, November 02, 1998

 
My Lords,
 
 
Since this is my first speech as Opposition Treasury spokesman in your lordships house, I propose to concentrate on Treasury matters.
The government has promised to make 'high and stable levels of growth and employment its 'central economic objective' .
But subject to two constraints,also spelled out in the Queen's Speech: the freedom given to the Bank of England to set interest rates to meet the government's low inflation target, and the government's commitment to 'abide by its fiscal rules'.
These bland phrases express the consensus view that the main contribution macroeconomic policy can make to growth and employment is to ensure a stable environment for business.
It was partly at least because the Labour Party had the

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House of Lords: National Lottery Bill 3rd Reading
Robert Skidelsky
Hansard | Monday, March 16, 1998

 
My Lords, as this is my positively last appearance before this Committee of your lordships house, I would like to take the opportunity afforded by the amendment standing in my name to sum up our main criticisms of this Bill.
 
These are three in number.
 
The first concerns the character of the new good cause. This is very different from the others. It is part of the government’s social policy. This has two consequences. First of all, the NOF will be much more directed as to what it should support than the other distributors. The much greater powers which the Secretary of State has taken under this Bill are a direct consequence of the new good cause. The second consequence is that, as I have already said, it is voracious. The government

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