Campaigning on education and the Robin Hood Tax (and wise counsel from Dilbert)

admin - August 27, 2012

Keeping it visual and campaign-y today. First a nice 10 minute video on the role of civil society organizations in lobbying for better education (see previous education wonkwar debate if you want more analysis) They certainly know a thing or two about campaigning in Germany, recently getting major German banks to drop commodity funds and (contrary to the stereotype) they even use humour, albeit in …

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‘As serious as a heart attack’: Robin Hood Tax Global Week of Action Kicks Off

admin - May 18, 2012

Update on substantial progress (and the risk the money raised won’t go to development and climate change) from Oxfam head of advocacy (and generally merry man) Max Lawson This week sees a Global Week of Action for the campaign for the Robin Hood Tax (aka the Financial Transactions Tax, or FTT). The FTT rose to prominence as a result of the financial crisis, which continues to …

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Robin Hood Tax update: more campaign success on the Financial Transactions Tax

admin - April 3, 2012

The RHT campaign continues to show the remarkable ‘how change happens’ potential of a response to shocks (in this case, financial crash + austerity = governments desperate for new sources of revenue + impending collapse of aid flows from many donors + massive public antipathy towards the banking sector = perfect time to campaign for a new tax on banks). Here’s a summary of the …

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Robin Hood, the G20 and the Greek debt crisis – what came out of last week's summit?

admin - November 7, 2011

It’s any campaigner’s nightmare – you work for months to get movement on a big issue at a summit, and then an international crisis blows up and threatens to wreck both the agenda and your plans. But Max Lawson, Oxfam’s head of Policy and Advocacy, reckons that the Robin Hood Tax made significant progress last week at a G20 summit dominated by the Greek debt …

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G20 rap curtain-raiser – Tap Dat A$$et from MC Moneypenney

admin - November 2, 2011

I’m in Cambodia for a few days, (more on that to follow), which means that I will miss the the last minute lobby briefings etc for this week’s G20 summit in Cannes. But in lieu of a curtain raiser, here’s something altogether more fun – MC Moneypenney provides an international finance 101 rap from Occupy Wall Street, and covers (among other things) quantitative easing, Weimar …

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The defenders of capitalism should have more faith – response by Ha-Joon Chang and me to critics of the Robin Hood Tax

admin - October 18, 2011

This piece by Ha-Joon Chang and me appeared in various places last week, including South Africa’s Business Day (under the title ‘Financial tax not the death knell of capitalism’ ). It was pegged to the G20 finance ministers meeting, which turned out inconclusive on the FTT – the Robin Hood caravan now rolls on to the  G20 summit in Cannes in early November. With European Commission president …

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Rise of the Machines: the weird world of high frequency traders

admin - September 30, 2011

Some delightful writing from my colleague Richard Gower on the weird (and destructive) world of ‘high frequency traders’ and the need for a Robin Hood Tax to calm them down: “Welcome to the future. Machines, trading hundreds or even thousands of times a second, now dominate stock trading on both sides of the Atlantic. They buy and sell according to pre-programmed algorithms that range from …

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What does Bill Gates' leaked report say about aid, tax and development?

admin - September 29, 2011

Take a look at the leaked report by Bill Gates to the G20, which got a good deal of media coverage because of its positive noises about the Financial Transactions Tax. Actually, the rest of the report is at least as interesting. Firstly, it’s not actually the final report, but a 7 page ‘technical note’ on the key financing proposals. The report itself is going …

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Two months to get a Robin Hood Tax? Guest blog by Max Lawson

admin - September 21, 2011

Crisis as opportunity, continued: Oxfam’s head of advocacy, Max Lawson updates us on some rapid progress on a European Financial Transactions Tax (aka Robin Hood Tax) and the need for concerted lobbying over the next two months. In a surprise turnaround, Jose Manuel Barroso, the European Commission President, announced on 31 August that the Commission now supports an EU-wide FTT, and will release a detailed …

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Robin Hood: the long view from Ha-Joon Chang (and me)

admin - April 19, 2011

This appeared in today’s Guardian and on its Comment is Free site yesterday. CiF is notable for the number and vehemence of comments, many of them slightly unhinged. 100 comments in the first two hours is about par for the course, evoking images of lots of angry people in bedsits and offices bashing away at their keyboards. Keeps them off the streets, I suppose. Robin …

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