This book seeks to review the state of political issues early in the twenty-first century, when New Labour is in its second term of office. As part of the updating process it became necessary to choose which political issues are important. The book includes the main issues which appear in current Advanced Level Politics syllabuses. In the case of Edexcel, which offers a specific political issues option in its A2 specification, all the specified issues have been included. The book deals with the process of constitutional and political change which are issues in themselves. It also includes material on constitutional reform (incorporating the recent development of human rights in Britain), and devolution. The book includes the global recession and other recent political developments and looks at the important issues in British politics since 1945. It examines the key issues of British politics today: economic policy, the Welfare State, law and order, environment policy, Northern Ireland, issues concerning women, European integration and the European Union, and the impact of the European Union on Britain. The book also deals with the European Union and Britain's relationship to it. Finally, it must be emphasised that Britain's relationship to the European Union is in itself a political issue which has fundamentally changed the party system.
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, especially on those which
are also debated at the national level. Hence, one can identify some kind
of ‘Europeanised’ party cleavages which have developed along the path of
European treaty reforms in the areas of social and employment policy,
equal opportunities policy, environmentpolicy and home and judicial cooperation. 18
This change in tone reflects a more pragmatic and less ‘idealistic’
approach towards European integration. German political players try to
increase their influence on the implementation and the
for Food Safety and the
Lessons to Be Learned, April, Edinburgh, HMSO.
HMSO (1999), Food Standards Act 1999, London, HMSO, chapter 28.
Food agencies as an institutional response
James, P. (1997), Food Standards Agency: An Interim Proposal, 30 April, London,
Department of Health.
Jones, A. and Clark, J. (2001), The Modalities of European Union Governance: New
Institutionalist Explanations of Agri-EnvironmentPolicy, Oxford, Oxford University Press.
Krebs, J. (2003a), Speech to Westminster Diet and Health Forum Seminar, 3
that few regard as desirable. Poverty bears an environmental
dimension, since the poorest are those most likely to suffer from ecological degradation. However, although many anti-poverty policies will be
environmentally benign, and many pro-environmentpolicies will reduce
poverty, the conjunction between social justice and environmental sustainability is by no means total. Some anti-poverty policies may need to
be environmentally damaging, e.g. a dash for GDP growth, and some proenvironment policies may be detrimental to the poor, e.g. price rises on