Opinionomics | 24 May 2012

Must-read comment and analysis. Featuring the fiscal cliff. Don't fall off!

1. Has the ‘greenest government ever’ given up on carbon budgets? (Left Foot Forward)

Reg Platt reveals that there is a 50gCO2/kWh gap in the government’s ambitions that must be explained if we are to believe it is committed to meeting the carbon budgets.

2. Papademos, Grexit, and catastrophe blackmail (Telegraph)

Papandreou was clueless. Papademos was complicit. Where does blame really lie, asks Ambrose Evans-Pritchard

3. Government becomes banker to the private sector (BBC News)

Robert Peston examines the phenomoenon of the private sector paying the government to look after their money.

4. Fiscal cliffs, multipliers, and the myth of central bank independence (Free Exchange | Economist)

Ryan Avent addresses the fiscal cliff.

5. What Bagehot said… (FT Alphaville)

Cardiff Garcia has lovely historical (if very wonkish) discussion of the history.

Pictured: A fiscal cliff. Maybe. Photograph: Getty Images

Alex Hern is a technology reporter for the Guardian. He was formerly staff writer at the New Statesman. You should follow Alex on Twitter.

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Could Jeremy Corbyn still be excluded from the leadership race? The High Court will rule today

Labour donor Michael Foster has applied for a judgement. 

If you thought Labour's National Executive Committee's decision to let Jeremy Corbyn automatically run again for leader was the end of it, think again. 

Today, the High Court will decide whether the NEC made the right judgement - or if Corbyn should have been forced to seek nominations from 51 MPs, which would effectively block him from the ballot.

The legal challenge is brought by Michael Foster, a Labour donor and former parliamentary candidate. Corbyn is listed as one of the defendants.

Before the NEC decision, both Corbyn's team and the rebel MPs sought legal advice.

Foster has maintained he is simply seeking the views of experts. 

Nevertheless, he has clashed with Corbyn before. He heckled the Labour leader, whose party has been racked with anti-Semitism scandals, at a Labour Friends of Israel event in September 2015, where he demanded: "Say the word Israel."

But should the judge decide in favour of Foster, would the Labour leadership challenge really be over?

Dr Peter Catterall, a reader in history at Westminster University and a specialist in opposition studies, doesn't think so. He said: "The Labour party is a private institution, so unless they are actually breaking the law, it seems to me it is about how you interpret the rules of the party."

Corbyn's bid to be personally mentioned on the ballot paper was a smart move, he said, and the High Court's decision is unlikely to heal wounds.

 "You have to ask yourself, what is the point of doing this? What does success look like?" he said. "Will it simply reinforce the idea that Mr Corbyn is being made a martyr by people who are out to get him?"