Author Archives: Caron Lindsay

Top of the Blogs: The Lib Dem Golden Dozen #470

Welcome to the Golden Dozen, and our 470th weekly round-up from the Lib Dem blogosphere … Featuring the five most popular stories beyond Lib Dem Voice according to click-throughs from the Aggregator (19-25 February, 2017), together with a hand-picked seven you might otherwise have missed.

Don’t forget: you can sign up to receive the Golden Dozen direct to your email inbox — just click here — ensuring you never miss out on the best of Lib Dem blogging.

As ever, let’s start with the most popular post, and work our way down:

Posted in Best of the blogs | 14 Comments

Lib Dem Lords vs the Article 50 Bill: Dick Taverne: Dictatorships don’t allow people to change their mind

The Lib Dem Lords have made some cracking contributions to the debate on the Article 50 Bill. Ahead of its next Lords stages, we’re bringing you all the Lib Dem contributions over the course of this weekend. That’s no mean feat. There were 32 of them and cover more than 30,000 words. You are not expected to read every single one of them as they appear. Nobody’s going to be testing you or anything. However, they will be there to refer to in the future. 

Our Lords excelled themselves. Their contributions were thoughtful, individual, well-researched and wide-ranging and it’s right that we present them in full on this site to help the historian of the future. 

Dick Taverne looked at the nature of democracy and concluded that the people must be allowed to change their mind. He also spoke about parliamentarians having a duty to speak out against the country taking a disastrous course of action.

My Lords, like the noble Lord, Low, who is not in his place at the moment, I want to talk about democracy. I never thought that, one day, speaker after speaker in a Commons debate, on an issue of immense significance for Britain’s future, would announce that, although they believed that Brexit would gravely damage our national interests, they would nevertheless vote to leave because the will of the people must be obeyed. They did not say, “Of course, we have to take the decision of the people very seriously, but in the end we have to make up our own minds”; they declared, in effect, that they were not in Parliament to exercise their own judgment but were delegates who had to vote the ticket of populist correctness.

Out goes the tradition of parliamentary democracy, with its checks and balances; out go Locke, John Stuart Mill and others, who created liberal democracy, which has been much admired; and out goes Edmund Burke, who argued that MPs were representatives, not delegates. The doctrine of Rousseau now rules in Westminster, that the will of the people must always prevail, a doctrine much admired by autocrats ever since the days of Robespierre and the Committee of Public Safety. With great respect to my noble friend Lord Ashdown, the idea that the will of the people equals democracy or the national interest is a fallacy. Before the Second World War, Hitler, Mussolini and Stalin all commanded overwhelming public support and represented the will of the people. That hardly made them democrats or left their countries better off. Today Putin and Erdogan are among the most popular populists. They boast about their majority support. Are they democrats, even though they suppress dissent and trample on the rule of law?

Posted in Parliament | Tagged and | 3 Comments

Lib Dem Lords vs Article 50 Bill: Dick Newby: Government plans ” horrifying mixture of pious aspiration and complacent illusion”

The Lib Dem Lords have made some cracking contributions to the debate on the Article 50 Bill. Ahead of its next Lords stages, we’re reminding you of some of the best over the course of this weekend. 

Their contributions were thoughtful, individual, well-researched and wide-ranging – unlike the stream of Tories who got up to repeat what seemed to have been a script handed down from the Whips which basically said “The Lib Dems said they wanted an in-out referendum and now they aren’t accepting the result. Na na na na na.” 

We kick off with Leader Dick Newby’s cracking speech. He addressed the issue of …

Posted in Parliament | Tagged , , and | Leave a comment

Stoke and Copeland results show how far Lib Dems have come in two years

If the Stoke and Copeland by-elections had happened at any point in the last Parliament, the Liberal Democrats would have been squeezed until our pips squeaked. We’d certainly have lost our deposit as we did in both seats in the 2015 General Election in both seats.

The results showed how far we have come. Our vote more than doubled in both seats and we did well to avoid a squeeze into oblivion. In Copeland we pushed UKIP into fourth as that party’s voters clearly felt comfortable enough voting for Theresa May’s Brexit Britain Party.

In Stoke, you have to wonder how much …

Posted in Op-eds | Tagged , and | 80 Comments

Another Thursday another TWO Lib Dem GAINS from the Conservatives

There were only three Council by-elections tonight, all Conservative defences.

The Lib Dems have two new councillors as we gained in Devon and Northamptonshire.

A ward we didn’t even stand in last time is now represented by Lib Dem Cllr Elizabeth Huntley.

Just like in Kettering.



Recent Comments

  • User AvatarPaul 28th Feb - 10:48am
    I feel the Lords will come to regret this series. The ridiculous comments from Lord Palmer about the conversion of a TV room being converted...
  • User AvatarEddie Sammon 28th Feb - 10:36am
    Manfarang, just because areas were once part of an empire or "dynasty" doesn't mean they have to be forever in the future, otherwise we would...
  • User AvatarNeil Sandison 28th Feb - 10:29am
    Our next big test comes in the nation poll for Shire and Metro Mayors .Local government has been bled dry by the tories with services...
  • User AvatarEddie Sammon 28th Feb - 10:29am
    These look like reasonable and inexpensive proposals for maternity leave for candidates. I think they are a very good idea.
  • User AvatarLorenzo Cherin 28th Feb - 10:07am
    Catherine You are correct to say what you do in reply to my comments on Raif Badawi. As far as I am aware , the...
  • User AvatarSteve Trevethan 28th Feb - 9:38am
    Thank you for a most thought provoking article. Perhaps a long term question mark over all parties except, mostly, the Conservatives, is that of what...