Author Archives: David Hall-Matthews

Opinion: 2013 – Time to think afresh about International Development?

Lynne Featherstone in Zambia. Photo:  some rights reserved by DFID http://www.flickr.com/photos/dfid/8220719712/Another year, another set of attacks on development aid in the right-wing press. Prompted by a spectacularly ill-informed paper from Civitas, the Telegraph, Mail and Spectator tried once again to argue, without evidence, that high proportions of British aid are wasted.

The truth is that, under the Coalition, far more attention has been paid to value for money in aid spending than ever before. What is more, there’s little need to speculate about where

Posted in Op-eds | Tagged , , , and | 22 Comments

Opinion: Why the UK should keep its promises on international aid

The best use of aid for International Development has been a controversial topic recently, with rows over the need for aid to India spilling onto the front pages – many of them spectacularly ill-informed on both sides. That issue is complex – but at least you can rely on Liberal Democrats to think about it carefully. In 2010, I chaired a policy working group on international Development, which argued that the UK should focus on supporting good governance, sovereignty and accountability to the poor, so that countries could move away from aid dependency. As India has all of those, we argued that aid to India could stop now. However, with more people living below the poverty line in India than the whole of Africa, the counter-argument is also strong. In the end an amendment from House of Commons International Development Select Committee Chair Malcolm Bruce, calling for aid to continue for now, was supported by conference.

Posted in Op-eds | Tagged and | 3 Comments

Opinion: Interpreting the internal election results

The bare bones of the internal party election results were set out here on Saturday showing who had been elected by conference reps to the various committees.

The detailed results for the Federal Executive and the Federal Policy Committee, hosted by Colin Rosenstiel, show some revealing trends when compared with previous years’ election results.

This year, in the Federal Executive elections, Evan Harris came top on first preference by a long stretch with 263 votes. Following him was David Rendel (107) and Ramesh Dewan (77) with others on 55. Evan is clearly identified with the progressive, Social Liberal wing …

Posted in Op-eds and Party policy and internal matters | Tagged , , , , , , , , and | 38 Comments
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    Mr Wallace and others - although it sounds fairly easy to just ban MPs from the devolved countries in the UK from voting on devolved...
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    Yes Andrew, it does include Crimea, and actually the whole of eastern Ukraine. Self-determination for everyone should be one of the biggest liberal causes.
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    David, Actually it was Greens 10% Lib Dems 5% in the TNS Holyrood poll (in the non-constituency section; the Greens are not mentioned in the...
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    Good speech by Paddy! (despite misquoting Edward Lear!)
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    Eddie, Does it extend to self-determination for Crimea as well? If they had a properly supervised referendum I am pretty sure they would still choose...
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    Andrew ""but I do not expect the pledge to be mentioned much if Farron is elected – simply because every time Labour supporters bring it...
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