Author Archives: Lee Dargue

Person X supports the legalisation of cannabis

 

“Person X supports the legalisation of cannabis” is quite a headline. For that person to be a sports star or celebrity generates some interest. For it to be a user of cannabis, it often generates derision.

If X is the leader of a political party, or a former government health minister, it surely is big news. This is why I joined, and have stayed a member, of the Liberal Democrats: to have radical, evidence-based policies which strike out as making us distinctive and pleased Norman Lamb has put a motion forward to conference for this policy, and please Tim Farron has supported it.

When it comes to policy-making, we are the party that prides itself most on having an evidence base. Some parties go for populism over evidence, whereas we often prefer radical policies. And some parties go on mainly grabbing headlines. These three elements are often at odds and one usually wins over the other.

Posted in Op-eds | Tagged , and | 38 Comments

Why Luciana Berger was so wrong to attack Norman Lamb

When you start a fight, you should choose to fight the side who is damaging you or the cause the most. You should also make sure you have the right backing and tools at hand to win the fight.

Luciana Berger has decided to both ignore the current Government’s reneging on spending for mental Health, whilst also choosing to attack Norman Lamb who has done more to put mental health on the political radar than anyone, whilst she has…well…what, exactly?

The point-scoring attempt this week to blame Norman for the continuing crisis in mental health services finally broke the straw that I’ve been carefully balancing for a while now.

Posted in Op-eds | Tagged , and | 10 Comments

Opinion: Why we can all be Charlie

I’ve often been moved to offer a rebuttal to comments made in the public sphere. Indeed, I’m known for taking a sharp intake of breath and squeezing my eyes shut in an anxious state when Michael Gove went to make a comment on education, before taking my big letter writing pen to an article asking what planet he inhabits.

Posted in Op-eds | Tagged , and | 118 Comments

Launch of new Liberal Democrat group focussing on Mental Health

Mental Health is finally getting the focus it has long deserved. With stigma slowly dropping and support services being increasingly scrutinised for quality, we need to ensure that provision is improved in both quality and quantity to meet the growing need for support.

I’m pleased to announce the launch of a new group today, called the LibDem Mental Health Association (LMDHA).

You can visit the website and sign up to offer your support, guidance and, where able, your commitment to help grow the group to help form policy in our party and government. You can join at www.ldmha.co.uk/join

Commenting on their …

Posted in News | 4 Comments

Opinion: Part of the solution is that we need more male feminists

Some rights reserved by Leo ReynoldsI’ve had enough.

I’ve had enough of women being seen by far too many people in society as second class citizens. I’ve had enough of working in the private sector and seeing women patronised for their ideas with a “oh that’s a good idea, love” attitude. I’ve had enough of women having to fight for the right to be heard and then being granted a voice, because it’s time to ‘let the woman talk’. I’ve had enough of a pervasive society, which for centuries has degraded women to being the pretty ones who are meant to serve men. I’ve had enough of women being pressurised

Posted in Op-eds | Tagged | 9 Comments

Opinion: Liberal Youth has changed for the better and I see promise of more

Following Sean Davey’s thought-provoking post on the upcoming elections of new Liberal Youth officers, I wanted to offer support and some further thoughts. In agreement, Sean is right to point out that LY cannot allow its incoming officers, along with the existing ones, to indulge in coasting or long-winded bickering and risk over-shadowing the hugely important work of LY in campaigning.

Sean also raises the issue of LY’s lack of diversity as a problem. I totally agree that we can’t allow things to stay as they are, and after some initial concerns I back the Candidate Leadership Program. However, …

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Opinion: #KillTheBill – but not for a reason you may be aware of…

This weekend saw the LibDems argue both for and against the Health and Social Care Bill. It may be a cliché, but whilst I’m in the #KillTheBill camp, I am still proud of our democratic system that allows votes on both sides of the argument to be counted (interestingly, I had to explain to supporters of the bill that those of us arguing against don’t want NO bill, just not THIS bill – for some reason they seemed surprised at that).

I spoke to both Paul Burstow and Judith Jolly about some of the concerns I have, and I pay tribute …

Posted in Op-eds and Party policy and internal matters | Tagged | 21 Comments
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  • User AvatarMichael BG 31st May - 2:31am
    I think this is a strange article. I remember the days when Conservatives used to talk about giving people equal opportunities. This meant that everyone...
  • User AvatarLorenzo Cherin 31st May - 1:45am
    Lauren Keith Very good article , well done. Eddie Agree with you on new and more tangible policies, not on the leadership.Tim is here to...
  • User AvatarStevan Rose 30th May - 11:17pm
    I hate to say it but we don't have an awful lot of credible, clear, and distinctive policies on offer. If we do then we're...
  • User AvatarEdith 30th May - 11:11pm
    The migrants are coming with no legal status in France. If they apply for Asylum in France, then the french government will take care of...
  • User AvatarDavid Raw 30th May - 9:20pm
    J. Dunn Oh, dear, I'm dazzled by such a sophisticated response. @ Shas, well done, great cause, but..... buy items from Sports Direct ? No...
  • User AvatarNoel Hadjimichael 30th May - 9:15pm
    As a new resident in the UK with voting rights I am keen to see both sides of the debate given exposure and robust examination....