Author Archives: Samuel Barratt

Opinion: Making the EBacc work

Michael Gove seems intent on bringing forward a replacement for the GCSE, going so far as to make its introduction a matter of confidence in the face of criticism.  All parties can agree, however, it is important to set out what these reforms should look like and make sure they deliver a qualification that is fit for purpose.

There are at least two key areas that I think Liberal Democrats should seek to influence.

Posted in Op-eds | Tagged and | 17 Comments

Opinion: Tuition fees – a progressive model for welfare?

Given the proportion of public sector spending it accounts for, in austere times welfare spending has come under the spotlight, with sizeable cuts having already being made.

Looking at who is accessing benefits to ensure those in receipt of them should be is to be welcomed. A blind eye should not, however, be turned to wealthier individuals in receipt of things like winter fuel allowance whilst cuts are made to some of the poorest in our society.

It is right that Liberal Democrats have distanced ourselves from Cameron’s musings that everyone under 25 should not be able to rely on support from …

Posted in Op-eds | Tagged and | 49 Comments

Opinion: The importance of social liberalism

The debate regarding the importance and roles of ‘social’ and ‘economic’ liberalism can, on occasion, be misrepresented. Whether deliberate or incidental the relationship between the two philosophies can sometimes be presented as discrete, zero-sum options. I believe they should be considered as dialectic.

In The Orange Book, a publication that is almost Frankensteinian in how it’s perceived and what it actually contains, David Laws offers definitions for social and economic liberalism, that broadly serve well in discussion, they are:

    economic liberalism: ‘the belief in the value of free trade, open competition, market mechanisms, and the effectiveness of the

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

  • User AvatarTony Greaves 30th Apr - 5:49pm
    There are serious problems with privately rented property. So the anser is to increase the number of privately rented properties. Hm. Tony Greaves
  • User AvatarBen Midgley 30th Apr - 5:47pm
    So, it seems pretty clear we have the capability to prevent Aleppo falling through humanitarian aid, and yes, if needs be, to provide the cover...
  • User AvatarJonathan Brown 30th Apr - 3:58pm
    To return to the point about listening to Syrians... This is the statement put out today at the demonstration in London and supported by the...
  • User AvatarJonathan Ferguson 30th Apr - 3:55pm
    Thanks for the excellent comments from everyone, and sorry for the lateness of this comment. I would like to write more on this topic in...
  • User AvatarJonathan Brown 30th Apr - 3:17pm
    As for food aid drops - most food aid has been seized by the regime and distribution is influenced, if not controlled altogether by the...
  • User AvatarEddie Sammon 30th Apr - 2:48pm
    The face saving idea for Assad sounds good, and I agree war needs to be an option, but the big plan by Syrian activists seems...