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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  • User AvatarDav 10th Feb - 12:43pm
    Single party government is perfectly possible with proportional systems It is possible, but you must admit that, taken generally over proportional systems globally, it is...
  • User AvatarTim13 10th Feb - 12:30pm
    Chris_sh No, of course AWS doesn't "rely" (entirely anyway) on safe seats, but selections done through it are buttressed by having a safe seat. AWS...
  • User AvatarGlenn 10th Feb - 12:26pm
    PSI. So basically you're peddling the trendy metropolitan elite trope and some guff about city dwellers and expecting to just have it accepted as a...
  • User AvatarChris_sh 10th Feb - 12:14pm
    @PSI "AWS is a system that relies on safe seats " I know it has been continuously repeated on LDV, but is it really true?...
  • User AvatarPeter Watson 10th Feb - 12:11pm
    @Jane Ann Liston "I do think that attacking people because of the school they attended is not at all fair" It is unfair, but no...
  • User AvatarRoland 10th Feb - 12:06pm
    @Peter - from the reports I fully understand where Jeremy Hunt and the government is coming from on this, namely the NHS is a 24x7x365...