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 AvatarDavid Allen 30th Jun - 3:15pm
    TCO: I doubt whether any of the parties offered the poor Greeks the chance to vote for a serious onslaught on tax evasion. Yes, Syriza...
  • User AvatarNick Thornsby 30th Jun - 3:12pm
    Sorry, Malcolm - no, the latter part of my comment wasn't aimed in your direction. I'm not so sure re tuition fees. It's obviously impossible...
  • User AvatarMalcolm Todd 30th Jun - 2:57pm
    Agreed, Phyllis. Perhaps "resign" could become a word that triggers the auto-m*der*t*r!
  • User AvatarMalcolm Todd 30th Jun - 2:55pm
    Nick Thornsby Not sure if your whole comment was directed to me, but I'm not arguing that the veto is inherently democratic, just the implied...
  • User AvatarRoger Lake 30th Jun - 2:54pm
    31. 9.12 Good on yer, Steve. I'm pleased to think I may have sparked an interesting debate -- one that I hope will continue in...
  • User AvatarRoger Lake 30th Jun - 2:51pm
    27. 2.07 Important questions about Labour, indeed. I think they might do, after more reflection than they've shown so far. They have respected elders who...
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