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 AvatarJoeBourke 31st Aug - 6:39pm
    The refugee crisis is a complex issue that will require a multi-tiered approach as was the case in the immediate aftermath of WWII Many of...
  • User AvatarJayne mansfield 31st Aug - 6:35pm
    @ Richard Stallard, The places that they are fleeing to initially are Turkey, Lebanon and Jordon, but the numbers are likely to destabilise those countries....
  • User AvatarPeter Chambers 31st Aug - 6:28pm
    @AndrewMcC Your point about Green authoritarianism is well taken. Taking the political compass at face value the UK Greens should be on the economic Left,...
  • User AvatarJoe Otten 31st Aug - 6:04pm
    Er, just to be clear, jedibeeftrix is not a party member, so everybody who is leaping to judgments about the party based on what he...
  • User Avatardavid thorpe 31st Aug - 5:56pm
    the definition i used is that applied in international law-;people apply for asylum claiming refugee staus and if their case is valid are granted refugee...
  • User AvatarDavidW 31st Aug - 5:55pm
    @Maria "Just wondering…. is it possible to be radical and moderate at the same time?" Hah, not really. Neither is it possible to believe in...