Category Archives: Humour

Douglas Carswell: Free Liberal – How it might have been (pt. 3)

This is the concluding part of a trilogy of counterfactual pieces previously published on LDV.

For Part 1 and Part 2, including the full results of the by-elections in Clacton and Heywood & Middleton in this continuity, please click the links.

…while some on principles baptized/To strict party platforms ties/
Social clubs in drag disguise/Outsiders they can freely criticize/
Tell nothing except who to idolize….”

-‘It’s Alright, Ma (I’m Only Bleeding)’, Bob Dylan

The dual results in in Clacton and Heywood & Middleton on 9th October threw UK Politics into complete disarray.

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Should Liberal Democrat Voice put up a post if and when a blogger leaves the party?

charlotte henryIn a spasm of madness a few weeks ago, from their conclavial confinement, the Liberal Democrat Voice team saw fit to emit a puff of white smoke in favour of myself, concerning the vexed matter of who would be Wednesday Editor of this august and elegantly barnacle-clad ship of the cyber-seas.

In the course of my duties last Wednesday, my not-very sophisticated news gathering antennae became aware of the news that Charlotte Henry had left the party. Newsmoggie kindly published a post concerning that. An interesting comments debate ensued under said post and it was one of our most popular offerings for this week.

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++BREAKING NEWS: Judy Murray’s Strictly success is due to a Scot Nats plot

I have a confession to make. I buy the Daily Express nearly everyday. There. I said it. Believe it or not, I get it to do a nine letter puzzle on page 43 in the presence of a nonagenarian relative who has done the same quiz each day for decades. Nonetheless, it gives me a forced insight into the right-wing press. So, here’s a summary of what they normally say:

DAILY EXPRESS

EAT A TOMATO AND TAKE AN ASPIRIN EVERYDAY AND YOU WILL LIVE TO BE A HUNDRED
(If your stomach survives the aspirin onslaught).

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Carswell: Free Liberal. How it might have been (part 2)

This is the continuation of an article posted previously on Lib Dem Voice. New readers should read the earlier post before this one.

…Do you remember…… changing the mind of pretenders?…

‘September’, Earth, Wind and Fire

As September 2014 began, even the most complacent Westminster journalistic eyes were swiftly turned away from Douglas Carswell’s Liberal insurgency, and towards events North of the border. The Scottish Independence Referendum was approaching within a fortnight, and Salmond and his remarkable growing coalition of voters were coming up fast/ A shock Panelbase poll published on 2nd September put the ‘Yes’ camp ahead by 1 point in the Independence Referendum. The campaign was electrified. For many Westminster politicians, it seemed as though they were waking up suddenly. Waking up, and booking train tickets to Scotland…

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Going forward, it’s all incredibly important to ordinary people

cf fringeOuch ! Don’t we sometimes cringe when we hear political or bureaucratic jargon during conference debates and fringe meetings?

Here are some of my favourite high-cringe-factor beauties…just a bit of fun….

1. Engaging with the public

Paints a picture of the general public and a political elite going out to meet ‘ordinary people’ (see below). Why not say ‘conduct research’, ‘find out what people want’, or just ‘meet people’.

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That Ed Miliband speech in full… (2)

The following arrived in a brown envelope at Lib Dem Voice Towers, this morning. It is probably an early draft.

Ed speechThankyou so much.

Friends, this country will never turn our back on the world and on the principles of internationalism. Those values are reflected not just in this country but in this party, and in the great team of Manchester United.

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Saltire hunting

imageOne of the superb, and very enjoyable, things about Liberal Democrat Voice, at the moment, is that there is excellent coverage of the Scottish debate. This is helped by having a Highlander co-editor, the great Caron Lindsay. There are about two interesting posts a day about Scotland at the moment in the run-up to the referendum.

As honorary photo editor, or “photo-fairy” as I encourage the team to call me, this leaves me with a bijou problemette. At the height of our powers here at LDV Towers, we like to illustrate each post. But there are only so many Scots photos one can lay one’s hands through the good offices of Flickr/CCL.

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Strategic advances at Liberal Democrat Voice

This week's Golden Dozen displayed via wordle.netWe at LDV towers are proud to announce a new strategy for Liberal Democrat Voice which will increase our influence within and beyond the party and leverage the capabilities of social media technologies to their full potential. This strategy makes full use of the unique placement we have as ‘our place to talk’ and premier online Liberal Democrat presence, as well as our regular authoritative members’ surveys.

The strategy has three essential, intertwined and synergistic elements:

1. We will be moving the site to the Nationbuilder platform …

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That Ed Miliband speech in full…

milibandThe following arrived in a brown envelope at Lib Dem Voice Towers, this morning. It is probably an early draft.

I want to start by thanking somebody from the bottom of my heart.

Ella Philips, who fell off her bike and called me an action hero who mysteriously appeared out of nowhere. She called me suave and not geeky at all.

I was pretty pleased with this until I realised she was concussed. So I got her to vote in her local constituency candidate selection.

I have emotion that is felt at kitchen tables …

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Opinion: Paxman, politics and pogonophobia

Bearded Nick Clegg

Oh what a fuss about a beard!

The media has gone mad over Jeremy Paxman’s beard, egged on a ‘Twitter storm’ last night. Even the BBC has got in on the act, declaring its presenter’s beard to be ‘notorious’.

What is it about beards that generate such interest, dislike, even fear? (This fear, the media tell us with glee, is properly called pogonophobia.)

Distrust of beards is nothing new. I grew mine the moment I escaped from sixth form. As an archaeologist, being hirsute was pretty much obligatory for men in those days. But when I led a dig for a county council, the head of personnel laughed out loud at the ‘odd habit’ of us diggers growing facial hair.

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Clegg: I’m perfectly relaxed about my staff wearing shorts to work

VANCL-Hawaiian-Beach-Shorts-Men-s-Yellow-White-SKU_6609665.bakHad all those staff cooped up in 70 Whitehall who are responsible to the deputy prime minister been listening to LBC 97.3 this morning (which I’m sure they weren’t of course; far too busy) they would have heard their boss announcing a dispensation from the usual rules of Whitehall attire, and giving them permission to turn up to work tomorrow in shorts.

The DPM didn’t even lay down any ground rules, so it seems it really is dress-down Friday time. Hawaiian shorts. A classy little three-quarter length denim number. And of course flip-flops and sandals. Or perhapsa less revealing pair of espadrilles.

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A short history of the market

As world conquests go, this was pretty impressive. While there were dark muttering about Islam taking over the world, neo-liberalism went ahead and did it in less than 50 years. It used the tools of an organised religion. If you wanted to be part of it, you had to forswear all others and commit yourself to a belief in the mystical powers of the Market. You could not question the powers of the Market, despite any evidence to the contrary, and discussion could only take place if both parties took the magical powers that flow from the Market as fact. …

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Bene habere bonum Aprilis Stulte Dies

I hope you all spotted that we had not one, but two, April Fool posts yesterday.

Simon McGrath announced a Special Lib Dem Conference to be held on April 1st 2016 when all former Lib Dem Ministers would don sackcloth and ashes and apologise for their actions in Government. I hear a song coming on …

That was followed by a post by our new co-editor, Caron Lindsay on how you can help Liberal Democrat Voice. Oh, sorry … that was deadly serious.

But later in the morning the Lib Dem Voice collective revealed that secret talks had been going on between the

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Hoggart on Webb: “He understands it so you don’t have to! Thank heavens!”

steve webbThe Guardian’s Simon Hoggart has been collecting examples of impenetrable jargon. This week, Lib Dem pensions minister Steve Webb features:

Thanks for the many examples of jargon you’ve sent in, and we’ll have a proper look at it all soon. In the meantime, there are examples which are actually quite helpful.

Take work and pensions, which is without a doubt the most difficult of all government departments. Yet the Liberal Democrat minister Steve Webb actually seems to know exactly what he is talking about. He may be alone. See if you

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That was the day that was… 15 March (with added by-election good news)

Another day over, here at Liberal Democrat Voice, and a fascinating one it has been too.

There is good news to report from Arun, in Sussex, courtesy of Cllr Jamie Bennett;

To put the result in perspective, a Conservative majority of nearly 1,000 was overturned, with Liberal Democrats up from 16% to 34%. Congratulations to our successful candidate, Paul Wells, and all of the team in Aldwick East.

Elsewhere, Liberal Democrat proposals for press regulation have been published on the Party website. We’ll have more coverage of that over the weekend and early next week.

And finally, in keeping with my occasional attempts to bring culture to the masses, here’s a little something that I’d like to dedicate to our site’s resident Eurosceptic…

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EXCLUSIVE: Lib Dem Voice supplies secret weapon to Eastleigh campaign

Eastleigh HQ

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Confessing LDV team members named

Some rights reserved by Lori GreigOn Christmas Eve some of the Liberal Democrat Voice team made public some interesting “confessions”. At that stage it was a case of “no names, no pack drills”. Readers had a chance to guess which team member made which confession. (There were a few jokers in there to make it even more interesting).

Now we can reveal the identity of each penitent:

Confession #1

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Christmas confessions from the Lib Dem Voice team

Confession - Some rights reserved by Lori GreigAs the Christmas sherry loosens us all up a bit, here are some confessions from the Liberal Democrat Voice team.

To turn it into a bit of a quiz, no names appear against each confession. So you’ll have to guess who the confessor is in each instance. By all means use the comments field below to have a stab at the identity of the owner of each revelation.

To make it a bit more interesting, there is an unspecified number of

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A Christmas Carol, as sketched by Bodz. All 5 Staves Omnibus.

Over the past five days, LibDemVoice has been delighted to bring you a contemporary updating of Charles Dickens’ classic story, A Christmas Carol, penned for us by Andy Boddington.

LDV scrooge story

If you missed any, or simply want to sit back in a comfy chair with a glass of mulled wine and enjoy the whole saga again from start to finish, here are all five staves of the story as sketched by Bodz. God bless them, every one…

Stave One: Mensch’s Ghost;

Stave Two: The Ghost of

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A Christmas Carol. Stave Five: The End of It

LibDemVoice is delighted to bring you A Christmas Carol, a contemporary re-imagining of Charles Dickens’ classic tale, told in five staves (as Dickens called them). The fifth stave, The End of It, follows. You can catch up with the story so far here: Stave One, Mensch’s Ghost; and Stave Two, The Ghost of Avarice Past; Stave Three, The Ghost of Arrogance Present; and Stave Four, The Ghost of Austerity Future.

LDV scrooge story

As sketched by Bodz

“Osborne, you are late!” Cameron said sternly. The wretched Chancellor mumbled …

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A Christmas Carol. Stave Four: The Ghost of Austerity Future

LibDemVoice is delighted to bring you A Christmas Carol, a contemporary re-imagining of Charles Dickens’ classic tale, told in five staves (as Dickens called them). The fourth stave, The Ghost of Austerity Future, follows. You can catch up with Stave One, Mensch’s Ghost, here; and Stave Two, The Ghost of Avarice Past, here; and Stave Three, The Ghost of Arrogance Present, here.

LDV scrooge story

As sketched by Bodz

Osborne stared at the umbrella and blinked. All around him the Olympic stadium was burning and crashing to the ground …

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A Christmas Carol. Stave Three: The Ghost of Arrogance Present

LibDemVoice is delighted to bring you A Christmas Carol, a contemporary re-imagining of Charles Dickens’ classic tale, told in five staves (as Dickens called them). The third stave, The Ghost of Avarice Past, follows. You can catch up with Stave One, Mensch’s Ghost, here, and Stave Two, The Ghost of Avarice Past, here.

LDV scrooge story

As sketched by Bodz

Osborne was struggling to keep warm on a deserted platform at Corby rail station. He dare not sleep, for fear of imagining yet again the Ghost of Avarice Past that …

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A Christmas Carol. Stave Two: The Ghost of Avarice Past

LibDemVoice is delighted to bring you A Christmas Carol, a contemporary re-imagining of Charles Dickens’ classic tale, told in five staves (as Dickens called them). Part One, Mensch’s Ghost, was published yesterday. Here’s the second stave, The Ghost of Avarice Past…

LDV scrooge story

As sketched by Bodz

Osborne sat on the stone bench and shivered. Mensch’s Ghost bothered him exceedingly. “It couldn’t have happened,” he moaned to himself. “There must have been something in that damned Starbucks coffee. Perhaps it is a revenge for my tax crackdown. Bah! Starbucks!”

Very …

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A Christmas Carol. Stave One: Mensch’s Ghost

Over the next five days LibDemVoice is delighted to bring you A Christmas Carol, a contemporary re-imagining of Charles Dickens’ classic tale, told in five staves (as Dickens called them). Here’s Part One, Mensch’s Ghost…

LDV scrooge story

As sketched by Bodz

Osborne was a very grumpy person indeed. Why on earth had the Italian economy decided to implode just days before Christmas? The crisis had kept him chained to his desk long after the rest of the cabinet had fled London. “Curse Berlusconi!” he muttered as his taxi crawled through the …

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From today’s Lib Dem News

By Howard of Lib Dem News

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From today’s Lib Dem News…

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From today’s Lib Dem News

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From today’s Lib Dem News

“And I thank Big Chief Boris and all his tribe for their gestures of support…”

By Howard from Liberal Democrat News

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Opinion: Three-in-one leader’s speech

Editor’s note: This composite leader’s conference speech was written last Thursday, well before Andrew Rawnsley published a similar piece.

Today we gather in a generic city with a bit of regeneration.

It is good to get out of the Westminster bubble.

It’s hard being outside the bubble.

Some people outside the bubble don’t like us.

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From today’s Lib Dem News

“We’re still compassionate, I still say “Hug a hoodie” – but you can blow their brains out if you find one in your house after midnight…”

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    The Govt's economic policy has failed Tim - the challenge following a credit bubble bursting is to maintain investment to drive future growth, rather than...
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    Stephen Donnelly 21st Dec '14 - 1:02pm "Actually that is exactly what we intend to do, and we are rather good at it. " I...
  • User AvatarStephen Donnelly 21st Dec - 1:02pm
    Tim13 : Yo say "The only problem with opening up the Byelection line, Caron, is that it invites the easy response from an interviewer, “But...
  • User AvatarRichard Dean 21st Dec - 12:42pm
    @Mark S The plan will likely include re-training, so that people whose skills are no longer needed would be trained up in skills that remain...
  • User AvatarCaron Lindsay 21st Dec - 12:41pm
    @tim13. Actually, the identity of the candidate is very important as we know that when polls mention the candidates's name, our vote goes up. The...
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    Caron Lindsay is right in her article where she says that most of us would not run up to Elton John and say - "...