Category Archives: LibLink

For highlighting articles by Lib Dems that have appeared elsewhere in the media.

LibLink: Dick Newby: Parliament, Article 50 and the case for a second referendum

Lib Dem Leader in the Lords Dick Newby has been writing about the EU referendum and Brexit for the Reimagining Europe website.

He is clear that Brexit will not resolve the problems which motivated people to vote to leave:

The overarching message which I take from the result, is that very many people feel alienated from the way the country is run and are worried about their economic futures. They don’t see the benefits of recent social and economic change. And they see large scale immigration as a threat, not as a benefit. Brexit alone would not assuage these fears, not least

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LibLink: Sarah Olney: Theresa May’s visit to Turkey betrays our liberal values

Fresh from her meeting in Washington with a man who has extolled the effectiveness of torture, admitted sexually assaulting women and who thinks building walls between nations is a good idea, our Prime Minister heads today to meet the leader of a so-called democracy where human rights mean nothing and journalists are imprisoned.

Sarah Olney has written a blistering article in the Guardian, attacking the PM for betraying our liberal values instead of safeguarding our trading relationship with the democracies on our doorstep.

This tawdry tour shames Britain. This is a defining period on the international stage and we must consider to what extent this new course is safeguarding both our interests and values around the world.

In an age of “alternative facts”, there is no doubt about the realities of the Erdoğan regime. Even before last July’s failed coup, Erdoğan had begun systematically dismantling Turkey’s democratic institutions. Since the coup, he has embraced full-frontal authoritarianism. He is not only locking up journalists, but teachers, professors and policemen – all without due process. Not quite the outfit you’d have in mind for a regime described yesterday as an “indispensable partner” by Theresa May.

>Indeed, turn the clock back eight months and our now foreign secretary was slating the Turkish president. Yet Boris Johnson has fallen unusually silent – refusing to call Erdoğan out on his shocking crimes. There is a pattern here: ministers pursuing business deals on the international stage at odds with Britain’s best traditions and values.

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LibLInk: Nick Clegg: This is the future – the unstoppable march of machines

Nick Clegg’s latest Standard column starts off by setting out a number of current problems. One is very different from the others:

There’s a lot to worry about these days: hard Brexit, Trump’s protectionism, Diego Costa’s future at Chelsea, Putin’s manoeuvres, conflict in the South China Sea, Boris Johnson’s next gaffe, climate change.

It’s another that he focuses on, though. What happens to people as their jobs are replaced by machines. He uses the self-driving truck as an example:

According to one recent report, truck driving and related jobs employ more people than any other job in 29 out of America’s 50 states. It is estimated that there are 8.7 million trucking-related jobs in the US. It is one of the few jobs that still attracts a fairly decent income — about $40,000 (£32,000) a year — without requiring higher academic qualifications. In other words, it’s a precious ingredient in the American Dream: a dependable job, accessible to everyone.

It is a question of when, not if, American highways will be crisscrossed by thousands of similar self-driving trucks. And what then for the millions of truck drivers, their families and their communities? An economic earthquake, that’s what, which could leave millions of people out of work.

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LibLink: Tim Farron writes “May’s Brexit intentions will betray the values promoted by Churchill”

Tim Farron has written an article in The New European. He starts:

If 2016 felt like a never-ending cycle of shocks and surprises, then 2017 already shows no sign of relenting.

I, like all other ‘Remoaners’, get constantly criticised for being too negative about the prospects of Brexit Britain. Yet right now, it is not my confidence in the government’s direction that is significant, it is the markets, displayed so clearly in the pound slumping to a fresh 31-year low on Monday.

The prompt for this had been the impending sense of gloom in anticipation of Theresa May’s Brexit speech on Tuesday, which outlined her plans for the UK to quit the single market, before even entering into negotiations with the EU.

Staggeringly, the PM, increasingly characterised as ‘Theresa Maybe’, has chosen her only act of decisiveness to be on leaving the single market – a British invention that she and her own cabinet have spent their careers recognising as being so fundamental to our public life and economic wellbeing.

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LibLink: Tim Farron: Whether you are Leave or Remain, Theresa May just betrayed you on Brexit

Tim Farron wrote a long response to Theresa May’s speech yesterday for the Guardian. Here are some of the highlights;

The new Ukip leader, Paul Nuttall, himself commented that May’s words could have come straight from a Ukip party conference speech. Farage and Nuttall might like to convince themselves that the referendum was an endorsement of their nationalist, populist politics, but that is an injustice to most of the British people who voted leave. Pursuing Ukip’s warped vision will not only have severe consequences on our economy, it will also severely damage our standing in the world.

A reckless exit from the

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LibLink: Tom Brake: Why the Liberal Democrats won’t stand aside in Copeland

In an article for the New Statesman, Tom Brake explains why the Liberal Democrats will be fighting the Copeland candidate with our excellent candidate, Rebecca Hanson. The brief summary is that you can’t have a “Progressive Alliance” with a party that isn’t very progressive. Labour’s approach to Brexit is something that we could not support.

But ultimately we will not help progressive politics if we stand aside for Corbyn’s Labour, which would merely give the left false hope that someone of the hard left could become Prime Minister. To us, a Eurosceptic statist such as Corbyn is not even progressive. By doing well ourselves, the Lib Dems will strengthen the hand of Labour moderates to seize back control of their party, or else leave it entirely. Only then will re-alignment be back on the agenda.

Brexit changes everything. So, whatever you thought of the Coalition or the Lib Dems, think again: if you are a progressive, you need Europe – and the Lib Dems are the only party fighting for your European future.

He also reminds readers how Jeremy Corbyn refused to share a platform with Tim Farron during the referendum to highlight how the EU protects workers’ rights.

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LibLink: Nick Clegg: Blaming liberalism for the world’s political turmoil is just too easy

A powerful riposte from Nick Clegg to those who blame liberalism for all the evils of the world:

My schoolboy history taught me that while Mill was a man of the 19th century he also espoused remarkably progressive causes — free speech, feminism, the environment and workers’ councils. My guess is if he was alive today he’d be on the barricades in favour of a mass, state-funded housing programme while defending Britain’s long tradition of internationalism, including our place in Europe.

But I would say that, wouldn’t I? For much of my political career people have either ignored liberalism, falsely espoused …

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  • User AvatarMark Goodrich 23rd Feb - 4:03am
    Lorenzo The difference is between a "deep" free trade area such as the EU and a shallow free trade area of the past. Given our...
  • User AvatarLorenzo Cherin 23rd Feb - 2:15am
    Mark The only reason we cannot have free trade without free movement is some bright spark, I think most definitely , certainly, surely, not, said...
  • User AvatarMichael BG 23rd Feb - 1:56am
    @ Paul I think you may have misunderstood me. I think Germany is the biggest problem in achieving reform, I didn’t mean that there should...
  • User AvatarMark Goodrich 23rd Feb - 1:38am
    I have a lot of respect for Kishwer but I think she has got this one badly wrong. To seriously engage with would take more...
  • User AvatarKatharine Pindar 23rd Feb - 1:35am
    Thanks, Peter Kemp - no, let nobody forget about Copeland. We have a truly outstanding candidate in Rebecca Hanson, head and shoulders above the rest....
  • User AvatarKatharine Pindar 23rd Feb - 1:12am
    Good points, I think, above, from people who still support the party policy, as I do. I like John Hall's dissection of the Baroness's suggestion...