Category Archives: LibLink

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

LibLink: William Wallace – Yorkshire needs its own voice ahead of Brexit talks

William Wallace has been writing for the Yorkshire Post, to mark the celebration of Yorkshire Day earlier this week:

In David Cameron’s response to the referendum result, he announced that the Government would consult the Scots, the Welsh and Northern Ireland administrations throughout the negotiations, as well as ‘other regional centres of power’ – by which he mainly meant London.

Theresa May has made a demonstration of that commitment by making early visits to Edinburgh, Cardiff and Belfast. But who would she come to consult in northern England? Will she even feel any need to do so?

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LibLink: Elaine Bagshaw: Turning things round in Tower Hamlets

Last month, Liberal Democrat Expand launched with an ambitious plan for the party to widen its net, to work in those areas where we had disappeared.

After the devastating election result last year, one of the first people back into the fray was Elaine Bagshaw, who had to run in a by-election for Mayor in Tower Hamlets.

Since then, she has built a team that is out there on the streets several times a week building an organisation from the ground up.

She writes about what she’s been doing on the Liberal Democrat Expand website:

The first has been about being brave and changing the mindset about “no go” areas. Wards that we were told would never vote Lib Dem had actually never been asked. I’m still shocked that in some places people won’t go and knock on council houses because apparently “they aren’t our people”. We definitely haven’t found this to be the case in Tower Hamlets. From a London perspective, it’s a foolish way to approach things as people move so often. At one point in Tower Hamlets 25% the electoral roll would change every time a new one was issued.

My other issue with “no go” areas is that for us to be in majority government we absolute have to win in places like Poplar & Limehouse and other areas that we dismiss as ‘not our territory’. Poplar & Limehouse is a passion project of mine partly for this reason but also because it’s in these areas that people need Lib Dems the most. Every time we write-off an area we write-off the people in it and that’s not a narrative we should be signed up to.

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LibLink: Alistair Carmichael: May’s legacy on immigration detention is callous and cold

Alistair Carmichael has written an article for the Times Red Box website in which he slams Theresa May’s record on immigration detention:

32,000 people is half the population of my home town.

He explains why immigration detention is so bad:

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Tim and Vince write for the Times on the need for ministers to provide leadership on Brexit strategy

Tim Farron and Vince Cable have written for the Times’ Red Box website setting out what they think should happen in negotiations with the EU and in economic strategy as we face a self-induced Brexit recession.

As Nick Clegg said before the referendum, so called Project Fear was understating the impact Brexit would have. We are also suffering a void of leadership and some very unrealistic thinking from the Brexit camp who, as we discovered, didn’t really have a plan.

We can’t hang about, they say:

Business and investors won’t wait around forever to see leadership.  Many first tier organisations will simply pack their bags and go unless they see a path ahead.  Meanwhile our smaller businesses, and particularly those in high risk/ high innovation sectors will feel the squeeze as bank lending dries up as it did in 2008.

Two things need to be done. You get the feeling this was filed before yesterday’s extraordinary events:

The first can only be done by leaders of Leave – those who wish to lead us into the new unknown – and in particular, Boris Johnson and Michael Gove.  They must now show his vision for the UK and provide a clear plan for Britain’s relationship with the EU.  To reassure the market they, and other potential prime ministers, need to make clear that membership of the single market is the priority ask for any negotiations.  Businesses need to know that, whatever else, their key relationships will not have to fundamentally change.

It will require real leadership, rather than populist platitudes.  It may mean securing a deal which pleases no one and does not address many of the concerns raised by leave voters about immigration and freedom of movement.  Leading is about making choices, it’s now time for Boris and Gove to tell us theirs.

The second urgent priority must be the responsibility of the current government.  There is now every likelihood of a Brexit recession.  If the government acts now, by abandoning its already unnecessary financial straitjacket and allowing capital investment and stimulus support to flow into precarious parts of our economy, we might avoid the worst impacts on jobs and livelihoods. The economy could be stimulated through the Network Rail Capital Project and local authorities being allowed to borrow to build houses. The £250bn the governor of the Bank of England has put aside could be put into the Funding for Lending and the Regional Growth Fund.

Of primary concern must be our most innovative industries.  Those businesses on the cutting edge are likely to see funding from traditional financial institutions dry up as banks revert to their core business model.  Giving serious financial help and stability to these industries is vital to ensure their long term future in the UK.

The British Business Bank, set up by the Lib Dems in Government, is a crucial part of the support for business that’s needed:

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LibLink: David Boyle – Tim Farron – history demands you step into the breach and ‘speak for England’

David Boyle has been writing for the Guardian following the EU referendum result:

I believe that we have to take the referendum result seriously. We can’t just finesse it or constitutionalise it away. We also need to shape a narrative that interprets it in the most liberal way we can. In fact, history may belong to whoever can do that most convincingly.

Now I have my own biases, as a Lib Dem. But, say what you like about my own party, it is one political force that may be united enough to do that. Yet – perhaps for understandable reasons – it spent the first few days of Brexit claiming to speak only for the 48% who voted to remain.

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LibLink: Jeremy Browne on why Europe fears Brexit

Jeremy Browne - Some rights reserved by Foreign and Commonwealth OfficeOn City AM, Jeremy Browne has been explaining that Europe fears Brexit because it would unleash forces that could prove impossible to control. He writes:

In Britain, we inevitably focus most on how our departure from the EU would affect the UK. What the other countries in the EU mainly worry about, however, is how it would affect Europe. They are standing back, nervous that any intervention could be open to misinterpretation and be counter-productive, but they watch our referendum with trepidation.

The

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LibLink: Mark Williams on happiness, which is still ground for punishment in Iran

 

Mark Williams has written an article for The Hill, the Washington based news source. Under the eye-catching headline “Happiness is still ground for punishment in Iran” Mark writes:

A couple of years ago, Western audiences were noticeably shocked at the news that several Iranian youths had been arrested for the “crime” of dancing together and posting a video of themselves celebrating life to the strains of an American pop song called “Happy.” It was one in a long series of vivid reminders of repression in Iran. But unfortunately it was one of only a few that have gained significant traction in the Western media. It left the European and American public with the right idea about the Islamic Republic, but also with a potentially incomplete picture of how serious and how pervasive the problem is.

He explains that the incident took place soon after the reportedly moderate Hassan Rouhani had taken over as President, and there was hope that things would change under his leadership.  But hopes were dashed.

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Recent Comments

  • User AvatarJonathan Brown 30th Sep - 8:57pm
    @Joseph - I see, thanks for the clarification - I think that's quite an important distinction. If there is to be any peaceful outcome then...
  • User AvatarJ Dunn 30th Sep - 8:43pm
    Joseph Bourke Isn't it strange,... how you judge an elected government, is only a legitimately elected government,.. until *you* decide,... it's a regime.? Assad,.. whatever...
  • User AvatarCaracatus 30th Sep - 8:20pm
    Hythe Parish Council Furzedown Ward (Hampshire) Lib Dems won 210 to 120 votes. The Tories were really going for it and quite confident, they left...
  • User AvatarJoseph Bourke 30th Sep - 7:20pm
    Jonathan, this ECHR report makes the argument for federalisation of Syria along the lines of the former Yugoslavia settlement http://www.ecfr.eu/page/-/ECFR185_-_NO_GOING_BACK_-_WHY_DECENTRALISATION_IS_THE_FUTURE_FOR_SYRIA.pdf. John Kerry put partition on...
  • User AvatarRichard Underhill 30th Sep - 7:18pm
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Voting_Rights_Act_of_1965
  • User AvatarJonathan Brown 30th Sep - 6:39pm
    @Joseph Bourke - I think talk of partition is a distraction at best, fuel for the flames at worst. As Eddie says, appart from many...