The latest edition of Liberator magazine (issue no.357 – February 2013) was delivered to subscribers last week.
Here’s a summary of the new magazine’s contents:
- The editorial column Commentary questions the decision to appoint David Laws to chair the working group drafting the 2015 manifesto. It also considers what lessons we can learn from President Obama’s ability to win despite a poor economic performance.
- The insider gossip column Radical Bulletin begins with the inside story of the Federal Policy’s Committee’s discussion of David Laws’s appointment as chair of the manifesto working group.
- ‘Social pressures’ – Policy decisions due in 2013 will affect the party for years to come. The Social Liberal Forum aims to exert its influence, says Gareth Epps (co-chair of the SLF).
- ‘What happened to community politics?’ – Peter Chegwyn (leader of the Liberal Democrat group on Gosport council, who ran many of the Liberal Party’s successful by-election campaigns in the 1980s) says that election results over the next few years need not be too bad for the Liberal Democrats, if they are allowed to recover their local campaigning flair.
- ‘The battle for hearts and minds’ – Being in a coalition shouldn’t change Liberal Democrat values. Michael Meadowcroft (Liberal leader on Leeds City Council for 13 years and Liberal MP for Leeds West, 1983-87) asks why the party is failing in the intellectual battle of political ideas.
- ‘Why have Lib Dems gone nuclear?’ – Steve Bradley (Chair of the Green Liberal Democrats and a councillor in Lambeth) says that the pursuit of nuclear power is wrong on environmental grounds and also deprives people of power over energy providers.
- ‘Defeat of the empty suit’ – Who was Mitt Romney? Dennis Graf (Liberator’s American correspondent) reports that few are any wiser after his defeat by Barack Obama, and the Republicans will be in trouble so long as extremists dominate them.
- ‘How to be a PCC’ – Newly-elected police and crime commissioners have unprecedented powers but face serious pitfalls. Wendy Kyrle-Pope (a director of the London Communities Policing Partnership) offers some advice.
- ‘The election that never was’ – Kiron Reid (a former Liberal Democrat councillor in Liverpool) left the party to stand as an independent police and crime commissioner candidate. Was it worth it, he asks?
- ‘Race for an equalities policy’ – Labour did only the easy bits of race equality and the Conservatives are out to do damage. Janice Turner (diversity officer at the BECTU trades union and a member of the SLF Council, who assisted the Liberal Democrat Race Equality Task Force) says it is time for an urgent new Liberal Democrat policy in this field.
- ‘The failure of localism’ – Nick Barlow (a Liberal Democrat councillor in Colchester) says that the coalition government’s policy of ‘localism’ has turned out to be nothing of the sort.
- Lord Bonkers’ Diary – Lord Bonkers (Liberal MP for Rutland South West 1906-10) recounts another eventful week in Rutland, including his regular phone-in programme Bonkers Hour on Radio Rutland.
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