Author Archives: Colin Green

Opinion: Lib Dems and the EU. Should we assert our Radical Localist side?

Map of the European UnionAt the beginning of the year, the European elections were looking touch and go for the Lib Dems.  Our poll ratings were on the borderline of losing our MEPs, so we took a risk.  We gambled on a strategy that, if it paid off, would win us the few percent of extra votes needed to hold most of our MEPs.  The tactic was to highlight that we are the only truly pro-Europe party, which would attract swing voters from more lukewarm parties. So we went all in with ‘The Party of In’. It was a gamble we lost.

Public opinion of the EU is mixed. People acknowledge the benefits of membership but many think the costs are too high. Polls suggest similar numbers of people want to leave the EU as want to stay in. But if the terms of membership are renegotiated, the majority of people support staying in.

Posted in Op-eds | Tagged and | 25 Comments

Opinion: The Unpalatable Truth – Pensions Have To Change

Pensions are again in the news. This time concerning the public sector. For a number of years now, private sector pension schemes have been closed or have changed from defined benefits into simple money purchase schemes. Why is this happening and what can we do?

In 1900, average life expectancy was just 50 years of age. Few people lived long enough to retire. By the 1950s, average life spans had reached 70. The state pension was introduced at age 65 giving 5 years of retirement after 50 years of work. Since then life expectancy has risen to 80, yet we still …

Posted in Op-eds | Tagged | 16 Comments

Opinion: Speaking up for coalition

Over the few days since the coalition government was announced I’ve been dismayed to hear several Liberal Democrat members say they will rip up their membership cards in protest.  Whilst many are understandably disappointed that we now have a Conservative Prime Minister, or that we don’t have a Liberal Democrat Prime Minister, a coalition government including the Lib Dems is not a bad thing.

Coalition talks with Labour failed.  Of the two remaining viable options, a Conservative minority was the only other choice to a coalition.  We would have a Conservative Prime Minister either way.  Unlike 1974 when the Liberal Party …

Posted in Op-eds | 34 Comments
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  • User AvatarAdam Penny 18th Oct - 2:15am
    Hi David, I pondered whether to go into models when writing it, but in the end I plumped for simply trying to raise the profile...
  • User AvatarMichael BG 18th Oct - 1:03am
    @ Katharine Pindar You made me laugh Katharine, which I enjoyed and needed.
  • User AvatarKatharine Pindar 18th Oct - 12:21am
    Andrew McCaig - hi, Andrew, I must challenge the logic of your statement, 8.17 pm, that having 'gone on a lot about Brexit' in your...
  • User AvatarDavid Allen 17th Oct - 11:32pm
    Norway, along with Costa Rica, Vanuatu, New Zealand and many others, manage fine outside the EU. That's because they have always been otside the EU,...
  • User AvatarLaurence Cox 17th Oct - 11:31pm
    @David Raw, @Expats There are perfectly good reasons for standing a paperless candidate in local elections: First, unlike a General Election, it doesn't cost anything...
  • User AvatarLittle Jackie Paper 17th Oct - 11:02pm
    Tristan Ward - 'Britain is becoming a laughing stock among foreigners. Who wants that?' Some years ago in the 1980s there was a painfully bad...