Author Archives: Nick T

UK income inequality lower than a decade ago: three challenges for the Lib Dems

Counterintuitive though it may seem to many, Britain is significantly more equal than it was a decade ago – especially in London, where the fall in inequality has been “dramatic” according to the IFS.

This poses several challenges for those who consider that reducing income inequality should be a policy priority, among whose number are many Liberal Democrats.

Posted in Op-eds | 62 Comments

What now for moderate politics and discourse?

“Emily Thornberry just took down the entire Tory party in 45 seconds” says the caption. Below is a video of Emily Thornberry at the despatch box at yesterday’s prime minister’s questions performing, it has to be said, very well.

It is the sort of thing we all see dozens of times every day, scrolling through our social media feeds whilst we wait for out train, lie in bed or pretend to listen to a friend’s anecdote.

Posted in News | Tagged | 28 Comments

Election 2017 headlines – how many Lib Dem MPs are there and who are they?

At present, the Lib Dems have 12 confirmed victories, a net increase of 3. They are:

    1. Tom Brake (Carshaton and Wellington) – re-elected
    2. Vince Cable (Twickenham) – newly-elected
    3. Alistair Carmichael (Orkney and Shetland) – re-elected
    4. Ed Davey (Kingston and Surbiton) – newly-elected
    5. Tim Farron (Westmorland and Lonsdale) – re-elected
    6. Wera Hobhouse (Bath) – newly-elected
    7. Christine Jardine (Edinburgh West) – newly-elected
    8. Norman Lamb (North Norfolk) – re-elected
    9. Stephen Lloyd (Eastbourne) – newly-elected
    10. Layla Moran (Oxford West and Abingdon) – newly-elected
    11. Jamie Stone (Caithness, Sutherland and Easter Ross) – newly-elected
    12. Jo Swinson (East Dunbartonshire) – newly-elected
Posted in News | 62 Comments

Strong showing for liberals in The Netherlands

Nick Clegg with Mark Rutte in 2010

As the FT reports, VVD, the liberal party of Dutch prime minister Mark Rutte, will once again be the largest party in the Dutch parliament:

Prime Minister Mark Rutte looks certain to form the next Netherlands government, with his party projected to secure a clear general election victory over rivals including populist challenger Geert Wilders.

The projected victory was welcomed by moderates and pro-EU politicians across Europe and has calmed their fears that the continent was poised to fall under the sway of nationalists following the UK’s Brexit vote and the election of President Donald Trump in the US.

Posted in News | 15 Comments

The triumph of mendacity, and what we can do about it

Brexit. Syria. Trump. 2016 in three words. It is human nature to see commonalities where there are none, but there are surely some here.

First, of course, there is the not-so-invisible hand of a resurgent Russia to be seen in each. Time magazine’s choice of Donald Trump as its Person of the Year was a mistake: it is not Trump but the subject of his admiration, Vladimir Putin, who has shaped world events this year more than any other individual.

Second (and not entirely unrelated to the first) is the triumph of mendacity. Key to each of the year’s key events was dishonesty. The referendum campaign felt at points like a contest to see which side could bend the truth furthest but it will, in the final analysis, be the Leave campaign that will be viewed as one of the most dishonest political campaigns in this country’s democratic history. Its mendacity was of course easily surpassed by Donald Trump, a man who in the face of inconvenient facts doesn’t just deny their existence but creates his own new reality. It didn’t help that the Democrats nominated a candidate much of whose political career has been defined by sleights of hand and questionable dealings: lying simply became relative.

Posted in Op-eds | Tagged | 19 Comments

Was this the funniest moment of the coalition?

Four years ago this week. Enjoy:

Posted in Humour | Tagged and | 1 Comment

Missing the civility of coalition

The perceptive-as-ever Rafael Behr makes a good, but subtle, point in his latest Guardian column. Many of the mistakes that the government is now making, Behr argues, are a function of the majority one-party rule that eluded David Cameron in his first term in No 10:

So how is that working out? Unshackled from coalition, Cameron and George Osborne are now at liberty to find extra billions of budget savings from the benefits bill. Except in so doing, they managed to provoke conscientious rebellion on the Tory benches over tax credits, and drive Iain Duncan Smith into self-certified compassionate exile from the cabinet.

Posted in News | Tagged | 28 Comments
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Recent Comments

  • User Avatarexpats 20th Nov - 9:39am
    David Raw 20th Nov '17 - 8:52am......PS A pie costs £ 2.50 at the Accrington Wham Stadium – at Chelsea’s Stamford Bridge it’s £ 4.80...
  • User AvatarGlenn 20th Nov - 9:33am
    Palehorse. I think, you are basically Michael Palin in Life of Brian "Too right Centurion, great people the Roman's".
  • User AvatarKomodo 20th Nov - 9:16am
    The Institute (no longer a registered charity) will be glad to see how many LibDems are happy to accept Blair's version of events without question....
  • User AvatarArnold Kiel 20th Nov - 9:16am
    A return to the Drachma is impossible: it would first require a stealth political decision and thousands of Greek civil servants would have to work...
  • User AvatarMartin 20th Nov - 9:03am
    This is a particularly objectionable referendum that fortunately has had a happy outcome. There is an obvious mismatch between the homosexual small minority and the...
  • User AvatarDavid Raw 20th Nov - 8:52am
    @ Palehorse "My point was simply that those who want the best things in life should just shut up and pay for them instead of...