Author Archives: Peter Wrigley

Letter to Vince Cable – UK military action in Syria is not justified

Embed from Getty Images
This letter is in response to Vince’s request for feedback on the Syrian question

Dear Vince Cable,

Thank you for giving we members an opportunity to forward our views to you on the possible military intervention by the UK in Syria.

This is an extremely difficult problem which seems to place us in a lose-lose situation. If we do not intervene we appear to stand by impotently whilst terrible wickedness takes place, including the internationally illegal use of chemical weapons. If we do intervene there is a strong possibility of making a bad situation worse, as has already happened in similar circumstances in Iraq and Libya.

Posted in Op-eds | Tagged , and | 36 Comments

Agenda 2020 Essay #11: What it means to be a Liberal Democrat today

Editor’s Note: The party is currently running an essay competition for members of the Liberal Democrats, to submit 1000 words on the theme “What it means to be a Liberal Democrat today.” The deadline for contributions is 2nd November. If you would like us to publish your submission, send it to [email protected]

For me, being a Liberal Democrat today implies sympathy with and a willingness to work for the following beliefs.

LIBERTY comes at the top of the list, with the John Stuart Mill constraint that we are free only to do what doesn’t harm others. This means that we value variety, welcome people with different cultures and religions and believe that diversity enriches society.  We resist unjustified and indiscriminate state surveillance into our private lives.  Where the preservation of liberty clashes with our other beliefs, such as equality, then we try to put liberty first.

In the fields of EQUALITY AND WELFARE, we believe that all individuals should be equally valued as human beings.   Hence we believe that the state has the dual function of both preventing some people becoming too rich (by progressive taxation) and providing a generous safety-net for the poor, so that all have the ability to reach their potential and participate fully in the norms of  the one society.    We believe access to a social security safety-net sufficient to secure a decent standard of living is a right.  In the past we have favoured a citizen’s income and may well do so again.

Faith in DEMOCRACY is at the root of our values. Liberals Democrats believe that people can be trusted. (Both Conservatives and Socialists alike believe at heart that we need to be coerced).  We want to see parliamentary reform, so that the people’s representatives have genuine control over the executive; reform of the electoral system by the introduction of proportional representation by single transferable vote in multi-member constituencies; an elected second chamber representative of the nations and regions, to which power will have been devolved; and vital local government.  All political power should be exercised at the lowest possible level.  We are devolvers, not centralisers.

Posted in Op-eds | Tagged | 1 Comment
Advert



Recent Comments

  • User AvatarRob Parsons 24th May - 12:29pm
    Thanks for the comments, Ruth and Mick. Mick, I agree with you about AWS. To be fair, Jo does propose other solutions, and I agree...
  • User AvatarBrynwell 24th May - 12:26pm
    Yep Tony. Don't be fooled these rules only came in with the Tories, the Lib Dems were in power too at the time, not to...
  • User AvatarMick Taylor 24th May - 12:25pm
    In principle I am against All Women short lists, but I spoke and voted in favour of them at the conference that agreed them. Why?...
  • User AvatarJohn Kelly 24th May - 12:23pm
    It is time for the Lib Dems in Parliament to take the lead and demand a public inquiry into the Home Office and its immigration...
  • User AvatarPeter Martin 24th May - 12:18pm
    I wouldn't say 'identity politics' (if we have to use this term) was tribal. There is now general agreement across the acceptable region of the...
  • User AvatarMartin 24th May - 12:14pm
    In the wake of Brexit, while acquiring UK nationality has become ever more onerous, more expensive and more arbitrarily uncertain, many other EU states have...