Author Archives: Zadok Day

Opinion: A Progress-ive Moment?

They say history never repeats itself, but when the Labour party is involved, you can be at least sure that it’ll rhyme. And once again, the far left of the party is indulging itself in an ideological battle. The target this time is the Blairite thinktank Progress, the GMB union having submitted a rule amendment to outlaw it as a part of the Labour party.

This represents a real chance for Lib Dems to realign the centre, a process which has already began with the Coalition, and liberal-leaning Cameronite Conservatives becoming closer to we Liberal Democrats than the right-wing fringes …

Posted in Op-eds | 28 Comments

New Liberal Reform group to launch today

2011 saw the second full year of Liberal Democrat participation in national government. It also saw the beginning of a process to test the waters for the creation of a grassroots grouping supporting the economic and social liberalism, the individual and political liberty that is so valued by our party. Discovering a good level of support for the idea, we decided to proceed. Our mission statement can be found on our website, but its preamble should give you an idea of the direction we intend to take.

Liberal Reform exists to promote four-cornered freedom in the Liberal Democrats – personal, political, social and

Posted in Conference and News | Tagged | 35 Comments

Opinion: Calm Down, Dears!

It’s a great shame that so many Liberal Democrats have reacted to the political downfall of Chris Huhne by bashing his successor. Ed Davey is an immensely capable minister and will do a wonderful job in his new position. Sadly, some have chosen this news to complain because a woman wasn’t promoted instead of a man. Gender balance is an issue that seems to divide opinion a great deal in the online world, for some reason, despite being hardly as controversial in the real world, where the principle is generally accepted that talent should be rewarded rather than the accident …

Posted in Op-eds | Tagged , , and | 47 Comments

Opinion: Minimum alcohol pricing – an attack on the poor

News that David Cameron is planning on imposing minimum alcohol pricing has not produced anything near the level of disgust that it should have.

This policy has the fatal flaw of expecting alcoholics and binge drinkers to behave in a rational and financially prudent manner. It’s self-evident that both groups will continue to purchase alcohol at a higher price, sacrificing other parts of their budget to make up the difference – perhaps clothing, perhaps food, perhaps their children. And let’s not forget, this policy will penalise all drinkers, not just the minority who commit crimes whilst under alcoholic …

Posted in Op-eds | Tagged | 57 Comments

Opinion: Danny Alexander is right

As far as momentous television appearances go it was hardly Frost/Nixon, but Danny Alexander nonetheless made quite a stir on 29th November’s Newsnight. Our Chief Secretary to the Treasury confirmed that, post-Autumn Statement, the budget deficit would not be eliminated by 2015, and that further cuts would be required beyond then if this goal was to be achieved. For most of us this was stating the obvious, as well as in keeping with our manifesto policy on the deficit which called for it to reduced at a slower rate than that taken up by the Coalition, …

Posted in Op-eds | Tagged and | 29 Comments

Opinion: Euro-reformists, not Euro-philes

We are due what will be undoubtedly be a hard general election in 2015, and Liberal Democrats are already lagging behind the other main parties by not planning our post-coalition policy. The economy, of course, is the most obvious issue – an elephant in the room that, this time around, everyone will be fully aware of! Falling back into second place, if not further, is the comparative whale in the fishtank: the EU, and Britain’s place in it.

Few would deny the time for debate is close. As the nation watches what looks like the slow-motion collapse of the Euro, Euroscepticism …

Posted in Europe / International and Op-eds | Tagged and | 39 Comments

Opinion: The Lib Dems should pursue more populist policies

So, an elected House of Lords; a massive victory for our party from a historical viewpoint, and a good reason for longstanding party members to feel warm and fuzzy as our support collapses in the north. Yet is it the badly-needed policy victory that we can take to the electorate as a compelling reason for voting Liberal Democrats? Not by miles.

Call it the dissatisfied carping of a relative newcomer to the party, but I can’t help but notice our distressing tendency to be insular and self-obsessed at times like this, giving critics’ barbs of ‘liberal elitists’ extra sharpness. It’s most certainly not Nick Clegg’s fault; it would be endemic in any political party regaining power after a century without. Yet he is as guilty as any grassroots member of putting party before country at the moment, blindly driving us into a rut that seems set to continue as the wins of our participation in the Coalition are ever more drowned out by failures of communication.

Posted in Op-eds | 39 Comments

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