Call Clegg 26 June: Tories can talk all they like about snoopers’ charter, it won’t happen as long as I’m in government

call clegg Clegg started in robust mood this morning, vowing that Theresa May will not get her way on increased surveillance powers while he’s in Government. He’s done well to stand firm against this for more than two years now. It’s certainly true that he had to be persuaded into this robust stance initially, but it’s to his credit that he listened to the points made to his office by a group of angry bloggers in April 2012 and has held firm ever since.

There seemed to be a clear theme throughout the half hour of Liberal Democrats standing up for people in the face of abuse of power by both state and private companies. Abuse of zero hours contracts is to end thanks to Liberal Democrats and the exorbitant interest rates charged by payday lenders is to be capped, among a whole raft of regulations brought in by Liberal Democrat minister Jo Swinson.

Here’s my Storify thingy of the event.

 

* Caron Lindsay is Editor of Liberal Democrat Voice and blogs at Caron's Musings

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21 Comments

  • Max Wilkinson 26th Jun '14 - 11:02am

    It would be good to see some truly liberal influences on drugs policy before the next election. All we’ve heard so far is the same old nonsense that Labour and Tory ministers peddled for years.

  • MNow this is why I originaly voted For Lib dems standing up for freedoms GOOD ON YA NICK

  • Stephen Campbell 26th Jun '14 - 11:16am

    “It’s certainly true that he had to be persuaded into this robust stance initially”

    He should not have had to be “persuaded”. An instinctual liberal would’ve recoiled at the idea from the start.

    Sorry, I really don’t believe a word he says. And based on his past actions on civil liberties, like voting for secret courts, I have no reason to start doing so now.

  • I thought Nick was extremely persuasive and articulate in his argument about the price of justice being the fundamental lynchpin of democracy. When he missed an open goal through surley being underbriefed about the true cost of the phone hacking trial I tweeted ‘Nick Ferrari @lbc now reduces £1.75 million cost of #hackingtrial in his own head from £100 to “£60m to secure 1 conviction” WRONG, it is 6’
    Nick could have pointed out that the true cost of the hacking trial to the taxpayer is around £2 million and total costs of £22-30 million include the police investigations to secure not one but six convictions.
    Still, when you’ve got a presenter who seeks to claim that the eight men and two women of the jury “weren’t particularly impressed” (with presumably the evidence) Nick had every right to launch a well argued defence of the ordinary citizen’s access to justice and for once he sounded pretty impressive.

  • Correction to above: “surley”? Surely not.

  • If only Nick had taken a liberal stand on Secret Courts, he might have been able to persuade me he was a liberal.

  • Stephen Hesketh 26th Jun '14 - 12:48pm

    Hi Caron
    Any chance of missing out the tweets on posts such as this? I personally find their presence to be a distraction and a pain to scroll past to get to contributers’ comments. By all means give us your commentary but (genuinely) wonder if it a problem to put them into ‘Word’ and then enter as a single post?

    Maybe just me, Maybe just an age thing!

  • Caron Lindsay Caron Lindsay 26th Jun '14 - 5:58pm

    Stephen, it would take hours to do that. A Storify can be put together in minutes. I would have to type each tweet out individually cos they don’t copy and paste very well. I also don’t have Word.

    So, the short answer is no, I’m afraid.

  • Eddie Sammon 26th Jun '14 - 8:43pm

    I honestly don’t think there is a future being anti-surveillance in the days of home-grown terrorism. A bit more balance required.

  • Eddie Sammon
    What was it about the IRA campaigns from the 1920s through to the 1990s that you do not consider that they were “home grown terrorism”???
    Or the actions of the now almost forgotten “Angry Brigade” which bombed selected targets in England during the 1970s.?
    Or indeed some of the actions of the tiny extreme fringe of the Animal Rights Movement ?

    When you talk about “the days of home-grown terrorism” you wouldn’t be falling into the media trap of believing that such a things is new would you? I am assuming your comment is not a bit of islamophobia because I think you are not of that view. But I do worry when in some of the media the phrase “home-grown terrorism” is code for young men who currently are doing exactly what George Orwell did during the Spanish Civil War.

  • Eddie Sammon 26th Jun '14 - 9:14pm

    John, I admit I don’t like using recent events as a justification to do things you would have wanted to do anyway, I just wanted to point out that at this very moment when it is in the media a lot then it is less electorally appealing.

    I remember hearing a justification for the snoopers charter along the lines of “we can monitor phones, so why not the web?”. I think perhaps we need to move with the times on this.

    None of it is a good substitute for having good relations with Muslims in general, I just think we need to deal with the problem of attacks on our home soil at every stage they could manifest.

  • I’d rather see increased surveillance powers any day of the week than be tried in a secret court. The guy just isn’t consistent and has no political principles. He says what he thinks the public wants to hear whenever he’s under any sort of pressure – far to weak to be a leader.

  • @John Tilley
    “young men who currently are doing exactly what George Orwell did during the Spanish Civil War”

    Exactly? I’m sure Orwell thought he was doing something a little more noble than killing people for being “apostates” and oppressing women. Orwell was fighting against fascists; ISIS are fascists.

    There is endless irony in the fact that a bunch of people who are engaged in killing Muslims (because they are the wrong kind of Muslim, apparently) are being defended by others who profess to being anti-Islamophobic.

  • Clegg may have stopped the snoopers charter but there are a number of things he did not stop, such as water cannons

  • Ian Hurdley 27th Jun '14 - 8:09am

    A recurring theme in responses to this and other threads on LDV is that Lib Dem successes in government count for nothing. The only matters of importance are when despite our best efforts, we fail to block a n authoritarian Tory initiative, which is taken as proof that we are just crypto-Tories.
    Roll on May 2015, but in the meantime let’s try and stop Cameron getting us thrown out of the EU.

  • Ian Hurdley

    “The only matters of importance are when despite our best efforts, we fail to block a n authoritarian Tory initiative, which is taken as proof that we are just crypto-Tories.”

    Unfortunately for the LibDem leadership the voters don’t see any “best efforts”. They do see a lot of LibDem MP’s playing a very active part in a nasty right wing government.

  • Matthew Huntbach 27th Jun '14 - 10:43am

    Stuart

    Exactly? I’m sure Orwell thought he was doing something a little more noble than killing people for being “apostates” and oppressing women. Orwell was fighting against fascists; ISIS are fascists

    But that’s the point John Tilley is making: Orwell may have been inspired to go out and fight with the noble aim of opposing fascism, yet there were horrendous atrocities committed on BOTH sides in the Spanish Civil War. See the Wiki article here which gives links to details of both. So perhaps this might help you see how easy it could be to go out inspired by what sounds like a noble cause, and end up carrying out, or supporting those carrying out, torture and murder.

    It is very easy when people are whipped up into a frenzy by one-sided and misleading arguments which make a heavy play on emotions and the idea of loyalty to a cause to think that cause is such a noble one that anyone fighting for it in any way must be doing good, and any violence committed in its name is just a sad necessity. Those going out to join ISIS quite likely do think of themselves as like Orwell, fighting something bad in the name of something good.

    There were also people who went out from UK on the other side, thinking they were fighting for noble Christian principles against brutal Stalinist thugs. Similarly, while ISIS calls on naive volunteers to “defend Islam” so Shia clerics have been making emotional calls to “defend Islam”, or at least their form of Islam, against its attacks, and there have been volunteers going out on that side as well. So, there we go, we may have one Muslim killing another Muslim, each thinking of themselves as a brave martyr who will go straight to heaven for killing the other one.

  • @Ian Hurdley
    “fail to block an authoritarian Tory initiative”

    I thought the whole point of the coalition agreement was to have an agreement.
    Suddenly, it seems that the true goal is just to rubber stamp Tory policy without a fight. This is not my idea of a coalition although I am sure that Conservatives are delighted.

    Well, if you do U-turns like that all the time, you throw away your credibility.

    I just wish Clegg could step up and lead rather than just rubber stamp

  • @ Stephen Hesketh
    I agree with you that this would be a better article without all the Tweets in it. (It might be an age thing), but I just don’t want to have to click on another page to read them.

    @ Caron
    I thought that in the past you didn’t add your Tweets, but just produced a few paragraphs of comments on the highlights. Why can’t you go back to that?
    Are your Tweets available to see for a time after you have tweeted? If so why can’t you just post in a link to them?

    @ Ian Hurdley – “A recurring theme in responses to this and other threads on LDV is that Lib Dem successes in government count for nothing. The only matters of importance are when despite our best efforts, we fail to block a n authoritarian Tory initiative”

    I promise if we agreed to a Tory policy in the Coalition agreement I won’t criticise our MPS and Nick Clegg in particular for supporting it. However I think we all have the right and the duty to criticise our MPs and Nick Clegg in particular every time they (and he) supports a Tory policy that isn’t in the agreement. The only way Nick and our MPs should agree to something not in the Coalition agreement is if the Tories also support a policy from our manifesto or a new policy agreed by conference. Not something like free school meals for 5 to 7 year olds which wasn’t in our manifesto and hadn’t been agreed by conference until Nick said, “Look I have got this from the Tories” (and the Tories quite liked it already, but we had opposed it in places).

  • Caron Lindsay Caron Lindsay 30th Jun '14 - 10:16pm

    Michael,

    I could do as you ask but this week I just didn’t have time. Is it really so hard to scroll down the page?

  • @ Caron
    If all your tweets were on one page then maybe I would read them, but knowing they extend to another I just don’t bother. I just preferred the old system which I found easier. I wonder how others feel and if since you have started doing it this way if there has been a reduction in the number of people who even click on it anymore?

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