Caron’s Sunday Selection: My favourite videos and articles from this week’s news

It’s been ages since I’ve done one of these and I’ve decided to change it slightly so that I put in some of my favourite articles, videos and interviews from various media outlets, not just the Sunday papers.

First up this week exactly the sort of confident, bold setting out of the liberal values our society so desperately needs. Dutch liberal Marietje Schaake talks to CNN’s Christine Amanpour about the benefits of liberalism:

Dutch liberals face a challenging election later this year with right wing populists headed by Geert Wilders in a strong position.

In the pages of the Express, you tend to find Liberal Democrats being lampooned. However, this is a quite charming article where Paddy Ashdown describes his favourite photograph – his wedding photograph from 54 years ago. He talks about their first meeting at a Christmas ball:

However, when I arranged to collect my cousin, the publican directed me to the wrong room – where I discovered a very pretty girl in curlers getting ready for the ball. I beat a flustered retreat, only to discover later that she was Tim’s cousin, Jane Courtenay.

will not say I fell in love with her that night because we danced only twice, but I did fall for her the next day when we met again over lunch with friends in Exeter. It turned out that Jane, who shared my love of architecture and classical music, was an art student and I found her as engaging, down-to-earth and fresh in her views as she was beautiful.

We were married in ‘military sin’ because if you were an officer in the services at that time you weren’t allowed to get hitched until you were 25. We had no help, no allowances and no accommodation – we weren’t eligible – and I had to seek permission for the wedding from the Lords of the Admiralty.

Thankfully, they didn’t say no because I had the backing of a wonderful Commando officer who trained me.

The truth is Jane and I probably were too young to get married but it proved to be the luckiest day of my life. We are complete opposites but we fit. I often say if it wasn’t for her I’d probably be dead or in jail because despite my thirst for adventure she has kept me on a steady course.

The dangers of Putin’s Russia have been evident for years. In a hard-hitting article in the Observer, Nick Cohen looks at the challenges an isolated Britain faces in dealing with the Russian threat:

In the past, Britain would have looked to the US for support and leadership. Now, and with the worst timing imaginable, at the very moment when Brexit is tearing up our relationship with Europe, Britain has to wonder if America is still a reliable partner. Downing Street and the Foreign Office must deal with a US president who endorses every violation of US and international law the British government has denounced. Trump has proposed recognising the annexation of Crimea that Britain opposed. Rather than fear Russian cyberwarfare as Britain does, he so revels in it he encouraged Russia to hack Hillary Clinton’s emails.

They say you don’t know what you’ve got till it’s gone, but for the past 8 years, I have appreciated what Michelle Obama has brought to the role of First Lady. She has been an incredible role model for everyone. Channel 4 News has some of her best bits:

In the Guardian, Laura Bates looks at innovative ways of providing support for victims of domestic abuse. She does of course emphasise the point that there is little point in these sorts of interventions if there are no services in the area to enable people to escape such abuse.

I’m always a fan of anything to do with David Tennant, so his portrayal of psychiatrist R D Laing in the upcoming film Mad to be Normal was always going to interest me. We learned this week that the film would have its world premiere when it closes the Glasgow Film Festival next month. There is a Liberal Democrat connection with the film. The company who made it, Gizmo Films, has as its director Peter Dunphy, chair of the party’s Federal Finance and Administration Committee.

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

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This entry was posted in Op-eds.


  • Richard Underhill 8th Jan '17 - 11:30am

    Missing from this week’s news is the traditional interview with the Prime Minister by Andrew Marr, or previously David Frost. The etiquette is that the PM goes first and then other leaders respond. The replacement Cabinet Minister was effectively saying “Not my job, above my pay grade, but in my department, … .”
    A little sympathy should be offered to Justine Greening. When she was first elected as an MP in 2005 the Conservative Party leader went to he constituency and made a speech. She looked surprised when he announced his resignation and a timetable for Conservative Party reforms for the election of another leader.
    Michael Howard was also the Home Secretary who said “Prison works.”
    Ken Clarke’s memoirs ‘A Kind of Blue’ say that the Tories could not possibly have won the 2001 general election, but they could and should have won the 2005 general election.
    Andrew Marr’s programme has today said nothing much about the crisis in Northern Ireland. The DUP leader is facing calls for her resignation.

  • Ruth Bright 8th Jan '17 - 12:19pm

    But the PM was interviewed this morning – in an impressive debut Sophy Ridge asked her about Trump’s attitude to women and quoted his use of the “p” word. Well you wouldn’t get that on the Sunday Politics!

  • Bernard Aris 10th Jan '17 - 12:53am

    I am doubly proud of my D66 MEP, Marietje Schaake.

    First that she is singled out first by Christiane Amanpour, and then by our LDV editor, Caron Lindsay, as a forceful Liberal in stormy times.

    And second that the European branch, editors, of the famous American weblog Politico has singled her out, december 2016, as the only MEP, as number 19 of the 28 “most influential Europeans”, especially for her effective use of twitter to set out her standpoints and react forcefully to political opponents (two of whom, populist Frauke Petri of the German party AfD and Turkish president Erdogan, made the same list of Politico). It is that nomination (in what Politico’s calls “the Class of 2017”) that will have pointed Mrs. Amonpour to Mrs. Schaake.

    As for Marietje’s fortright style of putting the D66 case, that shouldn’t surprise LibDem congress veterans; youn will recognise much of the style and feistyness of ex-MEP (and former party leader) Lousewies van der Laan; and the same characteristics resulted in the 2015 autumn LibDem conference give Sophie in’t Veld MEP, our European group leader, a standing ovation at het conference speech. The room she held her subsequent frionge meeting in had to be doubled in size to allow all conference participants to hear her.

    Every time I point out, in my LDV contributions, the difference between the D66 attitude and position versus the Populists and that of the “NatLib” VVD, I get put down by some of you as a “VVD basher”; one should not treat ALDE compatriots and fellow Liberals that way, is the reproach. Well, in this interview Mrs. Amanpour points out that VVD party leader and Dutch prime minister Mark Rutte is banning the burqa by law (only 20 women in the Netherlands actually wear them most of the time; only a couple of hunderds wear the Niqaab, which approaches it); which Mrs. Amanpour contrasts with the D66 standpoint, and rightly so. We voted against such symbol-legislation which solves almost nothing; our Council of State (Raad van State), official advisors on all legislation, was against the law because of its inconsequentialness. So I am not alone in remarking that difference…

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