Liberal Democrats – the Interdependence Party

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One of the things I like about our Party is our willingness to bounce ideas off one another.

On a Zoom meeting of our local party Exec this evening, once the formal business was out-the-way, we socialised over an optional drink. This was no epic drinking session of lore in the making, to be sung-about to our as-yet unspawned grandchildren, but a glass was nonetheless raised.

The frustrations of campaigning in Scotland, where the national dialogue is no longer Left vs Right, but Unionism vs Nationalism, came to the fore. In this common parlance, Liberalism doesn’t get much of a look-in. You might as well try to talk to people in the street about Confucianism.

Ask people why they voted SNP in their local council election, and they’ll go glassy-eyed and start bandying around words such as ‘Independence’ and ‘Freedom’, meanwhile their bins go unemptied. Even on a national scale, failings in Education and Health get brushed aside for this snake-oil cure for all ills, this panacea that is Independence. How exactly this constitutional change is supposed to improve their lives… well, let’s just say the detail starts to get a bit thin.

Yet there is an appeal, an emotional pull, to such a simple concept. The lack of detail is what keeps it beautiful – it is abstract. Compare this to our Party’s policies and manifesto, and you can see how much easier it is for the voter to embrace. It’s Monet’s ‘Water Lilies’ to Mondrian’s ‘Composition A’ (it’s okay to Google it…)

And then came the moment of clarity. We are the Liberal Democrats – The Interdependence Party.

Fundamentally we all know it’s true. We are all interdependent, and interconnected, in all aspects of our lives. Socially, economically, technically, globally. Look at our values and principles, all our policies areas, and you’ll see how they are interdependent. None can exist in splendid isolation. It’s why we’ve campaigned so strongly for Europeanism, internationalism, and a United Kingdom.

Once you’ve come to accept that, the notion of Independence seems as outdated, childish and churlish as it truly is.

I’ll raise a glass to that.

* Adrian May is a member in Edinburgh

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6 Comments

  • And I’ll raise a glass to :

    Not being in anyway affected or run by the shambolic Johnson, the opportunity to be part of the EU again……. my bins do get emptied and I receive excellent care from NHS Scotland in : post transplant care, hip replacement and currently, shielding.

  • Emotion is a tool exploited by many.’Get Brexit Done’ (and bollocks to it) are emotional tags. Equally Glazed over eyes re Unionism ,Nationalism. Emotions set the scene, feelings go high,No thought behind decisions that lead to catastrophic.decisions ,actions.That is why discussions have to be talked about in a rational way so that bins DO get emptied. The voter should be encouraged to talk about the pros and cons of emotional actions and their consequences.. This is a slow process not used in the us and them of today’s devisive politics but if we as a party can convince voters to STUDY THE FACTS before an election CONSISTANTLY in all media we could influence them for that election in our favour.

  • It would be refreshing to live in a country where parliament (and local government) was fully elected by proportional representation (and without a non-elected second chamber full of retired (or defeated) former M.P.’s supplementing their pension….. and without any remaining hereditary peers)…… and back in the EU.

    To paraphrase Schumacher, ‘Small is (or has the potential to be) beautiful’. If Ireland, Denmark and New Zealand can do it reasonably well (and without nuclear weapons) then so can Scotland. Jacinda Arden will always be welcome… though Ms Sturgeon is far and away ahead of Mr Johnson in the approval polls.

    Time for a rethink Scottish Lib Dems… one doesn’t have to be a nationalist to prefer a self governing Scotland within the EU.

  • Marc Stevens 17th Jul '20 - 8:15pm

    I agree with David Raw. It looks like Scotland will only be able to re-join the EU if they become an independent country unless they wait a very long time. The SNP is anti Westminster not anti English so I do not see it as an inward xenophobic party. That’s why so many English people I know who moved up there will be voting for them.

  • Sue Sutherland 18th Jul '20 - 1:13pm

    I agree that we are the party of interdependence Adrian, but I think of it as community. I can’t comment on Scottish politics and independence, except to say that I also agree with Alan, that one country shouldn’t rule over another and sadly many Scots see England’s relationship with them in just that way.

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