New edition of Liberator magazine

The latest issue of Liberator magazine (issue no.350 – January 2012) has just been mailed to subscribers. For those of you who are not yet subscribers, here’s a summary of the contents:

  • The editorial column Commentary examines the electoral consequences of the Autumn Statement for the Liberal Democrats. It also castigates the party’s Federal Executive for deciding against running candidates in next year’s police commissioner elections.
  • The insider gossip column Radical Bulletin begins with a report on the party’s decision not to contest the police commissioner elections.
  • Alice in Wonderland’ – Paul Crossley (leader of Bath and North East Somerset Council) argues that the decision not to run Liberal Democrat police commissioner candidates is a disastrous error.
  • ‘Twenty-year plan’ – Tim Leunig (chief economist at CentreForum) says that a long-term plan to boost education and reduce housing costs could transform Britain’s fortunes.
  • ‘Under the bed with the brandy bottle’ – Chris Bailey (a retired City economist and treasurer of Rochford and Southend Liberal Democrats) finds that the coalition’s Autumn Statement suggests it had learnt little from the last financial crisis.
  • ‘Can Egypt’s politics escape its past?’ – Mohammed Nosseir (chair of the secretariat of international relations for Egypt’s Democratic Front Party, a Liberal International member party) reports that Egypt’s temporary military rulers are trying to ensure that the revolution does not threaten their hidden power, instead of ushering in democracy.
  • ‘The view from the bubble’ – Simon Titley (a member of the Liberator Collective) reviews Jasper Gerard’s new book ‘The Clegg Coup’ and finds that it tells us a lot, but not what the author intended.
  • ‘Future tense’ – The party’s recent policy paper ‘Facing the Future’ proved more controversial than expected. Julie Smith (a member of the Federal Policy Committee and of the Facing the Future Working Group, writing in a personal capacity) says its critics have misunderstood its purpose.
  • ‘Eyes in Gaza’ – Chris Davies (Liberal Democrat MEP for the North West of England) reports on a visit to Gaza, where the local entrepreneurial spirit is doing its best in the face of Israel’s intransigence.
  • ‘Dumb down, or demand dosh’ – Matthew Huntbach (who teaches computer science and is a former leader of the Liberal Democrat council group in Lewisham) argues that attempts to create a market in university courses are doomed to fail because good teaching cannot be provided on the cheap.
  • ‘Timeless trip’ – Michael Meadowcroft (former Liberal MP for Leeds West) looks at a new book that traces a half century of Liberal policy development (‘The Revival of British Liberalism – From Grimond to Clegg’ by Tudor Jones).
  • Letters.
  • Book reviews – including a review of the new biography of Nick Clegg by Chris Bowers.
  • Lord Bonkers’ Diary – Lord Bonkers (Liberal MP for Rutland South West 1906-10) records another week from the vantage point of Bonkers Hall in Rutland.
If you missed any of our previous editions, they are available online here.
You can subscribe to Liberator here.
Liberator welcomes your articles, letters and book reviews. Please read our style guide before submitting any copy.The Liberator Collective may be e-mailed at: [email protected]

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  • jenny barnes 24th Dec '11 - 10:03am

    Paul Crossley suggests that we should “knock on doors” to campaign for the police commissioner positions, rather than leaflet or do nothing. That really is Alice in wonderland. In my constituency, we’d be lucky to get a few leaflet deliverers now; knocking on doors takes about 5 – 10 times as long as delivering leaflets, and the area is 15 times the size. So he’s suggesting we take on 100 times more work with less activists? Mmmmm. We’re all mad here.

  • Ian Sanderson (RM3) 24th Dec '11 - 12:12pm

    Jenny. I think what Paul says makes sense, in that we have not yet developed a technique that presents the LibDems properly to electorates larger than a Westminster constituency. I am told feedback since May 2010 is that leaflets alone are not enough, whereas talking on the doorstep is helpful in the short run and more productive in the long run. Talking, engaging, may well produce some future activists to deliver more leaflets and do campaigning work in the future. At least that’s the theory, and I’m going to follow it through.
    We don’t have police commissioner elections here, so that is not an issue locally. I don’t think thete is a ban on LibDem candidates for them; it’s just that they will need to look to local and English regional parties for backing, rather than Federal or English party.

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