New Liberator magazine out

This issue’s free sample online content is the Commentary on how the party might react to the election of Jeremy Corbyn as Labour leader, and why the campaign to stay in the European Union should not allow itself to be dominated by business leaders with little popular appeal.

Also as a free sample, former Devon North MP Nick Harvey exposes how Liberal Democrat polling during the general election showed the party losing almost every seat and that its messages were unpopular, yet those in charge of the campaign refused to change their plans.

Elsewhere the issue has news and gossip in Radical Bulletin, book reviews, Lord Bonkers’ latest thoughts and among the articles:

David Grace looks at the blunders being made by the pro-EU campaign by being over-dependent on business leaders.

‘Equidistant’ is the worst political place for the Liberal Democrats no matter where other parties have drifted off to, concludes Nick Barlow from his recent thesis.

What does the arrival of Jeremy Corbyn as Labour leader means for the Liberal Democrats? Gordon Lishman, Jennie Rigg and David Thorpe provide some answers

Liberator Collective members Gareth Epps and George Potter consider the party’s governance review and John Smithson offers a way to conduct OMOV elections.

Back issues are available on our website.


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This entry was posted in News.


  • Bill le Breton 17th Nov '15 - 10:07am

    Lions led by ostriches

    The Harvey post on internal polling should be required reading. It proves that the High Command knew that we were losing in every, yes every seat polled by our internal polling. Which in turns shows that those making the strategic decisions must have known that the most likely outcome of the general election was a Tory MAJORITY – yet they still kept wittering on about Coalitions instead of counter attacking on the consequences of a Tory Government.

    As Harvey writes, a better strategy might have been to scare the public witless about the consequences of a Tory Government – exactly the point I made to Paddy and Olly mid-April … and at the time the party was investing everything in the BluKip campaign!

    Here’s the link file:///C:/Users/William/Downloads/liberator-375-falling-for-our-own-propaganda.pdf

  • That seems to be a link to your PC, Bill. The speakers at the conference fringe session on the election polling seemed completely oblivious to its shortcomings – bemoaning budget limitations that prevented further polling! Nick Harvey was the most animated of the speakers from the floor and your precis explains why.

  • Adrian Sanders 17th Nov '15 - 12:07pm

    Bill Le Breton – same here – we campaigned on the consequences of the £30 to £50 billion extra Tory cuts but couldn’t detach ourselves from the national messaging. We had one of the lowest swings against us in England, but even with the right messaging nationally we would probably still have lost thanks to Clegg’s selfishness in hanging on to the Leadership after the Euro election debacle.

  • Well said, Adrian.

  • Bill le Breton 17th Nov '15 - 12:59pm

    Paul, thanks for those insights into the Fringe Meeting. Here is a link to the page where you can down load the piece by Nick.

    I was lucky enough to see some of the internal polling well before the ‘short campaign’and challenged its findings immediately. I maintained all along – and Nick Harvey seems to confirm it for his seat – that the first voter intention figure in those Party polls would be the more accurate and to ignore the second VI data which came after some hilarious one sided push questioning.

    The other large strategic mistake was not leaving government before fighting the campaign.As Michael Steed points out in the Autumn 2015 Journal of Liberal History, by leaving the Lib Lab Pact a year before going to the Polls, David Steel was able to preserve a large part of the Parliamentary Party. Steel achieved that in between 6 to 12 months. I think we could have left in 2013 as recovery had been achieved by then. Our job as defined in 2010 had been done.

    The comfort polling was a device to keep the Party on board with the strategy of staying in Government to the end and fighting on our national message. Steed writes ‘That message did not fit (the Party’s) localism, its community bases, its historic role in the regions, where it had maintained credibility as the main anti-Tory party or *** the priorities of particular groups of its supporters **** (my emphasis).

    Clegg’s team didn’t know its base from its elbow and it didn’t know (in Steed’s words) ‘how to play the uninominal system’.

    Why there were so few people able to see this remains a huge mystery.

  • Mark Smulian 17th Nov '15 - 3:03pm

    Nick – thank you for noting the commentary problem. I will try to fix it this evening.

  • Mark Smulian 17th Nov '15 - 6:41pm

    The problem with the Commentary download should now be fixed.

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