Tag Archives: lib dem messaging

How should Lib Dems deal with the Conservative fear-mongering?

Chris Skidmore (a Vice-Chair of the Conservatives 2018-2019) has called out his own party for heading in a  “very dark” direction in demonising those who call for a rapid reduction in CO2 emission as a way of justifying the watering-down of net zero targets.  

Softening net zero targets might well encourage people to think they need not worry about climate change and can ignore the extremes of “Just stop Oil”. It’s a million miles from the responsible course of addressing climate change — and implicitly saying “we have a problem, and a plan to address it.

There are echoes of the same mentality in some of Suella Braverman’s comments before the reshuffle. Talking of refugees arriving by boat in exaggerated language can make them sound like an “invasion” force, stoking people’s anxiety so that they are “grateful” when the government “protects” us. Talking of homelessness as a “lifestyle choice” gives a way to say we can ignore it — when we should be embarrassed at what it implies for failed housing and mental health policy.

The snag is that stirring up anxiety and then presenting oneself as the solution speaks to some very raw emotions and makes it hard to think. In 2019 it seemed inconceivable that a government that had just been found to have illegally prorogued parliament could win a General Election, but the slogan of “Get Brexit Done” spoke to who wanted Brexit and who were fed up with it and in a way that closed down debate. It was very hard to create any discussion of what the promised Brexit would look like, or how it sat with public opinion.

Posted in Op-eds | 4 Comments
Advert



Recent Comments

  • Chris Rennard
    It is sometimes claimed that we “underperformed” in 2005 when I was Chief Executive and Charles Kennedy was Leader. But electing 62 MPs, tripling our Westm...
  • David Raw
    Michael Bukola hits the spot. My advice to Sir Edward would be to avoid any interview with Andrew Neil under any and every circumstance....
  • Chris Rennard
    I do not think that those people seeking to see a sharper focus for us on some high profile issues are seeking for us to be a “think tank”. Whilst I would ...
  • David Raw
    @ Paul Fox. Some good and interesting points, Paul, and of course Paddy had charisma, an interesting hinterland, and could make an inspiring speech....
  • Michael Bukola
    The think this issue of the post office scandal is going to run and run right through the Election as the public want a scalp. It certainly does not help that t...