Tag Archives: liberal philosophy

Citizens Britain: a radical agenda for the 2020s

On Saturday, the anniversary of last year’s disastrous General Election, we published a new report. Citizens’ Britain is the follow up to our previous collaboration, Winning for Britain, which was the first data-rich review of 2019. That earlier report concluded with the challenge of identifying “a distinct, progressive, liberal alternative”. Citizens’ Britain, a country where every voice is heard, and where we work together to solve the problems we face, is that alternative.

We must be honest with ourselves: liberalism itself is now under threat in this country. A year on from the General Election, the Conservative government’s approach to the pandemic and Brexit is endangering lives and livelihoods. Since his re-election, Boris Johnson and those around him have enabled nationalism and right-wing conservatism while also stifling progressive voices and ripping up the liberal institutions and frameworks that underpin our daily lives.

The mandate that Johnson and his cronies are claiming for this is rooted in a myth. The myth says people are uninterested in politics and just want government to get on with running things while they are left alone to get on with their lives. The Tories, to be clear, believe that Brexit and the hoarding of power in the central executive, at the expense of parliament, the devolved administrations, and local government, is no more than a response to the popular demand for government to ‘just get on with it’. To the extent that their governing philosophy extends beyond that, it is to say only that people should occasionally be called upon to use their consumer power to boost the economy.

Posted in Op-eds | Also tagged | 11 Comments

Yellow, orange, green… time for new book, and a different approach

Back in 1928, publication of The Yellow Book – the report of a party inquiry “Britain’s Industrial Future” – provided the basis for Lloyd George’s 1929 general election programme “We can conquer unemployment!”. It put the party firmly in the camp of an interventionist economic strategy, with John Maynard Keynes as its intellectual lodestar. With the Great Depression ranging, the party firmly rejected laisser-faire liberalism.

Come 2004 and the Orange Book -subtitled Reclaiming Liberalism and edited by David Laws and Paul Marshall – challenged what some were calling nanny-state liberalism. It promoted choice and competition and argued that the Liberal Democrats …

Posted in Books, News and Party policy and internal matters | 8 Comments
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Recent Comments

  • Roland
    @Phil Beesley - "Starting with simple ideas, the UK will consume fossil fuels for many years. After we’ve (We=UK) stopped burning the stuff, we’ll still ...
  • Barry Lofty
    Very informative Peter!...
  • Peter
    I am by no means knowledgeable about this subject but I would have thought that certain things are rather obvious. The petroleum industry has evolved into a gig...
  • Brad Barrows
    @Phil Beesley I’m afraid your comment suggests a lack of understanding of the legal responsibilities of schools with regard to pupil safety and, in particula...
  • Peter Martin
    If the new plan B doesn't include vaccine passports it will be Plan B MINUS! Passports will encourage the take up of available vaccines. Compulsory mask wear...