Tag Archives: new year’s resolutions 2016

Five New Year’s resolutions for Liberal Democrats #5

Over the past few days, I’ve been suggesting some New Year’s Resolutions for Liberal Democrats to see us through 2016. Here’s number 5.

Pay attention to the Governance Review

There has been a group putting together proposals about the way our party is run. The last few years has given us many examples of where our disciplinary and other processes simply aren’t fit for purpose and it is difficult to see where  accountability lies. The Federal Executive will be drawing up a set of proposals for change. As an FE member, I do not want to see the power of members diminished or to see key decisions being exclusively taken by a small group of people, remote from members. We are a grassroots movement that believes in power being held at the lowest practical level and we need to live those values.

So, all I’m saying is keep an eye on what’s being proposed. If you are going to Spring Conference in York, come to the consultation session and if you aren’t, respond to the proposals with your comments. Above all, make sure your voice is heard. Constitutions may bore the hell out of you, but they set out where power is held. It’s important that we get that balance right.

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Five New Year’s Resolutions for 2016 #4

I’m suggesting five New Year’s resolutions for Liberal Democrats. Here, in very short and sweet from, is number 4.

Be very radical on diversity

We simply cannot go on with the embarrassment of our parliamentarians being as white and male as they are. It’s time to follow the example of Justin Trudeau and Nicola Sturgeon and Just Do It. It’s not just about processes, it’s about an unshakeable commitment to delivering diversity at every single level of the party from local party committees right up there that has to be driven by everyone in leadership positions. I think that measures like quotas, zipping and all women shortlists are an essential part of this. Others disagree, but if we don’t, we’ll still be having these discussions in 30 years time. At least now we know that the “but it has to be about merit” argument by opponents has been comprehensively debunked by the evidence. 

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Five New Year’s Resolutions for Liberal Democrats #3

I’m suggesting five New Year’s resolutions that Liberal Democrats should make for 2016. Here’s the third.

Sort our fundraising out

Any professional fundraiser knows that it takes years to establish a successful fundraising operation. In politics, that’s much more difficult to do because of the electoral cycle and general political climate. Professional fundraisers might baulk at the way in which we as a party ask people for money so frequently and by our increased use of digital fundraising. In some ways they may be right, but they also need to understand more about the rapidly changing environment in which we operate.

Candidates and campaign teams at all levels are going to have to be much more strategic about how we approach raising money to pay for our campaigns in the future, particularly when many of them are facing well-fundsd opponents carpet bombing their target areas with phone calls, emails, direct mail and literature. There is a huge disparity between what we can afford and they can so we need to be more creative in use of free stuff and work out how we can seriously raise some more money. It will increasingly come down to local campaigns having to do it for themselves rather than relying on the national party to do it for them. However, we need a national operation too, to help build our capacity on the ground in all parts of the country and that costs money. If we are to grow again, we need to make much more progress.

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Five New Year’s resolutions for Liberal Democrats – #2

I’m suggesting five New Year’s resolutions that Liberal Democrats should make for 2016. Here’s the second.

Stop fighting each other

This party has been incredibly resilient over the past five difficult years. We’ve mostly chummed along (albeit with heavy hearts) and got on with the job. However, there have been a few flashpoints, mainly online between a few people.  There’s one group of people who broadly think that the Coalition was evil,  and that the party was taken over by pseudo-Tories hiding behind the Orange Book and that everyone who thinks differently should bog off and join the Tories. Heavens, a small subset …

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