Tag Archives: the alternative

LDV Interview: Caroline Lucas talks about The Alternative Part 3

This week I had the chance to talk to Caroline Lucas, newly elected co-Leader of the Green Party of England and Wales, about the book “The Alternative.” She co-edited the book with Labour MP Lisa Nandy and her erstwhile 2015 Liberal Democrat opponent Chris Bowers. The three will be taking part in a fringe meeting at Conference TODAY at 1pm in the Buckingham suite in the Hilton Metropole. The event is organised by the Social Liberal Forum. Part 1 is available here.

I  wondered if the sense of solidarity that exists between women across politics, partly because we all have to put up with a fairly sexist political culture, could be developed to help the process of cross-party working along:

In my experience generally speaking women tend to be more interested in working together and and finding that common ground not in scoring points. But one of the crucial things is to have confidence building measures at a local level so that some of the very real mistrust between parties can be addressed and, as much as possible, neutralised.

I’m glad she brought that up because we all have that baggage of bad experiences with members of other parties. Many Lib Dems feel pretty bruised by some of the abuse that came our way during the coalition years, especially when we didn’t agree with what was happening.  We do have to get past that, but how do we patch that up?

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LDV Interview: Caroline Lucas talks about The Alternative Part 2

This week I had the chance to talk to Caroline Lucas, newly elected co-Leader of the Green Party of England and Wales, about the book “The Alternative.” She co-edited the book with Labour MP Lisa Nandy and her erstwhile 2015 Liberal Democrat opponent Chris Bowers. The three will be taking part in a fringe meeting at Conference tomorrow at 1pm in the Buckingham suite in the Hilton Metropole. The event is organised by the Social Liberal Forum. Part 1 is available here.

Part 1 ended with a discussion on a more collaborative politics. That’s not quite what we see even within the Labour Party at the moment. After what the Tories did to scare people witless of a coalition between Ed Miliband and Alex Salmond, what would they do with anything that involved Jeremy Corbyn, even if he were inclined to be a part of it?

Caroline is clear that this is not something politicians can stitch up between themselves:

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LDV Interview: Caroline Lucas talks about The Alternative – Part 1

The AlternativeThis week I had the chance to talk to Caroline Lucas, newly elected co-Leader of the Green Party of England and Wales, about the book “The Alternative.” She co-edited the book with Labour MP Lisa Nandy and her erstwhile 2015 Liberal Democrat opponent Chris Bowers. The three will be taking part in a fringe meeting at Conference on Sunday at 1pm in the Buckingham suite in the Hilton Metropole. The event is organised by the Social Liberal Forum.

The first part of the book explores all sorts of ideas, from foreign affairs to social security and public services, where there is significant common ground between those of a progressive nature.The second explores how progressives could work together to beat the Tories. It’s a progressive antidote to the Tory dystopia into which we are currently descending. Though the book sets a lot of hares running, it doesn’t seek to outline a way forward. So, I asked Caroline, what happens next?

In the book there are all kinds of options discussed and explored and absolutely no blueprint not least because what might work in one constituency might not work in another.

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LDV interview: Chris Bowers talks about The Alternative

The AlternativeLast week, Chris Bowers wrote about The Alternative, the book exploring the potential of a progressive alliance he has co-edited with Green co-leader Caroline Lucas and Labour MP Lisa Nandy.

I have really enjoyed reading the book. After a referendum campaign filled with divisiveness and nastiness, it’s good for the soul to read about how progressive ideas on the economy, immigration, public services could improve our society and our democracy.

While the book offers a vision of what life could be like, it doesn’t, nor does it claim to, provide a roadmap for getting there. Too many barriers and obstacles stand in the way and more work has to be done to overcome them – if the political will exists.

So, my first question to Chris was basically, how realistic is all of this?

Politics is in disrepute so co-operation is paramount and we need to start out on a path of exploration to see what is possible.

People didn’t vote Tory or for Brexit because of a passion for them. We need to look at ways of making politics more relevant to their lives.

He went on to talk about the  article written by Uffe Elbœk one of the founders of The Alternative movement in Denmark:

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Please understand what The Alternative is about

The AlternativeJudging by the reaction to Andrew George’s post last week  there seems to be a lot of unnecessary fretting among Liberal Democrats caused by ‘The Alternative’, the book I have co-edited with the Labour and Green MPs Lisa Nandy and Caroline Lucas. Allow me to explain why I think some people are getting the wrong end of the stick.

I fully understand the views of those who say Labour is not a progressive party, and that we sometimes have more in common with the liberal wing of the Conservatives than we do with Labour or the nationalist parties. Those views can be defended, but they don’t alter the practical reality of what we face.

Everyone is talking about how we were hammered at the 2015 election, which we were in relative terms, but the 8% of the vote we polled would have given us around 55 seats if we’d had a proportional election system, which was roughly what we had in the last parliament.

As a liberal, I’d happily accept whatever our core vote is – probably something between 8% and 20% – under PR. We’d probably never be a party leading a government, but we’d have real influence, and could pursue liberal-democratic policies in association with whichever other parties were receptive to our ideas.

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Andrew George writes…Can progressives unite to defeat the Tories?

The AlternativeFailure to fully fathom the ‘shy Tory’ at the 2015 general election didn’t just leave egg on the faces of opinion pollsters. It produced shock waves across the political spectrum; from a delirious Conservative party to Paddy Ashdown’s exasperated milliner.

Of course psephologists weren’t really suggesting that a significant proportion of Tory voters are bashful by nature but were perhaps politely implying there may be a sense of ‘shame’.

Politics in its most basic form is polarised between, on the one hand, those who feel ‘shy’ about their self-absorption and (when the mask slips) their distaste for those they consider are ‘low achievers’, and on the other, ‘progressives’ who seek to appeal to our better instincts (for others, a wider community, the common good, future generations, the climate etc). Less bashful ‘progressives’ may believe they are in a majority when in fact the country may be evenly divided.

Indeed, there’s an assumption amongst many ‘progressives’ that the 2015 general election represented a high water mark for the Tories; that the pendulum will inevitably swing back at the next election, and that scores of Tory marginals will be comfortably won back. A reality check is needed.

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  • User AvatarPatrick 10th Dec - 1:59am
    I don't get the interviewers point. How would it help preventing people entering the country, that they would be divided in two groups according to...
  • User AvatarDavid Evershed 10th Dec - 1:21am
    Channel Four seems unable to take a neutral position in political debate or political news. Maybe the Lib Dems should join the Conservative and Brexit...
  • User Avatarnigel hunter 9th Dec - 11:59pm
    I hear that people are buying SUV s more than Electric cars. Is that cos they are buying their last gas gobbler before electric takes...
  • User AvatarDavid Raw 9th Dec - 11:39pm
    @ David Le Grice, "Both this and other instances make it clear that at least one person at the BBC (presumably a tribal labour supporter)...
  • User AvatarRoss McLean 9th Dec - 11:38pm
    In any previous election, the PM's refusal to look at the picture of the boy in hospital - putting the reporter's phone in his pocket...
  • User AvatarMatthew Campbell 9th Dec - 11:11pm
    David Raw, I appreciate you shouting 'Oh what a giveaway!' like Eric Idle in Monty Python and the Holy Grail, but I fear what you...
Tue 10th Dec 2019