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What did you make of Vince Cable’s speech?

It was the speech which revived the Lib Dem conference, oddly listless after Nick Clegg’s speech on Monday: Vince Cable’s rallying final day speech gave members and activists a real lift, and provided plenty of red meat for the media to chew on. Here’s my first impression…

Perhaps what was most impressive about Vince’s conference speech was how unchanged it was from his usual fare: uncompromising, wise-cracking, punchy, intelligent.

The right-wing media has focused on Vince’s attacks on capitalism, with the Daily Mail in typically shrill mood, and ConservativeHome giving it the silly billing of ‘Red Vince Day’.

That’s the thing about some right-wingers: too often they are unable to see past their own dogma which assumes Big Business must always be right. It’s the same blind spot left-wingers have about the unions.

Liberals — and I’m not using that as a party label because it also encompasses Adam Smith — understand that unfettered capitalism is not the same thing as the free market, and capitalism does not automatically promote market competition. That is why liberals, and Liberal Democrats, believe in a regulated free market, to curb the excesses of capitalism and to promote the interests of healthy market competition from which individuals and society can benefit.

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