Top of the Blogs: The Lib Dem Golden Dozen #418

Welcome to the Golden Dozen, and our 418th weekly round-up from the Lib Dem blogosphere … Featuring the seven most popular stories beyond Lib Dem Voice according to click-throughs from the Aggregator (31 May – 6 June 2015), together with a hand-picked quintet, you might otherwise have missed.

Don’t forget: you can sign up to receive the Golden Dozen direct to your email inbox — just click here — ensuring you never miss out on the best of Lib Dem blogging.

As ever, let’s start with the most popular post, and work our way down:

1. On some of the less dignified tributes to Charles Kennedy by Jennie Rigg on Nothing is more important than my egomania.
The two people who should be reading this probably won’t be, will you, Lembit and Oakeshott?

2. 351,300 members in England and Wales, now that is what I call a surge by Iain Brodie-Browne on Birkdale Focus.
That was the Liberals in 1964. Really. Iain looks at an old statement of values

3. A lovely letter from Charles Kennedy by Mark Pack on Mark Pack.
So who was Charles’ favourite muppet?

4. Why Lib Dems should only laugh a little at Yvette Cooper’s awful article by Mark Pack on Mark Pack.
Mark says we can’t let our leadership candidates stick to generalities – we need specific plans from them.

5. “We can’t blame the Lib Dems any more” by Jonathan Wallace on Jonathan Wallace.
The lament of a Labour councillor.

6.  The results of 7 May were so bad that traditional Liberal Democrat campaign tactics will no longer work  by Jonathan Calder on Liberal England.
We are so far behind in so many seats that we’ll have to think of new ways to break through.

7. Which (ex) MP is backing which candidate in the Lib Dem leadership race? by Mark Pack on Mark Pack.
How are our grandees lining up?

And now to the five blog-posts that come highly recommended, regardless of the number of Aggregator click-throughs they attracted. To nominate a Lib Dem blog article published in the past seven days – your own, or someone else’s, all you have to do is drop a line to [email protected]. You can also contact us via Twitter, where we’re @libdemvoice

8. Who’s debating this merger except the Independent? by Stephen Glenn on Stephen’s Liberal Journal.
The debate within the party is about asserting our own identity, says Stephen

9. Charles Kennedy by Alex Wilcock on Love and Liberty.
Memories from Alex who was on party committees when he was leader. With added Doctor Who.

10. LGBTQ banned from Pride. Hmmm by Jae Kay  on A Liberal in Deepest, Darkest Kent.
Where could that end?

11. On the shoulders of giants we stand by Becca Plenderleith on Some Ramblings.
A critique of some of the coverage surrounding Charles Kennedy’s death

12. If Labour truly want to challenge the Tories, they need to embrace electoral reform by Nick Barlow on What you can get away with.
(But they probably won’t.)

Finally, it seems appropriate to include one of the best and most sensitive tributes to Charles Kennedy. Alistair Campbell would not normally be welcome on this site, but I feel he has earned a mention for his support of Charles’ family in these last few days and for this wonderful post written in the hours following the awful news. Charles Kennedy – a lovely man, a talented politician, a great friend with a shared enemy. There are lessons for us all in there.

I think they also appreciated that Charles, such a passionate and eloquent opponent of the war in Iraq, was nonetheless unwilling to join those who when it came to their view of Tony Blair or of me, could never see beyond that issue. Charles knew that it was possible to disagree with people without constantly feeling the need to condemn them as lacking in integrity or values; though he was not averse to making a few cracks about historic events down the road in Glencoe.

Even though we knew it was a lost cause, and that Charles would be a Liberal all his life, Philip Gould and I did have an annual dinner time bash at trying to persuade him that deep down he was Labour, and now you have a son at school in London, how about we get you a nice safe Labour seat? Banter political holidays style. It was never going to happen. He was Lochaber to his bones, and a Liberal to his bones.

And that’s it for another week. Happy blogging ‘n’ reading ‘n’ nominating.

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* Caron Lindsay is Editor of Liberal Democrat Voice and blogs at Caron's Musings

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