Welcome to my day: 3 September 2018 – dancing for loose change?

I’m not one to criticise Theresa May’s dancing. You don’t want to see me on a dance floor, if truth be told. And, regardless of her prospects in “Strictly Come Dancing”, she was trying.

And on that thought, welcome to another week, with the schools going back and, indeed, Parliament. The behaviour is likely to be rather more dignified in schools though, with the weekend papers featuring supposed coup preparations against both Corbyn and May. We Liberal Democrats have Vince’s speech to look forward to at the end of the week, when he may, or may not, be talking about his future. As preparation for the crucial debates on Brexit, it is possibly less than ideal (*sarcasm alert* for those of you who don’t know me).

Theresa May has been in Africa, pledging an investment boost in the continent post-Brexit, the aim being to become the biggest investor within the G7 members. I can’t help but feel that, with China building infrastructure across Africa in return for access to key raw materials, it’s too little, too late, but if she’s serious, it does at least imply a more internationalist, albeit somewhat selfish, agenda. I may come back to this later in the week, as I’ll be at an interesting talk in London, given by China expert, Humphrey Hawksley, author of “Asian Waters”.

The campaign for a people’s vote continues to bubble away, with a senior Conservative Party donor calling for a second referendum over the weekend. I find myself wondering, however, whether or not the EU27 would allow us the time to hold one. Has anyone done anything to check that, or is the concept of ‘British exceptionalism’ equally firmly held on both sides of the Brexit debate (the answer to the latter question is “yes”, I’m afraid)?

Liberal Democrats should be consulting liberal leaders, Labour leaders should be talking to their opposite numbers, Greens likewise. There’s no evidence that it’s happening though, and time is running out.

Something else that is rumbling on is the question of anti-semitism in the Labour Party. I’ve never been particularly keen on attacking other parties for the wrongdoing of individual members or activists – let he who is without sin cast the first stone, and no party is devoid of people whose views or proclivities might be less than optimal. But, if it is someone in a position of authority, balanced, accurate press coverage is the best way to allow the public to decide for themselves as to the level of offence taken. If only we had such a press…

And so, let the week begin!

* Mark Valladares is the Monday Editor of Liberal Democrat Voice. Sometimes, he turns up on other days…

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