After all, they're a modern, progressive and liberal party, the party of the metropolitan elite, the one with all the forward-thinking ideas. A truly internationalist party you might say, one that looks outward to the world and has a positive attitude towards it... They're also the party that will sell you this: [IMG: Pledge_4_Mug_-_Controls_On_Immigration] I wonder how many Ed Miliband's bought for his family?

Posted by Nick on What You Can Get Away With | Mute

Who could have foreseen that? Anyway, Metro wins our Headline of the Day Award.

Posted by Jonathan Calder on Liberal England | Mute

By the end of this weekend, the Liberal Democrats will have knocked on one million doors this year. That's pretty incredible. Paddy Ashdown has been in Bath today to campaign for Steve Bradley and mark that important milestone. Liberal Youth members have been out in force too. Bristol students called our election chief a "charm machine" which is a whole load more respectful than he got in Scotland last weekend when Willie Rennie dubbed him Father Jack after his sweary outbursts in press briefings. Campaigning in Bath with @paddyashdown he's a charm machine! — Bristol LD Students (@LDSocBristol) March ...

Posted by Newspuppy on Liberal Democrat Voice | Mute
Sat 28th
16:50

Goodbye to all that

In May of 2011, I was elected to Mendip District Council and became the youngest person ever to be elected to the authority. I could barely think as they were counting the votes, and by the time the result was announced, I could do nothing but cry. Cry with relief, exhaustion and confusion at everything that had happened. Election campaigns, as many of you will know are (as a good friend once said) the best of times and the worst of times. They're incredible. There's no feeling like being involved in something that you're so passionate about, side by side ...

Posted by Sam Phripp on So Sam said... | Mute

Lib Dems Believe Wordle 9

It's about freedom. That one word is the clarion call for Liberal Democrats. Liberal Democrats believe that maximising personal freedom is fundamental to a liberal society. We believe that freedom means the opportunity to make the most of our lives, while recognising that our actions must not prevent others from sharing those opportunities and that we may need to take active steps to extend freedom to all. A core aspect of our commitment to freedom is a commitment to civil rights, and that cause belongs to us more than to any other party. That means supporting fundamental civil rights to ...

I asked the other day why on earth the Liberal Democrats had indulged the Tories' last minute motion on the re-election of the Speaker which brought this Parliament to a rather undignified end. We still haven't had any real justification as to why we allowed this to take that leap from William Hague's head to Commons Order paper, but I thought that you would be interested to read the Liberal Democrat interventions in the debate, both of which were against the motion. David Heath's remarks were very brief but to the point: Further to the point of order, Mr Speaker. ...

Posted by Caron Lindsay on Liberal Democrat Voice | Mute

[IMG: USB 3.0 hub from Sabrent] Sabrent's 4 Port USB 3.0 Aluminium Hub is nicely made, with a rubberised non-slip finish on the bottom and generously spaced USB slots that make it easy to unplug and plug devices even when the other slots are all in use. Despite that generous spacing, it is light and small with the only real blemish being the thick and clunky cable to connect the hub to your main device. The Sabrent Hub is USB 3.0 compatible, which may well mean nothing to you if you're not up with the technical details of USB, but ...

Posted by Mark Pack on Mark Pack | Mute

Three current and one (sadly) former liberal MEPs have written for the European Parliament's Magazine following a Liberal International meeting in Oxford. They argued that liberals must stand together against the far-right and the politics of fear. Catherine Bearder, Dutch MEP Hans van Baalen, our Graham Watson and Swedish MEP Cecilia Wikström show how liberals see the world: As liberals, we will be standing together against the racists, the xenophobes and those who believe Europe needs to return to its fragmented past. Liberals are naturally internationalist; it is in our DNA. We view the world as a global stage, not ...

Posted by NewsHound on Liberal Democrat Voice | Mute

According to the one opinion poll I've seen, Ed Miliband was the loser by 54% to 46%, though my own impression was that Miliband's performance, in both content and presentation, was far superior to that of David Cameron. That is probably because my views are more in sympathy with Miliband's than Cameron's: it is hard to be subjective in these matters. Nevertheless, I do think Miliband missed two open goals in. The first was in the interview with Jeremy Paxman, whose hectoring and repetitive:" Did the Labour government borrow too much?" was crying out for a firm: "No, we borrowed ...

Posted by Peter Wrigley on Keynesian Liberal | Mute

[IMG: Salmond New York] The Herald reports that Alex Salmond has postponed a trip to the US to promote his book which had, incredibly, been due to take place in just 10 days' time, after the start of the general election campaign. His publishers pencilled in signings in New York and Toronto for the week after next, during the annual Scotland Week festivities. Banff & Buchan MP Eilidh Whiteford was also lined up to appear at a hustings in Gordon, where Mr Salmond is the SNP candidate, during his absence. Jean Marie Kelly of HarperCollins in New York said yesterday: ...

Posted by Caron Lindsay on Liberal Democrat Voice | Mute

So reports Information Age: Britain's hopes of enabling online voting in general elections by 2020 have faced a dose of reality after a security vulnerability in an Australian system was exposed. The iVote system was introduced for the New South Wales (NSW) State Election in 2011 for voters who are more than 20 kilometres from a polling station, and has also been used in subsequent state by-elections. But its use in NSW's state election this month has faced intense scrutiny after researchers discovered a major security hole that could allow a hacker to read and manipulate votes... Election security researchers ...

Posted by Mark Pack on Mark Pack | Mute

On the day Earth Hour takes place, the Liberal Democrats have released a video with Nick Clegg and Julia Goldsworthy at a Cornish seal sanctuary. They highlight the nature bill that's part of our 5 green laws in the manifesto. I know this is childish but every time I see that headline, I think of a cartoon David Laws, greened up like Elphaba in Wicked. The party's video communications are really good at the moment. Enjoy this one. Our plans for a Nature Bill include removing exemptions from all plastic bag charges to safeguard our environment and protect wildlife. Posted ...

Posted by Caron Lindsay on Liberal Democrat Voice | Mute

This looks fun - tonight on Channel 4 at 9.

Posted by Jonathan Calder on Liberal England | Mute

The City Council have announced that local residents can now pre-register for new city-wide energy tariffs that will be amongst the cheapest in the country. In January the council entered into a partnership with OVO Energy to establish dual and single fuel (electricity only) energy tariffs that are exclusive to residents with Peterborough local authority [...]

Posted by Cllr Darren Fower on Cllr Darren Fower | Mute

Dirk Bogarde was born on 28 March 1921.

Posted by Jonathan Calder on Liberal England | Mute

Don't forget to put your clocks FORWARD overnight, as British Summer Time starts I'm not going to get into the annual argument that we should abandon the practice / have permanent summer time / have double summer time etc, as for every view by parents / farmers etc there is an opposite one.

Posted by Alisdair Gibbs-Barton on Alisdair Gibbs-Barton | Mute

It's WWF's annual Earth Hour tonight, between 8:30 and 9:30. Many of us will be turning our lights off to show that the planet and its environment is a priority and to show that we want our government to take it seriously. I noticed that this year it clashes with Channel 4's docudrama thingy about the Coalition. When I moaned about it on Twitter, people reminded me about Channel 4 + 1. WWF Scotland have asked the country's political leaders to contribute a blog post to explain what Earth Hour means for them. Willie Rennie's is here. He starts off ...

Posted by Caron Lindsay on Liberal Democrat Voice | Mute

When I was a teenager, I was affected by punk music for a distinct period of time. Up until I discovered it, I was very much a little metalhead - both the music itself and the politics of punk changed my life. Although I'm not the little anarchist I was at fifteen any longer, the fight for individual thought I found in punk remains near and dear to my heart. So I thought I would list the five songs that most encapsulate what punk is. Imagine if an alien landed on Earth and asked "What is punk rock?" – these ...

Posted by Nick on nicktyrone.com | Mute

Yesterday's Plaid Cymru election launch was splashed across all Welsh media with their message that voters need to seize the opportunity to take the future of Wales into their own hands. However, closer inspection indicates that what is actually on offer is just Labour-lite with a dragon attached. The promise that the nationalists will unite with the SNP and the Greens to form a negotiating bloc in the event of a hung Parliament is fair enough, but it is unlilkely that such an unstable alliance will prove attractive to anybody. What is most bizarre about Plaid's position though is that ...

Posted by Peter Black on Peter Black | Mute

[IMG: image] It was very exciting to be at last night's West Berkshire Lib Dems campaign launch at Newbury Town Hall. We were very privileged to have Liberal Democrat Party President Sal Brinton present. She gave a very inspiring speech (photo above). I was also very inspired to hear Judith Bunting give a rousing address. "We get knocked down but we get up again", said Judith and the sound controller, Tony, quickly googled Chumbawamba's "Tubthumping" ("I get knocked down but I get up again") and played it, unscripted, at the end of Judith's speech. Sadly, I only I noticed this ...

Posted by Paul on Liberal Burblings | Mute

#InMyShoes: scientists share photos of their footwear in support of eight-year-old girl (tags: ) These horrifying political face swaps could determine how you vote in May (or not) The Con/Kip one is utterly terrifying though. (tags: ) The Growth of the Beard - British Library European studies blog (tags: ) Today's headlines show just how much work is still to do on mental health stigma (tags: ) Conservative benefit cut options leaked - none of these are exactly a surprise Nor is "Shadow Chancellor Ed Balls" looking at some of the same options #labservatives (tags: ) Sweden's feminist foreign minister ...

[IMG: David Heath] On Thursday a valedictory debate for retiring members took place in the House of Commons. Members whose service totalled several hundred years bade farewell to the Commons. Three of them were Liberal Democrats and we'll be publishing their speeches in full. Today we have David Heath, MP for Somerton and Frome for 18 years. You can read the whole debate, with speeches from long-standing and distinguished MPs such as Gordon Brown, Joan Ruddock, Sir George Young and Elfyn Llwyd, here. I always said that I would leave this place before I lost the buzz of having the ...

Posted by The Voice on Liberal Democrat Voice | Mute

www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-derbyshire-31951751 The BBC has the story – see the link to their web site above. Well I am a railway nut, so probably no surprise that this item on the BBC web site, which an old friend pointed out to me, has took my interest.

Posted by Cllr. Tony Robertson on Sefton Focus » Sefton Focus | Mute

A constituent recently pointed out that, in trying to obtain a permit to allow him to temporarily site a skip on the roadside during house improvements, he was surprised he could not directly apply on-line via the council's website. As I am keen that constituents are offered as many services on-line as possible (as well as alternative ways for those not wishing to go on-line), I asked the City Council's Head of Transportation why this was not possible on-line and have been advised as follows : "The current arrangements are that an applicant can access the form from Dundee City ...

The debate about the future of Sefton Borough has recently been ignited again by Southport Councillors calling for the Borough to be split. I share their frustrations despite living in Lydiate and representing Maghull and Lydiate on Sefton Council. [IMG: This wall art is on a former railway now pedestrian tunnel behind Bootle's New Strand Shopping Centre. Sadly it has gained a little unwanted graffiti.] This wall art is on a former railway now pedestrian tunnel behind Bootle's New Strand Shopping Centre. Sadly it has gained a little unwanted graffiti. Sefton is an odd place geographically and my guess is ...

Posted by Cllr. Tony Robertson on Sefton Focus » Sefton Focus | Mute

[IMG: Most of the one million doors are easier to get to than this one.] Most of the one million doors are easier to get to than this one. Over this weekend, the millionth door will be knocked on by Liberal Democrat campaigners since the start of the year.* That's not counting the several hundred thousand phone calls also also made and is an important part of the party's attempt to buck the national trend in both key Westminster constituencies and also many local council wards. Two different recent constituency polls (in London and Scotland) have shown the promising prospects ...

Posted by Mark Pack on Mark Pack | Mute

Back in the 1960s, before the touchy-feely, child-centred Green Cross Code was thought of, we had the kerb drill: "At the kerb, halt! Look right, look left, look right again. If all clear, quick march!"Now, with the poster above, the Liberal Democrats are trying to revive it. Could there be a grown up in charge of our campaign after all? You can see the drill in action in this first Ministry of Information film: And see an adult being taught it by a squeaky-voiced Forties child in the second.

Posted by Jonathan Calder on Liberal England | Mute
Fri 27th
20:42

Six of the Best 501

Tim Oliver says Liberals must stand up to Russia over Ukraine. "I very much welcome the decision of the Supreme Court that letters written by Prince Charles to Ministers should be published." Peter Black explains why. George Packer on a St Petersburg gathering of right-wing extremists from Europe and the US: "There's a little Putin in everyone, forever picking at old scabs, whipping up team spirit, settling scores—us against them, a hateful sort of love. Acknowledging these things is the only antidote to being governed by them." "The notion that ticklish conversations must be scrubbed clean of controversy has a ...

Posted by Jonathan Calder on Liberal England | Mute

Church Stretton Library is tucked away behind the town's church, housed in a former school. I have written more than one post on this blog there. Today the Shropshire Star reports that it is to be moved to a site that will be less convenient for many of the people who use it. Maybe this decision has been forced upon the council by the reduction in government funding - and the officers' report quoted in the Star eventually gets round to saying that - but you have to wade through a sea of management bullshit first: The decision was made ...

Posted by Jonathan Calder on Liberal England | Mute

This will be very popular with some Liberal Democrat activists, and it's a smart move to acknowledge that different activists have different policies they're keenest to promote: [IMG: War on Drugs bag] On sale here.

Posted by Mark Pack on Mark Pack | Mute

[IMG: whitehall] The Guardian have a very useful web page called Election 2015: The Guardian poll projection. On it, each day, they update their state-of-the-parties graph with the latest polling data, which then flows into an infographic showing the parliamentary arithmetic and possible government options after May 7th. One can, perhaps, quibble with their numbers to the degree of 4-5 seats either way for each party. But basically, as time progresses and we approach May 7th like a freight train at 120 mph, it is becoming clearer and clearer what kind of government we are going to wake up to ...

Posted by Paul on Liberal Burblings | Mute

There are only a few meetings scheduled for April at Blyth Town Council Tuesday 7th April Assets Committee Thursday 23rd April Planning & Development Committee Tuesday 28th April Events Committee All meetings start at 6:30 pm, and are to be at Arms Evertyne House The meeting of the Planning & Development Committee due to be held on 2nd April has been cancelled

Posted by Alisdair Gibbs-Barton on Alisdair Gibbs-Barton | Mute

An eyebrow rising detail from the legal action over the election of controversial Tower Hamlets Mayor, Lutfur Rahman: The petitioners claimed that mayor Lutfur Rahman and his election agent Alibor Choudhury committed electoral fraud to get Mr Rahman re-elected in 2014. On behalf of the petitioners, Francis Hoar returned on Tuesday to the fact Tower Hamlets First - the party Mr Rahman founded to run for mayor - did not have a bank account. He said: "Both Mr Raham and Mr Choudhury have wholly failed to say why that was. The only reason why you would not have a bank ...

Posted by Mark Pack on Mark Pack | Mute

All of us have been moved by the Germanwings plane crash, feeling for those who have lost loved ones or colleagues. The circumstances of the crash, caused by what seems to be a deliberate act by the co-pilot, has provoked much comment in the press, much of it deeply irresponsible. Headlines have screamed about Andreas Lubitz's mental health demanding to know why he was allowed to fly. Lurid headlines, written by sub-editors who clearly have no clue about mental health, do not help to either tackle the stigma faced by people with mental ill health or encourage those who suffer ...

Posted by Caron Lindsay on Liberal Democrat Voice | Mute

More comedy genius from Australia's Clarke and Dawe:

Posted by Mark Pack on Mark Pack | Mute

Incentives matter in our education system. The right ones encourage our schools and teachers to deliver the very best education the system has to offer. Yet in the run up to the general election, politicians would have us think otherwise. Rather than creating the incentives for excellence to spread, they seek to drive performance from the centre. Cross-party support for a new college of teaching illustrates this shift in rhetoric, with politicians trying to magic more high quality teachers without thinking about the underlying incentives. The so-called "Cinderella" teaching profession really has found its fairy godmother. The academy school programme ...

Posted by Amy Finch on Liberal Democrat Voice | Mute

LOCAL LIB DEMS WELCOME CLAMPDOWN OVER PAYDAY LOAN SHOPS AND U TURN OVER OFFICE CONVERSION Gerald Vernon Jackson, Leader of the LGA Liberal Democrats, has welcomed a new announcement that will enable councils to keep a lid on the numbers of payday loan companies or betting shops allowed to open. Cllr Vernon Jackson said: "Councils [...]

In case you were wondering, by my reckoning four Liberal Democrat MPs voted for the Hague / Gove "student union politics" move that would have allowed Bercow to be unseated by a secret ballot. They were: - Tom Brake (no surprise; the Deputy Leader of the House dutifully sat alongside Hague throughout) - Ed Davey - Don Foster - John Thurso I read that 10 Lib Dems voted against, but don't have their names at hand. Quite why the Liberal Democrats in government (and indeed William Hague for that matter, whose reputation as a "Commons man" must now be severely ...

Posted by Chris Connolly on A Yellow Guard | Mute

I have just received an interesting e-mail from the City Council. I attach a copy of the e-mail and my response to it below. The Council has called a meeting during a period known as 'purdah'. This period is designed ... Continue reading →

Posted by richardkemp on But what does Richard Kemp think? | Mute
Fri 27th
15:20

Whickham eFocus no. 94

The latest edition of eFocus for the Whickham area (number 94) has just been published and can be viewed on this link.

Posted by jonathanwallace on Jonathan Wallace | Mute

[IMG: Alan Beith] Yesterday a valedictory debate for retiring members took place in the House of Commons. Members whose service totalled several hundred years bade farewell to the Commons. Three of them were Liberal Democrats and we'll be publishing their speeches in full. Today we have Sir Alan Beith, elected in a by-election in 1973 and who faced two defences of his seat in the first year. You can read the whole debate, with speeches from long-standing and distinguished MPs such as Gordon Brown, Joan Ruddock, Sir George Young and Elfyn Llwyd, here. When I took my seat in the ...

Posted by Caron Lindsay on Liberal Democrat Voice | Mute

HAT TIP: Simon Clark Following on from Wednesday's post, we were nudged to read an excellent and revealing post over at Simon Clark's Taking Liberties blog. the subject of the blog is this tweet... [IMG: dedicated DH team] For those of you who don't know the faces in this picture. From left to right they are ... Andrew Black (civil servant) tobacco programme manager at the Department of Health Deborah Arnott from ASH Jane Ellison MP (Conservative) and Parliamentary Under Secretary of State at the Department of Health Paul Burstow MP (Lib Dem) Really? When did that re-shuffle happen? Does ...

Posted by Editor on Liberal Vision | Mute

Scotland's colour revolution? – "It's belatedly struck me that many features of the Yes campaign, and its post-referendum continuation in the SNP surge, come sharply into focus if you see what's going on as a colour revolution against Labour Scotland." Ken MacLeod offers an interesting take on Scottish politics. The Tories want to give away houses to make sure we have enough houses – Jonn 'build more bloody houses' Elledge on the idiocy of the Tory plans to extend Right To Buy to housing associations. Revealed: how British voters' political mood swings – John Bartle of the University of Essex's ...

Posted by Nick on What You Can Get Away With | Mute

General comments 1. We do not consider that the population estimates that underpin the Local Plan publication draft are sound. There are assumptions about sudden increases in inward migration that are simply not backed up by credible evidence. The figure of 615 houses a year seems to us to be a considerable over-estimate of the actual need. 2. Producing a Local Plan based on flawed assumptions means that Green Belt land, including high grade agricultural land, is being wrongly designated for housing. 3. Some of the actual need for housing can be met by measures such as reducing the number ...

Posted by John Dodd on Meols Lib Dems | Mute

[IMG: International office] Liberal Democrats do love a challenge. Not for us the easy life of safe seats and majority governments. Oh no, marginal and year round campaigning is the life for us. So imagine that this is your task: to inspire women to stand for election to new regional councils, under an alternative list system, to be held in September, probably. The regulations for the new system have yet to be finalised, but existing laws, under which all meetings of more than ten people have to be licenced and leaflets cannot be distributed without permission, remain in force. That ...

Posted by Baroness Liz Barker on Liberal Democrat Voice | Mute

Alan Beith - Graphic from Mark Pack's Quotes About Liberalism

What is a Liberal? The instinct of a Liberal is to distribute power as widely as possible, and to hold to account all those who exercise it. Alan Beith, our longest-serving MP, as a Liberal and Liberal Democrat Member of Parliament from 1973 until he retires this Sunday night. If you'd like any inspiring Liberal quotes or longer passages to feature on Liberal Democrats Believe, contact me at freedomfairnessfuture@hotmail.co.uk (removing the appropriate six letters).

In Northern Ireland today, some churches oppose same-sex marriage. Others do not. Yet, curiously, the law only accommodates those churches opposing it.

Posted by Andrew McFarland Campbell on Faith and Pride | Mute

A new report entitled "A Labour of Love?", released today by CentreForum and written by Tom Frostick and Chris Thoung, weighs up the pros and cons of Labour's recently announced policy on tuition fees, one which revolves mostly around the fees being cut from their current £9k maximum to a £6k ceiling. The report can be read here. On the plus side, the policy does acknowledge the importance of maintenance grants. It also reopens the discussion that needs to be had regarding the balance between state and individual investment in undergraduate education by lowering the percentage of loans the government ...

Posted by Nick Tyrone on Liberal Democrat Voice | Mute

I had to be at the Sage yesterday morning to give a speech supporting the granting of the freedom of Gateshead to two people and an orchestra. It meant an earlier than usual feeding time for the livestock but the ceremony went well. Those being made freemen were Anthony Sargent, former director of the Sage through its early years, Lord (David) Puttnam, former film director and now leading

Posted by jonathanwallace on Jonathan Wallace | Mute

The fall in the UK's greenhouse gas emissions was 8.4% last year due to a slump in household energy consumption a fall in the use of coal for electricity generation and policies on climate change. It shows that the Liberal Democrats green influence on government is having an impact. The Guardian says that carbon dioxide output fell by almost a tenth, as renewable energy generation rose to a new record high, accounting for nearly a fifth of electricity. This is the biggest fall in emissions since 1990. Environmental campaigners say that more needs to be done and they are right. ...

Posted by Peter Black on Peter Black | Mute

Marley Hill Community Centre, of which I am a trustee and member of the management committee, has a large amount of unused land on two sides of it. My plan is to turn it into a community garden and allotments. We have used some of the Local Community Fund, a small fund which councillors can use to support community activities, to draw up a feasibility study. There will be public consultation in

Posted by jonathanwallace on Jonathan Wallace | Mute

[IMG: whitehall] The Guardian have a very useful web page called Election 2015: The Guardian poll projection. On it, each day, they update their state-of-the-parties graph with the latest polling data, which then flows into an infographic showing the parliamentary arithmetic and possible government options after May 7th. One can, perhaps, quibble with their numbers to the degree of 4-5 seats either way for each party. But basically, as time progresses and we approach May 7th like a freight train at 120 mph, it is becoming clearer and clearer what kind of government we are going to wake up to ...

Posted by Paul Walter on Liberal Democrat Voice | Mute

Last night we had the fill in for what was originally going to be a head to head between the prime minister and the leader of the opposition. Cameron didn't want that to happen, stared down the broadcasters, and won. We saw from the proceedings on Channel 4 that began at 9 PM Thursday evening precisely why Cameron was smart to want to do that in the first place. First up, Cameron was interviewed by Paxman. And boy, for anyone who figured Jeremy was in semi-retirement mode, think again. He was as ruthless and cutting as ever, and soon Cameron ...

Posted by Nick on nicktyrone.com | Mute

Here's some of the articles that have caught my attention this week... 5 things we learned from Miliband and Cameron's Q&A Genuine thanks to @stephenkb for mentioning *policies* in his #battlefornumber10 assessment http://bit.ly/1HQ4W1L The TV non-debate: Miliband does better than expected, but not better than Cameron – Comment – Voices – The Independent Here's @JohnRentoul unpardonably bringing facts to bear on misleading Gdn/ICM poll sub-sample http://ind.pn/1BxKITk British public remains keener on tuition fees than you may think Shh, don't tell anyone: "British public remains keener on tuition fees than you may think" http://bit.ly/1D2d0eG Evening Standard Comment: The Liberal Democrats and ...

Posted by Stephen Tall on Stephen Tall | Mute

Experiments in public engagement, pioneered by the Sciencewise programme, are one of the quiet success stories of UK science policy over the past decade. The need for researchers to escape the lab or the seminar room from time to time, and talk to the wider public about the work that they do, and why it matters, is now such an established feature of the academic landscape that it's easy to forget how far and fast we've travelled. From the paternalistic if well-intended talk of "public understanding" of science in the 1980s, through the bumps and scrapes of battles over GM ...

Posted by James Wilsdon on Political science | The Guardian | Mute

[IMG: To the real victor, the front page spoils.] To the real victor, the front page spoils. In no particular order: The real winners last night were Jeremy Paxman and Channel 4. Given the chance to do what he does best and forensically interview leading politicians, Paxman was at his best. Both times, it felt a shame that the interview had to come to an end when it did: Cameron's because he was on the defensive and clearly wanted it over, Miliband's because he'd come to life and was clearly ready for more. Kay Burley was as terrible as you'd ...

Posted by Nick on What You Can Get Away With | Mute

Questions to ask before giving up - these get progressively more difficult & pressuring I still think they're a worthwhile checklist for a person with depression or similar, but I worry that they'll be IMPOSED on people with depression by well-meaning others. The last thing I want when I'm at my lowest is someone rattling off a list of progressively more difficult things to do which will make me feel guilty that I've not done half of them. (tags: ) Vox Day's Horrific MRA claptrap finds yet another outlet. (tags: ) Could the BBC be any more left-wing? First they ...

Sefton Council Lib Dem Opposition Group Leader Cllr. Iain Brodie Browne 24th March 2015 [IMG: Cllr. Iain Brodie Browne] Liberal Democrat Group response to Sefton Council's Local Plan For context and background information we attach our previous submission because much of what we said in it still applies. MP's raise concerns about Local Plan Firstly, two of the Borough's 3 MP's have very clearly and publicly expressed great concerns about the Sefton Local Plan. John Pugh MP (Southport) has questioned the reliance of the Borough Council on consultants who have a foot in both camps i.e. developers/land owners and the ...

Posted by Cllr. Tony Robertson on Sefton Focus » Sefton Focus | Mute

As there has been focus on the speed of payments to suppliers by Scottish local authorities recently, I sought an update from the City Council's Director of Corporate Services to give reassurance that the council makes every effort to pay suppliers - and, in particular, smaller local suppliers - promptly. In response, she advises : "Dundee City Council has a policy of paying all external suppliers within 30 days in line with the majority of other councils throughout Scotland and this is one of our key performance indicators. Dundee has consistently been in the top quartile in terms of performance ...

Environmental campaigners across the Sefton Central Constituency and indeed even I as a political opponent of the incumbent Labour MP Bill Esterson have praised his brave move prior to Christmas in attacking the poor Local Plan that Labour-led Sefton Council has been forcing through. That the plan is poor is a massive understatement, that it is an environmental disaster is nearer to the point. What with some of the 2% highest grade agricultural land in England going to be built upon in Sefton Central no wonder environmental campaigners, the Lib Dems and indeed our Labour MP have been up in ...

Posted by Cllr. Tony Robertson on Sefton Focus » Sefton Focus | Mute

[IMG: lusitania-poster-sinking-u-boat] This new exhibition opens today – 27 March 2015 – on the first floor of the Merseyside Maritime Museum, to mark the centenary of the sinking of the Lusitania, on 7 May 2015. As well as the story of the Lusitania, the displays consider the role of Liverpool's liners in the First World War.

Posted by Cllr. Tony Robertson on Sefton Focus » Sefton Focus | Mute

The WOODLANDS and YOU initiative, known as WaY, is one mechanism by which the Welsh Government can support community woodland groups, and yet both the promotion of this initiative by NRW and the take-up of opportunities have been limited. I would urge the Minister to consider the Welsh Government's role in supporting community woodland groups so that they can use and contribute to the management of the Welsh Government Woodland Estate." Llais Y Goedwig, the grassroots association representing woodland groups across Wales, estimates that there have been only 13 agreements granted since WaY began with a further 6 in negotiation. ...

Posted by William Powell AM on Freedom Central | Mute

 

Posted by LD Neath on Aberavon & Neath Liberal Democrats | Mute
Fri 27th
00:51

Envelope stuffing

Hooray! Over 3000 letters stuffed into envelopes recently and last night they were all bundled together in their delivery patches. They are all for my ward and delivery will take place in the next day or so. We are writing to a variety of people so the different letters had to be integrated together.

Posted by jonathanwallace on Jonathan Wallace | Mute
Fri 27th
00:31

Visiting Dunston Staiths

On Tuesday, there was a ceremony to mark the opening of the Dunston Staiths after the completion of restoration work. I missed the speeches as I had to be at another meeting, but when I arrived, I managed to snap a few pictures, some of which I have included here. The Staiths are the biggest wooden structure in Europe though, sadly, it was damaged a few years ago by arsonists. Nevertheless,

Posted by jonathanwallace on Jonathan Wallace | Mute

One thing I do occasionally, but rarely write about, is attend package shows of old 60s pop stars. These shows have a bad reputation, and not without reason, but at the same time they do provide a service. Very occasionally you'll get someone on there who could hold down a full show by themselves — [...]

Posted by Andrew Hickey on Sci-Ence! Justice Leak! | Mute

Gateshead Labour Councillor John Eagle is a regular reader of this blog. Hardly a meeting goes by with his making a reference to it. He has supported some rather distasteful views in the past, backing a Facebook site that advocated the violent murder of Margaret Thatcher. I've put the whole of his speech that he made at last month's budget meeting onto YouTube. In it he employed a rather vile

Posted by jonathanwallace on Jonathan Wallace | Mute