Sun 16th

Sunday Reading

Current Watchmen, by Alan Moore and Dave Gibbons (a chapter a month) A Suitable Boy, by Vikram Seth The Habit of Loving by Doris Lessing Too Like the Lightning, by Ada Palmer Words are My Matter, by Ursula K. Le Guin Last books finished Europe in Winter, by Dave Hutchinson The Gods of the Underworld, by Stephen Cole The View from the Cheap Seats, by Neil Gaiman Ninefox Gambit, by Yoon Ha Lee Next books The Parrot's Theorem, by Denis Guedj Lavondyss, by Robert Holdstock Argonautica, by Valerius Flaccus

The Gorton by-election is now into its final few weeks (the fourth of May is the election date), and so I should have more writing time again shortly, and I hope to go back to this blog being daily. However, ... Continue reading →

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

Welcome to the Golden Dozen, and our 476th weekly round-up from the Lib Dem blogosphere ... Featuring the five most popular stories beyond Lib Dem Voice according to click-throughs from the Aggregator together with a hand-picked seven you might otherwise have missed. This week's covers the two weeks from 2 April as we had our Easter holidays last week. Or at least, I couldn't drag myself off the beach in time to do it. 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 ...

Posted by Caron Lindsay on Liberal Democrat Voice

There's a real buzz about the Lib Dem campaign in Manchester Gorton. The Labour vote is soft in the way it was in the past in places such as Brent East just three weeks out from polling day.

Posted by Mark Pack on Mark Pack

I am a huge fan of the live-action remake of Beauty and the Beast. The feminism is portrayed excellently by Emma Watson is an essential message that so many of us need to hear. That woman can make their own choices and will not be forced into it by men. Also that song, Evermore is my new obsession. However, the message I want to talk about permeates the film. Throughout the film, from beginning to end, we see a quiet battle between shallow beauty and physical strength and learning and education. One side is seen through the characters of Gaston ...

Posted by Matthew Metcalf on The Mec Journal

As the local elections approach, the Liberal Democrats and the recent rise in their fortunes are gaining more coverage. The latest example is a Guardian article by Steven Morris which talks of "what increasingly seems to be a strong revival in the party's fortunes in Cornwall". He writes: The Lib Dems have won a succession of council byelections in Cornwall and are now once again the biggest group on the council with 43 members, governing in coalition with the independents. Lib Dem loyalists are buoyed both by the national party's resurgence and by a report in the New Statesman claiming ...

Posted by Jonathan Calder on Liberal England

Alexander Street isn't there any more. A little googling shows it once had a pub and a chapel, but today it has been completely cleared for redevelopment.That's what I wrote when I discovered this corner of Leicester, which is hidden behind the city's old Central railway station. The Leicester Mercury reports the redevelopment that is planned there: City council officials have received an application to build 322 apartments in Bath Lane near to the recently restored Friar's Mill office development. Developers Goldcharm are behind the plan which would see two blocks of flats erected - one 11 storeys high at ...

Posted by Jonathan Calder on Liberal England

The Guardian has the story on its web site – see link above Well despite Teresa May's happy clapping things are not going at all well and it now seems almost certain that the UK will be in a far worse trading, business and economic situation than we are under the present conditions. Nice going Brexiters it really is Brexit at any cost!" And with Labour meekly in step with this appalling right wing government of ours the prospects for the UK are looking grim indeed. Time we all started to buy hand carts as we are surely going ...

Posted by Cllr. Tony Robertson on Sefton Focus

Embed from Getty Images Writing about Julian Critchley after visiting his grave at Wistanstow, I quoted an interview he gave to Naim Attallah: I had two heroes in politics: Macmillan and Roy Jenkins. Macmillan, because he controlled to a very great extent Britain's decline in power and was responsible for our adjustment in straitened circumstances - something he managed despite a party of fools. My admiration for Roy Jenkins was based on the fact that as a young Labour MP he would advocate the cause of Europe in cross-party meetings, and he advocated brilliantly.Leaving Roy to one side, it strikes ...

Posted by Jonathan Calder on Liberal England

What's this to do with? Well the area, popularly known as Manor Drive, is presently experiencing a high volume of development. In recent times, due to shortages in school places locally, the Tories at the Town, announced they'd be scrapping previously agreed affordable housing, in order to agree to build a new primary and secondary school, [...]

Posted by Cllr Darren Fower on Cllr Darren Fower

Easter means many things to people. For Liberal Democrat campaigns staff, it often means long hours working in the run-up to an election. From the hypnotic rhythm of the Risograph to the chatter of activists who need occupying with leaflets, canvass sheets and letters to stuff, there is a Campaign Beast to be fed and it's the organiser who cooks up the menu. Now, if you are a candidate or a volunteer, you have some element of choice about if and when you hit the streets at this holiday time of year. If you are a member of staff, you ...

Posted by Caron Lindsay on Liberal Democrat Voice

David Laws, our former Schools Minister now heading up the Education Policy Institute (which used to be the CentreForum think tank) has been writing for the Observer. He's driven a coach and horses through the Government's case for grammar schools, which he says even fails to convince Education Secretary Justine Greening. It is one of the worst kept secrets in Westminster that education secretary Justine Greening is not the biggest supporter of the policy that is now the social mobility "flagship" of Theresa May's government - expanding the number of grammar schools. Greening must be aware of the clear UK ...

Posted by NewsHound on Liberal Democrat Voice
Sun 16th

Brexit on the doorstep

One of the salutary experiences of the last few months has been door-knocking in several areas which Liberal Democrats have not worked for a while and where there is significant support for Brexit. Responses have been varying. Alongside those promising to vote Lib Dem there have been angry responses — people who see the Lib Dem clipboard and slam the door and even someone who rushed out of their house to shout at me for putting a Lib Dem leaflet through their letterbox. This leaves me wondering about the antipathy. A slammed door says that someone is angry, but not ...

Posted by Mark Argent on Liberal Democrat Voice

This 1990 song is so familiar that I was surprised to read this on Wikipedia: Although it was the Sundays' biggest hit internationally, topping the U.S. Modern Rock Tracks chart for one week, the track was never released as a single in the group's native United Kingdom due to the collapse of the Rough Trade Records label.

Posted by Jonathan Calder on Liberal England
Sun 16th

Letters from Baghdad

A century ago, the shape of the modern Middle East was formed out of the ruins of the Ottoman Empire. The behind-the-scenes power play by Britain and France that resulted in the secret Sykes-Picot Agreement led to the boundaries of their respective zones of influence. But also significant was the work done by the British [...]

Posted by jonathanfryer on Jonathan Fryer

Welcome to my email digest for news from the Liberal Democrats in London, combining official news stories from the region with those from London Assembly member Caroline Pidgeon and the London Lib Dem MPs.

Posted by Mark Pack on Mark Pack

According to the Times today (£) the Liberal Democrats are putting up a serious challenge to Labour in the Manchester Gorton seat. We know that's true, of course, because we are running a pretty vigorous campaign. Key people in the party are making it known that they are clearing their diaries and heading there as much as they possibly can. However, it's good to hear serious journalists taking serious note of what they are being told: With the vote less than three weeks away, party sources said that the Lib Dems were stronger than they had been in the Witney ...

Posted by Caron Lindsay on Liberal Democrat Voice

How do I use Dreamwidth's image hosting? How do I manage my images once they've been uploaded? Another link for LJ > DW refugees gallifrey_times | Obligatory LJ>DW Influx Attempt At Revival Post! Given all this new life at DW, I thought I'd try to revive GT. We'll see how it goes. Gallifrey Times's list of Active Doctor Who Related Communities on Dreamwidth Put Down the Pink Dumbbell A long but useful post about what constitutes good and bad exercise Replace EU flag on driving licences with Cornish cross or Yorkshire rose, ministers suggest *headdesk headdesk headdesk* I bet my ...

Sun 16th

The Corbyn effect

In the interests of full disclosure nobody has actually mentioned Jeremy Corbyn to me directly on the doorsteps since we started canvassing in earnest for the local elections. However that does not appear to be the case elsewhere. As the Guardian reports,on Thursday the Conservatives won a council seat in Middlesbrough, usually considered a Labour stronghold, in which Corbyn's leadership apparently featured strongly. Conservative candidate Jacob Young took the seat of Coulby Newham, with 38% of the vote, up 8.3% since 2015, while Labour saw its share fall by 8.2%, to 35.5%. The paper reports that Tom Blenkinsop, the MP ...

Posted by Peter Black on Peter Black

I know some of my readers will have been kept up nights of late worrying about the real problem of our age: what do we replace the EU flag with on UK driving licences once Brexit is complete? Of course, I could churlishly chime in here that we could just redesign the licences any way we like and replace the EU stars with nothing at all, or even, hey, just add the Union flag. But some Tory MPs have other ideas, such as adding regional flags and insignias instead. Scott Mann, a Cornish MP who is talking this idea up, ...

Posted by Nick on

When I've heard strong disagreements about Brexit, whether the coalition was a good idea or not, or who should be welcome in the party, I've often thought of this video from Christians in Politics. It features our very own Sarah Dickson, Director of the Liberal Democrat Christian Forum. It has a simple message. The importance of disagreeing well. It's an important message, not just for Christians or just for Easter. And it's important for everyone involved in politics. If we want to change the country in a democracy, we need to change minds. And you don't change minds by insulting ...

Posted by George Kendall on Liberal Democrat Voice

Making telephone calls - whether it's to voters to ask who they support, to supporters to remind them to vote or to members to invite them to social events - is an important part of any local party's campaign activity.

Posted by Mark Pack on Mark Pack

The clock on St Helen's Church – Sefton Village The BBC has the story on its web site – see link above Being a railway enthusiast I have always realised how important it was to have a common time across the country but this article is also really interesting in a broader time sense and it's well worth a read. With thanks to Keith for spotting it.

Posted by Cllr. Tony Robertson on Sefton Focus

Here is Tim Farron's Easter Message There was quite a fuss the other week when the National Trust was condemned for taking references to 'Easter' out of its publicity for a chocolate egg hunt. This led to angry responses from some in the church and from politicians, including the Prime Minster. It turned out that the National Trust had done no such thing and that all those who had got so cross had to wipe the chocolate egg off their faces. It was a reminder that we shouldn't be so quick to jump to conclusions and condemn. The thing is, ...

Posted by The Voice on Liberal Democrat Voice

DUNDEE CITY COUNCIL - ROAD REPORT FOR THE WEST END REPORT FOR WEEK COMMENCING MONDAY 17 APRIL 2017 Riverside Esplanade/Riverside Drive (Tay Road Bridge off ramp to 75m along Riverside Drive) - westbound nearside lane closure for 31 weeks to facilitate V&A construction works. SSE Glenagnes Cable Renewal - Lochee Road lane restrictions and closures on Blinshall Street, Fleuchar Street and Scott Street for 4 months. Blackness Road/Glamis Road - temporary traffic lights for one week for gas main renewal. Forthcoming Roadworks Riverside Approach (Roseangle/Magdalen Yard Road to Riverside Drive) - closed from Tuesday 2 May for 2 weeks for ...

Sun 16th

Cyclists Green Wave

In Copenhagen they have timed coordinated traffic lights to give cyclists a green flow at a sensible cycling speed along main roads. It gets rid of stop start for cyclists - helps reduce cyclist/vehicle conflicts and generally makes cycling more attractive. It also standardises cycle speed. From a vehicle drivers perspective it's ideal as it largely keeps cyclists out of the way from them. Fewer stationary cyclists. How could we get this trialled ideally in Southwark? The Walworth Road from Camberwell to Waterloo would be a great place to start.

Posted by James Barber on James Barber

This UKIP Guy Is Selling "Bleach" As A Health Supplement Political poison. (tags: ukpolitics wankers ) Doctor Who: series 36, episode one - The Pilot @guardian review. (tags: doctorwho ) Boris Johnson makes pig's ear of Syria response Lord Hannay on the state of UK diplomacy. (tags: ukpolitics brexit eu syria ) Coercion, cash and culture: how to resolve conflicts My own views on peacebuilding. (tags: mymedia peace war )