Two weeks ahead of the Budget, tomorrow Vince gets his retaliation in first. Of course, as a former business secretary and the man who predicted the financial crash, he has a whole load of economic credibility. In comparison, when the Chancellor delivers his speech on 22 November, he's going to look pretty amateurish compared to Vince. He will outline the major challenges facing Phillip Hammond in light of the expected downgrades in Britain's projected future growth, the threat posed by Brexit to any attempt to fix our economy, and what needs to be done in the budget to begin to ...

Posted by Caron Lindsay on Liberal Democrat Voice

A good slideshow showing some Leicester industrial history that now lies derelict and vulnerable to arsonists.

Posted by Jonathan Calder on Liberal England
Tue 7th

Six of the Best 740

"The solution in Catalonia seems obvious to me: both sides should engage in negotiations without preconditions and consider amendments to the Spanish constitution as proposed by the Socialist Party, which is supporting Rajoy against Catalan secession." Jonathan Powell on how to solve the current crisis in Spain. Peter Franklin puts forward some ideas you might not expect to find on Conservative Home: "The Chancellor should announce a comprehensive review of land taxation. Rents extracted from the productive economy by property speculators and land monopolists are a drag on growth not a contributor to it. They should be taxed accordingly." Politicians ...

Posted by Jonathan Calder on Liberal England

Embed from Getty Images Yesterday the Richmond & Twickenham Times quoted Sarah Olney's explanation of her resignation as Vince Cable's chief of staff after only eight weeks: "Commuting from the constituency to Westminster every morning, and talking to so many local people on that daily journey, convinced me there remains much to do in the constituency. Having lost by just 45 votes at the last election, I believe I can win the seat back and I am determined to fight for local people against a Conservative Brexit and Heathrow expansion. "I have only done the job for a short period ...

Posted by Jonathan Calder on Liberal England

The housing association conglomerate Connexus has submitted a new application for five bungalows on the green space between Sidney Road and Charlton Rise. A previous application for five bungalows on this site was rejected by a majority at a South Planning Committee meeting a couple of months ago. The plans are different in detail but not in principle. The temporary tree protection orders on the trees on the green have expired. That means the remaining Norway Maple and other trees can be felled at will. This site has an unhappy history. The first plans for development were drawn up by ...

Posted by andybodders on Andy Boddington

In an idle moment this evening I was browsing through the forgotten petitions on the last few pages of the parliamentary site. In among all of the authoritarian, dangerous, nationalist and sundry other nonsense (for example, "Make people pass a politics test before they can vote", "Ban cyclists from the road and allow them on the pavement" and "Make Northumberland ... The post Ask the government to re-open the Dubs scheme appeared first on ten pence piece.

Posted by tim on ten pence piece

Embed from Getty Images Dear Mr Fox/Liberal Democrat Voice As a Cabinet Minister I am astonished that on the Today program you have claimed that we must be careful not to "over-react" about Boris Johnson's comments over Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe. If your wife was stuck in jail on trumped up charges I don't think you would be saying that. Nazanin has already appeared in court since the careless comments of the Foreign Secretary. Comments that are now being used against her. As a consequence she may face another five years in prison. One of the primary duties of the Foreign Secretary ...

Posted by Chris Key on Liberal Democrat Voice

Third poem in the book (actually Catullus 5): My Lesbia, let us live and love And not care tuppence for old men Who sermonise and disapprove. Suns when they sink can rise again, But we, when our brief light has shone, Must sleep the long night on and on. Kiss me: a thousand kisses, then A hundred more, and now a second Thousand and hundred, and now still Hundreds and thousands more, until The thousand thousands can't be reckoned And we've lost track of the amount And nobody can work us ill With the evil eye by keeping count. Vivamus, ...

Tue 7th

Taking a moment

As if by divine command, the rain stopped. Over the distant horizon, the clouds parted. And the day's last few rays of sunshine wove their tender magic. Continue reading →

Posted by Simon Perks on Simon Perks

There is a frequent claim on these pages and wider commentary: as a party of the centre or centre-left, with Labour and the Tories pulling away from the centre, the Lib Dems should be polling a good deal better than 5-7%. This failure to transform an advantageous position into wider support is ascribed to a lack of vision, distinctiveness, or messaging etc. I consider this analysis is flawed, and that the 'solutions' that follow are unlikely to improve our situation. My contention is as the article title states - we are not a party of the 'centre'. Centre of what? ...

Posted by MIchael Atkins on Liberal Democrat Voice

I've been asked by a couple of people about the toolchain I use when writing, because it's not the standard "Microsoft Word and nothing else, or maybe Scrivener if you're a Mac user" toolchain that every other writer, more or ... Continue reading →

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

It is widely recognised that the UK has a mid-level skills gap, which means employers can struggle to recruit for medium skilled occupations. At the same time, it can be hard for established workers (those over 25) to retrain or upskill if they aren't supported by their employer or can't self-fund. In my day job at University College London working on a cross-disciplinary research programme addressing issues of justice and equality, I commissioned a researcher to prepare a report investigating this topic. Specifically, the report looks at the non-university skills gap many employers face and the routes to undertaking technical ...

Posted by Rebecca Taylor on Liberal Democrat Voice
Tue 7th

Carl Sargeant dies

As a minister, Carl Sargeant had been a vocal advocate for women's rights (Photo: Inside Housing) In the last few minutes it has been reported that Carl Sargeant, the Welsh Assembly Member, has died at the age of 49. While this alone is sad news, what is both shocking and disturbing is that it has been widely reported that Sargeant has taken his own life. Sargeant was, until last Friday, the Cabinet Secretary for Communities and children in the Welsh government. He was also the Labour AM for Alyn and Deeside. Sargeant has in recent years been a strong advocate ...

Posted by Andrew on A Scottish Liberal

Justa reminder that the Owl Prowl at Wapley Bushes Local Nature Reserve, which had to be postponed last month due to high winds, will take place this Friday 10 November at 7 pm. This Owl Prowl will be led by well-known local expert Ian McGuire. Ian's owl prowls are a night-time walk in woodlands for all the family where you can learn about British owls through his iPad video presentations and through the evening he will be calling wild tawny owls in the hope that one will call back and possibly fly in for everyone to view. Owl prowls are ...

Posted by Paul Hulbert on Focus on Sodbury, Yate and Dodington

A couple of years ago I purchased some Soundpeats QY7 bluetooth headphones. I use them when travelling and other than the battery life and charging find them pretty good. So when Soundpeats asked if I'd like to try their Q16 truely wireless bluetooth headphones I said yes please. They are pretty easy to set up and fit more comfortably than the QY7 with the over ear loop. It comes with three different sizes of ear buds to let you select a shape that best fits. As there is no wire between them they stay in better (although the QY7 were ...

Posted by Ryan Cullen on The Artesea

Another month and another mass shooting in the US where a large part of the population is in denial about the serious problem of guns. The even more depressing point about the Sutherland Springs massacre in Texas is that many, including Trump, are arguing that more guns are needed to protect people against guns. If ever there was a cycle of destruction, this must be it. The US is awash with guns,

Posted by jonathanwallace on Jonathan Wallace

The obvious reason to stand for election is because you want and hope to win. A related common reason is that you want to win and hope that standing this time means you can win on a future occasion. But it also makes sense to stand even if winning isn't on the foreseeable agenda and you are what is often called a 'paper candidate'*. I've written before about the advantages of standing in unwinnable council by-elections. (The brief version: even an unwinnable contest is a chance to practice, to learn, to experiment and to raise the odds of winning somewhere ...

Posted by Mark Pack on Mark Pack
Tue 7th

My tweets

Mon, 12:56: Two good threads for the price of one. Mon, 13:18: RT @lewis_crofts: No catching @JBrokenshire out on being photographed without notes. Mon, 16:05: In defence of Brussels: 'If you actually know it, you probably love it Ixelles. Mon, 17:04: Antar�s, �pisodes 2-6, by Leo Mon, 20:31: RT @juliamacfarlane: A serious blunder by @BorisJohnson that could have dire ramifications for Nazanin Ratcliffe, British mum held in an Ir... Tue, 00:00: RT @jonlis1: Back from meetings in Brussels. There's good news and bad news. First, the bad news. Because it's... extremely bad. 1/ Tue, 10:45: Long ...

Tue 7th

An anniversary

We go on, because we must go on We go on, for that is what we do We go on – that's how the light gets in Famous Blue Raincoat Advertisements

Posted by AL Franklin on Maintain the Advance!

Monday: Parliament is crumbling, and that isn't just a metaphor. We should all be concerned for the physical safety of the thousands of people who have to work in the enormous Westminster folly, built on a swamp, a firetrap with miles of wiring and gas pipes, which is absolutely falling to bits. But we should worry much more about the safety of our democracy. It's the day after Bonfire Night and too many people are saying Guy Fawkes had the right idea. But it's not the PEOPLE who want to be EXPLODED, it's the building that traps them in a ...


Commenting following reports that Theresa May has cancelled this morning's Cabinet meeting, Alistair Carmichael, Liberal Democrat Chief Whip, said: "When the Prime Minister lacks the authority to bring her ministers together for ninety minutes on a Tuesday morning then you have a government that has gone beyond meltdown. "It is time she used whatever clout she has left to get her house in order and fire those Ministers bogged by scandal. "Unfortunately we have a Prime Minister unable and unwilling to take action. This is no way to run a country."

Posted by LD Neath on Aberavon & Neath Liberal Democrats

Man who spent all year mocking 'virtue signallers' pretty keen for you to notice his massive poppy RT @rubberbanddoll: Man who spent all year mocking 'virtue signallers' pretty keen for you to notice his massive poppy Men and journalism - Steve Bloomfield - Medium RT @the2ndsource: "Given the dominance of men at the top of journalistic power structures it's essential men speak up" - @BloomfieldSJ How (in received wisdom) Men Elevate, and Women Ruin, the Foods They Love "Yogurt, a neutral food if ever there were one, went from being feminized to being marketed as protein-rich workout fuel for men. ...

Vince Cable's Chief of Staff, Sarah Olney, has stepped down: Former Richmond Park MP Sarah Olney has stepped down as chief of staff to Lib Dem leader Sir Vince Cable so she can campaign to retake her old seat. Rumours emerged that Ms Olney had resigned, but Sir Vince said this was not the case. He said: "She has moved to a different role, basically working as a consultant to the party and also to me. She's been restricted in what she can do working for me, but this will allow her to campaign in Richmond Park again." After winning ...

Posted by Mark Pack on Mark Pack

For more than a century across the western world, political movements, governments and public policy focused exclusively on states and markets, and ignored civil society – the relationships and activities that constitute our lives in families and communities. Civil society forms the social infrastructure in the 'centre' of society, between the individual and the state, [...] The post Why we need a powerful, radical centre appeared first on Radix.

Posted by Vern Hughes on Opinion - Radix

The Community Engagement Forum will be meeting 7 pm - 9 pm on 16 November at Poole Court, Poole Court Drive, Yate BS37 5PP. This is your chance to talk directly to local Police and Fire and Rescue representatives, and Town/Parish and South Glos Councillors about issues of local concern. There will also be a presentation about the work done by Abbotswood Action Group and the progress made in the Abbotswood area.

Posted by Paul Hulbert on Focus on Sodbury, Yate and Dodington

Whatever happened to honour in politics. Some might say that it was lost in the cacophony of Ministers and politicians rushing to cover their backs and hide their mistakes so as to avoid taking responsibility for their own actions. Lord Carrington took responsibility and resigned as Foreign Secretary following the invasion of the Falkland Islands by Argentinian troops. What a contrast with the present incumbent of that post who has made bumbling an art form in a post where precision, diplomacy and tact are required attributes. Boris Johnson's latest gaffe is all the more serious because of its consequences for ...

Posted by Peter Black on Peter Black

The next West End Police Surgery takes place at the Mitchell Street Centre later today - details below :

The Council for the Protection of Rural England (CPRE) has the story on its web site – see link above I have long thought that here in Sefton Borough we are not addressing local housing needs despite Sefton Council allocating acre after acre of the highest grades of agricultural land for more new housing. My focus has not only been on protecting high grade agricultural land from development (because it grows the food that we eat!) but also, where we do build houses, they really do need to meet local need. Like many folk I see building more 3 ...

Posted by Cllr. Tony Robertson on Sefton Focus