Monday, July 25, 2011

My Liberator article on where now for the Scottish Liberal Democrats

I wrote an article for the last Liberator on the future for the Scottish Liberal Democrats in the wake of a bruising election result.

The new edition is now out so the old one is available online here. It'sprobably very wrong and utterly egotistical that the only time I've drawn your attention to the publication that's in many ways the Party's conscience is when I've written in it, but it is worth reading. I let my subscription lapse for a couple of years and regretted it. I've now got it up and running again and can definitely recommend it.

Alongside my article, there's a critique of the ill-fated Yes 2 AV campaign from James Graham, Peter Black explaining how the Welsh remained relatively intact in the elections, Dinti Batstone urging the appointment of more women to the Lords and a particularly fascinating article by Nigel Scott, a Haringey Liberal Democrat Councillor on the campaign to free Amanda Knox and Raffaele Sollecito,convicted in Italy of the murder of student Meredith Kercher. He outlines the flaws in the Italian judicial system.

I have to say that I share his concerns. Many years ago now, my sister-in-law and her boyfriend ended up in jail in Italy for a short period, but it took literally years to clear their names and cost a fortune. The Italian judicial system is certainly flawed and difficult to negotiate.

Anyway, go and have a read of this edition and let me know what you think of any of the articles.

1 comment:

Douglas McLellan said...

Its an interesting piece Caron and makes a lot of key points. I was convinced we would get a tanking and before the polls closed I thought we would get only 5 (blog and tweets can confirm this!).

Although it is still early I think we are missing a trick. We are the Scottish Liberal Democrats but we are struggling to offer a vision of Scotland that comes close to the SNPs vision of Scotland (however right/wrong or even achievable their vision is). I think that our focus on government scrutiny & accountability will come across and empty and petty. In many respects we just have to let the SNP do their thing and only pick them up on mistakes and issues of might concern. Instead we should concentrate on portraying ourselves as Scottish with a vision for Scotland.

During the SNPs 1st term (and even now) there has been a dramatic decline in trust and approval in Westminster from structural problems like MP expenses through to trust issues like tuition fees. Whilst I am 100% behind the coalition and proud of many of its achievements by backing fees in the way that we did blew our trust ratings out of the water. Because of these issues, and no matter what the reasons behind them, I really do think the people of Scotland are no longer tied to the idea of Britain as they used to be.

It is a common saying that elections are not won, they are lost. I think that a referendum could go the same way.

If the SNP can make a reasonable economic argument to bolster the emotional appeal of an Independent Scotland that those who favour the union (personally I am ambivalent) are in for a fright.


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