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Author Topic: opinion of the uk lib dems?  (Read 1100 times)
WalterMitty
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« on: April 30, 2007, 11:14:52 am »
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seems like a great party!

other than their misguided views on iraq
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« Reply #1 on: April 30, 2007, 01:17:16 pm »
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A very strange party that could do with splitting into at least three seperate parties (o/c the electoral system means that won't happen or even be considered).

But in general a fairly inoffensive, if mildly cranky, middle-of-the-road liberal party with an ability to say different things to different people and get away with it. There are exceptions to that (usually nasty ones as well), and lot's of them. Personally I've always found their voters to be nicer than their members (o/c you can say that of all parties, but it's especially true with them).
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WalterMitty
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« Reply #2 on: April 30, 2007, 01:20:33 pm »
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al, im curious, what is your opinion of william ewart gladstone?
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« Reply #3 on: April 30, 2007, 02:09:16 pm »
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al, im curious, what is your opinion of william ewart gladstone?

I'm not a fan, obviously, but I don't hate him (unlike most 19th century P.M's).
An interesting individual though; someone from his class who became less conservative the older he got.
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« Reply #4 on: April 30, 2007, 06:39:06 pm »
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An odd conglomeration of a variety of disparate factions brought together by the need to create a single party apparatus for all those who do not belong to the two main parties in order to have some sort of representation in a FPTP electoral system. Not altogether horrible, some of their ideas are alright, but they are basically an artificial creation that would be rendered obsolete by any type of proportional representation.
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« Reply #5 on: May 01, 2007, 02:42:23 am »
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Due to the third way policies of Tony Blair (and his support of the war in Iraq), my support in the UK is with the Lib Dems. Of course, I would be more inclined to vote for the candidate rather than the party if I were dropped into the UK right now.
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« Reply #6 on: May 01, 2007, 03:26:38 am »

I have to concur with Al; their membership are some of the most irritating i've encountered as they sycophantically 'big' up their chances (remember the 'we are the real opposition' stuff)

I can't support the party as it stands bar the Orange Book lot.
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« Reply #7 on: May 01, 2007, 09:26:06 am »
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Due to the third way policies of Tony Blair (and his support of the war in Iraq), my support in the UK is with the Lib Dems.

If your objection to Blair and the Labour Party as a whole is third way type policies, supporting the LibDems in protest is... er... an... interesting... decision. Unless you think the third way isn't centre-mushy-ness enough, that is Wink
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« Reply #8 on: May 01, 2007, 01:24:04 pm »
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As far as ideology is concerned, I have yet to find a political party worldwide that is closer to my views than the Liberal Democrats. That should give you some idea of my opinion of them Wink
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« Reply #9 on: May 01, 2007, 02:01:27 pm »
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As far as ideology is concerned, I have yet to find a political party worldwide that is closer to my views than the Liberal Democrats.
You don't have one either? Wink
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« Reply #10 on: May 01, 2007, 03:10:15 pm »
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As far as ideology is concerned, I have yet to find a political party worldwide that is closer to my views than the Liberal Democrats.
You don't have one either? Wink

Hush. The Lib Dems do have a very concrete set of policies. People just like to make fun of them because they aren't right-wing and aren't really left-wing either.
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« Reply #11 on: May 02, 2007, 12:56:48 am »
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Annoying Crap Sandwich
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« Reply #12 on: May 02, 2007, 01:41:32 am »
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Due to the third way policies of Tony Blair (and his support of the war in Iraq), my support in the UK is with the Lib Dems.

If your objection to Blair and the Labour Party as a whole is third way type policies, supporting the LibDems in protest is... er... an... interesting... decision. Unless you think the third way isn't centre-mushy-ness enough, that is Wink

Well, I know Al. But if it's a choice between economically right of centre parties, then I will pick the more socially progressive of the two.  However, I don't really want to be stuck with the LibDems for obvious reasons.  Britain lacks a party like the NDP for which I fall neatly inline with (well, I disagree with many NDP policies, but if you average my beliefs, I fall pretty close to the NDP).  Now I know you're going to hate me for saying this, but RESPECT might be a good fit for me! Who cares if Galloway is a crazy nut? Wink
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« Reply #13 on: May 02, 2007, 08:23:59 am »
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I thought the Lib Dems were like the Labour Party for rich people (Poor & Middle Class vote Labour; rich people who aren't Tories or hate them vote Lib Dem). They are further right than Labour and the only reason they oppose the Iraq War is b/c Tony Blair supported it, so they filled a political vacuum.

I was very disappointed in the Lib Dems 5/5/05 performance. They seemed to increase their vote in every district, yet only gained like 10 seats or something. The Tories won more seats than they should of, since Michael Howard was less popular than Charles Kennedy (I think).
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« Reply #14 on: May 02, 2007, 09:03:57 am »
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Due to the third way policies of Tony Blair (and his support of the war in Iraq), my support in the UK is with the Lib Dems.

If your objection to Blair and the Labour Party as a whole is third way type policies, supporting the LibDems in protest is... er... an... interesting... decision. Unless you think the third way isn't centre-mushy-ness enough, that is Wink

Well, I know Al. But if it's a choice between economically right of centre parties, then I will pick the more socially progressive of the two.  However, I don't really want to be stuck with the LibDems for obvious reasons.  Britain lacks a party like the NDP for which I fall neatly inline with (well, I disagree with many NDP policies, but if you average my beliefs, I fall pretty close to the NDP).  Now I know you're going to hate me for saying this, but RESPECT might be a good fit for me! Who cares if Galloway is a crazy nut? Wink

Respect is basically an Islamist party these days, so I'm not sure you'd like it so much.

I thought the Lib Dems were like the Labour Party for rich people (Poor & Middle Class vote Labour; rich people who aren't Tories or hate them vote Lib Dem). They are further right than Labour and the only reason they oppose the Iraq War is b/c Tony Blair supported it, so they filled a political vacuum.

This is extremely simplistic in its understanding; the difference is actually more in age rather than class. Younger voters vote Lib Dem (I believe Lib Dems won the 18-25 demographic in 2005) while older voters vote Labour. Of course, even this is off since the elderly of Cornwall and Devon are the most consistently Lib Dem in the country.

If you consider Labour to be left-wing, then, yes, I suppose the Lib Dems are to their right. There are certainly some Labour politicians who are to the left of all Lib Dem politicians. However, realistically, the current situation is Lib Dems: centre-left, Labour: centre, Tories: centre-right to right-wing. The Lib Dems are the only party that opposes the increased cost of college education, the only party that favors replacing property tax ("council tax") with scaled income tax, the only party that opposes closings of National Health Service hospitals consistently (the Tories oppose it when the hospital is in on of their constituencies), etc.

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I was very disappointed in the Lib Dems 5/5/05 performance. They seemed to increase their vote in every district, yet only gained like 10 seats or something. The Tories won more seats than they should of, since Michael Howard was less popular than Charles Kennedy (I think).

Realistically, the Lib Dems' 2005 performance was stellar. The Lib Dems themselves placed an extremely high bar for themselves (100 seats, I believe) and then tried to reach it. Much of their increased vote came in Labour strongholds, where swings of 10-20% Labour to Lib Dem were typical across urban Britain, yet these were mostly seats with huge Labour majorities that the Lib Dems only very rarely overturned.

Yes, Michael Howard was unpopular, but to expect the Lib Dems to outdistance the Conservatives, an established party and the only party viewed by everyone as right-wing and socially conservative is ridiculous. The voters of, I don't know, the Cotswolds won't change their vote just because their leader is lackluster.
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merseysider
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« Reply #15 on: May 02, 2007, 09:05:32 am »
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A bunch of slimy, grubby, opportunistic liars. Living in a city which (for now) is LibDem controlled I know this from personal experience.
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« Reply #16 on: May 02, 2007, 09:43:22 am »
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Though I'm probably not too far from them on the issues I don't like middle-class mushy-liberal parties too much.
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« Reply #17 on: May 02, 2007, 11:01:36 am »
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Respect is basically an Islamist party these days, so I'm not sure you'd like it so much.

In Birmingham, yes. But in London relations between the Bangladeshis and the (mostly) Trot leadership has soured a great deal; a Respect counciller on Tower Hamlets LBC actually defected to Labour a few days ago (and don't be surprised if more follow).
But I can't see Earl as a Trot either so...

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the difference is actually more in age rather than class.

Nope. This is Britain. (Almost) all is Class.

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Younger voters vote Lib Dem (I believe Lib Dems won the 18-25 demographic in 2005) while older voters vote Labour.

Where on earth did you read that? While I'm sceptical of the "exit poll" demographic breakdowns from 2005 (which aren't actually from an exit poll...) Labour "won" younger age groups, while the Tories "won" older ones.
On a personal level (so treat this with a pinch of salt), I've found that very few young working class voters are LibDems, but that plenty of young middle class voters are.

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Of course, even this is off since the elderly of Cornwall and Devon are the most consistently Lib Dem in the country.

Always thought LibDem success in Cornwall was due, in part, to a backlash against all the incomers to the area. One of the Cornish LibDem M.P's is actually a Cornish Nationalist, btw.

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However, realistically, the current situation is Lib Dems: centre-left, Labour: centre, Tories: centre-right to right-wing.

...and objectively social democracy is the moderate wing of fascism...

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The Lib Dems are the only party that opposes the increased cost of college education,

The issue of higher education funding over here is a complicated one and is quite different to in the states (from what I understand the costs over here don't even come close to what students fork out over there).
For what it's worth, there are reasons entirely in keeping with Labour's stated ideology for introducing tuition fees (sadly at the time they weren't really emphasised enough, but that's the Third Way for you...). The initial system was not really very clever, though subsequent modifications have (IMO at least) improved it. It's still not as redistributive as I'd like though; you could easily eliminated fees for students with family incomes under (say) 30,000 with a fairly modest increase in fees for those further up.

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the only party that favors replacing property tax ("council tax") with scaled income tax,

The council tax is also graduated. I'm not a big fan of it (prefered the old rates system myself) and it's certainly in need of reform, but at least it's possible for local authorities to run themselves; a local income tax (or at least the one proposed by the LibDems) wouldn't be.
In pratice the people who would benefit from the LibDem's local taxation policies would be pensioners, while younger people would get further screwed.

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the only party that opposes closings of National Health Service hospitals consistently (the Tories oppose it when the hospital is in on of their constituencies), etc.

Opposition to hospital closures (or downgrading) is an election ploy that has been used by all three major parties for decades... usually in by-elections and often in constituencies in which no hospital is actually under threat!
IMO the only way round this is to make local NHS administration directly accountable to the public (ie; have elected NHS boards or something).

Now on the other hand, the list of reasons for thinking that Labour is the the left of the LibDems is a rather long one, largely centered around the predictable issues of government spending, social policy, labour legislation and so on.
But this debate is a strange one; I don't see why so many LibDem supporters on teh interwebs like to see their party as being to the left of Labour when they clearly aren't... and when they are equally clearly a much more liberal party than Labour. It's probably due to the increasing tendency of people to confuse liberalism with being left-wing and vice versa.

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Much of their increased vote came in Labour strongholds, where swings of 10-20% Labour to Lib Dem were typical across urban Britain, yet these were mostly seats with huge Labour majorities that the Lib Dems only very rarely overturned.

More complicated than that. The constituencies in which they did the best tended to be full or (or had large minorities of) affluent, well educated small "l" liberals. There was an interesting group of urban constituencies in which you saw a Labour vote basically the same in raw terms as in '01, but with a large rise in the LibDem vote, apparently from said liberal types who didn't vote in 2001 (Liverpool Riverside, Manchester Gorton and so on). An interesting example of the fact that class politics in Britain can be played outside of Lab/Con contests.
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