Loyalty and liberalism

I found myself in a situation where every time I criticise liberal democrats Im being blamed for not being loyal to my party. Since when did liberals swallow everything that comes out of government? The idea that the government is not always right and that individuals have soverignty over themselves and their minds is core to liberalism. Since the election a lot of people seemed to have suspended their critical faculties.

Take for example a number of people who are perfectly happy to stand up for policies that only a few months ago they were strenuously denouncing. Take for example those who BELIEVE that cuts will be fair and progressive and absolutely best thing to do at the moment when just few months ago we said that cuts this deep and at this time will ruin the economy.

The first cuts were announced in local government falling mainly on housing and regeneration. How is it progressive and fair http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-11400220 That’s rubbish. Housing and regeneration are crucial to economic recovery and inequality. I know Clegg and Danny Alexander said that they changed their mind because of economic changes not political circumstances.. Im no economist but I just dont believe that and I dont see why I should defend it.

Don’t tell me now that Im playing into Labour’s game. This is our game from just few months ago and for that matter Barack Obama’s game as well.  This is a game of ‘fairness’ and debate.

Don’t tell me that Im not loyal to my party. I am just loyal to what we said for several years.. Why do I have to praise everything that comes out of government. That’s just not liberal.

I care about social justice as many liberals have always done. Is there still room for us in the party?


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5 Responses to “Loyalty and liberalism”

  1. Andrew Says:

    Just to clarify I never said you wern’t being loyal etc. I guess I’m just willing to give the coalition the benefit of the doubt. I think you’re perfectly in your rights to criticise, any other position would be illiberal.

    I do share your misgivings about the cuts, but like I said I would like to see how it all pans out first. There was a great deal of waste under the last government. For example, the usage of fully trained police officers as admin staff when normal people could have done the same job for cheaper. These kind of things were designed to make the government look good ‘more police on our streets’ or ‘more investment in public services’ (often with little actual return) but can be cut without really affecting things.

    The Liberal Party does still care about social justice, the conference made this perfectly clear. But in a coalition government our leaders are constrained by the British constitution (disagreement being regarded as a resignation issue) We’ve just gotta hope they can help protect those areas which are vital, whilst trimming off from those which are not.

    Just remember that a cut does not automatically translate into ‘getting worse’, and that our government has to rid ourselves of this unsustainable budget deficit.

  2. Marie Chelle Says:

    Thank you very much my friend, you are very kind in sharing this useful information with? others…. he details were such a blessing, thanks.

  3. JohnM Says:

    I think we are a predominantly Social Liberal party but are guilty in the past of maybe being too social democratic – which isn’t surprising considering the Alliance and merger. I do hope the coalition works out and lasts the full 5 years and accept that means compromise but I’ll be damned if I will be uncritical of things which make the lot of the poor, vulnerable and struggling worse; not better. The Social Liberal Forum really needs to foster innovation to overcome divisive policies but in some ways it’s losing leadership to the likes of ResPublica’s big society evolution.

  4. Joe Otten Says:

    The cuts are going to stink and it isn’t disloyal to say so.

    But no government could have prevented them – no government has a pot of magic money that the others don’t.

    Share the blame however you like between Labour and the bankers (I go for about 50 50), and condemn them for the cuts.

    Questions of timing and speed are technical economic judgements not a reflection of anyone’s values. Cut too late and you have to cut harder because there will be a much bigger interest bill sucking up revenues.

    Our position was nuanced before the election, although this was not always reported. Cable: “More will almost certainly be necessary” IIRC.

  5. weight Says:

    yeah my dad will like this

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