Lib Dem conference gets bumped down the new agenda
The predicament of the Lib Dems is summed up by the media coverage, or lack thereof, of their conference. Looking at the papers today, the Lib Dem conference seems to be about, at best, the fourth item on the news agenda. The worrying thing for the Lib Dems is that this isn’t likely to change as the week goes on. It is hard to see Northern Rock shifting from the front pages and if it does there is bound to be another twist in the McCann saga to capture public attention.
Lib Dems Boo Farage
Nigel Farage today addressed Lib Dem delegates at a fringe meeting where they debated Menzies Campbell's surprise decision to call for a referendum on
Lib Dems brand
If you ever needed just the smallest bit of evidence that the Liberal Democrats are not really very serious then you can guarantee that the discussions and motions at their conference will provide it to you. Take for example yesterday where they passed a motion calling for schools to develop policies to tackle bullying. Sounds perfectly reasonable I know, but at its core is the assumption that school's don't have bullying policies already, which obviously nonsense.
Right on the money
Lib Dems 07: The party's willingness to discuss the radical idea of land value taxation sets it apart from the competition.
Will the Lib Dems finally get serious about taxation this morning?
Mark Braund is remarkably generous about the Lib Dems on Comment is Free this morning, saying that “what makes the Lib Dem position on tax most interesting is their apparent willingness to discuss the far more radical idea of land value taxation (LVT).” The truth is, this debate will be happening in the face of the Policy Committee and many members of the Party’s front bench. Last year’s Tax Commission report promised jam tomorrow, promising to revisit this issue. This year’s “Reducing the Burden” report makes almost no reference.
Ming and nothingness
Lib Dems 07: Sir Menzies Campbell's rudderless performance today encapsulated the Lib Dems' larger existential crisis: what are they for?
Clegg tackles immigrant amnesty critics
As I type, Nick Clegg has just finished an introduction to the party conference motion on immigration. He’s billing it as a departure from a government approach that has mixed “tub-thumping populism” with incompetence and promises “a much more rational, competent and fair response to this vexed issue”. But there are some seperate votes coming up from delegates who challenge a few of the policy motion’s points.
Hidden in plain sight
So, José Manuel Barroso, president of the EU commission, tells us – via the Lib-Dem conference yesterday – that "