This blog is a political blog from a left-of-centre perspective. This is not specifically a party political blog, but does have a Lib Dem orientation. Constructive enagement with radical liberals, social democrats / democratic socialists and greens is particularly welcomed.

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Illiberal 'Liberator' ?

The commentary piece is the latest issue of ' Liberator' magazine pulls no punches ! It suggests that those around the Liberal Vision project and those who share the classical liberal outlook should basically put up or shut up and, when they've lost the argument, they should clear off ! Not the most liberal stance one might take !

I am strongly opposed to LV and, from what I can understand from the myriad explanations of it, libertarianism. I am very reluctant to push out those I disagree with. Certainly I was shocked by the tone of the 'Liberator' article. Of course, I want social liberalism to predominate as a guiding philosophy for the Lib Dems over classical liberalism or libertarianism, but is arrogant to believe that I can't ever engage with and be influenced by those holding such views.

That said, I DO feel the likes of Gavin Webb and others have far more in common with the Libertarian Party UK, but this tiny forum offers no prospect of office or influence. I DO feel it is disingenuous to belong to a party when another seems to be philosophically more in tune with one's beliefs, but that is for others to decide. Forcing people out is definitely not the answer.

All things considered a shoddy opinion piece from 'Liberator' !


Clegg - a Social Democrat ?

Nick Clegg it is suggested on Jock Coates' blog is guilty of slandering libertarians. Certainly his response to a question about the differences between liberalism and libertarianism is less than enlightening. However, Andrew Withers of the LPUK loftily dismisses Nick as a social democrat. As if !

This seems the preferred insult of libertarian minded Lib Dems. In Tristan Mills' eyes I'm a social democrat. Charlotte Gore has implied that I feel that the Lib Dems aren't 'socialist' enough. Let's be clear, whilst the dominant philosophy that guides the Lib Dems is liberalism, the party was formed through amalgamation with a social democratic party, the SDP. It is not a 'pure' Liberal party. It certainly isn't a classical liberal, let alone libertarian, party. Why not accept this ? Is it not politically more honest to form or join a party that fits the latter philosophical bases, if that's what you believe ? Why be in a party whose modern day outlook and direction is not one you share ? Why bang your head continually against a political brick wall ? sometimes I have a sore head politically, but the other political brands would leave me with headaches too, so I carry on within the Lib Dem fold for now, at least.

It comes as a surprise to me that I allegedly have so much in common with Clegg, whom I not the greatest fan of by any means. How is Clegg not a liberal ?

Finally, surely the reason 'thickies' like me fail to understand libertarianism in any accessible way is because it seems to meen widely differing things to differing people within the libertarian family. Anyone care to explain in a digestable form what they feel libertarianisn is - and isn't. Seriously I am prepared to engage with this !