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  • From the Chair
    Article: Mar 25, 2020
    By Keith Melton

    The Times They Are A Changin' [Part 1...]

    The Bob Dylan song from the early 1960s sprang to mind earlier when I was thinking about coronavirus and its consequences, many of which are unprecedented.

    Unprecedented… so, I looked this word up on a word analyser and discovered it was thought to be the 7,753rd most common word in the English language, but I am guessing its position will have changed recently, jumping a few hundred positions lately in the context of the coronavirus pandemic.

  • Page 63 of GLD Challenge magazine 2019-2020 (GLD Challenge Magazine)
    Article: Mar 20, 2020
    By George Miles

    The Free and Open Source software used for GLD Challenge magazine 2019-20 was Scribus (for DTP), LibreOffice (for wordprocessing), Gimp (for editing photos) and Inkscape (for editing line diagrams). ( Kdenlive edits videos, Audacity edits sound. )

    They can all be downloaded free for Macs, Windows and Linux. They are opensource: users can suggest and code improvements. Popular programs like these have many youtube tutorials.

  • Keith Melton (Keith Melton)
    Article: Mar 20, 2020
    By Keith Melton

    The Case for Emergency Universal Basic Income: NOW

    As I started writing this article my intention was to start from the general economic implications of the coronavirus pandemic and work my way towards my conclusion, but it was feeling too slow! So I am just going to dive in and say "NOW is the time to start with a Universal Basic Income (*UBI) and we can work out a more nuanced approach as we learn from experience"

  • facebook
    Article: Mar 18, 2020
    By Keith Melton

    The observant internal election "nerds" amongst you will perhaps recall that, although I did not quite manage to make it onto the Federal Conference Committee in the 2019 Party elections, I was actually "Last Man Standing" in the single transferable vote as the counts progressed!

    I am happy to report that the FCC have reached out to me (prompted, kindly, by Duncan Brack, I gather) because they have decided to set up a subgroup to look at the issues that need to be addressed to make the Federal Conferences more environmentally responsible. The sub-group is chaired by the FCC Vice Chair Cara Williams and in a January email exchange we agreed that I should write a short piece inviting ideas from GLD members about changes that should be considered to progress the greening process. The original piece appeared on our website…

  • From the Chair
    Article: Mar 16, 2020
    By Keith Melton

    From the chair - 2020 vision

    Hello all.

    This is my first article for the GLD website as newly elected Chair of the Green Liberal Democrats. So, my first happy task is to say a big `thank you` to all of you who voted for me. My second task is to say `thank you` to Peter Bruce for a friendly `campaign` and an even bigger `thank you` to him for all the sterling work he has done over a considerable time as Vice Chair, Organisation.

  • facebook
    Article: Mar 15, 2020
    By Kevin Daws and George Miles in GLD Challenge magazine 2019-20

    Reflections on the 2019 General Election

    There is no question that the 2019 General Election was a disaster both for the Liberal Democrats and for this country.

    Where did we go wrong?

    When Jo Swinson was elected our new leader following the skilful leadership of Sir Vince Cable and the fantastic results in the May 2019 local elections and the June European Election, she had a hard act to follow. Any new leader wishes to make their mark and Jo was no exception and she made the decision to move from 'Bollocks to Brexit' to 'Revoke Article 50' and, in my opinion, she wanted to make that move not just to make her mark but because Labour would move their position at their Annual Conference to supporting a Peoples' Vote which would squeeze the LibDem Vote. On this basis many LibDems, like myself, did not speak out and say that this was a mistake but we should have done. Whilst Jo made a mistake we as members also made a mistake by not questioning and challenging her new strategy.

    In my opinion the second mistake that the Party and its leadership made was to oppose moving the date to achieve Zero Carbon date from 2045 to 2040 or earlier. Climate Change and the environment was a major issue for the LibDems but we were marginalised both because other parties were credibly arguing for an earlier Zero Carbon date and also because of the perception that our leader failed to positively promote and explain our policies during Channel 4s Climate Change debate.

    The third mistake was that as a party we appeared to have ditched our targeting strategy and I think this contributed both to the defeat of Tom Brake in Carshalton & Wallington as well as to Jo's own defeat.

    Green & Radical Liberalism


    Since the removal of Charles Kennedy as Liberal Democrat leader most, if not all, of his successors have conveniently forgotten that the LibDems do best when we fight on a radical platform rather than wooing the Tory vote. You only have to look at the election successes under Charles Kennedy's leadership in 2001 and 2005 and it was those same radical policies that contributed to our success in 2010.

    Whoever the next leader of the Liberal Democrats is they need to have the courage to adopt radical policies along with radical and targeted campaigning strategies.

    Kevin Daws


    Liberator magazine has many reviews of the November 2019 General Election campaign and many ideas of how to do better next time, from Tony Greaves and others.


    'YELLOW TORIES' was a hurtful insult to me, a Green Liberal!


    Ed Davey, Don Foster Chris Huhne and other LibDem MPs did great things in the Cameron / Clegg coalition to fight climate change, but, because all ministers had to vote with the coalition whip, the voting record of Jo and our other MPs looked far less green than most of Labour's. They used this in their F*c*book memes.


    Libdem strategists believed Farage when he promised to stand a Brexit Party candidate in every seat,
    but then he didn't.

    George Miles

  • facebook
    Article: Mar 14, 2020
    By Linda Johnson in GLD Challenge magazine 2019-20

    The Proceedings of the 'How to Go Greener Day'

    Organized by Beverley Methodist Circuit Social Responsibility Group

    At Toll Gavel United Church Beverley, HU17 9AA

    Saturday 30th March 2019 10.00am - 4.00pm

    By Lara S H Blythe

    Psalm 24: "The Earth is the Lord's and everything in it"

    Putting the 'How to Go Greener Day' into perspective

  • facebook
    Article: Mar 14, 2020
    By Steve Bolter in GLD Challenge magazine 2019-20

    Calling out Carbon Neutral target dates is pretty Meaningless Gesture Politics.

    Background
    Despite large demonstrations and media coverage, the general public's awareness of the seriousness of climate change had been developing only slowly, limiting public support for serious measures to tackle it.

  • facebook
    Article: Mar 14, 2020
    By Keith Melton + Laura Sykes in GLD Challenge magazine 2019-20

    Green Heroes Campaign

    The General Election was a busy time for all of us, so you may have missed our Green Heroes Campaign on the GLD website?! We have no sure way of telling if it made any difference to votes, but we do know it was noticed (if anyone out there is ready to do a Ph.D. in political activism, there's a research project right there!) If you did not see it at the time visit our website and have a look at how we tried to boost our Green Heroes, from Pippa Heylings, our GLD exec member, through MP Wera Hobhouse, to Sir Ed Davey, MP, now our Party`s acting leader. And many, many, more!

  • Bristol Lib Dems against airport expansion (Mary Page)
    Article: Mar 14, 2020
    By Mary Page in GLD Challenge magazine 2019-20

    No Bristol Airport Expansion

    Bristol Council turned down planning permission for expansion of bristol airport after a campaign by Libdems and others Mary Page, the Bristol Liberal Democrat Mayoral Candidate, said: "The expansion plans seemed to be about running a car parking business, not one promoting connectivity and global business. "If Bristol is serious about tackling the climate emergency, then that means we need to be a good neighbour and take an interest in the activities of businesses in the next door council. Air pollution, CO2 emissions, and ecological interferences are all impacts of the expansion plans and we should, quite rightly, be concerned as these do not respect the arbitrary and artificial local authority borders.