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Showing posts from December, 2015

A Liberal day of life- joyful and sad

Today is another day of life. It is a bitter-sweet day. 

I have seen my friend Alistair Carmichael win his court case, which takes a huge strain off his family and preserves the Scottish Liberal Democrat voice in the House of Commons. I have known Alistair since we were students in Aberdeen and have always enjoyed his human take on politics. The vindictive case raised by the SNP has rightly been denied, and will I hope rebound on the shrill and narrow minded nationalists whose vituperation against anyone who opposes their views borders on the psychotic.

The SNP have been in charge long enough for us to know that they represent much of what is worst in politics. Far from being an antidote to Westminster they are merely crowd pleasing populists whose mistakes - with the Forth Bridge maintenance schedule, for example- are beginning to come home to roost. The Economist recently accused the SNP of being Peronist and to be honest, it rings entirely true. Economically illiterate, the Scottish …

After party politics

The past few months have been a worrying time for those of us who believe in the virtues of representative democracy. The long term trend of the decline of membership and support for political parties has, if anything, accelerated, and long standing loyalties to right or left have given way to a far more complicated political reality in which populist or even anti democratic voices are now being increasingly heard. The rise of Marine Le Pen in France or Donald Trump in the United States point to the failure of conventional politics to maintain a rational and intelligent framework for economic or social policy choices. Irrational and violent solutions are increasingly being touted across the democratic world.

Chat rooms have become the echo chambers of an ill informed political culture that, despite its ignorance, will brook no dissent and which reserves the right to intimidate and threaten in support of its cause. The Scottish cybernats represent a kind of intolerance that is a direct …