Monday, February 20, 2006

Coalition: Coming on nicely, critique and roundup

Update:Changed a few things and marked them, just to be a little more clear, provisional title very misleading.

Very briefly, I'm in a rush, large amount of discussion out there, not all of it favourable, good summary from the Bloglines Citations facility. Some criticisms, discussed below, likely they'll be ongoing. Some opposition, Bob Piper and Neil Harding being two, I don't think either have fully got the point.

Anyway, Anyone But Labour Tactical Voting Campaign (provisional title) is crystalising, see Bloggerheads for more on that, specifically I agree completely with Tim's call for readers to join in and set upt ehir own blogs. Agree or disagree, blog-spot is free, and getting a domain with all the trimmings isn't that expensive. Many of us out there can help with the basics if you want or need it. The more people we have discussing the issue, linking to each other and telling their real life friends/colleagues, etc the better off we and the campaign are.

I'm thinking maybe a Carnival of Blogs, a lá Britblog, that could rotate around, the best posts, the new blogs, etc? Good idea? Ah, whatever; start nominating anyway; libertyroundup at fuzzyduck dot org until I set up a proper email account for it. Anything on topic, and also any/all well written critiques.

Unity has been posting and working on the other aspect, Liberty Central, see his blog for more on that and the openings of a discussion.

Beyond that, I have a life to lead; keep the feedback and posts coming, even critiques and flaws are worth reading.


BondWoman said...

"Not got the point"...The point is history mate, and for me your coalition is a no go area because it cannot, ever, be "anything but new labour"...there are things which are worse, and I suspect a lot of people over 40 think similarly.

Anonymous said...

Neil, I'm afraid, is almost the blogosphere's very definition of cluelessness (as in 'could not get a clue if he smeared himself in clue pheromones and stood in a middle of a field of horny clues in the clue mating season'). [This got a bit long so I've moved it to my blog...]

As for 'things which are worse'. Well, I'm over forty, and yes of course, anyone could think of things which are worse, but there is nothing realistically on offer which is worse than what New Labour is forcing through. And Blair relies on that emotional memory of the past to garner support for his (perhaps unwitting, thgough surely he can't be that stupid) construction of the requisite framework of a police state. Time to make choices - what matters more: freedom or economic policy? I know which I think is more important.

chris said...

Having had a look at both the doubters they seem fairly heavy Thatcher-phobes. Well Neil can be persuaded, even if his default position does seem to be rather clueless.

As for there being things that are worse? I'm under 40 and can also think of many e.g. the BNP, Respect, the SWP, Al Mujaharoon, Hizbut Tahir etc.

Luckily there is zero chance of them becoming a government. Labour on the other hand is very likely to become the next government unless something is done to stop it.

Anonymous said...

If you only could alter the title "Building a coalition to remove the NuLabour nanny staters from power." to "Building a coalition to remove the Labour nanny staters from power." - After all, you wouldn't like to replace the New Labour nanny staters with the Old Labour nanny staters, would you?

Simon Hodges said...

I disagree, we need people who are pissed off with the government's determination to bring the country under its control, we need the widest coalition we can get. As a "Thatcher-phobe" myself, I'm perfectly willing to join as long as it doesn't turn into a massive Tory-athon.

On another tack, there's been talk spoke of one step further than the other coalitions/campaigns. One effective, if not wholely original, method would be to take out double page adverts in the Times, Telegraph and Guardian at strategic points in the campaign, calling for support informing people of our view.

This of course will neeed money. In an ideal world we would keep the campaign as grassroots as possible to highlight to the government just how pissed off we are BUT a bit of financial backing would be good if we can get a few influential figures: a few MPs, Lords and a handful of celebs, it'll raise our profile considerably.

A good canvassing drive should do it.

Anonymous said...

I don't think the party that the Nanny States come from is of great importance - these measures would still be horrendously authoriatarian if they came from the Tories (and, given that this is the party that gave us asylum seeker island, I'm not buying into this assumption that they'd be any better).

I've ranted at some length (as promised) on Atlantic Rift about why I think bringing partisanship into this isn't the way of doing it. Any coalition should campaign on issues not parties.

Anonymous said...

I know I'm not one of the big boys in this discussion, but I can't express strongly enough how important it is to me that this whole campaign/coalition is not about party politics. There have already been people of many different politic colours generally supportive of this idea, and if everyone lets this get bogged down into New Labour/Old Labour, how-much-do-we-hate-Maggie and aren't-the-LibDems-lairs bun fighting then it'll all be a waste of time and a great opportunity will have been wasted.

Please please please put away the party politics.

Anonymous said...

Or, to put it more succinctly: what Katherine said.

Another reason why an issue-led coalition: it makes it a more positive campaign. "Against authoritarianism" is a much more positive proposition than "Against New Labour."

Garry said...

I'm sure that keeping party politics out of the liberty coalition as much as humanly possible is the way to go. The coalition should support individual MPs or candidates based on their attitude towards issues of civil liberty and constitutional reform.

To add to something Jonn said: "Against authoritarianism" is a much more positive proposition than "Against New Labour."
Agree that we should not be defined as "against New Labour". My view is that the central message should be that we are for liberty.

There actually seem to be two seperate issues emerging here. Libery Central, as Unity proposes, should be a positive campaign for change. This should have the next general election as it's target.

The "Anyone but Labour" campaign should, in my view, be a seperate entity with the explicit aim of curbing the power of New Labour in the years until the next GE. Of course, many people would support both aims, and the overlap is obviously substantial. It would, I think, still be a good idea to keep the two aims seperate and distinct.

That is, mind you, all a bit, People's Judean Front versus People's Front of Judea. Splitters!
Seriously though, I think it might be better, certainly in the longer term, to have a coalition defined by what it is for, rather than what it is against.

MatGB said...

Oy! My job to make the splitters references here (although I haven't done it for a few weeks).

Agree. Completely. Two, separate, projects. Unity was already planning LibertyCentral, I've just given it a kickstart without knowing about it. Good.

The tactiacl votes campaign and the liberty central movement will be separate; you don't need to buy into one in order to support the other.

I'm now not keen on the anyone but labour descriptor at all. It was a tag that I probably should never have repeated. But, to me, Unity's project is much more important than the short-term tactical votes campaign.

I'll be involved in both, but I know which to prioritise given a choice. Hope I don't need to.

Back to the drawing board for a few things it is then...

Anonymous said...

The coalition could send for all the candidates a questionary, which they would fill. The results might be published on the site of coalition. Better yet, people could choose which liberty issues are most important for them, and the site would show which of the candidates would be closest to their views in their constituency.

Of course the answers of the sitting MPs should be compared to their voting records in or, but it would be particularly helpful in the case of candidates, who aren't yet MPs.

Anonymous said...


I'm over 40 (by a very small margin) and I do remember some pretty bad things:

The country being forced to go to the IMF like some 3rd world basket case; the 3 day week; mountains of garbage in the streets; mortuaries running out of space for the stiffs; the railways at a standstill because the drivers were on strike; not being able to go to school because there was no heating oil (OK, that wasn't so bad at the time, but on mature reflection....).

So yes, there were governments worse than the current bunch (just). The problem (from your point of view, I suspect) is that the only examples I can think of were Labour governments.


Anonymous said...

But, the above notwithstanding, I am fully in agreement with any campaign to rid the country of Mr Blair and his control freak freinds. Even the 1970's Old Labour respected the notion of parliamentary democracy.

If it was a case for voting for Blair or Benn (the Elder, not his NuLabour, lickspittle sprog) I know which box would get my X.