Daily Archives: 14 November 2005

Meeting the Challenge 1: Introduction

Having gone through the Tax Commission paper, with moderate success, it’s time for me to start blogging about Meeting the Challenge, the main Lib Dem policy review.

Quick Plug #1: the Meeting the Challenge review has its own website, which thus far has been woefully underused. I would encourage people to go there and add their own comments.

Quick Plug #2: I co-authored a short guide for local parties for holding their own Meeting the Challenge consultations, which can be found here. I mention this for two reasons. Firstly, if you are a Lib Dem member and your local party isn’t running a meeting of its own, ask them why and demand one (your local party AGM should be coming up). Secondly, I think the more basic structure that we adopted for the local party consultation is easier to get around than the dozens of minor questions contained within the consultation paper (there is a general point here about the Federal Policy Committee making its consultation papers more, well, consultative, but that’s for another time), and I’m opting to use that structure for my blog entries. I’m an arrogant sod and if I don’t like the questions, I simply ask different ones. 🙂

The main questions behind Meeting the Challenge are:

  • What specific challenges do you think the UK will face over the next 5-10 years?
  • What opportunities and threats will the Liberal Democrats face over the next 5-10 years?
  • FREEDOM: to what extent is it justified to limit civil liberties in order to fight threats to those liberties such as terrorism and crime?
  • FAIRNESS: what should we do to reduce inequalities in health, education and prosperity?
  • LOCALISM: to what extent can policing, health and regeneration be devolved to neighbourhoods and families?
  • INTERNATIONALISM: how do we ensure global security and respect for international law?
  • SUSTAINABILITY: what should government do to tackle the effects of climate change and look after the interests of future generations?
  • PROSPERITY: how can the UK compete in an increasingly competitive global marketplace?

There is a fair amount of scope for repeating some of what I said in response to the Tax Commission, but I’ll try to keep this to a minimum and link where possible.

So, without further ado, let’s get started!