Farron, religion and Liberalism

That a thoroughly decent man has been forced from public office is a given and I say that as an atheist.

Yes I was very uncomfortable watching Tim contort himself into knots when asked about his religious views and yes the media were out to do him harm over his religion. Just think about it, how many other leading politicians have strong religious views and how many of them have been hounded out of office for holding them? Blair got some stick because he was Roman Catholic but I struggle to think of many others in recent times.

Did Tim bring trouble upon himself? Well yes to some extent because of this contorted answers that had us all scratching our heads. And you know despite his odd answers he actually did a lot to back minority rights and the LGBT community have acknowledged that apart from what I will call their more militant fringe.

Can you be a Liberal hold religious views? Well you must be able to as there seem to be many people out there who do. Anyway one of the significant strands of liberalism comes from ‘Chapel Liberals’ and Methodism. I am sure my dear old Mum was a Chapel Liberal and I personally know many Lib Dem’s who hold strong religious views and I count them as my friends.

The crunch issue as I see it is this. As a Liberal your guiding light is the rights of others and your being willing to stand up for those rights even when you personally do not subscribe to them. That’s what Tim Farron tried to do, that’s why he stood up for LGBT rights even though his religion was seemingly telling him otherwise. His problem was being unable to publicly reconcile his liberalism and religion when the contradictions were put to him by the media. And once he had shown weakness the first time he was asked about the matter it was always going to be where the media homed in.

Were the media involved in bullying and intimidation? Yes of course they were, indeed they were acting as though they were from the 1950’s and steeped in intolerance with more than a hint of the Spanish Inquisition thrown in for good (or is that bad) measure. It’s as though Farron were being treated as a criminal for holding religious and political views, it’s a sad reflection on our reactionary media and the intolerant times we live in.

Yes of course opposition politicians also exploited Tim’s inability to answer straight forward questions on the potential conflict between his religion and his liberalism. I picked up what I viewed to be political trolling comments on this very matter.

Brexit has split us very deeply because it has brought back into focus views that people used to be ashamed of talking about – racism, intolerance, homophobia, etc. Farron in my view became a victim of that new intolerant culture and it shames our society greatly.

One last thing, the schism on the left of British politics is not actually so much about policy but about libertarian versus authoritarian approaches. In general terms socialism is more authoritarian and liberalism is obviously libertarian. Tell you what is good for you as opposed to giving you the facts to make your own mind up you could say. Quite obviously our society is by its nature these days far more authoritarian and less libertarian. I hope it goes without saying that Conservatism is also authoritarian.

Authoritarian societies don’t tolerate differences from the norm and the norm is usually set by the ruling classes. Farron is, like many Liberals before him and those who will follow him, too libertarian to be tolerated by a media and a political establishment that see most things very black and white, right and wrong.

Don’t look upon Farron as someone you liked or disliked in party political terms, look upon him as someone our society showed the door to because he was not conforming to the norms as interpreted by the media and the establishmnet. Then look at other minorities and think about them too, who will be next?

Oh yes and Farron stood in 2017 General Election on a policy of tolerance!

General Election – Final thoughts

Teresa May is an appalling politician in my view. She comes across as harsh and uncaring. Her attack on pensioners is breathtaking via her Dementia Tax. And on the very Brexit issue she claimed to have called the election on she has clarified nothing whilst looking just like the very last person you would want to be negotiating with the EU for us.

Jeremy Corbyn is an old fashioned socialist from the 1970’s with a hankering for nationalisation. However, on the issue of poverty he is far from being robust. My view is that despite what looks like a left wing Labour Party they have all but abandoned the poor and those with nothing. Top that with backing Brexit and Labour are not really a progressive party at all.

Tim Farron is someone that I voted for in the party leadership election some time back. I do have my differences with him on issues such as Right to Die where I believe he has been fundamentally wrong. But on the wider picture he comes across as a true Liberal who is passionate about fighting for those with nothing. He’s condemned the Tories Dementia tax, he’s strong on environmental policy, he is a big backer of the NHS and of our personal freedoms which Teresa in particular wants to curtail.

Well you knew it anyway if you are a regular reader of this blog site – I’ll be voting for Tim’s party the Lib Dems.

Labour – Another stab at why they are all but abandoning the poorest in our society

Or put it another way, some of us on the left have not been taken in by Corbynism

labour-uncut.co.uk/2017/05/31/why-doesnt-corbyn-just-go-and-join-the-tories/

At the risk of driving some of my friends in the Labour Party over the edge in their frustration with me I present, via the link above, another piece about why Labour is no longer on the side of those with little or nothing in our society.

This is a theme I have been developing for a while now and it seems that others have been having similar thoughts too.

My own guess is that the Labour manifesto is really aimed at the middle classes who are both earning and who will most probably vote. Whilst still trying to give the impression of being on the side of the poor the reality is that Labour are actually looking for middle class votes from those with a little nostalgia for nataionalisation.

There are too many voices now saying that only the Lib Dems are trying to seriously address the issue of poverty in our divided society for it not to be worth seriously thinking about.

Do you want a say on life after Brexit? There’s only one place you’ll get it.

www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2017/jun/02/conservative-candidate-may-brexit-lib-dems

The Guardian has the story on its web site – see link above

Quote from the article:-

‘This nasty, Ukip-inspired version of Brexit will isolate us from our European neighbours, threatening our security and our prosperity. I believe we all should have the right to decide whether it’s a deal we want for Britain. We should be given the chance to vote in a second referendum once the full terms of the negotiations, and the implications for our country, become clear.
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Only the Liberal Democrats are offering a second referendum, which is why I am delighted to be joining a party which is on the right side of this historic debate.’

With thanks to Roy Connell for the lead to this posting

Trump – Teresa May needs to condemn him over his climate change stupidity

Below is Tim Farron’s open letter to Teresa May. Please consider signing the letter via the link at the bottom of it.

Climate Change is the biggest threat to us all and especially future generations. Climate Change deniers like Trump are putting the future of the human race in great danger and leaders like Teresa May need to stand out against him not sit back saying its disappointing!

*****

Lib Dem Leader Tim Farron with Cllr. Pat Keith on Southport Station.

Dear Theresa,

We both know climate change is real.

It’s one of the greatest threats to all our futures and if we’re going to leave a better world for the next generation, we need to take tackling it seriously.

I was appalled last night when Donald Trump announced he was pulling out of the Paris Agreement.

That is an act of vandalism on a global scale. The effects of this decision will be felt for generations to come.

But I was bitterly disappointed when I heard you’d refused to join other European Leaders in condemning him.

If the special relationship means anything, it means that when an American president makes a decision that is so patently and catastrophically wrong, we should be able to say, clearly and plainly “You are wrong and you are putting us all in danger.”

Because Donald Trump is putting us all in danger.

So please, stand up with our European and Canadian allies and condemn Donald Trump’s reckless decision, before it’s too late.

We can’t sit by and just let this happen.

Tackling climate change isn’t just the right thing to do, it’s the only thing we can do if we want to leave a better world for our children.

Thank you,

Tim

Tim Farron

Leader of the Liberal Democrats

ADD YOUR NAME HERE:-
www.libdems.org.uk/trump?recruiter_id=96065