The LDV Friday meme: Seven reasons I joined the Lib Dems

by Stephen Tall on May 8, 2009

Welcome to the first of what we intend to be the first in a series of LDV Friday memes to amuse you at the end of the week, and for Lib Dem bloggers (should they so choose) to pick up and run with over the weekend.

I’m starting with a simple one: the top seven reasons I joined the Lib Dems:

  1. I was a Labour party member for five years (1994-99). Then I realised Labour was interested only in being in power, not in giving power away.
  2. I would far rather be in a party whose ‘extreme wings’ are – supposedly – represented by Simon Hughes and David Laws than in a Tory party with Bill Cash or a Labour party with Diane Abbott.
  3. I’m a liberal – who else would I join?
  4. When I’m in a room full of Lib Dems, no matter how much I disagree with any one of them I know I agree more with all of them.
  5. Because I don’t like hierarchies. The Lib Dems are the most contrarian, sceptically rational political grouping I know. The leadership may hate it from time to time but it makes us what we are.
  6. I wanted to be part of a party whose activists are in it out of political belief not personal ambition.
  7. I think politics is about championing underdogs (not least ‘cos we know how it feels).

Who to tag with this meme? Well, obviously all Lib Dem bloggers should feel free to give it a whirl. But I’m going to particularly tag those who were featured in the most recent Golden Dozen: Charlotte Gore, Steve Middleton, Wycombe Lib Dems, Fraser Macpherson, Sandy Walkington, Mark Valladares, Caron Lindsay, Alix Mortimer, Colin Ross, James Graham, ‘Costigan Quist’, and Jennie Rigg.

Suggestions for future LDV meme topics gratefully received…

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No comments

What’s wrong with Abott? I’ve always found her harmless…

by rantersparadise on May 8, 2009 at 6:54 pm. Reply #

I joined the Liberal party in 1983 as it was the only “Green” party around in those days. There was also the “Ecology” party which was tiny, and pointless in my opinion.
After I joined I also appreciated it’s committment to internationalism, human rights and social justice. Even better, there were no “libertarians” in the party back then.

by Geoffrey Payne on May 8, 2009 at 9:52 pm. Reply #

Yay, I escaped the tagging. I only have one reason anyway – I am a Liberal!

by Peter Black on May 8, 2009 at 11:33 pm. Reply #

I LIKE Diane Abbott 😛

But I shall meme.

by Jennie on May 8, 2009 at 11:51 pm. Reply #

Yeah, burn the libertarians!

by Alex Foster on May 9, 2009 at 12:19 am. Reply #

I think Jennie’s “reasons for renewing” are brilliant.
I suppose for mine (if you’ll excuse me as I don’t blog)
1. I’m no fan of dogmatism; of course I think I’m right about things, but “when the facts change, I change my opinions”! I’m always open to the possibility that I’m wrong. The Lib Dems did – and still do – best encapsulate that in politics in my opinion.
2. I’m politcally centre left, where else would I go?
3. Oh, and I’m not a socialist.
4. I actually want to be in a party that sees a role for party members.
5. I actually want to be in a party that wants to help people help themselves.
6. Although when I was young I was fairly eurosceptic, when I found out a bit more about how the EU worked, I realised that the way it makes legislation was in some ways more “democratic” than our own Parliament. The Lib Dems are really the only party that wants to use the EU to make things better. The Tories want out, as do the Greens (to whom I cast my first Euro vote in 1999, to my shame) and Labour don’t seem to have a bl**dy clue.
7. Oh go on, I suppose it appeals to me to be in a party where you have to convince people to vote for you, rather than one people often vote for blindly because they always have.

by Grammar Police on May 9, 2009 at 9:05 am. Reply #

Stephen’s ‘Seven reasons (to be) a Liberal’ are much the same as my reasons for still being a member of the Labour Party in Nottingham (160 to date). I ask myself regularly, ‘Where is the opposition?’ and, as far as I am concerned, in the inner-city area where I live (Dunkirk and Lenton), it’s the local Labour Party. I can’t remember the last time I saw a Liberal or a Liberal Party leaflet. I don’t hear Liberals in my world talking about empowering communities, urban parish councils and a new look city council with councillors elected by PR — it’s people like me in the Labour Party. In truth, I wouldn’t argue with some of your criticisms of Labour’s national leadership, but at the grass roots, where I live, us Labour folk are as ordinary and decent as you find the Liberals. And that’s why I stay. Now that I’ve found your blog, I’ll be back.

by Robert on May 9, 2009 at 10:14 am. Reply #

Basically joined the Liberals in 1965 and found the LibDems still the most comfortable (though not perfect) political home going.

Looking at the political cake-slices in some other countries do we realise how lucky we are to have this resource and haven?

by Edis on May 9, 2009 at 11:40 am. Reply #

Interesting choice of bloggers as there is some real rubbish there like Valladares but some real quality like Alix Mortimer.

For me the only sane voice on the economy has been Vince, the Lib Dems are socially Liberal which is important and are nearly there economically. It is a shame my vote in Durham North will mean nothing but I am onside.

by Martin Kinsella on May 9, 2009 at 12:31 pm. Reply #

Charlotte Gore has a terrific blog.

by Martin Kinsella on May 9, 2009 at 12:37 pm. Reply #

Another “Diane Abbott’s not that bad” Lib Dem here.

by lucy on May 10, 2009 at 4:16 pm. Reply #

“I think politics is about championing underdogs (not least ‘cos we know how it feels)”

That might be changing

“Labour is likely to get 25 per cent of the vote, beaten by the Liberal Democrats on 27 per cent.”

rock on 🙂

by Monkee on May 10, 2009 at 7:15 pm. Reply #

hmmm…. I’m a Lib Dem because I’ve got at least half a brain, and the Lib Dems are the only party that fits their policies to the evidence rather than the evidence to their policies. Plus we’re green. And the other parties are too awful to contemplate. And we’ve not only got Vince, we’ve got Norman Baker too!

by Prue on May 11, 2009 at 1:24 pm. Reply #

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