Lib Dems Are Britain’s Worst Party 2023

Politicians always have strong ideas about the opposing side. As polarization grows and social media encourages conflict, this seems to be happening more and more. Austerity has killed hundreds, according to the left. The right argues that Labour secretly wants hundreds of millions of refugees to come to the UK and that Jeremy Corbyn is best friends with Vladimir Putin (I find this ludicrous).

However, people increasingly believe politics has existential stakes. The opposite side must lose. I think the right has this propensity more. However, Labour voters dislike the Tories and Tories dislike Labour. Remainers and Brexiteers.

But what if Britain’s worst political party wasn’t Labour, as the right claims, or the Tories, as the left claims, but the middle? What if Britain’s most dysfunctional political organization was yellow? Yes, the Liberal Democrats.

For a leftist like myself, blaming the Lib Dems for Britain’s problems may seem like vulgar contrarianism. Many others, especially those involved in local politics, are aware with the Lib Dems’ “nice guy” toxicity and depths. Let me argue for the prosecution.

Jekyll and Hyde.

First, the party’s politics—or lack thereof. The Lib Dem pitch is straightforward locally, where they have prospered. They say you should vote for them “to keep Labour out” and that the Conservatives “can’t win here” when their nearest challenger is Labour. They argue the reverse when the Tories are their main rivals. Thus, Lib Dems tout their “progressive” credentials when courting Labour voters but not Tories. Imagine Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde campaigning together and agreeing only on electoral reform and a 5p plastic bag fee.

No serious agenda in municipal governance. What have Lib Dem councils accomplished after 40 years? The Tories can claim to cheap council tax (at least for Band D houses) while Labour can refer to the Preston model or London’s transit infrastructure developments since the turn of the century (and shortly Manchester’s). Lib Dems? ‘We aren’t the other two’ seems to mean more bollards and nimbyism.

Like the country, the Lib Dems manage decline, but they appear to enjoy it. In 2021, the party voted to build at least 380,000 homes year, but in local government, they obstruct new constructions. Infrastructure has been similarly shortsighted. Nick Clegg rejected nuclear power in 2011 because it wouldn’t be operational until 2022. Ten years later, power prices rose 66% in March. The Lib Dems aim to achieve nothing. A party councillor’s pamphlet, uploaded on Twitter, summed all his accomplishments: obstructing new infrastructure and homes.

Gerald Vernon Jackson is Portsmouth’s council leader. He spoke during the 2004 Tricorn Centre destruction on Youtube. A decrepit area will become a housing and retail center in two years, the spectator is assured. It remains a vehicle park almost two decades later with the same council leader. If you didn’t know better, you’d think the space was Luftwaffe rather than Lib Dem urban planning.

Fake news.

Besides politics and inaction, the Lib Dems lead fake news. The party’s false campaign materials have included bar charts, European election statistics, and “tactical voting” websites. In Kensington’s 2019 general election flyers, they encouraged the “tactical” Lib Dem vote for progressives, despite Labour’s Emma Dent Coad being the incumbent. Dent Coad lost 150 votes. To Tories.

Even the Lib Dems commission shady statistics. In 2019, the party released a leaflet in Jacob Rees-Mogg’s area stating they had 32% and the Tories 38%. In the previous general election, the Tories won 53%, the Lib Dems 8%, and Labour second. How did they get this figure? By conducting a survey with the following question: “Imagine that the result in your constituency was expected to be very close between the Conservative and Liberal Democrat candidate and none of the other parties were competitive. Which party would you vote for? One Putney party leaflet cited a YouGov survey that year. It was fake.

Lifestyle and phony publications follow. The untrained eye thinks they are local freesheets, not party propaganda. Letters from “polling experts” omit to disclose that they are former Lib Dem parliamentarians. No other party goes so low.

If Labour or the Tories committed such dishonesty, the media would brand it “fake news.” Even Donald Trump would blush. The Lib Dems appear to be exempt. The party and its viewpoints are over-represented in centrist British broadcast media, which may explain the double standard.

Most irritating is that the Lib Dems still try to portray themselves as the nice guys of British politics and their opponents as nasty. Their toxic mix of inertia, anti-politics, and misinformation undermines political trust more than Labour or the Tories.

After the Lib Dems leave, British politics and public life can revive. It automatically opposes new ideas and open debate. Both are vital.

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