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27 of 33 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Often Misunderstood.
The Orange Book is often cited as being a rabidly right wing and nasty text by a large number of those on the left of the political spectrum who have generally not even read the work. Whilst it did mark some form of a move towards the right in the up and coming stars of the party, it is actually far less radically out of tune with the party's tradition than is often...
Published on 23 Feb 2011 by BCM

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12 of 26 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Revealing presentation of the LibDems' extreme laissez-faire capitalist views
This is a most revealing collection of essays by LibDem MPs and MEPs. Chris Huhne calls for legalising wars of intervention and for an EU `rapid reaction force'.

The LibDems want to `replace' the NHS and to allow private `alternative providers', which opens the door to US `health corporations'. They want to end national pay bargaining in the public sector. They...
Published on 2 Jun 2010 by William Podmore


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27 of 33 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Often Misunderstood., 23 Feb 2011
This review is from: The Orange Book (Paperback)
The Orange Book is often cited as being a rabidly right wing and nasty text by a large number of those on the left of the political spectrum who have generally not even read the work. Whilst it did mark some form of a move towards the right in the up and coming stars of the party, it is actually far less radically out of tune with the party's tradition than is often suggested. Notably it is often forgotten that those who set up the SDP left the Labour party because it was becoming too left wing. It is also the case that the contributors of the book have exactly the same aims in mind as those on the more social liberal side of the party. Many of the pieces are actually entirely uncontroversial for most Liberal Democrat members, from Nick Clegg's pro-European but pro-Reform essay on the EU to Ed Davey's essay on localism.

However the main point is that the book itself is thoroughly worth reading due to its consistent challenging of dogma, and use of innovative solutions to long standing and burgeoning problems, such as pensions, public services and the environment. The only piece I personally viewed with much scepticism was David Laws' essay on the health service. However whilst I disagree with his overall argument, he still makes compelling points and raises issues that should certainly be thought about.

If you are a Communist, you probably won't like this book. But if you are interested in reading about interesting approaches to some of the main questions of modern British politics, that are still relevent today despite the time passed since this book was published, it is certainly worth opening this book with an open mind, regardless of your political affiliation or persuasion.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Worth a read, 21 Jun 2011
This review is from: The Orange Book (Paperback)
Disagree with the substantive content or not, this book is worth reading for the insight into lib-dem thought, and for an explanation for why they seem to have gone along with so much supposedly tory inspired policy; it's very similar in ideology to what they actually think and believe in. Worth a read if you can get a cheap copy.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Great wider reading for anyone interested in Politics, 11 Jan 2014
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This review is from: The Orange Book (Paperback)
My son is doing A level Politics and this has been a great insight into the roots of todays liberalism.
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22 of 32 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Liberalism in the true sense, 12 May 2010
By 
Nicholas Farhi "nicholas" (London) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: The Orange Book (Paperback)
This book cuts through dogma and espouses clearly argued positions on critical issues of our time. It should be a blueprint for the Tory-Lib coalition
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12 of 26 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Revealing presentation of the LibDems' extreme laissez-faire capitalist views, 2 Jun 2010
By 
William Podmore (London United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: The Orange Book (Paperback)
This is a most revealing collection of essays by LibDem MPs and MEPs. Chris Huhne calls for legalising wars of intervention and for an EU `rapid reaction force'.

The LibDems want to `replace' the NHS and to allow private `alternative providers', which opens the door to US `health corporations'. They want to end national pay bargaining in the public sector. They advocate privatising the Royal Mail.

The contributors all say nice things about local democracy. Yet the coalition government's recent Localism Act gave 126 new powers to central government over local.

Nick Clegg urges Britain to join the euro. As the euro crisis deepens, this looks even more stupid. He writes, "the vast majority of the electorate is both confused and undecided on the big European questions." This is patronising and untrue: there is a consistent 2/1 majority against joining the euro.
Clegg writes of `the overwhelming case for European integration'. He states that the EU is moving `in a more open, decentralised, accountable direction'. Really? He writes of the "threat" of mass migration from Central and Eastern Europe, as if it were not real. (In 2002 there were approximately 4,000 workers from the A8 nations in low-skilled jobs in the British economy. Now there are 235,000.) He urges a referendum on the EU Constitution. Good idea! But what has happened? Another promise broken.
Vince Cable too praises the euro, writing of `the likelihood, and desirability, of the UK joining the euro zone at some stage'. He urges dismantling the Department of Trade and Industry, general de-regulation and abolishing capital gains tax.
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0 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Liberalism in the 21st century, 2 Aug 2011
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This review is from: The Orange Book (Paperback)
This book contains several essays. David Laws gives a brilliant analysis of four different aspects of Liberalism: Economic, Social, Political and . He shows how it would be possible to espouse them all to give a clear set of principles to offer an electorate. In the British political scene, this would give the Liberal Democrats a distinctive and attractive platform which would avoid the incoherence that comes from making purely tactical policy decisions.
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0 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Liberalism is effectively reclaimed!, 5 Sep 2011
This review is from: The Orange Book (Paperback)
Eloquently written, particularly by David Laws, Vince Cable, Nick Clegg, and Susan Kramer, liberalism is definitely captured.
The belief in individual autonomy, in the private sector as a tool for change, and in social justice is clear throughout. The expectable fizziness of detail is absent. The Orange Bookers clearly and with great detail lay out a vision for the future; comparing and critiquing ready existing systems and ideas!
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