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Tag-Archive for "Liberal Democrats"

The Saturday List: Lib Dem Constituency Songs Mar 13

In honour of my writing this from Lib Dem spring conference in Birmingham, today’s (short) list is Pop Songs That Name Constituencies With Liberal Democrat MPs. It’s also inspired by the first entry on the list, which – bizarrely – was being sung outside the conference hotel in the early hours last night.

Despite our 63 MPs, few constituencies are likely to appear in song lyrics because they contain qualifiers (mainly compass points). So Brent East, Leeds North West, Bristol West, Cardiff Central and Oxford West and Abingdon are unlikely to feature.

I’ve managed to come up with six. Any additions in the comments please.

  • Jackie by Scott Walker – Twickenham
  • From Rochdale to Ocho Rios by 10cc – Rochdale
  • Boston (Ladies of Cambridge) by Vampire Weekend – Cambridge (there must be more that mention Cambridge)
  • Winchester by Emmy the Great – Winchester
  • Chesterfield King by Jawbreaker – Chesterfield
  • Taunton Exhibition by The Bus Station Loonies – Taunton

All right, I got the last couple from Google.

The Pod Delusion on party conference Sep 25

The other day I mentioned The Pod Delusion, a new podcast to which I’m contributing.

Episode 2 is out today and subjects include homeopathy, NHS cuts and the BNP on Question Time. My piece – “if it’s not sung, if it’s spoken, it’s a piece” – is a quick guide to party conference, and in particular Lib Dem conference, for those who’ve never been to one.

Linky linky: Pod Delusion websitepodcast RSS feediTunes directory

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Eight for 2008 in review Dec 31

James’s post reminds me that it’s time to check back on my eight wishes for 2008 to see how they turned out.

1. That the fourth series of <DOCTOR.WHO> will be at least as good as the third; that the second series of The Sarah Jane Adventures will be at least as good as the first; and that the new series of Torchwood will be better than the first (and I’m sure it will).

No, yes and yes. The most recent series of Who had the usual mix of good (Midnight and Turn Left) and not so good episodes (Planet of the Ood, The Doctor’s Daughter), but overall it couldn’t match the third season – but then it had a lot to live up to. SJA put in an excellent second series (although I’m yet to see the finale) and Torchwood was much improved.

2. That the Lib Dems get good results in the London elections and the English and Welsh local elections in May.

There were good local election results, gaining seats, councils and a good share of the vote, despite the predictions that we would fall back. London alas saw us squeezed between the Livingstone and Johnson megaliths.

3. That I’m able to find enough spare time to make some progress on various projects currently sitting on the back burner.

Yes and no. The ones I were thinking about have still largely remained in drawers but a few newer projects have taken shape well.

4. That in the light of its inability to handle personal data securely the Government abandons the illiberal, costly, and technically monstrous identity database.

OK, this was just wishful thinking. But the Government and its agencies have continued to lose personal data all over the shop.

5. That I maintain a reasonable record playing Scrabulous on Facebook and at some point win a game of Settlers of Catan.

Don’t think I managed to win Catan, but my board game playing took a bit of a hit towards the end of the year as I got tied up with various other stuff. And this was the year, of course, where Scrabulous was destroyed by the owners of Scrabble. I’ve done reasonably will in the handful of games I’ve played on the cumbersome Scrabble application but don’t play anywhere near as much as before.

6. That the majority of my commuter trains into London are on time (December’s score: 0%).

In true OCD style, I’ve kept a record of every commuter train into London I’ve caught this year – with Southern spared the indignity of my measuring their evening service. There were positive signs at the end of February and it turns out that I got my wish: 52.5% of my trains left on time. That’s still a pretty poor figure and doesn’t take into account that few of those actually arrived into London Bridge at the scheduled time, but it’s better than a kick in the Travelcard.

7. That a sensible Democrat wins the US Presidency.

I think we can put this one down as a WIN.

8. That I lose some more weight, although ideally not through amputation, decapitation or any sort of wasting disease.

This, on the other hand, remains a work in progress.

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You know you’ve had a good party conference when… Sep 17

Long time readers of this blog will be aware of an awesomely popular, semi-regular feature, written when I used to be involved in classification of library resources, where I highlighted some of the latest additions to the Dewey Decimal System.

So I was delighted to be alerted by a former library colleague to this month’s changes which are all about the classification of political parties.

For example, should you find yourself needing to classify a book on the French Communist Party in Paris, 324.2440750944361 – leaning towards being mistaken for pi by the inattentive – is the number for you.

And now, added to 324.24106 (Liberal Party and its successors) is the entry:

Class here Liberal Democrats


I couldn’t resist flicking through other recent months’ updates for old times’ sake, so here are some highlights:

  • Management of household finances moves from 640.42 to 332.024
  • 364.16: “Class here looting, pillage, plundering”
  • 364.4: “Prevention of crime and delinquency – including curfew, eugenic measures”
  • 133.539 changes from “Trans-uranian planets, and asteroids” (remember, transuranic planets may not be used where there is life) to “Neptune, Pluto, asteroids, related bodies”
  • To reflect its recent demotion out of the planetary premiership, Pluto itself is moved from 523.482 to 523.4922