Sex sells and the Lib Dems know it

Thousands gathered in Brighton this week. Hundreds of councillors and parliamentary candidates, a smattering of MPs and a larger number of ageing members of the House of Lords. Also in attendance were countless think tanks, lobby groups and charities. But rather like a grey cloudy day in autumnal Brighton very few people noticed.

Worthy and detailed motions were debated on taxation (scrapping business rates), housing policy (the creation of a British sovereign bank) and the redistribution of wealth (big increases in inheritance tax), and yet the tumble weed rolled past the front doors of the conference centre and the lack of much security made the point rather than making the delegates feel secure.

And that’s the problem for the Lib Dems. No one wants to take any notice or does.

Forcing Vince Cable to utter those un-Vince like words of erotic spasm (a reference to the joy unbounded of the chief brexiters desire to leave the EU) and then ‘mis-speaking’ by turning the phrase into exotic spresm was just about the only thing that made it into the evening news and national newspapers.

Worthy doesn’t sell and nor do policies that might make a difference. Conflict does and credibility comes from massed ranks of MPs sitting in the House of Commons.

What the Lib Dems urgently need isn’t any more policies but a mission to change Britain for working people and their families well beyond the conclusions of the EU negotiations. What they also need is a leadership that can truly explain that mission and why it will make a difference to people’s lives.

Until then perhaps they will have to rely on sex selling although only until the day’s new cycle.

This article was written by Ian Thorn, Chairman of MPC.