miss_s_b: (Politics: Democracy)
miss_s_b ([personal profile] miss_s_b) wrote2017-09-12 07:07 pm
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Report Back from FCC Saturday Sept 9th

So, as promised in my election campaign, I am reporting back after FCC. Zoe's factual report on which amendments etc were and were not selected has gone up on LDV. If you have any questions about any of them, do feel free to ask and I'll answer as best I can.

The only one I had any personal involvement with was the Emergency Motion to do with rail fares, which was ruled out of order due to the bloody stupid technocratic somewhat technical definition of "emergency" that FCC uses - and do remind me to sort out an amendment of some kind to deal with that at some point. I suspect, though, that even given the legendary Lib Dem train fandom it would not have won the ballot for debate even had it made it onto the ballot, given some of the other motions on there. I, personally, am rooting for Sal Brinton's Treatment of Disabled People motion to win, and I strongly suspect that it will. It's a fantastic mix of pointed evidence bases and passion, and I genuinely hope it wins. If it becomes party policy I will be extremely happy about it. I further suspect that the Mental Health motion which won it's appeal will be the other lucky winner.

But that's not what you want to hear about, is it?

What you want to hear about is the suspension of standing orders discussion...

I'm not going to go into huge detail about who said what and who voted which way, because while I am happy to be transparent about my own contributions, it's not fair on other people to force transparency upon them when it's not what they signed up for. However:
  • there was passion and pragmatism on both sides of the debate;
  • I agreed strongly with points made on both sides;
  • my own personal votes were on a very fine knife edge;
  • at one point the chair actually said to me "you can't have half a vote, your hand is either up or it's not" when I was vacillating;
  • the eventual result of the Significant Vote That is Agitating People was very close indeed - 5 votes to 4;
  • had I seen some information before I voted that I actually saw today, I would definitely have voted the other way.
I'm actually pretty angry about some of what happened, and feel like at least one person significantly misled me, both as to the positions other people had taken and the positions they had taken themselves. I've seen screengrabs, people, and they do not paint a pretty picture. This has put a massive dent in my trust of both that person and of the way the committee structures operate.

Anyway, everything is escalating hugely, there's a lot of willy-waving going on, and it was all so bloody avoidable. If FCC had voted in the initial agenda setting meeting to allow a proper debate on Europe instead of a pointless consultation session (which was something I advocated, and which also came down to a very close vote) we would not be having all this ballache right now. We would not be having people publicly calling this a declaration of war. We would not be risking the harmony and unity our beloved director of communications so desperately desires us to show.

Yeah, yeah, I know, I know, nobody likes people who say I told you so.

Still, my fellow FCC members, I abso-fucking-lutely told you so.

Anyway, at some point, this party is going to have to decide whether it is in favour of representative democracy or endless plebiscites. I would rather we decide that as soon as possible, and to that end I would urge you, if you are going to Lib Dem Conference, to be in the hall, bright and early on Saturday morning, to vote IN FAVOUR of the suspension of standing orders so that we can have the debate. Please. There needs to be a 2/3 majority for it to pass. The payroll vote (or what's left of it, at any rate) will doubtless be rolled in to vote against, and I really would like to see it pass. I do not understand why the leadership of our party is so utterly dead set against us having a proper debate on the most important issue facing our country for generations, but as things stand conference is still sovereign and can still tell the leadership to sod off.

I would like to see it do so on Saturday morning.

Question about the vote

(Anonymous) 2017-09-13 08:37 am (UTC)(link)
Will there be a debate on the suspension of standing orders, or will it just be a vote?