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Britain in 2030 - a Liberal Democrat vision

February 9, 2017 11:59 AM

Open, connected, united. That's the liberal Britain of the future. A place where hope and opportunity allow each of us to succeed. Where barriers of discrimination are no more. Where prosperity is enjoyed by the many, not the few. And where there is a line below which we allow no-one to fall.

An open Britain: open not just for business, but to bold ideas and radical innovation. Open to talent from whatever place or background, open to new tools and technologies to embrace the challenges of the digital future. Open to new ways of running our economy and public services so that the citizen comes first, not the speculator.

We live connected like never before. Whether it be social networks, online shopping, or life-saving treatment in the NHS, technology links each of us to a world of opportunities. This is a world where connection is essential to success, and to attracting inward investment. And where fairness means we ensure no-one, and no community, is left behind.

The strength of the nation depends upon a wide diffusion of prosperity and opportunity. A liberal Britain means progressive measures to tackle failures of private enterprise, such as the housing market, transport and social care. Sectors where the state must have a leading role if we are to live in a fair and strong society. A liberal Britain means a globally connected nation playing a leading role in the defence of freedom. A successful NATO remains our strongest pillar of defence, and ultimate deterrent. And we should also lead on strengthening the global economy through measures to combat tax evasion, fraud and cybercrime. Britain will not be alone. We will have one of the biggest economies in Europe, and play a key role in European affairs. With our allies and partners, we can create a force for good, increasing the wealth of our nation and contributing to peace and international cooperation.

Our Britain is a nation united against intolerance, and the doctrines of hate and fear. United in the belief that the nation prospers when individual success contributes to the common good. Where there is fair deal for all, especially for those trying to find a job, a home, or a decent way to raise a family.

A place where no-one is attacked for daring to be different. A place where we encourage responsibility and celebrate compassion. Where the state makes sure the homeless are housed, the sick treated, the young well-educated, and the unemployed re-skilled. Not out of pity, but out of the conviction we are stronger in a fairer society. Richer when all talents are encouraged. Safer when we welcome our neighbours and fellow citizens, rather than hide behind our curtains and live in solitary fear.

A liberal Britain means a competitive economy, and an open, decent society. The one requires the other- a point some parties seem to have forgotten. It's a place that values your voice, not just your vote. Your land of opportunity.

Lee Howgate