An example of the line between classical liberalism and Toryism being quite blurry.
To back up that point: consistent classical liberalism - eg Nozick - recognises that there is little or no justification for existing structures of wealth, property, and power. They are not products of voluntary transfer and exchange.
But faced with that problem, the classical liberal approach is typically to ignore or forget about it - at least in practice.
In the end, what is important (at least in practice) is maintaining the existing structure of property rights and power. The overlap with Toryism becomes plain.
That reluctance to confront existing structures of wealth and power also shows itself in classical liberal approaches to free speech. Lots of interest in the right of anyone with a megaphone to use it as they like: less interest in who has the megaphone and why they have it.
And also much less interest - verging on hostility - to anyone protesting against the way in which those with a megaphone use their speech. See @SpeechUnion for an example.
A less Tory, but authentically liberal (and also social democratic) approach is to recognise property rights (important for all of our daily security) but also to be prepared to balance them against other pressing concerns - like distributing power more fairly and widely.
And on free speech to balance the right to say what you want against the rights of others to protest the way in which you choose to use it, and also to ensure that those with a megaphone can’t use it to drown out those who don’t have one.
(Recognising that getting that balance right is often hard.)
PS Helen is far too interesting and reflective a writer to be pigeonholed neatly: do follow her for challenging views (which I usually disagree with but sometimes do agree with).
PPS do Helen’s quiz. I came out (to my relief) as a Leveller. And she’s right that the English Revolution/ War of Three Kingdoms (note terminology) is highly relevant, critical to our history, and far too little remembered/taught.

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More from @GeorgePeretzQC

11 Jun
I think it’s important to explain why this take by @Dominic2306 is wrong (particularly as the thread goes on to call for - unspecified - JR reforms, on the basis that this shows why JR is damaging to good government). (Long thread)
First, when reading his criticisms of the detailed procurement rules, remember that the judge actually found that (apart from the apparent bias issue) the government complied with those rules and was entitled to use the emergency procedures.
(Judgment here: see grounds 1 and 2 - paras 71-131.)…
Read 26 tweets
10 Jun
One obvious difficulty with the “unequal treaty” line is that those now saying it rather conspicuously didn’t at the time. This, by one @AllisterHeath. And, of course, the Tory manifesto presenting it as a “great deal”. Image
In one sense, that is history: if it’s a bad deal, then it doesn’t become a good one just because those (like @AllisterHeath) who now denounce it praised it (or at least went along with the “great deal” line) at the time.
But that masks the problem that making the Protocol work (or, for those determined to find an an alternative, getting agreement to any alternative) requires trust. And trust is in short supply, largely because of the current government’s conduct.
Read 5 tweets
7 Jun
It’s always worth reading @HelenHet20 but I’m not clear from this piece what she thinks the English Question actually is. I think that that may be because she is confusing two questions.
One “question” is about English identity: where it is a commonplace since Orwell that the left can struggle to sound as if it likes England very much. I have various thoughts about what to do about that but it isn’t really my area.
But the other question is about accountability and say in decision-making. That is a question about local government/devolution/bringing decisions closer to home: and to the extent that Helen seems to be denying that there’s a demand for that in England, I think she’s wrong.
Read 8 tweets
6 Jun
Final day of #Coast2Coast! Littlebeck to Robin Hood’s Bay. Littlebeck woods: ImageImageImage
Whitby Abbey in the distance. Image
Can’t go east any more. Image
Read 5 tweets
5 Jun
One principle of good regulation is that it should prevent activity you don’t want while not impeding activity that you do want.
Regulation that stops EU school parties visiting the U.K. (which we presumably do want) while not in practice preventing holders of EU ID cards who want to dodge the passport requirement from slipping in via Ireland does not, in any obvious way, pass that test.
NB another example of why immigration control should be taken away from the Home Office and given to an economic department (my vote would be a Department of Employment (and Tourism)).
Read 4 tweets
5 Jun
Interesting to read @SirJJQC’s interview on the current government’s attitude to the Protocol that it had signed: “having signed up to this deal, there were aspects of it the Government didn’t really like, and was going to try to find ways around.”
Also worth noting.
Full interview here.…
Read 4 tweets

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