I have added a few new links, in addition to philosopher Jonathan Derbyshire's blog, which I particularly recommend.
For a long time I linked to a blog by a Liberal Democrat activist, James Graham, whom I corresponded with and who to my regret has discontinued his site. I have replaced it with the weblog of Peter Black, Welsh Lib Dem spokesman on education. The split in the Liberal Democrats between the parliamentary leadership and the activists is potentially one of the more significant unremarked-upon stories in British politics; so far as I can tell, Peter Black is on the side of the leadership. He has sportingly defended his party's cause on this blog.
Some time ago an American reader wrote to me asking, with extraordinarily unnecessary courtesy and great charm, if she might link to this site on her own blog. I have been tardy in returning the favour, and am now shamed into doing so by the fact that the biggest blog on the whole Internet has got there before me. The site is called bebere.com, and its author explained to me that it covers gardening and knitting. I explained that these were subjects in which I have zero knowledge and experience, and she took the trouble to recount the essential principles of both disciplines to me in a way that I could understand. I strongly recommend her site.
In common with Stephen Pollard, I have linked to a stirring American site called 'Thank You, Tony'. Recalling the Iraq war, it declares:
The American people extend their heartfelt thanks to Prime Minister Tony Blair for his courage and leadership; and extend their deep appreciation to the United Kingdom and the men and women of its armed forces.
Quite right too. The correspondent who recommended this site to Stephen and me is a member of the Conservative Party, but that is no reflection on him or us, or indeed Tony Blair, I'm sure.
Finally, I have added another Liberal Democrat blog. I know nothing about its author except that his name is Barry Stamp, and his site - which is called 'Barry Stamp's Political Diary' - discloses that he is Councillor for Gnosall, Haughton, and Church Eaton, and a member of Stafford Borough and Staffordshire County Council. He expresses the hope that his blog "will give the reader an insight into his life as a local councillor". I am hooked on it; I only wish it were updated more often. Here is the entry for 21 July:
I’m beginning to dread planning meetings! Tonight I attended because I had called in the plan to build a new stable block at Little Onn, Church Eaton. Little seemed to have changed since I last went. One member of the committee again made a spectacle of himself, by shouting across the room, interrupting other members when they were speaking, and laughing at his own jokes, which by the way were far from funny. Once again I sat there wishing the floor would open up and swallow me up so at least I’d be away from the embarrassing situation!
The planning application I’d called in also left me in a tight spot. I’d been approached by both the applicant and the objectors to speak on their behalf and this is exactly what I did. However it was difficult going especially as the officers report was very negative, even though their final recommendation was to approve the plan. I wasn’t happy with this stance and neither were the Planning Committee who have instructed the officers to report to the next meeting with an explanation as to how they can say one thing but recommend another! At least I got the committee to visit the site before they make their decision. However given the comments and the general mood of the meeting I would certainly not put my money on the scheme being approved!
I urge you to visit Cllr Stamp's blog.