Lib Dem conference gathering again eh?
A conference. That's nice. They'll all be having them, a little political animation in an otherwise lifeless, twitching Westminster corpse. Bright lights. Warm words. Scripted battlelines.
And small food with warm wine.
Nothing will happen, nothing will really be said but a million air-puff words.
So LibDems, if I had a lanyard like you, and Sky News in the lobby and the world's cameras a heartbeat away, I'd get a box. I'd take it somewhere everyone has to pass and make a quiet, heartfelt speech. The quieter I started, the more would strain to hear.
And I'd say
"What are we doing friends?
Stop! Just for a minute! I want to speak to the you that signed the membership forms.
I want to speak to the teenager you were, delivering leaflets in the rain.
I want to speak to the student who debated with fire in the union bar.
I want to say pause here now, just for a second.
Those set phrases and pyramid facts - constructions of wonder - let them all go. Be you. Just for a few minutes, here with me now, be you.
We focus on our wins - and rightly so - at Picasso angles, never to turn to the blue, the grey.
And every night, when the lights go off, are they enough? Because they HAVE to be enough.
Every day, the compromise becomes a loan. This compromise cannot be equal, but it must be fair, or it is debt. And we are falling heavier in debt every day.
They loan us freedom from tax for millions of those who most need our help, but in return they take the heavy interest of security from our disabled constituents and their carers.
They loan us a vote on electoral reform, but they demand chaos in our NHS, a destructive economic policy most of us didn't support and secret courts.
They loan us Lord's reform, but then they foreclose on that debt completely, without reason or recompense.
Are we SURE? Can we live with the debt or are the payments just too high.
We ALL know why we're here. We ALL know what we came here to achieve.
We all know the well rehearsed lines to explain beliefs held so deeply, cherished so dear.
But always in coalition and compromise there has to be a reckoning and if the balance tips too far we must know how to recognise it.
If I stand in a room with students and pensioners, workers and those not in work, disabled people and those more able, doctors, nurses, bankers, priests, parents can I still say, with my head high and my eyes clear that the compromise is right? That it's enough?"
I'd beg them to throw away their set lines and speak the words their hearts believe - just while conference is on. Can you IMAGINE the impact?
Update : I should have known the AMAZING Mr Potter would be the one. The one with the lanyard and the belly full of truth and fire.
Oh, he'll get in trouble for this post. I've been where he is and I feel his pain. But he's there everyone. All the while there are still George Potters at conference, we're going to be OK