The weekend of conference so far has been pretty packed – motions, workshops, plenaries, etc.

The theme for Saturday was essentially cuts and credit crunch. In the morning, the party passed an emergency motion to opposing cuts to public services. However, it later threw a sop to those who believe ecological destruction can be measured by GDP alone, and agreed to establish a working group to discuss whether there is a conflict between investing in building the infrastructure of the future and saving the future. We can only assume the working group will conclude that it doesn’t. It was frustrating to see a motion which was (I would argue) essentially inaccurate pass without sufficient challenge. However, it did only start a conversation and it was great to see it followed by a session with our newly re-elected deputy lead Adrian Ramsay and CWU General Secretary Billy Hayes explaining clearly explaining the case against cuts, and discussing what councils can do to fight them in practical ways.

The party also passed overwhelmingly a motion to regulate the banking sector, and maintain at least one of the part-nationalised banks in public hands (presumably RBS).

Quote of the day:

“proper funding for public services isn’t living beyond our means. It’s providing a means to live”

Adrian Ramsay – Deputy Leader speech.

Sunday so far has mostly been constitutional in nature – both internal constitution (should we have a shadow cabinet? – referred back); and national – should we support a yes vote in the AV referendum (while continuing to support PR)? After a number of speeches – most powerfully from Peter Cranie on Scotland’s missed opportunity in ’79, the party voted overwhelmingly in favour of backing a yes vote in the coming referendum.

Quote for the day (so far):

“don’t let the best the the enemy of the good”

Caroline Lucas on the AV referendum