Wednesday, August 30, 2006

countries I have (and want to) visit

These are the countries I have visited so far

create your own visited country map
or check our Venice travel guide

These are the countries I wish to visit before I die

create your own visited country map
or check our Venice travel guide

Tuesday, August 29, 2006

Forty Years on

As many of you will know forty years ago yesterday on August 28th, 1963, after meeting with President John F. Kennedy, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr delivered his famous "I Have a Dream" speech on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial to a crowd estimated at 250,000.

"I Have A Dream"

Sometime ago now I read Give Me Ten Seconds by John Sergeant and in a chapter titled "I Have A Dream" John Sergeant recalls how he felt as stood listening when Martin Luther King, Jr delivered the speech. John Sergeant recall's his feeling when Martin Luther King, Jr delivered the last paragraph "When we let freedom ring, when we let it ring from every village and every hamlet, from every state and every city, we will be able to speed up that day when all of God's children, black men and white men, Jews and Gentiles, Protestants and Catholics, will be able to join hands and sing in the words of the old Negro spiritual, "Free at last! free at last! thank God Almighty, we are free at last!".

After reading the speech again yesterday I realised that since the sixties we have come a considerable distance on fighting discrimination in many countries including our very own United Kingdom.

However unfortunately people are still being discriminated against and the fight against discrimination must go on. We must continue to fight to ensure that our children have the chance to grow up in a society where everyone is treated equally no matter what their gender, marital status, family status, sexual orientation, religion, age, disability, race, membership of the traveller community, HIV status or political affiliation. So the fight against discrimination and injustice must go

Monday, August 28, 2006

You Are 46% Evil

You are evil, but you haven't yet mastered the dark side.
Fear not though - you are on your way to world domination.

Thursday, August 24, 2006

Compulsory voting: A solution to low turnout or just papering over the cracks?

The second publication in the Hansard Society’s Democracy Series will be launched at a debate on Thursday September 14. Democracy and Voting examines the case for compulsory voting in the UK. Chris Ballinger and Ben Rogers (contributors to the pamphlet) will be debating the pros and cons at a Hansard Society public meeting in Oxford. The meeting will be chaired by Dr David Butler.

The Democracy Series is a major project from the Hansard Society focusing on fundamental concerns about the future of democracy at home and abroad. The Democracy Series draws together contributions from a range of experts and actively encourages people from all sections of society to voice their opinions via a moderated online debate at

Democracy and Voting by Dr Chris Ballinger with commentaries by Dr Ken Ritchie, Professor Helen Margetts and Dr Ben Rogers raises questions about whether compulsory voting would encourage civic engagement or mask underlying alienation from the political system. These issues will be debated on the Democracy Series website ( where the pamphlets can be downloaded free. Anyone with an interest in these vital issues and the way in which our democracy might adapt in the future is encouraged to join the debate.

For further information and to book your place at the launch debate in Oxford on September 14, contact

Sunday, August 20, 2006


The Liberal Democrats will be carrying out a series of interviews with leading Liberal Democrats which will be published on .

The second interview, which has been published, is with the party's Trade and Industry spokesman and chair of the Campaigns and Communications Committee, Ed Davey MP.

People can also send in their questions about the Tax Commission or comments to Ed Davey.

Interview with Ed Davey MP

Saturday, August 12, 2006

Work/Life balance for Councillors

I have just been reading Councillor Karen Hamilton's blog and in her latest post she discusses the Work/Life balance for Councillors. Councillor Karen Hamilton is one of nineteen councillors from the hundred and twenty in Birmingham who is a councillor that manages to hold down a full time job as well.

While Councillors serving on Birmingham city Council are amongst the best paid/reimbursed in the country it is very unfortunate that some of the best cant do more for the council because the pay they receive as councillor is not enough. Just looking at the list of Liberal Democrat Councillors in Birmingham I can think of at least five councillors who unfortunately due to their full-time work cant do more to serve the council or the people of Birmingham.

In her post Councillor Hamilton says "There is so much I want to do and I often have to miss meetings as they are during the daytime. Then there is the mountain of paperwork. You have to really enjoy the work and be committed to public service in order to be a successful councillor" I think we have to seriously consider how we can reduce the amount of bureaucracy anyone dealing with any public body in UK has to put up we also have to consider ways in which we can help people who are elected to public bodies financially so that it is easier for them to give up their fulltime jobs in order to carry out public service.

A lot of people who could be great councillors or cabinet members in the UK are not doing this because the money on offer is just not good enough and I hear a lot people complain about how so many councillors are retired people well given the amount of time that is taken up with attending council meetings, doing casework and campaigning its no surprise that most councillors are people who have retired. Most young people who are still trying to trying to get their careers off the mark and settling down or have a young family will just find it too difficult to do some of what is required of councillors. In UK if we want the best of what society has to offer to be our elected representatives then we must also look at giving our elected representatives something similar to what the best of industry has to offer.

Thursday, August 10, 2006

Holiday Destinations

Today I have been doing some thinking about where I want to go on my holidays in the future I think I have narrowed my list down to 2008 Saudi Arabia, 2009 Malawi & South Africa, 2010 India, 2011 United States of America, 2012 Australia, 2013 Israel/Palestine, 2014 Jordan, 2015 Egypt, 2016 New Zealand, 2017 Russia, 2018 Japan and 2019 Morocco.

Not sure how many of those countries I'll actually get round to traveling to but I would like to visit all those countries at some point in my life even if it’s not in that order.

Wednesday, August 09, 2006

The Student Panel tuition fees survey

The Student Panel recently asked 1009 members of The Student Panel what they thought of the £3,000 tuition fees that are being introduced for new students from this year. Not surprisingly, most of them thought it was a bit steep.

You can read the report at:

Tuesday, August 08, 2006

Brighton 2006 - Training Programme

Last week Colin Ross emailed me to say that he now had the Liberal Democrats 2006 Brighton Autumn Conference Training Programme. Since I will be training in Brighton during conference (my first time at federal conference) I was particularly pleased to know that the training programme was now available. As a trainer its always useful to know where and when you are training. I had a rough idea of what I was training however I was surprised to find that I will be training with Colin Penning and Colin Ross. I was under the impression that I would be training with Miranda Piercy who I trained with at the Agents and Organisers Training Day in Birmingham during July.

I know both Colin Penning and Colin Ross I have known Colin Penning since 2005 when I joined the Liberal Democrats Agents and Organisers Association and I have known Colin Ross since spring 2004 when he trained a module at regional conference that I was at. I have trained a number of times with Colin Ross including the module or something similar to what we will be training at Autumn Conference but this will be the first time I train with Colin Penning.

I will also be training for LDYS. Along with Chris Keating I will be training Winning the Student Vote. I have known Chris since 2004 when I was first elected to the LDYS Federal Executive. At that point Chris was LDYS Vice Chair Campaigns and I was just a General Executive Member. Chris was a great friend who advised me wisely on a lot of the work I did. Since I have not met Chris for sometime I look forward to meeting and training with him at the Liberal Democrats Autumn Conference.

For your information these are modules I’ll be training with others.

Sunday 17th September, 09.15 – 10.45
Treating your Members Well
Colin Penning & Adam Teladia - Agents Association
Glyndebourne 1, Holiday Inn

Sunday 17th September, 11.00 – 12.30
Winning the Student Vote
Come & find out tricks to get more students out to vote & to replicate the successes of seats like Cambridge and Leeds North West
Chris Keating & Adam Teladia - LDYS
Glyndebourne 1, Holiday Inn

Tuesday 19th September, 09.15 – 10.45
Designing your Development and Campaign Plans
Colin Ross & Adam Teladia - Agents Association
Glyndebourne 1, Holiday Inn

Saturday, August 05, 2006

Birmingham City 2-1 Colchester United

As many of you may know today was first day of the football season for most of the Coca-Cola Football League Championship teams. So as a Birmingham City fan I thought that since I had seen Birmingham City’s first game in the Premiership I should go and see the first game in our first (hopefully only) season outside of the top league of English football.

My last trip to St Andrews to see a competitive match was back in September, 2002 when I went to watch Birmingham City loose 3-0 to Newcastle United. The last time I was at St Andrews was in May, 2005 when I went to watch Birmingham City take on a Capital Gold Celebrity XI.

This event was very different from my past two experiences. Birmingham City who started with Taylor in goal, Kelly, N'Gotty, Tebily, Sadler in defence, Danns, Johnson, Clemence, Dunn in midfield and Forssell and Campbell up front got off to an edgy start. Colchester didn’t shy away and defend they attacked Birmingham City and at times put Birmingham City under great pressure. From what I saw I think Steve Bruce is seriously going to have to consider if the midfield Birmingham City started with worked at all.

The pressure was somewhat lifted when Dudley Campbell scored for Birmingham City after thirty minutes when he headed in from a cross by Bruno N'Gotty, however soon after the halftime break Colchester United equalized when Richard Garcia scored.

I think it was the Colchester United goal which forced Steve Bruce to make changes and so Clemence was replaced by Bendtner and Campbell came off for Larsson however not much changed. Bruce then made another substitution when he took of Forssell and bought on Jerome. Unfortunately Jerome didn’t last long as he was sent off less then five minutes after coming on for lashing out at Karl Duguid. After Jerome’s sending off Colchester put Birmingham City under great pressure but Bendtner who is on loan from Arsenal scored the winner for Birmingham when he scored with just eleven minutes to spare.

I thought the result was very harsh on Colchester United who were by far the better team on the day and I hope that players like Johnson, Clemence and Dunn who all had a bad game either re-gain their full fitness (which could have affected thier games) or improve their game before they are allowed to start again.

Wednesday, August 02, 2006

greenbelt homebuilding

Dear Khalid Mahmood,

The Government's latest home building projections look like a troubling first step towards increasing greenbelt homebuilding in the West Midlands region and most unfortunately this is happening at the expense of some of the nation's most beautiful countryside and natural environment.

According to the Campaign to Protect Rural England (CPRE) the latest Government predictions of housing requirements could see fifty percent more land being allocated for house building across the West Midlands over the next twenty five years, with the figures more than doubling in some areas. The damage that these proposed greenfield developments could do to the West Midland's countryside is almost unbearable to think of.

It is vitally important that we build on brownfield sites (many of which can be found in constituencies like the one you represent) and regenerate inner-city areas, so that these areas don’t become derelict and home to street gangs and yobs who spend their time causing nuisances.

We need affordable and sustainable housing but that does not mean that we ruin our rural areas especially while a great number of brownfield sites that are in desperate need of regeneration are left untouched. We need to put preservation of our green land and regeneration of our inner cities before destructive developments.

I hope that you will encourage Birmingham City Council not to build on any greenfield sites while there are still brownfield sites in the city which need regeneration. I would also ask that you call on Birmingham City Council to follow the example of South Shropshire District Council where the council has developed affordable part ownership schemes on brownfield land.

I also hope that you will call on the government to provide support for local councils hoping to regenerate inner-city areas. I would ask that you use your privileged position as an MP to encourage private companies to work in partnership with local councils especially Birmingham City Council to ensure that our inner-cities are regenerated and that we have more affordable and sustainable housing.

Yours sincerely,
Adam Nazir Ahmed Teladia