Saturday, 5 November 2011

Why I've left 38Degrees

I joined the online campaign organisation 38Degrees well over a year ago. But yesterday I finally made the decision to leave.

For a while now I've been a bit exasperated by the way 38Degrees has been behaving. For example, inundating individual members of the House of Lords with exactly the same email from thousands of 38Degrees members is exactly the wrong way to get them to listen to concerns about legislation and exactly the right way to get them to just delete all of the emails without reading them.

On top of that, during their campaign against the NHS reforms they commissioned detailed legal advice which reviewed the NHS reforms. The legal advice came back and said that most of the problems 38Degrees were campaigning against (such as the idea that the NHS would be privatised) weren't actually an issue as changes to the legislation had already resolved them.

But instead of listening to this advice, 38Degrees kept on sending out emails to their members (such as me) saying that the NHS was about to be privatised. And then they launched this massive campaign to get the House of Lords to reject the legislation as soon as it reached them. But that's not how it works, if a parliamentarian objects to legislation they'll still vote to allow it to be debated as that then allows the legislation to be amended to tackle the problems that they're concerned about. And so, predictably, a lot of the peers who were inundated with emails claiming that allowing the NHS reforms to be debated would mean the end of the NHS decided to just ignore any future emails from 38Degrees as they knew that what was being said in them wasn't true at all.

So that was my first beef with them. But I still stuck with them, signing petitions when I agreed with the campaign issue.

But yesterday I found out about something which really pissed me off. You see, 38Degrees members get to vote to decide what to campaign on. There's this huge list of issues suggested by members and the ones which get the most votes become official campaigns.

Well, in the last vote, the issue that came top was the cuts to benefits for disabled people - something that will cause real hardship for thousands of people who will be unable to cope with it. But, instead of campaigning on this issue, 38Degrees cancelled all the results and started the voting again from scratch, and this time they got the answer they wanted - the NHS reforms emerged as the top campaign issue.

Now, I don't object to them campaigning on the NHS, but it is a disgrace that they ignored the plight of around 2 million long term sick and disabled while happily campaigning to protect a few trees from being sold off to private companies.

As far as I'm concerned, 38Degrees has lost its way. And I'm not going to have any part in it any more.

40 comments:

  1. I gave up 38 degrees some months ago as they are not democratic in anyway as all they push is anything which suits their own political leanings ignoring others.

    Avaaz is far better

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    1. I just gave them up. Tried to start a campaign to sack the Lord Chief Justice, using the evidence from shyreman.com. They kept denying there was any evidence in my claims, all their arguments were opaque - no real intent to study matters forensically. Makes me think they are full of fawning lawyers ready to replace one bad set of bad people with their own set of bad people.

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    2. I did not like their comments when I wanted to start a campaign. They wanted me to dilute it. If I had allowed myself to be manipulated by these individuals it would have been pointless sending out the petition. I am not going to be dictated to by a bunch of smarmy establishment boot lickers. They are rude, domineering and disrespectful.

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    3. I complained to 38 DEGREES about a petition which they are currently running (05 / 01 / 2017) and asked them to remove the petition and all signatures. Parts of the petition contain erroneous information and therefore misleads in the campaign to gain signatures. I used the offered "FLAG THIS PETITION" (twice) to report the misleading petition. I had no reply and the said petition is still live and asking for signatures. I have now contacted 38 DEGREES using their supplied email address - I’ve since only received an automatic confirmation - otherwise no response. Problem now, which group do I contact to complain about 38 DEGREES allowing an erroneous petition to remain?

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    4. It should come as no surprise that the people controlling 38 Degrees have connections with the globalist control-freak and psychopathic international criminal George Soros. http://www.theartofannihilation.com/avaaz-imperialist-pimps-of-militarism-protectors-of-the-oligarchy-trusted-facilitators-of-war-part-ii-section-iii/

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  2. I totally agree. I watched the whole debacle of the 38 degrees campaign about disability benefits as it unfolded - there were three seperate campaign ideas - all saying similar things, they apparently tried to merge two of them and in the process thousands of votes "disappeared" and despite many people contacting them about it and offering many solutions to how the "mistake" could be fixed they didn't fix it. They initially promised to act on the campaign idea anyway, then totally ignored it - and all members attempts to find out why.

    I too will be unsubscribing, as will all my family and friends.

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  3. I'm a disabled benefit claimant and I'm also very unhappy with this apparent sleight of hand by 38 degrees over campaigning against benefits cuts. However, abandoning the campaign altogether sounds a bit of a baby and bathwater situation to me. Maybe it's just getting a bit too embarrassing for Lib Dems to be members when so many of the issues being protested are being supported by Lib Dems in parliament?

    As for writing to the Lords this is a red herring. Remember the emails don't all come from 38 degrees itself, they come from individuals. Standard wording in all of them yes so I wouldn't expect a recipient to read every single word of every single email. The idea is that peers realise how many people support that point of view. If they don't like it then that's another nail in their coffin of irrelevance as far as I'm concerned.

    What exactly are the changes that remove any possibility of 'privatisation' of the NHS? I genuinely don't know and would like to. As far as I can see the fundamental change of the Sec of State becoming an 'enabler' rather than a provider, along with the extension of foundation hospitals and their ability to treat private patients provides quite a lot of scope for effective privatisation in my book. I would like to know what has changed because I've obviously missed it.

    As for GP commissioning that's just plain daft. GPs are in no position to take this role on and will inevitably hire consultants to do it for them. This is not privatisation of health care itself but very much will be a privatisation of commissioning which is a vital area of the NHS. And it will cost a fortune as the consultants cream off their profits.

    I'm afraid if I had been a Lib Dem member it is that organisation I would be leaving. This claim of 'taming the Tory Right' is looking increasingly hollow as Lib Dem MPs repeatedly vote for the Tory Right's proposals. Legal Aid cuts, welfare cuts, dismantling of green initiatives, the list goes on.

    I hope you feel that's all a price worth paying for your party's local representation being wiped out at the last council elections. I had a great deal of respect for the Lib Dem councillors in Nottingham, they managed to gain influence beyond their numbers by a mixture of campaigning and constituency work. But they've all gone now.

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    1. Excellent comment.

      Delete
    2. Your comments are why internet discussions and campaigns can be so great, real people speaking truthfully. Thanks for that, and you do have my sympathy.

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    3. They are always after your money as well you don't pay money to sign petitions

      Delete
  4. Here are some of the comments from the 38 degrees site -

    If you add together the 4 top campaign ideas under the poverty and welfare catogery which relate to DLA and all relate to the same objective of not abolishing it and changing it to PIP, it has a total of 4,687 votes which is 1,484 more than the top campaign idea on the entire campaign ideas list.I echo Broken of Britain's question, so what is the point of voting for a campaign idea if its not going to be instigated when it becomes top of your list. With such a large number of votes it's obviously going to have a major impact on a HUGE number of people.
    Until we put compassion for those who can't speak up for themselves at the heart of the next campaign and do it for them, we lose our basic humanity. One person dying (which has already happened) is one too many imo.Saving that one life (stranger,family member or friend makes no difference) is more important than (AT THIS MOMENT) fast train schemes etc, even though those things ARE extremely important too.
    Many of the suggestions have/are receiving a lot of high profile, vast public campaigning and political debate, with money as well to back some of them....the chronically and sick are not.
    Now I think its their turn.


    People need benefits to eat, clothe, and shelter themselves. We need DLA to pay for the higher costs we face by dint of being disabled - and those costs are manifold. I guess most of the respondents aren't disabled, and many of the rest either don't care about what they don't see, or are taken in by the press image of us.

    contd in next comment...

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  5. How are the people in care homes supposed to have their spirits lifted by a tree when they have lost their means of leaving their home? How are housebound disabled people supposed to access a library when they can't pay the rent? It is always the case of I'm all right Jack just hope it stays that way.

    And disabled people need benefits to survive. I care about trees and libraries too, but come on.

    totally disgusted. The campaign idea to 'stop the abolition of Disablity living allwance' had over 5,500 votes and other campaign ideas relating to the same objective had approx 3,000 votes by REGISTERED forum members. You then messed them up ,not once but twice.These were way above the next largest campaign idea on legal aid. The campaign idea 'Dont hand our NHS over to private individuals called GPs' had 147 votes!!
    May I suggest you completly remove the campaign ideas forum if you are then going to throw the voting system open to non registered people so i and other dont waste our time , just for the effort of then being sidelined.
    I AM NOT against the NHS being a priority campaign, just think you ought to find a) a better way of drawing up your campaign shortlist (not word count) b) then the voting process of the shortlist.
    With the precious little energy I have I( having severe ME) it will be better spent elsewhere like cleaning my teeth,so I wont be bothering with this site anymore.

    I'm beginning to lose interest in this site as it seems they will fly enthusiastically into any campaign that's easy to gain support for but shy away from benefits campaigns as they only affect the poorest and most vulnerable in society, with the Tory rhetoric about 'scroungers and the feckless poor' we aren't that popular at the moment. To place badgers above the disabled just shows me where their priorities lie. Populist rubbish!

    contd in next comment...

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  6. there was a supposed explanation as to the undermining of this campaign idea on Facebook yesterday. It was said that the matter would be sorted this morning. It hasn't happened. This campaign suggestion should have topped 2000 votes by now instead it is back where it started almost two months ago. Most of the original votes are still lodged in the DLA 'complaint' made by crazymum. When are 38 degrees going sort this out? This is an urgent and important campaign idea. People on DLA are desperate for a glimmer of light. I have no doubt it is a genuine human rights issue.

    38 Degrees completely undermined the most popular 'campaign idea' namely the campaign for the retention of DLA! Committed members went to the trouble of putting up the campaign idea, voting on it and posting the reasons why. Some of those postings make harrowing reading.

    DLA should be important too - tie in to another campaign if necessary. People are going to die if they cut this - it's absolutely criminal. Stand up for the disabled!

    Really, really sad that more people care about libraries than disabled people. I care about both, but for me the higher priority is people with disabilities having independence, financial stability and a decent quality of life.


    DAVID BABBS 38 degrees EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR'S reply - 7 months ago -

    I understand your concern, but there's good news there too - over 90% of 38 Degrees members think we should campaign on it either a lot or a little. So whilst it won't be priority number 1, we will definitely be getting involved.


    That was 7 months ago. Nothing has happened and now it isn't even a choice when they are asking members what should be the next campaign!!

    The campaign idea is still there. It has 3048 votes, in March this year it should have had over 5,500 votes but they didn't add them on when all the mistakes happened. That was 7 months ago and more people have voted for it since then.

    Yet, they continue to ignore it.

    And yet again disabled people are facing discrimination.

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  7. @allnottinghambasearebelongtous

    There's no point in staying in a campaign organisation that ignores the views of its members and focuses on what would appear to be the ideological aims of the people running it rather than what's important.

    I'm a Lib Dem who disagrees with the NHS reforms. That means that campaigning to change the government's policy is exactly the kind of thing I want to do. But I'm not an idiot. These changes will not privatise the NHS and over the top hyperbole is damaging to the campaign. As is ignoring your own legal advice.

    If you want peers to know how many people are concerned about something then organise a massive petition and forward it to them. But having your email inbox spammed with the same message again and again will only put people's backs up.

    Now Lib Dems are opposing legal aid cuts and our party policy, passed near unanimously in September, is now to oppose the ESA cuts. If you object to things like cutting child benefit for wealthy households then I'm afraid we're on a different page when it comes to fairness.

    As for cutting green initiatives, that's bullshit. There's a Green Investment Back, a home insulation scheme, Carbon Capture and Storage and legally binding targets to cut CO2 harder than any other country in europe. The only area where we've gone backwards on is the Feed in Tariff - and hopefully that's something that'll be changed.

    And no, I don't think that those achievements on there own are worth the blow we (including my local party) suffered in May, but I think that ending child detention for immigration purposes, increasing capital gains tax for millionaires, rolling back the authoritarian database state, restoring the earnings link to pensions, providing equal maternity leave for both parents, introducing a poor pupils premium, increasing the tax threshold to take a million people out of income tax, finally finishing our century old mission to reform the lords and protecting foreign aid spending are.

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    1. "There's no point in staying in a campaign organisation that ignores the views of its members and focuses on what would appear to be the ideological aims of the people running it rather than what's important."

      The same could be said of the current British political system but unfortunately we are stuck with that (for the moment).

      Mr. Potter, how do you feel now the NHS has since been indeed - to all intents and purposes - privatised?

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  8. George, nice to see you standing up for disabled people again. When I blogged about this in frustration yesterday I thought one or two people might agree, but it seems that there's a huge undercurrent of anger amongst disabled people who feel 38 Degrees have betrayed us because we simply aren't trendy enough. There's a word for that, disablism, or two words, disability discrimination.

    It's been clear government policy to demonise disabled benefit claimants (and ultimately all disabled people) through the media for the past several years, a campaign whose results can be seen in the booming disability hate crime statistics. If 38 Degrees have let themselves be perverted by that campaign of hatred, then what hope is there for them?

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  9. George, you didn't answer my question. How has the NHS Bill been changed to remove any chance of privatisation of the NHS by stealth? I still see many opportunities for this to happen.

    Of course privatisation won't be overt, politically the electorate would never accept that. But covert privatisation really does look possible if the NHS Bill becomes law, at least partially. And of course it will continue in future because such huge changes happen in changes.

    "Now Lib Dems are opposing legal aid cuts"

    How? Only 10 Lib Dems voted in support of Legal Aid for welfare benefit cases, less than a quarter of your MPs.

    "...our party policy, passed near unanimously in September, is now to oppose the ESA cuts"

    It's very easy to come up with nice popular policies at party conferences but it remains to be seen whether it translates into votes that matter. Although I understand that your amendment was opposed pretty much tooth and nail by your party's top brass which isn't very encouraging.

    The WCA was made stricter by amendment to the ESA Regs in February this year. I know this was secondary legislation so didn't require a vote in Parliament but it demonstrates how little say your party has in government.

    And yes I know the groundwork for that amendment was started under Labour but I haven't any time for them either and I'm similarly unimpressed with their damp squib efforts in opposition.

    And how did this alleged opposition to ESA cuts translate into actual votes in Parliament? I realise the journey isn't finished yet but the bill has passed every stage it's been through so far. Any significant opposition will be whipped into oblivion.

    "If you object to things like cutting child benefit for wealthy households then I'm afraid we're on a different page when it comes to fairness."

    The Child Benefit cuts were tokenism and will only save small change, not least due to the increase in administration costs that any form of means testing entails. It will also reduce even further any residual support for the welfare system that remains in the middle classes which, of course, was the real reason for it. Ask anybody with any knowledge of social policy and they will tell you that the more you narrow the scope of welfare provision the less support it has and the easier it is to sell further cuts. It's like a win-win for the right wing.

    In addition of course, Lib Dems stood by when Tax Credits were cut which does of course hurt the lower paid. I'm very glad to be 'on a different page when it comes to fairness' in such circumstances.

    "As for cutting green initiatives, that's bullshit"

    Temper, temper George. The cuts to feed-in tariffs is pretty major and carbon capture and storage is unproven at best and highly dangerous at worst. As is gas fracking which seems to be the next big thing. Home insulation schemes have been around for years and the coalition can't take credit for them. This is a long way from being the greenest government ever.

    I'm afraid Lib Dems have gone from being a (small) part of the solution to being very much part of the problem and I find that extremely depressing. My vote for them at the General Election now feels like a huge mistake and I very much feel betrayed.

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  10. It's David Babbs from 38 Degrees here. I've just posted the comment below on David Gillon's original blog post (http://davidg-flatout.blogspot.com/2011/11/disabled-people-betrayed-by-38-degrees.html#comments)

    We have not "cancelled the results" of a previous poll. We run fresh polls every month or so, quite often with different options if new potential campaign ideas have arisen. This is so that we keep an up to date picture of what 38 Degrees members want to be working on.

    You can read more about how 38 Degrees members shape what 38 Degrees campaigns here: http://38degrees.org.uk/pages/faq/

    There's a detailed explantion of how the campaign suggestion forum "uservoice" works here: http://www.38degrees.org.uk/suggest-a-campaign

    And you can read news stories (and view stats) for past polls here: http://blog.38degrees.org.uk/tag/future-campaigns/


    I'm not sure why you think our legal advice confirmed that most of the problems with the NHS legislation have already been resolved. I think our legal team would be quite surprised to read that interpretation!

    I am sorry to hear that you have decided to leave 38 Degrees. But that's obviously up to you.

    --

    My comment on David Gillon's blog:


    Hi, it's David Babbs from 38 Degrees here. I am sorry it has taken some time to reply to this debate. The whole 38 Degrees office has been very busy pulling together the latest stage of our NHS campaign which needed to go live today in time for a debate in the House of Lords this Wednesday.

    To be honest, not including welfare cuts in this month's member poll was a mistake. The member of the office team in charge of preparing the poll this month was in a car accident last weekend (she will be okay, but it was quite nasty and she's currently still off work). In the scramble to get the poll out in her absence we left a couple of things off by mistake. We couldn’t add an extra issue in half way through as that would have definitely badly skewed all the results.

    I don't think the omission actually matters that much in the practice – though I am very sorry for the negative impression it has caused. We have polled the 38 Degrees membership around this issue several times before and I feel pretty sure on the basis of all that information that if we can find a way in which 38 Degrees members can make a real difference to this campaign, they will want to take part. The office team is already actively looking at ways we can contribute to this campaign, and we are in touch with many organisations active in this area. That won’t stop because of this omission.

    There are two main reasons why we haven't done more on welfare cuts and their impact on disabled people so far. The first is that we are still only small and can only do a very limited number of things at once. The NHS campaign has been massive, and has been quite a struggle for us to keep on top of it. I wish we had more staff so we could do more. The second issue has been trying to work out where 38 Degrees members could add value to the excellent work already being done by other groups already. We don't want to simply duplicate (or even worse dilute) the great work of groups like Hardest Hit and Broken of Britain. We don't want to just do something for the sake of being seen to do something to.

    The implication that we're in some way deliberately skewing the results of polls/ignoring past poll results because of some bias against disabled people is wrong. To be honest I find it a bit upsetting to read this accusation. As we explain on the uservoice forum, where an issue is popular we poll our membership on it in other ways. We don't rely on uservoice alone for two reasons: firstly most 38 Degrees members don't regularly visit so it isn't necessarily representative, and secondly non-members can vote which can skew the results. The DLA issue has been very high on uservoice for some time, which has led to us including it in several member polls since.

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    1. Well said david. Its a thankless task trying to engage a nation in reform. Together our complacency has lead us to this hostile uncaring state. together we must be the solution. This lap top revolution needs all of our physical interaction with rallys and support. Our vulnerable neighbours need to know that we are supporting even if its just a kind word. We have an almighty mountain to climb in so many ways to bring the compassionate change we all need. Lets help each other. I have complete faith that 38 degrees are doing their absolute best. We all need to have faith and support. Compliments of our wonderful government and their corporation leader ship for leaving our disabled in an inhuman mess and our country in complete ruin.

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  11. allnottinghambasearebelongtous there have been lots of ammendments and alterations. Our of 14 changes proposed by the Social Liberal Forum (driven by Evan Harris and Shirely Williams) I think 12 have been implemented and the 13th seems likely to be implemented soon.

    If you want more detail than that you'll have to research it yourself though.

    With regards to legal aid, it might only be ten MPs rebelling but that's because the method we're pursuing is to amend the legislation rather than blocking it. Wait and see what happens when it goes through the lords.

    RE ESA, I suggest you read my other blogposts on the subject. Suffice it to say that Lib Dem conference is sovereign on policy and that there is a /lo/ of campaigning going on in order to get the changes made to the Welfare Reform Bill.

    When it comes to benefits in general I suggest you wait to see the outcome of the universal credit but in the meantime I think it should suffice to point out that we are currently blocking conservative attempts to increase benefits at a rate lower than inflation.

    About green initiatives the fact is that what you said is bullshit in the sense that there is no substance behind the claim.

    Carbon Capture and Storage technology is developed and safe - the issue is implementing it on a commercial scale. Fracking is something that has been proposed by a few people and I highly doubt it will be allowed. So I suggest you wait for the outcome before criticising over that.

    In any event, the Green Investment Bank, legally binding targets to cut CO2 beyond the rates proposed by any other european countries and a national Green Deal which includes loans for home insulation which will only be repayed through the money saved on heating bills are all things that have never been done before. Now, if you want to criticise us for not going far enough then fine. But to claim that we are going backwards when we have obviously made massive leaps forwards is utterly ridiculous.

    Finally, thank you for voting for us last time. All I want to say is that if you'd voted for us in any general election prior to 2010 you would have seen zero of the policies you voted for implemented. Now we have 75% of our policies being implemented despite having only 9% of the seats in parliament. If you're not satisfied about the other 25% not being implemented then the solution is to persuade more people to vote for us so that we can get even more of our policies implemented.

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  12. And, just to prove what I said about fracking:

    http://www.libdemvoice.org/pugh-fracking-safety-fears-25839.html

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  13. Thank you for taking a stand against 38degree's over there totally ignoring the pleas of many disabled people to share our petition about the Welfare reform bill. And I also agree that getting people to send exactly the same email is not going to help anyone. They clearly have their own agenda and are not the voice of the people they are making out they are.

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  14. 'We don't want to simply duplicate (or even worse dilute) the great work of groups like Hardest Hit and Broken of Britain.'

    When did increasing support for an idea dilute it?

    I would condemn it, but words actually fail me. It isn't possible to articulate the contempt I have for that statement.

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  15. I wonder what is really going on with 38 degrees, what political agenda it is running along. It is certainly not for the people, per se. The issue over the disabled is far greater than the NHS distraction. Something going here that we are not being told about. Somehow all things appear to fit, that is certain victories claimed over government that I feel government were going to change their minds upon left to its autocratic self.


    38 degrees is making us think that it can change the mind of parliament, and for the better. This is not the case. Parliament will do what parliament decides to do, and if someone says something that parliament believes is in its own interest, parliament will run with that, after all parliament speaks down to us, parliament constituted as an autocoracy, not democracy, which 38 degrees fails to mention, to mention the 1911 Parliamentary Act.

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  16. 38 degrees do not listen to what you have to say. They keep asking the same old questions. They have their own agenda. All they care about is the themselves. They are not there for the masses. They are a waste of time.

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  17. I followed a link on an email from 38 degrees, about the European elections, today, to a site called 'votematch' where after answering the questions I was somewhat surprised and annoyed to see the headline statement say something along the lines of 'you agree with UKIP on a range of issues' ! when I examined the results more closely I discovered that the party whose policies I had most matches with was The Scottish Nationalist party, 3 times as many matches as UKIP ! I hope my results are registered more accurately in the published survey results than in the answer I got !

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  18. The 38 degree site used to be much easier to navigate. Where for exmaple do we now comment on propsed campaigns. We can suggest one. We can vote for one but comment on suggested ones seems to be no longer a possibility.

    I am becoming increasingly concerned with its left wing, PC, green issue, pro immigration bias. But where do members discuss these things?

    And why does 38 degrees not have its own forum I don't want to use twitter and facebook.

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  19. The 38 degrees of convoluted dissent...yep, went along today in Bristol, to a "grass roots meeting..." Almost everyone was concerned with corruption and sleaze within the upper echelons of the ruling classes...but, ...the organisers steered it all towards...the NHS...and how to organise marches and demos. Looks like a pantomime, smells like a farce.

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  20. So giving up an avenue of political voice is good, no it is short sighted immature and self defeatist. Look at the many successful campaigns it has run. Yes it will skip some ideas, but after all who needs the drumming of groups like UKIP or Britain First filling out forms on the internet to raise a campaign, we don't they get far too much coverage of their antisocial behaviour, so I'm happy not to have their rubbish, but Long live the team at 38 Degrees who give the ordinary man a voice.

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  21. I can only echo what the above comments already say about Action 38 degrees. There is definitely something strange about the way they send out their emails. After signing an education petition they sent me an NHS one yesterday, when I opened the email came up as 'Oops, wrong URL' then it took me back to an Etsy account for a shop I am concerned about. All very dodgy, I unsubscribed from them yesterday. I would urge anyone else who has concerns about them to contact Action Fraud online.

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  22. I quickly found this thread and decided against donating to 38degrees. Who are Ya'll donating to at the moment if not 38degrees? Can I be lazy and just give part of my disdabilty benefit to Oxfam?

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  23. I feel the Lib Dems have done untold damage to the country in their capitulation to the Tories. Support 38 Degrees and don't vote Lib Dem. I made the latter mistake last time - never again. Never, never, never.

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  24. NHS: Interested parties should google for NHS Federation. Their occasional newsletter tells me what is happening - private contracts awarded, etc.

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  25. I've joined 38 Degree recently, going to meetings (well one last month and one this month), precisely due to the points outlined above - ie point these things out and attempt to steer them away from conspiracy theories. I've also highlighted out misinformation in regional civ lib groups (Bristol, Swindon, Devizes). This got me both thanked and kicked out of an anti-fracking group - no neutrality tolerated there. Other reactions vary. When people have got their heart set on doing something, they don't like being told what they're campaigning against isn't real. Still, I feel it's important to use my vote in these organisations, to help offset the tide before we all get washed away.

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  26. I have today left 38 degrees - the alleged 'scrapping' of the Human rights act being the final straw. As far as I am aware, there is no agenda to 'scrap' the human rights act, but rewrite some parts of it to make our country a safer place. I believe that 38 degrees use scaremongering tactics to appeal to the more radical or less educated factions of our society. I feel I can no longer tolerate this obviously very biased organisation..

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    1. If the Tories disagree with the the Human Rights Act and the protection of the ECHR, then why don't they tell us what the new British Bill of Rights will be? Surely they know the parts they disagree with... Sorry, but to me, the snooping charter along with the diminishing of human rights and Trade Union laws are revealing of a paty which has overwhelmingly served establishment interests for the majority of their history. They don't question Milton's economic model/the free market when it clearly serves the banks/elite. They privatise at the public's behest (see East Coast Line). Please stop demeaning the intelligence and understanding of 38 Degrees members like myself; it is a massive presumption and generalisation about a wide-ranging group of people (mainly volunteers) who want to affect positive change. Try watching Pride (2014) and understand the importance of solidarity in making change. Where I live, people are seeking to come together over issues rather than divide over smaller details. Before anyone shoots me down for that smaller details point, I am unemployed, disabled, and have no access to benefits. Reading some of the comments on here, you would think that the 38 Degrees organisation was an enemy of the people. It's ludicrous in my opinion. They have campaigns orgainsed by members and local groups supported by the London organisers. Should I be annoyed that they haven't sorted everything out for Schizophrenics because I am one? People are doing what they can to help; rather than criticise, take part (if not 38 Degrees, someone else or set up your own group). It's easy to criticise, it takes much more to act.

      Delete
  27. Quote from OP - "As far as I'm concerned, 38Degrees has lost its way. And I'm not going to have any part in it any more."

    As a member of the Liberals and then Libdems since the early 70's, I'm afraid I can express the exact same sentiments about our party.
    Tom Corbett

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    Sex :………….
    Address............
    Tel :………….
    Occupation :……..
    Amount Required :…………
    Purpose of the Loan :……..
    Loan Duration :…………
    Phone Number :………
    Contact email: finance2014911@gmail.com



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  29. They are controlled opposition and it is pointless doing Petitions through them as they want you to dilute them. They are an annoying bunch of control freaks, worse than the corporations that I deal with. They are obstructive and a waste of space.

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  30. This comment has been removed by the author.

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I'm indebted to Birkdale Focus for the following choice of words:

I am happy to address most contributions, even the drunken ones if they are coherent, but I am not going to engage with negative sniping from those who do not have the guts to add their names or a consistent on-line identity to their comments. Such postings will not be published.

Anonymous comments with a constructive contribution to make to the discussion, even if it is critical will continue to be posted. Libellous comments or remarks I think may be libellous will not be published.

I will also not tolerate personation so please do not add comments in the name of real people unless you are that person. If you do not like these rules then start your own blog.

Oh, and if you persist in repeating yourself despite the fact I have addressed your point I may get bored and reject your comment.

The views expressed in comments are those of the poster, not me.