Friday, 13 February 2009

Questions to Peter Black

Inspired by a recent posting in Liberal England, I have put 20 questions to one of the longest-established political bloggers.

Updated 2009-2-17

What made you decide to start blogging?

I have always looked upon the internet as a useful way of interacting better with my constituents and as a forum to widen the audience for my views and for Liberal Democracy. In the early days I used to have a weekly diary piece on my website. This developed into a proper blog following help and advice from some well-wishers.

What is your best blogging experience?

Not sure that there is such a thing. Winning an award as the best blog by a Lib Dem holding public office at the last Liberal Democrat Conference was nice and a huge surprise.

And your worst?

Not really had a bad experience though the reaction to my post ‘Time for Ming to shape up’ ( took me by surpise.

What do you regard as your best blog entry?

Favourite blogs?

Liberal England and Annie Rhiannon (

What inspired you to go into politics?

I sort of fell into it. I have been active since the age of 14, joined the party because it best matched my liberal beliefs and convictions and then followed through the logic by standing for office to get things done and change things for the better.

You are one of the longest-serving political bloggers in the UK, and one of the top two or three in Wale. How, in your view, has political blogging progressed over the past five years?

There are more people blogging but longevity is not a feature of most blogs. Progress can be measured by the number and diversity of voices in the blogosphere but it remains poorer for the failure of a large number of full time politicians to engage with it.

We seem to hear less from Nick Clegg than we do of Gordon Brown and David Cameron. Why is this?

Not sure if this is true. The media are naturally focussed on the so-called two parties of government but I think Clegg is holding his own.

Is there anywhere abroad which you haven't been to, that you would like to visit?

Lots of places. I would particularly like to go to Italy, which for some reason I have not yet visited.

Is there anywhere abroad you have visited, that you would love to revisit?

San Francisco – great City, wonderful chocolate.

Who, excluding the present leader, do you regard as the best Liberal
Democrat/Liberal/SDP Party leader, and if different, the best Prime

Since I have been active it has to be Ashdown even though I did not vote for him as leader.

Which political figure has been your greatest inspiration?

Not really into this hero-worship, inspiration stuff. All the people who brought me into politics were ordinary activists like my former English teacher. David Penhaligon however stands out for me as somebody who was both inspirational and inspired.

Favourite Bond movie?

Live and Let die

Favorite Doctor Who?

Peter Davison

Chocolate, vanilla, or mint?


Visiting for the weekend?

Laugharne or Bath

Favourite national newspaper?

I read the Western Mail every day out of duty but prefer the Guardian

What would you say your hobbies were?

Don’t much have time for hobbies these days but enjoy watching films and was once reasonably good at chess.

what would you say were your three favourite songs and three favourite
books (bar the Bible and The Complete Works of Shakespeare)?

Bohemian Rhapsody

Smoke on the water

‘How you remind me’ by Nickleback

Catch 22 by Jsoeph Heller

The Passion by Jeanette Winterson

Collected Poems of T.S. Eliot

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