The changing outlooks of Britain

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The Independent Online
John Selley, 47, a retired policeman who works as a miniaturist in Presteigne, Powys: conservative, with authoritarian tendencies. "My lifestyle and work is so off-beam I've always thought I was liberal in outlook. The only thing about me that people may say is conservative is my opposition to merger with Europe."

Guy Peppiatt, 30, watercolour expert at Sotheby's: libertarian. "I'm fairly apolitical and don't always vote. I agree with some things different parties say, but never agree with everything any particular party says. Government should have as little to do with people's lives as possible."

Jeffrey Archer, Lord Archer of Weston-super-Mare, safely in the conservative camp, but with socialist leanings. "I'm pleased to learn I am conservative on economic issues and socialist on personal matters. There is no doubt people do not want extreme right or extreme left politics. I don't think they even want politicians any more."

The Rev Margaret Hall, vicar at Ashley Green, near Chesham, Bucks: libertarian. "It sounds awful to be described as a libertarian. I feel government should be involved in some areas but not others. I support the NHS, but not identity cards."

Peter Tatchell, gay rights activist: libertarian, with a slight conservative leaning on economic matters. "I have always thought of myself as a libertarian socialist. Political boundaries have always been blurred. Any label is a generalisation."

Claire Wright, probation officer in London: libertarian. "It is right to say I'm a libertarian. Being libertarian is a luxury - if you're well off it's OK, but if you're a single mother on benefit trying to get a loan it's a different matter."

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