Andrew Rawnsley wrote a piece in the Observer this morning that answered no questions but ended with the comment:
The centre is not dead. It is dazed and confused. It needs fresh ideas and more engaging ways of expressing itself. It will get its voice back one day.
I have never seen much merit in the centre, per se: being neutral has no inherent merits when there are clearly issues on which stands have to be taken. But, if he is portraying the centre as anything between Corbyn and Farage (and he is, describing it as the liberal centre in other parts of the piece) then it is obvious where it things have gone wrong. It's misunderstanding of the word liberal that has waylaid the centre.
Don’t get me wrong: I am a social liberal and always have been. Nothing I say here changes that. The difficulty is that the centre forgot the difference between being a liberal and being libertarian. Without disappearing deep into theory it’s my contention that these two are nothing like the same thing. Liberalism, broadly speaking, is about respect for the ideas of others, equality and the freedom to live as one wishes so long as others are not harmed. On the other hand libertarianism, as I see it, is about the primacy of the individual and their right to action.