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  • Democracy Is Dead

    Boris,the unelected PM,doing a fair impression of Oliver Cromwell.Doesnt want to know about what MPs want to say but closes down Parliament for the time being so that he can impose his views on the whole country without it being voted on in the Commons.
    I always regarded him as Bonkers Boris but this is taking it too far.

  • #2
    What makes you think that there is (or ever was) any democracy in this country?

    Steve

    Comment


    • #3
      Steve's eternal cynicism aside, this is a very serious issue which I can see leading to civil unrest unless we can put a stop to this dangerous buffoon.

      It will certainly lead to a split in the Conservative Party if he gets his way.

      Comment


      • #4
        Eternal cynicism? Or honesty & realism?

        Steve

        Comment


        • #5
          Steve isnt entirely wrong - the UK's democracy has always rested on the 'gentleman' theory - that people made the right choices and behaved properly. There is a constitution, but its messy, uncodified, depends on the 'good chap' theory a lot of the time and is underwritten by an unelected monarch with all a monarchs powers, but no actual power to say no. These powers essentially end up in the hands of the executive. As Gina Miller puts it, 'As a country we have more of a political constitution than a legal one, and as such it operates via conventions and precedents.'

          If you are willing to break conventions, to lie, to cheat and not care, you will probably get away with it, because if you win, it will be too late to do anything about it. And as, James O'Brien points out, if you do it with a plummy accent, you can get away with anything.

          And since parliamentary procedure is arcane, distant and probably unfit for purpose (the building itself is close to falling down), most voters take little interest. Secrecy is endemic - ministers dont want to reveal anything, and we have little idea who is influencing who. We certainly have little idea about what the government thinks about Brexit or its impact - the EU's minutes, reports and policies are all fully available on their website, whereas the media is addicted to leaks and 'sources'.

          Its further hampered by a First Past the Post system of elections which allows a party to win with essentially no more than 37% of the electorate, but to then harness the full powers of the state. And FPTP tends to concentrate people in overly large parties where the worst instincts tend to come out, and also sets up conflict and a 'winner takes all attitude' over consensus and cooperation. And effectively disenfranchises those who dont vote for the government, or at least the party that will hold a safe seat (which are all too many). If people feel ignored, when you give them the chance to take out their anger on something, they will, no matter how irrational or stupid.

          Our system doesnt really work, and if essentially closing parliament down to force something that nobody voted for by a PM that nobody voted for had happened anywhere else, we would be calling it a coup. The Bulgarians have pointed out as much.

          And we have, on the whole, a truly awful press. Five billionaires (the Barclay Brothers, Rupert Murdoch, Lord Rothermere and a Russian oligarch) essentially control 80% of the UK national press. Two of them are not even British, and the Barclay Brothers effectively live on their own private island in the Channel Islands (trying to fight off demands for tax from HRMC) and Rothermere spent years paying hardly any tax by claiming non dom status in France. And those papers are a large part of the media ecosystem, at least regarding politics, and they bend the coverage of the broadcast media. The BBC, in particular, has been shockingly bad,, not only in their reporting, but even what they chose to report. Look at the Irish media, and its vastly different.

          Brexit didnt just happen - it took time and the dripping of poison, anger, frustration, a false sense of British (actually English) specialness and people given licence to express the very darkest parts of their feelings. And people willing to use that ruthlessly for their own ends, and people who did nothing to stop them.

          Its not just what Johnson has done, or how so many members of his cabinet have gone along with it (having said previously there was no way they would support such a thing), but the fallout. Once those norms have been broken, they cant be mended. Ministers will have Henry VIII powers - they can do a vast amount of damage with absolutely no oversight or limitations. And if power corrupts, absolute power corrupts absolutely.

          We must all resist - write to your MP and demand answers from them. And remember that whatever you might think of Brexit, your MP s being shut out of the place you sent them to do a job on your behalf and hold government accountable - thats the sort of thing that Charles I did, and it did not end well.

          Oh, ans anyone who said that they voted for Brexit to return sovereignty back to Parliament better think what is being done in their name, because it is anything but.

          Comment


          • #6
            It's the MP's who voted against May's 'deals' fault..........

            If they had voted for the majority people's vote, so we had an orderly Brexit, instead of voting against any deals regardless, because they are vehemently against leaving the EU, Boris wouldn't be doing what he feels he has to do...........

            Cameron said, a straight in or out referendum, the personal views of MP's are irrelevant, they are meant to serve us, they (and several non-politicians) are doing themselves no favours by continuously thwarting Brexit.......

            That EU, the faceless, unelected bureaucrats of Brussels don't half make some silly diktats (everyone must obey, without question), like forbidding bent and crooked carrots to be sold in shops and markets, not exactly doing the environment any favours by dumping them back into the ground.........

            Plenty of root vegetables, nothing more good for you, whatever shape they are !..........

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by Mark O View Post
              .... like forbidding bent and crooked carrots to be sold in shops and markets, not exactly doing the environment any favours by dumping them back into the ground.........
              Another 'Daily Mail' inspired Euromyth Mark, which ranks alongside the 'straight banana' nonsense.

              You would really do yourself a favour by doing a little research before posting this sort of stuff Mark.



              Comment


              • #8
                Under our constitution an MP is a representative not a delegate.Thus our idiot of a Tory MP supported the Government on Brexit in the Commons despite the fact that this is a solidly Remain constituency.Hopefully we will be able to get rid of him in the next general election.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by orpheum View Post
                  Boris,the unelected PM
                  Would you use that term to describe *any* PM who succeeds another one of the same party without a General Election? So John Major who succeeded Maggie, Gordon Brown who succeeded Tony Blair.

                  And if he is unelected, what would that make Jermey Corbyn if he was made a caretaker PM? Not only would he be unelected but he'd be a member of the opposition - who *definitely* haven't been elected! I would lose what little faith I have in UK politics if Corbyn was made caretaker PM instead of an immediate general election being called so the public can decide which party (and therefore which party leader) should be in government.

                  Originally posted by narabdela View Post


                  Originally posted by Mark O View Post
                  [begins]
                  .... like forbidding bent and crooked carrots to be sold in shops and markets, not exactly doing the environment any favours by dumping them back into the ground.........
                  [ends]

                  Another 'Daily Mail' inspired Euromyth Mark, which ranks alongside the 'straight banana' nonsense.
                  Even if it was not true, the fact that so many people believe the newspaper stories are true says a lot about the EU's reputation.


                  I passionately believe that the UK should remain part of what was the EEC, a trading alliance of Western European countries. But the rot set in when Maastricht and Amsterdam heralded greater polical, legal and immigration union, and when the EU started to accept countries with very different economies to those of the existing members. Member countries should have been allowed to vote in referenda before those changes were ratified. Sadly at that time, none of the major UK parties (Con, Lab, Lib/SDB) had Eurosceptic policies, so there was no electable party that people could vote for to support any "this far but no further changes" policy. So I'm pro Europe, anti EU.


                  I hope Boris succeeds in getting Brexit through. Ideally I hope he does so with some form of deal - maybe Theresa May's with a watered-down backstop. But failing that, yes, no deal. That is what the majority of voters chose - Brexit rather than Remain - so that is what must be delivered. And let's not have any talk about Brexit being voted for by a minoirtiy of those who were *eligible* to vote. If people choose not to vote, they cannot be part of the decision and should not be *implicitly* counted as being part of either side: for decision-making purposes they are invisible.

                  At least Boris is being forceful and pushing the EU, which is something that I don't get the impression May did. Boris is also not afraid of making it clear who he will blame if we don;t get a deal - the EU for not negotiating: a process which involves both sides abandoning their entrenched positions and meeting half way if necessary. I don't get the impression that the EU (especially Tusk) understand and appreciate that we have a right to our reasons for wanting to leave, even if the EU doesn't agree with them.

                  The last couple of years' negotiations and statements by EU and other EU member countries have reinforced my belief that the country made the right decision to leave. The prospect of a United States of Europe, with increasing sovereignty ceded to the EU and no control on immigration from other EU countries, scares me shitless.
                  Last edited by martinu; 30th August 2019, 04:52 PM.

                  Comment


                  • Shirley Brahms
                    Shirley Brahms commented
                    Editing a comment
                    QUOTE=martinu;n76990] Would you use that term to describe *any* PM who succeeds another one of the same party without a General Election? [/QUOTE]

                    Yes.

                • #10
                  Originally posted by narabdela View Post

                  Another 'Daily Mail' inspired Euromyth Mark, which ranks alongside the 'straight banana' nonsense.

                  You would really do yourself a favour by doing a little research before posting this sort of stuff Mark.


                  I admire your persistence/optimism

                  Comment


                  • #11
                    It's the MP's who voted against May's 'deals' fault.......
                    It was Leaver MP's who voted against May's deal that made the difference. Labour did so because it was a 'Tory Brexit, although their leader essentially wanted the same thing (apart from some brave souls) , but the Tories have a majority, and could have had the votes of perhaps 20 or more Labour MP's. The vast majority of Tory 'rebels' voted with the government. Do you know who didnt? The DUP and the ERG - and the likes of Boris Johnson and Rees Mogg (at least until the final chance to vote on it).

                    Brexit didnt pass because of Remainers , but because leavers could never make up their minds what they wanted, and even when they did, it did not survive reality. They did this for two years, and frankly, are still doing the same thing. They have become talibanised - as someone put it, its like having a teenager being angry at you. At some point its not about anything thats wrong, its just about grievance. No Brexit can ever be good enough, which is why we are where we are.

                    Leavers need to own their mess - nothing to do with remainers in parliament, the civil service etc. And Cameron promised something outside his power - referendums have to be advisory, because parliament is sovereign. As usual, Cameron did something amazingly stupid to get him out a jam, and when he messed up, he just vanished.

                    In Brussels, you have the EU parliament, which you vote for. They have oversight and vote for the heads of commission, who are essentially civil servants (have you ever voted on who will be head of the civil service - me neither). And the Council of MInisters is made up of elected senior politicians from the EU states, including the UK. It should be pointed out that the Queen is hereditry, the House of Lords unelected (especially in the case of the sitting bishops), and that our lack of a proportial system means that a government can be formed on 37% of the vote, or possibly even less.

                    As for 'we voted for it' - the leave campaign promised a 'deal' in its official literature, which was deliberately never spelled out. largely because it didnt exist, and the various factions could not agree. The EU has been consistant, fair and flexible. We have been idiots, arrogant and deluded. And look where its got us. I notice that leavers dont say how great leaving will be, only that we will survive, like the Blitz. And that we have to leave, because we have to....which makes the Tory Party and outriders essentially a millennial death cult.

                    It was won by lying, fraud regarding data capture, and use of information, illegal spending, and possible interference by the Russians (the FBI are pretty sure it took place, just as it did for the US election). The margin of victory was tiny, and has changed from pretty much the moment the vote was taken - now Remain is consistently 6-10 points ahead. And the margin of victory has gone, eaten up by death.

                    Did anyone vote for having empty supermarket shelves? Patients not being able to get drugs or radiotherapy? The death of the car industry? Weakened food regulations? Deaths in Northern Ireland? Perhaps 50% of farms bankrupt and vast piles of culled sheep having to be burnt or bulldozed into giant pits?

                    If you voted for crashing out, then you are deluding yourself, because it was never on offer on any ballot paper, or even mentioned by Leave. They sold a pack of lies, which just barely won an advisory vote, which had it been a general election, would have been so flawed the result would have been thrown out - governments own lawyers admitted that it was flawed, but the advisory nature allowed them to get away with it. And they have had three years to come up with a plan - and are still failing.

                    There have only ever been three alternatives - May 'deal', which will involve a decade of negotiations with our nearest and biggest trading partner (which will be second only to the US in global GDP terms if we leave), no deal, which will be amazingly painful and then likely a decade of negotiation, etc. Or just Revoke Article 50, kill Brexit and survive, and then it will be over.

                    Comment


                    • #12
                      Originally posted by Bonekicker View Post

                      It was Leaver MP's who voted against May's deal that made the difference. Labour did so because it was a 'Tory Brexit, although their leader essentially wanted the same thing (apart from some brave souls) , but the Tories have a majority, and could have had the votes of perhaps 20 or more Labour MP's. The vast majority of Tory 'rebels' voted with the government. Do you know who didnt? The DUP and the ERG - and the likes of Boris Johnson and Rees Mogg (at least until the final chance to vote on it).

                      Brexit didnt pass because of Remainers , but because leavers could never make up their minds what they wanted, and even when they did, it did not survive reality. They did this for two years, and frankly, are still doing the same thing. They have become talibanised - as someone put it, its like having a teenager being angry at you. At some point its not about anything thats wrong, its just about grievance. No Brexit can ever be good enough, which is why we are where we are.

                      Leavers need to own their mess - nothing to do with remainers in parliament, the civil service etc. And Cameron promised something outside his power - referendums have to be advisory, because parliament is sovereign. As usual, Cameron did something amazingly stupid to get him out a jam, and when he messed up, he just vanished.

                      In Brussels, you have the EU parliament, which you vote for. They have oversight and vote for the heads of commission, who are essentially civil servants (have you ever voted on who will be head of the civil service - me neither). And the Council of MInisters is made up of elected senior politicians from the EU states, including the UK. It should be pointed out that the Queen is hereditry, the House of Lords unelected (especially in the case of the sitting bishops), and that our lack of a proportial system means that a government can be formed on 37% of the vote, or possibly even less.

                      As for 'we voted for it' - the leave campaign promised a 'deal' in its official literature, which was deliberately never spelled out. largely because it didnt exist, and the various factions could not agree. The EU has been consistant, fair and flexible. We have been idiots, arrogant and deluded. And look where its got us. I notice that leavers dont say how great leaving will be, only that we will survive, like the Blitz. And that we have to leave, because we have to....which makes the Tory Party and outriders essentially a millennial death cult.

                      It was won by lying, fraud regarding data capture, and use of information, illegal spending, and possible interference by the Russians (the FBI are pretty sure it took place, just as it did for the US election). The margin of victory was tiny, and has changed from pretty much the moment the vote was taken - now Remain is consistently 6-10 points ahead. And the margin of victory has gone, eaten up by death.

                      Did anyone vote for having empty supermarket shelves? Patients not being able to get drugs or radiotherapy? The death of the car industry? Weakened food regulations? Deaths in Northern Ireland? Perhaps 50% of farms bankrupt and vast piles of culled sheep having to be burnt or bulldozed into giant pits?

                      If you voted for crashing out, then you are deluding yourself, because it was never on offer on any ballot paper, or even mentioned by Leave. They sold a pack of lies, which just barely won an advisory vote, which had it been a general election, would have been so flawed the result would have been thrown out - governments own lawyers admitted that it was flawed, but the advisory nature allowed them to get away with it. And they have had three years to come up with a plan - and are still failing.

                      There have only ever been three alternatives - May 'deal', which will involve a decade of negotiations with our nearest and biggest trading partner (which will be second only to the US in global GDP terms if we leave), no deal, which will be amazingly painful and then likely a decade of negotiation, etc. Or just Revoke Article 50, kill Brexit and survive, and then it will be over.
                      A very rational and well-thought out response, Bonekicker and, again, I can only admire your persistence and optimism.

                      Comment


                      • #13
                        Originally posted by Bonekicker View Post

                        It was Leaver MP's who voted against May's deal that made the difference. Labour did so because it was a 'Tory Brexit, although their leader essentially wanted the same thing (apart from some brave souls) , but the Tories have a majority, and could have had the votes of perhaps 20 or more Labour MP's. The vast majority of Tory 'rebels' voted with the government. Do you know who didnt? The DUP and the ERG - and the likes of Boris Johnson and Rees Mogg (at least until the final chance to vote on it).

                        Brexit didnt pass because of Remainers , but because leavers could never make up their minds what they wanted, and even when they did, it did not survive reality. They did this for two years, and frankly, are still doing the same thing. They have become talibanised - as someone put it, its like having a teenager being angry at you. At some point its not about anything thats wrong, its just about grievance. No Brexit can ever be good enough, which is why we are where we are.

                        Leavers need to own their mess - nothing to do with remainers in parliament, the civil service etc. And Cameron promised something outside his power - referendums have to be advisory, because parliament is sovereign. As usual, Cameron did something amazingly stupid to get him out a jam, and when he messed up, he just vanished.

                        In Brussels, you have the EU parliament, which you vote for. They have oversight and vote for the heads of commission, who are essentially civil servants (have you ever voted on who will be head of the civil service - me neither). And the Council of MInisters is made up of elected senior politicians from the EU states, including the UK. It should be pointed out that the Queen is hereditry, the House of Lords unelected (especially in the case of the sitting bishops), and that our lack of a proportial system means that a government can be formed on 37% of the vote, or possibly even less.

                        As for 'we voted for it' - the leave campaign promised a 'deal' in its official literature, which was deliberately never spelled out. largely because it didnt exist, and the various factions could not agree. The EU has been consistant, fair and flexible. We have been idiots, arrogant and deluded. And look where its got us. I notice that leavers dont say how great leaving will be, only that we will survive, like the Blitz. And that we have to leave, because we have to....which makes the Tory Party and outriders essentially a millennial death cult.

                        It was won by lying, fraud regarding data capture, and use of information, illegal spending, and possible interference by the Russians (the FBI are pretty sure it took place, just as it did for the US election). The margin of victory was tiny, and has changed from pretty much the moment the vote was taken - now Remain is consistently 6-10 points ahead. And the margin of victory has gone, eaten up by death.

                        Did anyone vote for having empty supermarket shelves? Patients not being able to get drugs or radiotherapy? The death of the car industry? Weakened food regulations? Deaths in Northern Ireland? Perhaps 50% of farms bankrupt and vast piles of culled sheep having to be burnt or bulldozed into giant pits?

                        If you voted for crashing out, then you are deluding yourself, because it was never on offer on any ballot paper, or even mentioned by Leave. They sold a pack of lies, which just barely won an advisory vote, which had it been a general election, would have been so flawed the result would have been thrown out - governments own lawyers admitted that it was flawed, but the advisory nature allowed them to get away with it. And they have had three years to come up with a plan - and are still failing.

                        There have only ever been three alternatives - May 'deal', which will involve a decade of negotiations with our nearest and biggest trading partner (which will be second only to the US in global GDP terms if we leave), no deal, which will be amazingly painful and then likely a decade of negotiation, etc. Or just Revoke Article 50, kill Brexit and survive, and then it will be over.
                        When you say 'possible interference by the Russians' (with EU Referendum and the USA Presidential Election), could someone please explain in what way did they 'interfere' ?..........

                        I'm shaking my head, trying to fathom what the Russians did, no representative contacted me and told me what I should for !........

                        I can recall a time when the USSR held it's iron grip on Eastern Europe, any dissent and it was met with brute, military force, remember Czechoslovakia 1968 ?........

                        Comment


                        • #14
                          Originally posted by Mark O View Post



                          I'm shaking my head, trying to fathom what the Russians did, no representative contacted me and told me what I should for !........
                          Are you suggesting that 'interference' in the 21 century requires each individual voter to be contacted separately and asked to vote one way or the other?

                          Comment


                          • #15
                            In unelected PMs i would add Lloyd George1916 and Churchill 1940

                            Comment


                            • Tonch
                              Tonch commented
                              Editing a comment
                              ...for some reason, no one ever seems to mention Jim Callaghan (1976).
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