The Futility Monster

He'll pointlessly derive more enjoyment out of your resources than you

Constitutional Crisis Ahoy?

Posted by The Futility Monster on April 26, 2010 @ 09:24

I'm not sure that's the right metaphor, but hey, it's a picture isn't it?

People like me take great delight whenever we hear the words “constitional” and “crisis” in the same sentence. It’s probably because one day I’d love to see the joke that is the British mostly uncodified constitution unravel before our very eyes, because it makes no allowances for certain provisions.

Clearly, one of those provisions would be if the sitting Prime Minister got significantly fewer votes than everyone else, and still remained the largest party in a hung parliament.

The more cerebral reason why I’d like such an eventuality to occur is that I think it would finally demonstrate to everyone just how stupid our system is. Based upon the blatant fraud that is First Past The Post, and involving ridiculous conventions involving a supposedly neutral head of state who has zero mandate and zero legitimacy, and yet potentially exercising the enormous privilege of asking someone to form a government.

The revolutionary in me would heartily enjoy the head-scratching and conjecture drawn up by civil service mandarins and academic “experts” on the so-called constitution. A few days, or even a few hours, of grave and severe turmoil might finally encourage the British people to demand that, at long last, we get all of our constitution down into a formal document so we can cover these eventualities.

But I’m not at all optimistic about that. First of all, pushing Labour into third place in a General Election will be a mammoth struggle. If the Lib Dems could do it, it would be a remarkable achievement, almost a century after being replaced by the Labour party as the new opposition to the Conservatives. One of the world’s greatest, and longest, fightbacks.

The main obstacle to it, however, is the British people. We’ve had silly election results before from our system, and nobody took a blind bit of notice. Or if they did, the establishment remained resolute that change would not be in our interests. By which they mean, not in their interests. After all, who wants to share power with another party when you can have power all to yourself? Better still, power completely disproportional to the share of the vote you got.

Constitutional crises only occur when there is a dispute over which way we should turn. And they aren’t necessarily a bad thing. In fact, this kind of one would be very good for us.

It would be appropriate, then, that this country, which is so battered and bruised by recession and 13 years of Labour failure, and in such a quandary over what party to elect, should take a moment just to pause and reflect. Let that ambivalence and uncertainty be represented in the election result.

Deliver the politicians a real dilemma. And a real opportunity.

A once in a lifetime  opportunity.

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One Response to “Constitutional Crisis Ahoy?”

  1. Peter Reynolds said

    I have no doubt now that you should be carted off to the Tower for a few weeks miserable incarceration followed inevitably by execution. High Treason is the charge and none of your lily livered, yellow and orange friends can help you now!

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