The Futility Monster

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

This Must Be Stopped

Posted by The Futility Monster on May 29, 2010 @ 10:22

All shall bow before the Ermine!

Yesterday’s unveiling of the dissolution peerage lists has to be the last time we see this kind of thing happening.

The list is a veritable Who’s Who? of the failed, the disgraced, the defeated and the meddling ones who had decided they wanted to continue to be in politics but not have to face the trifling inconvenience of facing the electorate by defending their seat.

The Labour list is particularly galling.

  • Quentin Davies: turncoat, couldn’t bring himself to face the certain defeat that was the consequence of his defection
  • John Hutton: couldn’t hack it any more in the Commons, apparently, so send him to the Lords instead…
  • Jim Knight: defeated
  • Tommy McAvoy: Gordon Brown lackey rewarded
  • John Prescott: expenses, so-called class warrior being unable to refuse the temptation of the ermine
  • John Reid: retired, wants to continue meddling
  • Angela Evans Smith: defeated
  • Michael Wills: Gordon Brown lackey rewarded

The Lib Dem and Tory appointments are not much better, but at least there are fewer of them.

The House of Lords is treated as a play-thing by party leaders as yet another weapon of patronage at their disposal. The sad thing is that, at the same time, the country appears to be woefully ignorant of the fact that these very generous gestures are not the equivalent of giving someone a nice title so we can call them Sir.

Oh no. It is conferring on them the potential of a lifelong seat at the expenses trough, and with the potential for continuing to influence government and legislation way after their democratic mandates have run their course.

That should be an embarrassment to our democracy.

The House of Lords has zero legitimacy. Our ancestors recognised that a century ago and tried to do something about it.

A century later and we’re still waiting.

The time for commissions and inquiries is over. If the Lords is not reformed in this first or second session then it never will be. Only a 100% elected House of Lords will suffice, and if that is not the outcome of these first two years, then the Coalition government will have failed its first test to clean up and strengthen British politics.

Or maybe they’ve failed their first test already

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2 Responses to “This Must Be Stopped”

  1. The Welshman in Hull said

    It warms the cockles of my heart to see the latest nominations, oh yes. Yet again it allows the Monster to strengthen its case for a fully elected chamber and rightly so.

    The dream of a second ‘higher’ chamber based on expertise and free from overt political interference is now truely dead in the water with looming reform removing the last shackles of morality in the nominations process. Now, even we loyalists to the idea of the Lords as it never was, must bend to the idea of the political bicameralism for which I can only see significant constitutional problems ahead, at this stage.

    Never mind, I’ll just have to raise a glass of Blue Nun to what should (and could) have been and cross my fingers for the future…

    • Out of interest, what is your preferred model for the Lords? I fully recognise the possibility of undermining the Commons, but in truth, a constitutional vandal like myself isn’t all that bothered, given the sham democracy that creates its membership.

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