Monday, 17 May 2010

172 Lords a leaping the death of Liberal democracy

The Times today tells us that

"The coalition government has agreed to reshape the House of Lords, which is currently dominated by Labour, to be “reflective of the vote” at the general election. That saw the Tories and the Liberal Democrats together get 59 per cent.
None of Labour’s 211 existing peers can be removed, so the coalition must appoint dozens of its own to re balance the upper chamber. Lib Dem estimates suggest that the number of Tory peers would need to rise from 186 to 263 and Lib Dem peers from 72 to 167."

So this is our brave new political order? A modern form of politics where our servant politicians listen and represent their, the electorate, masters voice in a progressive democratic society? If the Cameron twins Dave and Nick want a second chamber reflective of the vote what is wrong with having an election where the electorate vote!!! That would be fairly reflective of the electorates wishes. Although it would also be democratic, fair and dare I say it progressive not to mention right. It should surprise no one that the dynamic duo would pull such a stunt to ensure legislation is pushed through but with the proclaimed death of spin it is the absolute audacity and bare faced cheek that we get the "reflective of the vote" line that so grates and irritates.

Of course this follows swiftly on the back of the plan for 55% support to vote for the dissolution of parliament that is undemocratically going to be dropped on us. Again the spin is that such a measure is needed to give the strong and stable government needed to ensure a five year term (The best thing so far proposed by our new leaders is indeed the fixed term of parliament). Again the bare faced cheek and insult to our intelligence in the fact that with 47% of seats the conservatives are safe even if the newlyweds decide far from until death, its a matter of until a vote of no confidence us do part.

Every day I become more and more convinced that the coalition that we the electorate told the politicians we wanted - Or so they keep telling us it's what we wanted - will indeed see out the intended five year term. Things could be very interesting five years from now, the economy will probably be bouncing back from the hardship and cuts of the next couple of years and the conservatives will be taking all the credit. The liberal democrats, what will they be taking credit for? What will they be standing for? Will there be a recognisable liberal Democratic party five years from now? I actually felt great sympathy for Simon Hughes in his recent painful appearance on the BBC's question time as he struggled to defend his leader on the forming of a coalition with the conservatives. As a true liberal democrat and a man of integrity his unease as plain to see but by the end of the show he was loyally toeing the party line on what a great future was ahead for the lib Dem's in Cameron's coalition-Not particularly profound or original but if someone like Hughes can so easily drop his morals I cant help but think of the famous ending to Orwell's Animal Farm and wonder in May 2015 as the electorate looks through the polling window will they be able to distinguish Tory from lib Dem or vice versa?

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About Me

46 year old ex of many vices that have been given up in some vain attempt to reach 50.Currently exiled in Birmingham although largely cynical of current affairs I remain Left Of Centre.