A View From Middle England - Conservative with a slight libertarian touch - For Christian charity and traditional belief - Free Enterprise NOT Covert Corporatism

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Jack Straw's House of Hayseeds

A typical hayseed!Jack Straw is meddling again. Not content with waiting to see what sort of House of Commons we get after the next election, he is muttering and murmuring about the House of Lords. He should leave well alone. An elected Lords in any form will be a disaster. Just a further tranche of politicians seeking the electorate's favours and friendship.

The likelihood is that the next general election will provide us with career politicians without fault or stain. Paragons of virtue with limited value in a democratic sense. I dread to think of the outcome. Never again will the House of Commons have mavericks, independent spirits or principled campaigners. We might as well have the whole House linked to a far-eastern call centre.

Now Jack Straw is a man of delusional thought when it comes to the House of Lords. He says, "A reformed second chamber could breathe new life into Parliament while protecting the fundamental primacy of the Commons". Not in a month of Sundays. A hybrid House will be a hybrid horror. Democracy will count for nothing. It is not democratic just to stuff the House of Lords with list-voted second-string politicians.

What is at stake is the loss of fine minds and those with a sense of contribution to give and a willingness to share knowledge. I cannot for the life of me think why it is wrong to have scientists, film directors, authors, playwrights, actors, farmers, diplomats, policeman et al in the House of Lords all giving some ability to revise legislaton, to impart some actual experience to aid parliamentary debate. Jack Straw, in some vainglorious attempt to ingratiate himself with the public by displaying "democratic credentials", just plays into the hands of those seeking to emasculate the second chamber.

I have no desire to have somebody knock on my door seeking election to a "revised chamber". Election for what exactly? To put my views forward? I have a MP for that and I can easily write to a peer on any subject under the sun. That's the great advantage of the House of Lords. Somebody knows about something. Yet Jack Straw, in his "Justice Secretary" role, keeps up this appalling mantra for change. "A reformed second chamber could breathe new life into Parliament while protecting the fundamental primacy of the Commons," he burbles. Hardly a change that will assist the country out of its current dire distress.

All that this will do, this crazy desire for change, will be to unleash a load of new politicians in pursuit of a reason to be there. They will squabble with MPs over who has democratic primacy, they will offer token revision of bills if they are government supporters and they will go to the cliff edge if they are not. According to Straw's plans, they will have fifteen years to do something and then go regardless.

If you want a constitutional crisis in the making, then vote for this second tier of wannabe governors. Tell Jack Straw you love the idea. My desire is for it to be left well alone. I've enough trouble worrying about the selection and election of on-message greasy pole sycophants to the House of Commons. That is the real problem facing the country. A 1984 intake in a 2010 election!


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