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BS: Bring back Democracy to the UK

The Barden of England 27 May 09 - 03:56 PM
Rapparee 27 May 09 - 04:04 PM
The Barden of England 27 May 09 - 04:11 PM
Riginslinger 27 May 09 - 04:12 PM
The Barden of England 27 May 09 - 04:16 PM
Rifleman (inactive) 27 May 09 - 04:43 PM
Georgiansilver 27 May 09 - 04:53 PM
Leadfingers 27 May 09 - 04:57 PM
The Barden of England 27 May 09 - 05:02 PM
Eric the Viking 27 May 09 - 05:21 PM
Eric the Viking 27 May 09 - 05:29 PM
The Barden of England 27 May 09 - 05:31 PM
GUEST,Allan 27 May 09 - 05:54 PM
Richard Bridge 27 May 09 - 06:22 PM
McGrath of Harlow 27 May 09 - 06:34 PM
GUEST,Daily Mail reader 27 May 09 - 07:30 PM
Lox 27 May 09 - 07:38 PM
The Barden of England 27 May 09 - 07:40 PM
The Barden of England 27 May 09 - 08:01 PM
GUEST,Daily Mail reader 27 May 09 - 08:08 PM
The Barden of England 27 May 09 - 08:12 PM
Richard Bridge 28 May 09 - 03:06 AM
Stu 28 May 09 - 04:07 AM
Richard Bridge 28 May 09 - 07:12 AM
Bryn Pugh 28 May 09 - 07:29 AM
Ringer 28 May 09 - 08:01 AM
The Villan 28 May 09 - 09:05 AM
Acorn4 28 May 09 - 09:31 AM
sian, west wales 28 May 09 - 10:43 AM
Richard Bridge 28 May 09 - 12:22 PM
Don(Wyziwyg)T 28 May 09 - 01:38 PM
Don(Wyziwyg)T 28 May 09 - 01:46 PM
Eric the Viking 28 May 09 - 01:56 PM
Don(Wyziwyg)T 28 May 09 - 04:12 PM
Rifleman (inactive) 28 May 09 - 04:32 PM
Richard Bridge 28 May 09 - 05:13 PM
Lox 28 May 09 - 05:18 PM
Slag 28 May 09 - 05:30 PM
Eric the Viking 28 May 09 - 07:01 PM
Lox 28 May 09 - 07:04 PM
Eric the Viking 28 May 09 - 08:08 PM
Lizzie Cornish 1 28 May 09 - 08:14 PM
Richard Bridge 28 May 09 - 10:26 PM
ollaimh 29 May 09 - 01:43 AM
Ringer 29 May 09 - 04:28 AM
Backwoodsman 29 May 09 - 05:50 AM
GUEST,Allan 29 May 09 - 06:51 AM
Peter K (Fionn) 29 May 09 - 08:45 AM
Ringer 29 May 09 - 09:21 AM
theleveller 29 May 09 - 09:45 AM
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Subject: BS: Bring back Democracy to the UK
From: The Barden of England
Date: 27 May 09 - 03:56 PM

There are now so many threads regarding 'Snouts in the trough' etc, etc. that I just wondered if it's time we (and by that I mean the UK electorate) got rid of the 'first past the post' system that leaves us with either a Conservative or Labour government, with no effective opposition to speak on our behalf for 3 or 4 years. I believe that until our politicians stop treading the 'party' line and bowing before the 3 line whip, we are just fodder at the polls. Proportional representation returns democracy to us (and by that I mean me), it stops the old addage 'I don't vote 'cause who I vote for won't get in' syndrome. It may mean that the odd 'BNP' or 'Raving Looney' will get there, but it works in many European country, so why shouldn't it work here??
I'd love to hear your views.
John Barden


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Subject: RE: BS: Bring back Democracy to the UK
From: Rapparee
Date: 27 May 09 - 04:04 PM

The UK isn't a democracy. It's a constitutional monarchy. You can't bring back what you never had.


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Subject: RE: BS: Bring back Democracy to the UK
From: The Barden of England
Date: 27 May 09 - 04:11 PM

The Monarch has no power here in the UK. I figurehead is all she is.
John Barden


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Subject: RE: BS: Bring back Democracy to the UK
From: Riginslinger
Date: 27 May 09 - 04:12 PM

Surely the BNP will bring it back!


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Subject: RE: BS: Bring back Democracy to the UK
From: The Barden of England
Date: 27 May 09 - 04:16 PM

Never in a million Riginslinger.
John Barden


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Subject: RE: BS: Bring back Democracy to the UK
From: Rifleman (inactive)
Date: 27 May 09 - 04:43 PM

"The Monarch has no power here in the UK. I figurehead is all she is"

The form of government is a constitutional monarchy nonetheless.

God help us all if the BNP do show signs of being able to run the country.


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Subject: RE: BS: Bring back Democracy to the UK
From: Georgiansilver
Date: 27 May 09 - 04:53 PM

The voting system in the UK may be democratic in nature but the results are most certainly not... Those appointed are supposed to do their best for the Country AND the people... the British people that is. In effect we appoint a party.... whose aims are different to another few parties.. who battle it out verbally (in the House of Commons) like little boys in a playground with all the name calling and pseudo logic it presents.
I personally feel that we should have a NO party system and our country should be run by a democratically elected 'Board', chaired by a democratically appointed Chairman... to run the Country as a going concern... for the good of the country and the people and in a way that preserves all the good things our little country has.... such as the Health Service... the Educational system, the benefits system, care for the elderly and other 'challenged' groups etc etc.
You don't see two or more parties running a successful business.... namecalling, jeering, battling for power with each other.... the business would surely fail !!!!... A Board of Directors who are concerned with 'doing the right thing for the company' is the successful way... and I really believe that this is what our country needs............
Ah well... I was being honest whatever.
Best wishes, Mike.


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Subject: RE: BS: Bring back Democracy to the UK
From: Leadfingers
Date: 27 May 09 - 04:57 PM

Wsnt it Winston Churchill who described Democracy as an absolutely BAD system , that was infinitly better than any of the current alternatives ?


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Subject: RE: BS: Bring back Democracy to the UK
From: The Barden of England
Date: 27 May 09 - 05:02 PM

Thanks Georgiansliver, that's just the sort of thing I was looking for. A wide view on this would, I believe, give us a far better and less narrow take on things.
John Barden


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Subject: RE: BS: Bring back Democracy to the UK
From: Eric the Viking
Date: 27 May 09 - 05:21 PM

The Queen plays no real part in our politics. The Royal ascent has not been refused since about 1707 When queen Anne refused to sign it. The last time it was signed by a monarch was in 1854. So they have no real use except to figurehead and get loads of money orf us peasents.

Proportional representation is the only real sensible idea. The three line whip forces the adjenda of the party elite on us. It does not represent, nescessarilly, the view of the electorate. (Sometimes good and sometimes bad but not truly representivitve)

The BNP will bring more hatred and violence should they ever become strong enough. They will set family against family, friend against friend, religion against religion (As if that crap isn't bad enough already) and race against race. Then the police and the army on the rest of us!

A parliament of many honest independent MP's would have to work. The machinery of the civil service would ensure that it would continue to gevern and groups would form around common ground and common policies. With established honest MP's from the major parties and the established civil servents as experienced mentors and a system of fair pay, just reward and not open to abuse, there might be a chance.

"The UK isn't a democracy. It's a constitutional monarchy. You can't bring back what you never had". Well it's about time we did have one then ! There is no written constitution. There are contributions from three major documents; The Magna Carta, The Bill of rights and The Reform act. None of which seem pertinent in today's climate. When we cast our vote, we generally whether intentionally or not only prop up the two party system. With the balance of power swinging between these two for the last sixty years and more it's no wonder that the "club" has thrived at our cost.

PR should become the norm. Labour won't touch it though I suspect they would do well under it.(Before recent activities) The lib dems would do much better, and David Cameron has ruled it out.


Popular vote 2005 election.
   
Labour   36.91%                   9562122 votes.


Conservative   33.86%             8772598 votes


Liberal Democrat   23.09%         5981874 votes.


UK Independence   2.32%            603298 Votes


Scottish National   1.59%          412267 votes



Labour   36.91%


Conservative   33.86%


Liberal Democrat   23.09%


UK Independence   2.32%


Scottish National   1.59%


Others   2.23%



from the above if PR were "it", then parliament would have been much more balanced.


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Subject: RE: BS: Bring back Democracy to the UK
From: Eric the Viking
Date: 27 May 09 - 05:29 PM

I agree with Georgian silver, but.... Look at the fine examples that the bankers have recently set. They were suposed to be..." A Board of Directors who are concerned with 'doing the right thing for the company'. In the end, many of them did the "right thing" for themselves at our expense. Having said that there are many thousands of businesses whose board do do the right thing. In this case the "right thing" should be the protection and care of the peoples of Britain in the widest sense.


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Subject: RE: BS: Bring back Democracy to the UK
From: The Barden of England
Date: 27 May 09 - 05:31 PM

Thanks Eric the Viking - Good to see the breakdown for the 2005 election. It would have been '3 party' politics, but that's got to be better than where we are now I believe.
John Barden


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Subject: RE: BS: Bring back Democracy to the UK
From: GUEST,Allan
Date: 27 May 09 - 05:54 PM

"Quote- The UK isn't a democracy, it is a constitutional monarchy"

The constitutional monarchy is a form of democracy. The government is elected and the Head of State herself is not part of the government.


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Subject: RE: BS: Bring back Democracy to the UK
From: Richard Bridge
Date: 27 May 09 - 06:22 PM

1. Parliamentary rules should become enforceable at law.
2. The Whip system needs radical modification. It should remain possible to withdraw the electoral whip (ie a candidate might have to stand as "independent" rather than, say "conservative"), but the function of a whip in seeking to ensure voting along the party lines should become illegal and all votes in the house should become votes of conscience. With luck this should bring an end to the schoolboy insult style of debate.
3. Constitutional conventions should become enforceable at law. That sort of muddle is one of the things that the common law system is superb at sorting out. Then, for example, ministerial reponsibility would mean something.
4. The doctrine of separation of powers needs properly sorting.
5. Committees need reforming too, but I find the innate problems more intractable. One has to have them since not everything can be debated on the floor, but they have become part of the instrument of steamroller.
6. The entire system for positive and negative resolutions to approve statutory instruments is a farce, but I am damned if I know how to fix it. Statutory instruments in general and particularly those implementing European Law are not in any real sense scrutinised and have become a constant source of incomprehensible rubbish.
7. John, for God's sake do not go anywhere near the "Board of Directors" concept! I got saddled with teaching some company law last term and it reminded me that the history of English company law is of directors stealing from their companies. It is the concept of short term shareholder value, and short term director value through stock options and a flawed system of determining remuneration that led us to the present crisis (that and bankers being bent).
8. There is nothing wrong with a constitutional monarchy, it's a lot more economically efficient than the US presidency system (look at the constant turmoil they have there with elections to two houses and the presidencey, and the quasi-autonomous state systems) and Miss Piggy has proved rather good at keeping it on track, as, I suspect, Big-Ears or Mrs Naff-Orf would be (he has a conscience and she some common sense) but I am substantially less convinced about those contaminated by the Dim Diana bloodline. However they probably could not do too much harm since the limited influence of the monarchy requires subtlety.
9. I am reluctantly persuaded that we do need reform of the Hose of Lords, despite the few recent times that that House has acted as nation's conscience. I am not convinced that any of the proposals that we have seen will get it right, but if we can dilute the dictatorship of the majority in the commons then it becomes less vital to ahve the Lords as a safety valve.


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Subject: RE: BS: Bring back Democracy to the UK
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 27 May 09 - 06:34 PM

I don't think boards of "successful businesses" are too good a model for running a democratic system. More especially since so often the "success" just melts away - and the board members waltz off with a fortune while the company goes under.

The question of whether to retain a purely decorative Queen or King is a complete red herring. Does anyone seriously think that the Italian Republic is a better example of a democratic system than say Sweden, with its King?

There are a whole range of electoral systems - the first-past-the-post one is probably the least democratic one that could be devised, with its ability to ensure repeatedly that parties which most people vote against can get enormous majorities in parliament, that most MPs have seats for life, virtually regardless of how they perform, and that the only electors who can make any difference are the relatively small number living in more marginal seats.


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Subject: RE: BS: Bring back Democracy to the UK
From: GUEST,Daily Mail reader
Date: 27 May 09 - 07:30 PM

You will see a change, you will see democracy in Britain and you are seeing the British public moving towards the only party that can deliver true democracy. It will be a slow process, but believe me my friend it is coming.


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Subject: RE: BS: Bring back Democracy to the UK
From: Lox
Date: 27 May 09 - 07:38 PM

No it isn't, and the reason is that just about every person I meet would rather superglue their genitals to an extractor fan than allow the BNP into power.

But enough about your impending orgasm. Nobody fancies your chosen political part.


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Subject: RE: BS: Bring back Democracy to the UK
From: The Barden of England
Date: 27 May 09 - 07:40 PM

And in what way GUEST,Daily Mail reader?

John Barden


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Subject: RE: BS: Bring back Democracy to the UK
From: The Barden of England
Date: 27 May 09 - 08:01 PM

That's a most wonderous picture you've painted in my minds eye 'Lox'. The best 'put down' I've seen in a while, and thanks.
John Barden


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Subject: RE: BS: Bring back Democracy to the UK
From: GUEST,Daily Mail reader
Date: 27 May 09 - 08:08 PM

I can assure you the campaign is coming on swimmingly. A friend of mine in the Scotland British National Party team said things could not be going better up there. Their groundbreaking campaign in "new" territory in Clydebank, Dundee, Edinburgh, Dumfries, Fort William and Aberdeen has been amazing.

The public's disgust with the mainstream politicians is evident with lots of people in these areas promising to vote BNP on June 4th, a public pledge of support which we have never seen in Scotland before.

BNP Scotland are keeping their feet firmly on the ground with regards to its expectations. They were starting from almost no organization a year or so ago, and are literally building from the basement level up.

Just goes to show you what a few years can do. They wouldn't have had a sniff in places like South Wales, County Durham, Wiltshire, Cumbria, Kent...or North West Scotland..!!


Interestingly my mother in law grew up in Clydebank and a number of her friends who still live there have stated unequivocally that they will be voting BNP. Yes, they are sick of the other parties, but it's not a protest vote. They maintain that they have looked at what the BNP have to offer and are impressed. BNP Scotland, like the rest of the Party, are doing an excellent job and have much to be proud of. I am also proud to say that both my daughters are going to vote BNP at the upcoming election. My BNP vote was decided a very long time ago. I have never looked forward to an election so much. Onward and upward.

It's down to dedicated folk like Nick. Every corner of our fair islands now have the opportunity to show the self-serving "mainstream" spivs and the hacks living in their back pockets, how highly the BNP are regarded...roll on June 4th...

Good night and Best of British to you all.


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Subject: RE: BS: Bring back Democracy to the UK
From: The Barden of England
Date: 27 May 09 - 08:12 PM

And the best of British to you too DMR. I think I know how the majority will vote on the day. Now I put it to you that the majority will NOT be for the BNP. I trust my fellow Brits to understand the implications.
John Barden


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Subject: RE: BS: Bring back Democracy to the UK
From: Richard Bridge
Date: 28 May 09 - 03:06 AM

Don't you think it rather telling that DMR completely ignores all of the fairly detailed commments I made above?

Ah well. Come his revolution we'll vote for what we're bloody well told to vote for.

Incidentally does anyone else realise that the anglo-saxons are a set of invaders who raped and pillaged their way across what is now England in about the 500AD period, driving the indigenous cultures out to Cornwall Wales Scotland Ireland and Brittany - and indeed destroying civilisation road building learning and literacy, until the Irish (mostly) re-introduced at least the latter (having learned thier value in that country's extraordinary enlightenment following St Patrick?.

So, DMR, back to Jutland with you!


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Subject: RE: BS: Bring back Democracy to the UK
From: Stu
Date: 28 May 09 - 04:07 AM

"Good night and Best of British to you all."

You wouldn't know what the Best of British is.

"Incidentally does anyone else realise that the anglo-saxons are a set of invaders who raped and pillaged their way across what is now England in about the 500AD period, driving the indigenous cultures out to Cornwall Wales Scotland Ireland and Brittany - and indeed destroying civilisation road building learning and literacy, until the Irish (mostly) re-introduced at least the latter (having learned thier value in that country's extraordinary enlightenment following St Patrick?"

Er, not actually true. The idea that the Anglo-Saxons somehow ethnically cleansed their way across England has long suspected to be wrong, and recent DNA analysis shows 80% of the population of the Isles share the same ancient DNA (see this article for a summary). Like the spread of Celtic culture the invasion was of ideas rather than masses of people (In the Anglo-Saxon Chronicles it states Alfred made provision for the 'British' of Wessex).

Indeed, there is evidence emerging of the continuous occupation of defined tribal areas that seem to straddle the period of transition between Celtic and Anglo-Saxon English settlement, indicating that the tribes became an amalgam of Saxon and indigenous culture, rather like the spread of Estuary English in the south.

Of course, the DNA evidence of Cheddar Man etc shows that in all likelihood our ancestors haven't moved too much since they arrived at the end of the last ice age.

It's outrageous the BNP hijack our history, which is far more fascinating and full of wonder than their hateful little minds could ever understand.


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Subject: RE: BS: Bring back Democracy to the UK
From: Richard Bridge
Date: 28 May 09 - 07:12 AM

I didn't say people, Jack, I said cultures. Many of the indigenes acculturated to the dominant invaders.

After the German/Danish/Viking invasions: -

1. The old language disappeared
2. Stone buildings ceased to be built
3. What remained of centralised or regional government after the ROmans left also disappeared
4. Roadbuilding stopped
5. Paganism largely replaced Christianity (until the Irish brought it back)
6. Literacy largely disappeared (until the Irish brought it back).


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Subject: RE: BS: Bring back Democracy to the UK
From: Bryn Pugh
Date: 28 May 09 - 07:29 AM

What Richard Bridge said, post of 0622 above.

The only problem with his first point, as I see it, is that under the UK Constitution as it stands, there is no Statute which is not amenable to subsequent repeal.

(Parliament can make or unmake any Law whatsoever; and no person or body is seen as having power and/or authority to overturn or ignore a validly enancted Statute : Dicey, Law of the Constitution).

Hence the principal difficulty in concretising Parliamentary Rules and Constitutional Conventions into Law.

It is claimed that the use of SIs (Statutory Instruments - Delegated Legislation) saves Parliamentary (i.e. House of Commons) time. I would see these done away with.   Legislation which impacts on subjects

of Public Law (you, me, Joe Soap and Lizzie Dripping) should and must be the subject, and the result, of debate on the floor of the House.

(This might give Parliamentarians less time for "Yah ! Boo! Sucks!" abuse.)

Those remaing powers which constitute the Royal Prerogative must be vested in Parliament and not in the PM of the Day, purportedly exercised by the Crown.

The House of Lords must be abolished, and replaces by a small body of directly elected "Senators" (for want of better term).


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Subject: RE: BS: Bring back Democracy to the UK
From: Ringer
Date: 28 May 09 - 08:01 AM

It wasn't only DMR who ignored "all of the fairly detailed commments" you made above, Richard Bridge; everyone else did, too. I am about to rectify that.

Of your 9 points, 4 is the most important. Since most wannabe MPs want to be in government rather than be backbenchers, and since toadying to whips and ministers is the way to get that preferment, then they toady away, instead of holding the government to account. Whilst the government is drawn from parliament, this is bound to happen. Hence, separation of powers is essential. All else, from reforming expenses to PR, is mere tinkering at the edges.

I disagree with your last point, that the House of Lords should be reformed. I don't think that the zeitgeist would permit anything but an elected second chamber; and the quality of the elected Commons shows what that would be like. The Law of Unintended Consequences implies, in this case, "Let well alone." (And I think it is well, as you yourself admit it can be the Nation's conscience.)

Some of your points I do not understand. What, for instance, is the significance of, "Parliamentary rules should become enforceable at law?"


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Subject: RE: BS: Bring back Democracy to the UK
From: The Villan
Date: 28 May 09 - 09:05 AM

What about having a sort of Alan Sugar The apprentice/Britains got talent approach.

The first thing would be to accept all those wanting to be Prime Minister putting their names forward and nothing to do with allegiance to any party.
They then appear on telly just like the above programs and the country votes by phone each week eliminating a couple of them each week until we finish up with 1 truly nominated Prime Minister.

The Prime Minister then advertises the management posts available, and all interested parties go through the same procedure, until each position is filled by whom we want.

All other jobs are then filled as you would employ anybody in this country.

We could all set the salary levels and other employment rules.

Just think, we might end up with people like
Alex Ferguson, Ester Ranson, Joe Brown, Richard Branson, Vin Garbutt running the country.

Your thoughts :-)


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Subject: RE: BS: Bring back Democracy to the UK
From: Acorn4
Date: 28 May 09 - 09:31 AM

Right Wing extremist parties will always do well in a recession, as with Oswald Moseley in the thirties, and we must realistically expect the BNP vote to go up.

How about doing what Martin Bell did a few years back and putting in candidates on an anti-sleaze agenda.

If you wanted a label, the ticket could be called "Honesty" - would steal a few votes off the BNP as well as the other parties I would imagine.


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Subject: RE: BS: Bring back Democracy to the UK
From: sian, west wales
Date: 28 May 09 - 10:43 AM

Remember that we have Proportional Representation in the devolved governments, although I don't know if we all use the same system. I think ours is the one referred to as Single Transferable Vote and, although I didn't think it was the absolute best choice at the time, it gives a much more balanced Assembly than the old first-past-the-post system. I like it. We have a coalition gov't at present which, again, many people don't like but I think it's great. Makes debate a lot more consensual. Of course, it'll get reeeeaaaaaal interesting when we have a different team in the driver's seat at Westminster than we have in Cardiff ...

I know they tried to bring PR into ... Ontario? ... a while back but that style of PR was absolutely daft and deserved to be thrown out.

And if we're playing the "dumb-ideas-for-new-gov't-paradigms" game, it's my go: I think we should have two elected Houses, one all male, one all female, and either can initiate legislation and every law has to pass both Houses. Maybe a male Speaker in the Ladies House and a female Speaker in with the Lads. Not sure what one does about the Prime Minister; maybe they'll have to be hermaphrodites only.

sian


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Subject: RE: BS: Bring back Democracy to the UK
From: Richard Bridge
Date: 28 May 09 - 12:22 PM

Well, Bryn, as you will remember there are ways - arguably, but the main point about parliamentary rules having the force of law would be that until their repeal the courts, not the goverment nor parliament, decided whether the rules were broken.

Rig thank you for your considered comments - I am a bit pressed but may get back into thinking mode on Monday (off to Pig's Ear Folk Ale in the morning).


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Subject: RE: BS: Bring back Democracy to the UK
From: Don(Wyziwyg)T
Date: 28 May 09 - 01:38 PM

""I can assure you the campaign is coming on swimmingly. A friend of mine in the Scotland British National Party team said things could not be going better up there. Their groundbreaking campaign in "new" territory in Clydebank, Dundee, Edinburgh, Dumfries, Fort William and Aberdeen has been amazing.

The public's disgust with the mainstream politicians is evident with lots of people in these areas promising to vote BNP on June 4th, a public pledge of support which we have never seen in Scotland before.


Strange indeed that the Scots should espouse the BNP in disgust against their politicians, given that most of the measures to promote openness and honesty are already in place in Scotland, and have been for several years.

Strange too that DMR should be totally unaware of that FACT, given the FACT that Alex Salmond has been making serious capital out of it on English TV.

WHAT A COMPLETE PILLOCK!

I have received your note John, and I'm considering my response, as it requires very serious thought to answer in a meaningful, and NON partisan way, which, IMHO is required at this point in English Politics.

I WILL post soon on the matter.

Don T.


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Subject: RE: BS: Bring back Democracy to the UK
From: Don(Wyziwyg)T
Date: 28 May 09 - 01:46 PM

""How about doing what Martin Bell did a few years back and putting in candidates on an anti-sleaze agenda.""

Tony B. Liar did that in 1997 Acorn, and look where that led.

"An end to Tory sleaze", and the beginning of a period of New Labour sleaze which was at least as bad, and more widespread, encompassing, as it did, ALL THREE PARTIES, and some of the minorities.

The ONLY party which was completely honest WAS the BNP. We already knew what a bunch of slimy, xenophobic, bigots they are. I don't know what their expenses were like, but I'd be surprised indeed if they WEREN'T on the fiddle.......BIG TIME!

Don T.


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Subject: RE: BS: Bring back Democracy to the UK
From: Eric the Viking
Date: 28 May 09 - 01:56 PM

Where is the evidence for the claim? "A friend of mine in the Scotland British National Party team said things could not be going better up there. Their groundbreaking campaign in "new" territory in Clydebank, Dundee, Edinburgh, Dumfries, Fort William and Aberdeen has been amazing," There are no reports on the TV or in the Scottish papers I read .

My son lives in Dundee and he and his friends think they are a pile of shit. He is not aware that the BNP is groundbreaking, just the usual collection of skinheaded thugs that you would cross the road to avoid, lying low and getting drunk.

I got the BNP leaflet though my door along with all the others. I cleaned up the cat litter tray with it. I was going to post it back, but though much more of the postal workers who might have had to handle it.


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Subject: RE: BS: Bring back Democracy to the UK
From: Don(Wyziwyg)T
Date: 28 May 09 - 04:12 PM

""My son lives in Dundee and he and his friends think they are a pile of shit.""

I've always thought the Scots were a canny lot Eric.

Don T.


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Subject: RE: BS: Bring back Democracy to the UK
From: Rifleman (inactive)
Date: 28 May 09 - 04:32 PM

"and we must realistically expect the BNP vote to go up"
doesn't mean me, the family and the dogs have to like them *LOL*


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Subject: RE: BS: Bring back Democracy to the UK
From: Richard Bridge
Date: 28 May 09 - 05:13 PM

You know (elitist old lefty as I am) I'm all for the "one man (or woman) one vote" principle - but I am prepared to make an exception for DMR and friends.


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Subject: RE: BS: Bring back Democracy to the UK
From: Lox
Date: 28 May 09 - 05:18 PM

Don,

I would like to refer to your post of 28 May 09 - 01:38 PM






LOL!!





Awesome.


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Subject: RE: BS: Bring back Democracy to the UK
From: Slag
Date: 28 May 09 - 05:30 PM

Get a real King, have a real monarchy.


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Subject: RE: BS: Bring back Democracy to the UK
From: Eric the Viking
Date: 28 May 09 - 07:01 PM

From all that seems to be going on we in the UK are up shit creek without a paddle. Parliament has lost the will of a large segment of the population. The major parties are in a mess.The BNP are being hyped up, and the more everyone talks about them the more they get publicity.Crooks and conmen..................... I wish I was young enough to leave Britain. I've told my kids to get out. Australia, New Zealand. We are heading for disaster...........I've always been an optimist until very recently. What think you?

I'd like to think that we here engage in (sometimes) serious debate making fairly well informed comments and judgements whatever our personal stance (ignoring those who deliberately upset others)But I worry for the disenfranchised members of society.They are already out in the wilderness, unrepresented and ripe for extremism.


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Subject: RE: BS: Bring back Democracy to the UK
From: Lox
Date: 28 May 09 - 07:04 PM

I'm with tony Benn - don't underestimate the intelligence of the public - and don't patronize them.

Not saying that anyone here is, just that we should feel more confident.


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Subject: RE: BS: Bring back Democracy to the UK
From: Eric the Viking
Date: 28 May 09 - 08:08 PM

You are quite right but nobody is discussing the influence that the threat of an increased BNP pressence is going to have on ethnic minorities. If I was an asian or an afro carribean, I'd be more likely to look to my own extremist party to combat the (supposed but maybe real) threat. It does not mean that the general public is not intelligent but given the extreme level of disgust felt towards the mainstream parties and their expenses and the "sexing up" of the BNP, those who generally pay little heed to what is happening around them and live in degrees of privation soon find a common ground to stand on.There are many people who live on poor estates with degrees of racial tension on both sides who could be soon influenced.


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Subject: RE: BS: Bring back Democracy to the UK
From: Lizzie Cornish 1
Date: 28 May 09 - 08:14 PM

I think we should all vote for Joanna Lumley. :0)


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Subject: RE: BS: Bring back Democracy to the UK
From: Richard Bridge
Date: 28 May 09 - 10:26 PM

Now I know the world is turned upside down! I have to agree with Lizzie.


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Subject: RE: BS: Bring back Democracy to the UK
From: ollaimh
Date: 29 May 09 - 01:43 AM

all right i'm game. who the hell are the bnp? and for that matter who are the uk independence party--speaking as a canadian colonial suffering uner out legacy of a constitutional monarchy.

i am guessing the bnp are a right wing nationalist party but they don't seem to even be rivals with the uk independence parrty and the snp so are they a real threat to gain votes?

i would also like to point out that the unwritten constitution is far too susceptable to the whims of the momentary political majority. many canadians are shocked that the uk has gotten rid of the "golden thread of british justice" the presumption of innocence without much caring or notice it seems from this side of the pond.

as for the house of lords--sheesh--really guys--how does anyone hold their head high when the supreme court of appeal and the higher chamber of their legislature are a bunch medieval aristocrats. i understand labour has reformed the chamber, but why would anyone want such a non democratic anachronism?

we have an appointed upper chamber called the senate but at least they are people of significant achievement who get appointed not hereditary do nothings. and out senate safely does not usually interfere with legislation comming from the house of commons.

when i lived in the uk back in the seventies down on chaney walk in chelsea i had a neighbour who was the son of a member of the house of lords. nice fellow, but a real berty wooster type--i shudder to think he might be sitting in parliament right now.


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Subject: RE: BS: Bring back Democracy to the UK
From: Ringer
Date: 29 May 09 - 04:28 AM

"...but why would anyone want such a non democratic anachronism?"

Possibly because we've seen what a modern democratic alternative (ie the Commons) is like.


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Subject: RE: BS: Bring back Democracy to the UK
From: Backwoodsman
Date: 29 May 09 - 05:50 AM

Olive, I think you need a new keyboard - the 'Shift' key's not working.


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Subject: RE: BS: Bring back Democracy to the UK
From: GUEST,Allan
Date: 29 May 09 - 06:51 AM

"I am guessing the BNP are a right wing nationalist party but they don't seem to even be rivals to the UKIP and the SNP"

The BNP and SNP in particular wouldn't be likely to be rivals for votes and the Scots Nats would be aghast at being somehow compared to them. The BNP don't stand through the whole UK but they do have a presence throughout Great Britain whereas the SNP stand only in Scotland and of course are currently the Scottish government rather than a fringe movement. The BNP believe Britishness is somehow down to genetics whereas the SNP stated aim is that should they achieve Scottish independence then (as well as some other categories) anyone legally living permanently in Scotland at that date would be offered citizenship regardless of ethnicity, religion or place of birth, and if they chose not to accept that citizenship then that wouldn't affect their rights of residency. The SNP are also one of the more pro EU parties in the UK. There are many people who disagree with SNP policy but very few who would suggest they are comparable to the BNP. Basically just because both parties have Nationalist in their name it doesn't mean they in any way resemble each other. There is a small vehemently anti-English grouping called Siol Nan Gaidheal (Seed of the Gael) who beleive on independence English people (but not Irish) should go up in front of a tribunal which would decide whether they could get citizenship. People attached to this grouping were banned from SNP membership more than several decades ago.


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Subject: RE: BS: Bring back Democracy to the UK
From: Peter K (Fionn)
Date: 29 May 09 - 08:45 AM

A thoughtful line from Georgiansilver. Don't assume that the board would be running an avaricious company for the benefit of its investors. Think more of a charitable trust. Trustee directors of such organisations often do an admirable job. I have to think only of that wonderful organisation, the CAB, where I myself do an admirable job... Anyway, it's an idea that deserves to be teased out in the review of UK governance that is now so desperately needed.

The UK constitution has degenerated into a basketcase, In particular the upper chanber is a mess. Its hereditary element has been removed only to be replaced with an ill-defined, ad hoc process of patronage exercised by the leading political parties - especially whichever one happens to be in government. The fact that the government of the day can "rewrite" the (unwritten) constitution at will (sweeping changes to the upper chamber, the relationship between governance and the judiciary, etc) is ridiculous. And any reform of the voting system for the lower chamber is in the gift of the government, and as the late Robin Cook observed (with regret): no government is going to change the system that got it into power.

On the question of PR v first-past-the-post I would make this observation without comment: Labour achieved a landslide victory in the 1997 general election with a smaller vote than Labour achieved in 1951. Yet the electorate was much smaller in 1951 than in 1997. And in 1951 Labour LOST.


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Subject: RE: BS: Bring back Democracy to the UK
From: Ringer
Date: 29 May 09 - 09:21 AM

"In particular the upper chanber is a mess."

Been on holiday, Peter K? If you think "the upper chanber is a mess," have you considered the Commons lately? "Mess" doesn't describe it.


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Subject: RE: BS: Bring back Democracy to the UK
From: theleveller
Date: 29 May 09 - 09:45 AM

Our local MEP, UKIP member Godfrey Bloom, lives in our village and is a complete and utter pompous pillock.

Here's what happened on his first day at the European Parliament.

"A Euro MP for the UK Independence Party has sparked controversy hours into his first day in the Strasbourg parliament.
Godfrey Bloom was given a seat on the European Parliament's women's rights committee on Tuesday.
But he told the media: "No self-respecting small businessman with a brain in the right place would ever employ a lady of child-bearing age."
A range of fellow politicians were outraged, saying his views were terrifying and outrageous.
Mr Bloom, an investment fund manager from York, told journalists he wanted to deal with women's issues because: "I just don't think they clean behind the fridge enough".
"I am here to represent Yorkshire women who always have dinner on the table when you get home. I am going to promote men's rights," he added."

Why would anyone, in their right minds, vote for this tosser?


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