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-   -   The Christmas Repeal (https://pirate.planetarion.com/showthread.php?t=193281)

Ste 12 Dec 2006 10:57

The Christmas Repeal
 
I was listening to Radio 4 on the way into work and heard that the today programme are having a vote on what British laws should be repealed for christmas.

link here

Quote:

We want you to suggest a law which you think should be scrapped.

Which is Britain's least useful or most damaging law? If possible, be specific. Our panel of politicians (across the spectrum) and legislation experts will sift your nominations to come up with a shortlist of six.

That shortlist will go to a vote and, on New Year's Day, we'll announce the winning - or, more accurately, losing - law. At the very least, we hope, we'll fuel debate. But we'll also see whether any politician is brave enough to take the views of Today listeners to the House of Commons.

Who knows where it might lead? Watch this space.
So I wondered what the people of GD would suggest?

The two mentioned this morning was "tuition fees" (obviously) and "cycling on the pavement" (it's even illegal for toddlers to ride a tricycle)

There's a few obvious ones - Drugs use (Deepflow), Age of consent (Dace), etc.

So what would people seriously (or not) like to see repealed?

Cooling 12 Dec 2006 12:12

Re: The Christmas Repeal
 
I can't think of any English laws that I would like to see repealed (not living in England you see...)

But I would like to see you reenact the Buggery Act 1533, and if possible the Egyptians Act 1530, which sought to expel the "outlandish people calling themselves Egyptians" (meaning Gypsies) in order to prevent them from plying their "devlish and naughty practices and devices".

Phil^ 12 Dec 2006 12:18

Re: The Christmas Repeal
 
the parliament act. ( the one blairs abused regularly )
no house should have the authority to ram through anything that the other house finds unacceptable.

furball 12 Dec 2006 12:31

Re: The Christmas Repeal
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Phil^
the parliament act. ( the one blairs abused regularly )
no house should have the authority to ram through anything that the other house finds unacceptable.

Abused regularly? It's been used 3 times, admittedly far more than under any other governments, but Blair had to deal with the most hostile House of Lords.

1. European Parliamentary Elections Act 1999, which changed the system of elections to the European Parliament from first past the post to a form of proportional representation.
2. Sexual Offences (Amendment) Act 2000, which equalised the age of consent for male homosexual sexual activities with that for heterosexual and lesbian sexual activities at 16.
3. Hunting Act 2004, which prohibited hare coursing and (subject to some exceptions) all hunting of wild mammals (particularly foxes) with dogs, taking effect in early 2005.


I assume the one you object to is the passing of the Hunting Act 2004. The majority of the population is against hunting with dogs, and a significant minority believed that action should be taken to ban it. The House of Lords by its very composition is naturally conservative and generally in favour of hunting. This is partly why the Commons had to override the Lords (the other reason being that the Act itself is terrible and the Lords had standards).

Stew 12 Dec 2006 12:33

Re: The Christmas Repeal
 
The question has to be asked, just what the **** was a 23 year old doing listening to Radio 4?

Ste 12 Dec 2006 12:50

Re: The Christmas Repeal
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by furball
Abused regularly? It's been used 3 times, admittedly far more than under any other governments, but Blair had to deal with the most hostile House of Lords.

I think they've threatened to use it on numerous other occasions though...



Quote:

Originally Posted by Stew
The question has to be asked, just what the **** was a 23 year old doing listening to Radio 4?

The 4 radio stations I listen to in my car are XFM manchester, Radio 1, Radio 5 and Radio 4.

XFM has adverts and I get bored of hearing Razorlight every 10 minutes, Radio 1 is crap most of the time and radio 5 i only listen to for football.

Radio 4 has a lot of interesting news stuff and debates and things. I heard a 30 minute thing about Hendersons relish the other week :) That reminded me of Uni days... sigh...

BTW hello Stew - haven't seen you post in ages.

Tomkat 12 Dec 2006 13:08

Re: The Christmas Repeal
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Stew
The question has to be asked, just what the **** was a 23 year old doing listening to Radio 4?

Posting in agreeance. I'm forced to listen to it in the morning as my dad always has it on.

Sometimes, sure, it can be quite interesting. A lot of the time it isn't though.

furball 12 Dec 2006 13:11

Re: The Christmas Repeal
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Ste
I think they've threatened to use it on numerous other occasions though...

That's nothing new though, the threat of using the Parliament Acts was used repeately by other governments to compel the House of Lords to accept proposed legislation. The difference here is that the House of Lords has refused to buckle on a number of occasions.

lokken 12 Dec 2006 13:26

Re: The Christmas Repeal
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Stew
The question has to be asked, just what the **** was a 23 year old doing listening to Radio 4?

I listen to I'm Sorry I Haven't A Clue which is great :)

Dante Hicks 12 Dec 2006 14:27

Re: The Christmas Repeal
 
I'm not sure repealing one law would do much good in many cases, with a lot of things stripping away one law would simply put an older law back into effect, and there's presumably common law foundations for quite a lot of this stuff.

But speaking in a general sense, I'd quite like to see almost all drug legislation repealed (obviously), I don't like a lot of trade union legislation on the books, and from a practical day-to-day point of view there are things about CLARA (Common and Leasehold Reform Act) which irritate me.

Phil^ 12 Dec 2006 14:36

Re: The Christmas Repeal
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by furball
Abused regularly? It's been used 3 times, admittedly far more than under any other governments, but Blair had to deal with the most hostile House of Lords.

1. European Parliamentary Elections Act 1999, which changed the system of elections to the European Parliament from first past the post to a form of proportional representation.
2. Sexual Offences (Amendment) Act 2000, which equalised the age of consent for male homosexual sexual activities with that for heterosexual and lesbian sexual activities at 16.
3. Hunting Act 2004, which prohibited hare coursing and (subject to some exceptions) all hunting of wild mammals (particularly foxes) with dogs, taking effect in early 2005.


I assume the one you object to is the passing of the Hunting Act 2004. The majority of the population is against hunting with dogs, and a significant minority believed that action should be taken to ban it. The House of Lords by its very composition is naturally conservative and generally in favour of hunting. This is partly why the Commons had to override the Lords (the other reason being that the Act itself is terrible and the Lords had standards).

Actually its none of the acts per-se. Its the way they rammed through the bill via the parliament act instead of giving it a full and proper debate.
'oh you dont like the bill, Tough. we've got a majority in the commons and the power to push through anything we want'
Its that sort of attitude which is bad for government

Tomkat 12 Dec 2006 14:37

Re: The Christmas Repeal
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Dante Hicks
I don't like a lot of trade union legislation on the books

Like what?

Would you rather give the unions more or less power?

Dante Hicks 12 Dec 2006 15:11

Re: The Christmas Repeal
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Tomkat
Would you rather give the unions more or less power?

That's not how I'd phrase it. I don't want to give anyone power. But I'd like unions to have more power (compared to the government or corporations), but that's a different question.

Mainly I'd want to get rid of some of the restrictions placed on unions by some of the legislation formed between 1979 and 1997. In particular, I'd like to see the ban on secondary picketing lifted. There's some details on the range of things that affected Labour Law here : here. Clearly it isn't all bad though.

ChubbyChecker 12 Dec 2006 15:14

Re: The Christmas Repeal
 
I'd like to change the way the points system works in regards to speeding fines. I don't mind paying the fine, I just don't like the 12 points and you lose your driving license system.

Ste 12 Dec 2006 15:18

Re: The Christmas Repeal
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by ChubbyChecker
I'd like to change the way the points system works in regards to speeding fines. I don't mind paying the fine, I just don't like the 12 points and you lose your driving license system.

So the rich can then drive as fast as they want and just pay the fines whilst the poor have to obey the law?

I think the points system is a good idea, I'd just like it to represent the seriousness of the offence. Speeding in a 30 is more serious than speeding in a 40,50 or NSL road in my eyes... And getting 3 points for yellow box offences, or going over the white line at a red light is a bit much...

ChubbyChecker 12 Dec 2006 15:22

Re: The Christmas Repeal
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Ste
So the rich can then drive as fast as they want and just pay the fines whilst the poor have to obey the law?

Then maybe the fine should be a percentage of your annual income. Like that guy in Finland who owned Nokia or something who ended up paying thousands of pounds for a speeding ticket because he's so rich :up:

Phang 12 Dec 2006 15:26

Re: The Christmas Repeal
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Phil^
Actually its none of the acts per-se. Its the way they rammed through the bill via the parliament act instead of giving it a full and proper debate.
'oh you dont like the bill, Tough. we've got a majority in the commons and the power to push through anything we want'
Its that sort of attitude which is bad for government

the first two were the lords being

1. deliberately awkward on a procedural matter just because it was about europe
2. fascists

and the third one represents a massive conflict of interest in the first place.

The first two didn't need debate, and the Lords did not add to the debate on the third in a useful way so far as I was ever able to tell.

Besides which, I seem to recall it took about five years for any semblance of a Hunting Act to come about precisely because they let the Lords pontificate at length about how jolly fun it all was.

Tomkat 12 Dec 2006 15:37

Re: The Christmas Repeal
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Dante Hicks
Mainly I'd want to get rid of some of the restrictions placed on unions by some of the legislation formed between 1979 and 1997. In particular, I'd like to see the ban on secondary picketing lifted. There's some details on the range of things that affected Labour Law here : here. Clearly it isn't all bad though.

Seriously? It was a complete shambles. So you want it to return to the same kind of state it was under Thatcher?

Edit: On reading that page I could see how it might be "tweaked", but reverting to pre-1979 union legislation would not be beneficial to anyone, in my opinion.

Tomkat 12 Dec 2006 15:40

Re: The Christmas Repeal
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Phil^
Actually its none of the acts per-se. Its the way they rammed through the bill via the parliament act instead of giving it a full and proper debate.
'oh you dont like the bill, Tough. we've got a majority in the commons and the power to push through anything we want'
Its that sort of attitude which is bad for government

The idea of a "House of Lords" is an outdated concept anyway, so who cares if bills are pushed through just because they disagree with them?

furball 12 Dec 2006 15:45

Re: The Christmas Repeal
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Phang
and the Lords did not add to the debate on the third in a useful way so far as I was ever able to tell.

I assume you're not going to try to substantiate that? Having read through Hansard a couple of years ago while researching an essay on the Hunting Act, I was pretty impressed by the eloquence of many of the Lords' speeches. Much better than the House of Commons.

Just because you disagree with what someone says don't mean that they're not saying anything useful.

Quote:

Originally Posted by Phang
Besides which, I seem to recall it took about five years for any semblance of a Hunting Act to come about precisely because they let the Lords pontificate at length about how jolly fun it all was.

Er....you seem to be recalling wrongly.

Quote:

Originally Posted by Wikipedia
After New Labour came to power in 1997, another private member's bill, introduced by Michael Foster MP, received a second reading with 411 MPs voting in support, but failed due to lack of parliamentary time. The Burns Report in 2000 concluded that hunting "seriously compromise the welfare of the fox", but (in line with its remit) did not draw any conclusion on whether hunting should be banned or should continue. In a later debate in the House of Lords, the inquiry chairman, Lord Burns also stated that "Naturally, people ask whether we were implying that hunting is cruel... The short answer to that question is no. There was not sufficient verifiable evidence or data safely to reach views about cruelty. It is a complex area."[1] Following the Burns inquiry, the Government introduced an 'options bill' which allowed each House of Parliament to choose between a ban, licensed hunting, and self-regulation. The House of Commons voted for a banning Bill and the House of Lords for self-regulation. The 2001 General Election was then called and the Bill ran out of parliamentary time.

Following a series of evidence hearings (details below) in 2002, on 3 December 2002, Rural Affairs Minister Alun Michael introduced a bill to allowing licensed hunting in 2003. The Commons passed an amendment proposed by Tony Banks to ban hunting entirely, but the bill was rejected by the House of Lords.

The identical Bill to that passed by the House of Commons in 2003 was reintroduced to the Commons on 9 September 2004. It received Royal Assent as the Hunting Act 2004 on 18 November 2004 when the Speaker of the House of Commons invoked the Parliament Act, with the Bill not having received the approval of the House of Lords who had preferred an Act that regulated hunting with dogs.

I make that 3 years, fairly efficient for Parliament when the Parliament Acts have been invoked. If you bring up the Foster Bill....well, I'm sure you don't need explained to you the difference between a Private Member's Bill and your average government bill.

Tomkat 12 Dec 2006 15:50

Re: The Christmas Repeal
 
i do


Oh, and:

Quote:

Originally Posted by furball
I assume you're not going to try to substantiate that? Having read through Hansard a couple of years ago while researching an essay on the Hunting Act, I was pretty impressed by the eloquence of many of the Lords' speeches. Much better than the House of Commons.

An eloquent speech is not necessarily a good speech. Also why are we supposed to care what the Lords have to say on the matter? Why do they represent us (as a nation) in deciding legislation?

I could write a super duper speech and stand up and give it, and my opinion really would be about as representative of the populace as someone in the House of Lords (in fact, I'd probably be more representative). Yet I don't represent anyone except by votes, and they do.

Why?

Stew 12 Dec 2006 15:52

Re: The Christmas Repeal
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Tomkat
Like what?

Would you rather give the unions more or less power?

I'd sooner they had no power. Not that they have much.


And, hello Ste :)

Yahwe 12 Dec 2006 16:00

Re: The Christmas Repeal
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Tomkat
i do


Oh, and:

An eloquent speech is not necessarily a good speech. Also why are we supposed to care what the Lords have to say on the matter? Why do they represent us (as a nation) in deciding legislation?

I could write a super duper speech and stand up and give it, and my opinion really would be about as representative of the populace as someone in the House of Lords (in fact, I'd probably be more representative). Yet I don't represent anyone except by votes, and they do.

Why?

because you are a moron.

(for evidence see above)

Hebdomad 12 Dec 2006 16:07

Re: The Christmas Repeal
 
Repealing the Parliament Act would be an awful, awful idea; unless the upper house was COMPLETELY overhauled.

I didn't realise bicycling on the pavement was illegal. I'd repeal that law. It's far more fun on the pavement than on the road. And now Why Don't We Do It In The Road by The Beatles is in my head. That's my christmas gift, from me, to you.

Nodrog 12 Dec 2006 16:12

Re: The Christmas Repeal
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Tomkat
iAn eloquent speech is not necessarily a good speech. Also why are we supposed to care what the Lords have to say on the matter? Why do they represent us (as a nation) in deciding legislation?

I could write a super duper speech and stand up and give it, and my opinion really would be about as representative of the populace as someone in the House of Lords (in fact, I'd probably be more representative). Yet I don't represent anyone except by votes, and they do.

Why?

Because its nice to have an external check on the powers of government and Britain doesnt have a proper constitutional system? (shut up yahwe)

Also I've no idea which specific law(s) gives the government the power to collect income tax but it would be that one.

Tomkat 12 Dec 2006 16:14

Re: The Christmas Repeal
 
Yeah I wasn't actually asking "why" - it was kind of rhetorical. As in I was pointing out we don't have a proper system and it really should be fixed.

Thanks anyway though :(

furball 12 Dec 2006 16:14

Re: The Christmas Repeal
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Tomkat
i do

A private member's bill is one introduced by someone who isn't part of the Government (i.e. either a backbencher in the ruling party, or a member of the Opposition). If it's not supported by the Government, it very rarely gets anywhere.


Quote:

Originally Posted by Tomkat
An eloquent speech is not necessarily a good speech. Also why are we supposed to care what the Lords have to say on the matter? Why do they represent us (as a nation) in deciding legislation?

I could write a super duper speech and stand up and give it, and my opinion really would be about as representative of the populace as someone in the House of Lords (in fact, I'd probably be more representative). Yet I don't represent anyone except by votes, and they do.

Why?

I was using the word eloquent to describe a speech that argues well as opposed to saying "OMG THOSE POOR FOXES", which was common in the Commons. I was referring to speeches on both sides of the argument as well.

You don't seem to like the House of Lords very much. Newsflash: they've changed a lot since their pre-1997 composition. Very few Lords are intellectually weak, and you've got a lot of specialists in there who have succeeded in their fields and have been given life peerages. The remaining 92 hereditary peers are there on merit.

Of course, this change is one of the main reasons that the House of Lords feels able to challenge the Commons much more often now. It's not just there to rubber-stamp everything, it's taking on the challenge of scrutinising everything that the Commons does and trying to improve it.

Tomkat 12 Dec 2006 16:31

Re: The Christmas Repeal
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by furball
You don't seem to like the House of Lords very much. Newsflash: they've changed a lot since their pre-1997 composition. Very few Lords are intellectually weak, and you've got a lot of specialists in there who have succeeded in their fields and have been given life peerages. The remaining 92 hereditary peers are there on merit.

given peerages by who

I'm sure I could find 92 tiptop gents who I think are upstanding and righteous, but it doesn't mean the rest of the country would agree with me*.







*probably because most of them would be regulars in heat magazine and ex-big brother contestants :crymeariver:

All Systems Go 12 Dec 2006 16:39

Re: The Christmas Repeal
 
Haha, your countrys crap.

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/wales/6121962.stm

Oh wait, :(

Phang 12 Dec 2006 16:41

Re: The Christmas Repeal
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by furball
A private member's bill is one introduced by someone who isn't part of the Government (i.e. either a backbencher in the ruling party, or a member of the Opposition). If it's not supported by the Government, it very rarely gets anywhere.

'411 MPs in support' sounds like the support of 'rather a lot' of the government to me, given the Opposition was against it.


edit, besides, my chief point was that there was a 'full and proper debate', or at least a semblance of one. Anyway though; turkeys do so rarely vote for Christmas and I felt this was evident in a lot of the debate in the Lords - note that whereas the Burns report suggests licensing rather than self-regulation, the House as a whole went with the latter. Why? Because it was better for them. Unless, of course, the most significant study undertaken by the House was ill-advised in its conclusions, in which case your argument has ...problems.

Hebdomad 12 Dec 2006 16:47

Re: The Christmas Repeal
 
PMBs don't get enough time on the floor to be passed; unless certain MPs are so impassioned about an issue that they persist for a couple of years as happened in the fox hunting bill. Oh, oh, oh let's talk about parliament!

milo 12 Dec 2006 17:33

Re: The Christmas Repeal
 
aside from the drugs/age of consent laws, id get rid of any mention of id cards, bring back a right to silence, dna records destroyed rather than retained.

If i could increase the sentence for a crime id say people who are convicted in the cash for honours thing should get life sentences* or any MP convicted of a crime relating to his/her position be treated especially harshly



*im feeling quite hateful towards policians of late

Phil^ 12 Dec 2006 17:34

Re: The Christmas Repeal
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by milo
If i could increase the sentence for a crime id say people who are convicted in the cash for honours thing should get life sentences* or any MP convicted of a crime relating to his/her position be treated especially harshly

Let them be flogged first at least :(

furball 12 Dec 2006 18:09

Re: The Christmas Repeal
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Tomkat
given peerages by who

The Queen, as recommended to her by the Prime Minister. Blair's been in office for nearly 10 years, go check out how many people he's made peers. It's a lot.

Quote:

Originally Posted by Tomkat
I'm sure I could find 92 tiptop gents who I think are upstanding and righteous, but it doesn't mean the rest of the country would agree with me*.

:rolleyes:

Dante Hicks 12 Dec 2006 18:33

Re: The Christmas Repeal
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Tomkat
Edit: On reading that page I could see how it might be "tweaked", but reverting to pre-1979 union legislation would not be beneficial to anyone, in my opinion.

I'm not sure I suggested that. It is not a simple dichotomy. Even in legislation I would consider generally "bad" there might be some good things put forward as principles or it may have had some positive things around the edges.

So for example, as I understand it the 1980 Employment Act was generally "anti-union" but did advance maternity rights (a bit). Do I want it all reversed? Well, no. That's not how legislation works (generally speaking).

But anyway, even if you did change legislation back to it's exact form in 1979 the country would not somehow zap us back in time. We have a different economic structure, considerably different demographics, and a different technologies are in place. These are the things which help, in interaction with the law, to determine what sort of nation we'll live in.

Tomkat 12 Dec 2006 18:34

Re: The Christmas Repeal
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by furball
The Queen, as recommended to her by the Prime Minister. Blair's been in office for nearly 10 years, go check out how many people he's made peers. It's a lot.

No... look... I.

I wrote it:
1. Lowercase
2. With poor grammar
3. With no punctuation

It wasn't mean to be serious. I know that sarcasm is pretty difficult to show across the net without being annoyingly obvious (or having to tell people which kind of defeats the point) but I was hoping you would realise :(

I know who gives out bloody peerages.

Phil^ 12 Dec 2006 18:42

Re: The Christmas Repeal
 
use asterisks ( or bold/italics ) around certain keywords to convey sarcasm more effectively. If that fails, the :rolleyes: smiley works too

Dante Hicks 12 Dec 2006 19:30

Re: The Christmas Repeal
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by furball
The Queen, as recommended to her by the Prime Minister. Blair's been in office for nearly 10 years, go check out how many people he's made peers. It's a lot.

I'm not overly bothered by the Lords / Commons issue, but the above could be argued to be a blow to the independence of the Lords. Sure, the time lag involved means the makeup of the Lords will often be very different from the Commons - ideologically speaking - (which means they might help provide balance between parties) but they don't necessarily provide a balance between people and the government generally. Most of the people in the Lords are (or were) someone who was once seen in a positive light by powerful politicans. I'm not sure if that's a good character reference.*

I suppose if you think that the parties in this country do a pretty good job at representing the country overall then this is less of a concern.

* = The same criticism could be made of the US Supreme Court of course. Although it does seem you can pretty much make someone a peer for being the PM's mate, which I presume would be frowned upon with the Supreme Court. Because there's so few SC justices I suppose people take the whole thing a bit more seriously.

furball 12 Dec 2006 20:47

Re: The Christmas Repeal
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Tomkat
It wasn't mean to be serious. I know that sarcasm is pretty difficult to show across the net without being annoyingly obvious (or having to tell people which kind of defeats the point) but I was hoping you would realise :(

I know who gives out bloody peerages.

As Phil said, internet sarcasm can be pretty difficult to detect sometimes - especially since sarcasm tags are now passe :(

Besides, I got the answer partially wrong. The House of Lords Appointments Commission was set up six years ago and makes non-partisan recommendations to the Prime Minister who then passes those onto the Queen. I think that's how it works anyway - I can't imagine them directly communicating with the Queen.


Quote:

Originally Posted by Dante Hicks
I'm not overly bothered by the Lords / Commons issue, but the above could be argued to be a blow to the independence of the Lords.

Without a doubt. There needs to be a wholly independent Appointments Commission that makes not only non-partisan appointments, but also takes recommendations for partisan appointments from the political parties (and then decides who appoint). Partisan appointments would be made according to the votes cast for each party - around 35% for both Labour and the Conservatives and 20% for the Lib Dems, based on the last general election.

The alternative is, of course, an elected House of Lords, but having once been in favour of this I now prefer an appointed upper chamber that has strong scrutinising powers (but no veto). Those appointed would be experts in their fields - it'd be a combination of a meritocracy (in the successful sense - so entrepreneurs such as Richard Branson would be appointed it as well) and a technocracy.

Quote:

Originally Posted by Dante Hicks
Sure, the time lag involved means the makeup of the Lords will often be very different from the Commons - ideologically speaking - (which means they might help provide balance between parties) but they don't necessarily provide a balance between people and the government generally.

Until the turn of the millenium, the House of Lords was firmly Conservative. This didn't prevent Tory governments from clashing with the Lords, but Labour certainly had far more problems. If peers had terms of office of 6-12 years, similar to the methodology behind the US Senate, then you might achieve that balance - but then again, if a party leaves government in disgrace, you'd have to wait up to a decade to clear their fellow party members from the upper house as well.

Quote:

Originally Posted by Dante Hicks
Most of the people in the Lords are (or were) someone who was once seen in a positive light by powerful politicans. I'm not sure if that's a good character reference.*

It depends who's being appointed. Party politicans can be very good (e.g. the late Robin Cook, who would have eventually become a Lord, or Paddy Ashdown, the ex-Lib Dem leader who now sits in the Lords) or pretty mediocre (Baron Hattersley, anyone?)

There's nothing stopping a politican from being a very good Lord, but they'll need to have the intellectual background and rigour to be an effective scrutiniser of the Commons. Ex-trade union leaders who became MPs are less likely to be as successful at this, although there's obvious plus points for putting them in the Lords to balance out the entrepreneurs.

Quote:

Originally Posted by Dante Hicks
* = The same criticism could be made of the US Supreme Court of course. Although it does seem you can pretty much make someone a peer for being the PM's mate, which I presume would be frowned upon with the Supreme Court. Because there's so few SC justices I suppose people take the whole thing a bit more seriously.

You'd think so, wouldn't you? There's always been a fair bit of patronage and horse-trading in appointing Supreme Court justices, especially since so many American politicans have legal backgrounds (and anyone can be made a Supreme Court justice, whereas in the UK I've never heard of anyone becoming a Law Lord without first sitting in the High Court and then Court of Appeal).


And let's not forget George Bush's nomination of his own personal lawyer, Harriet Miers, either.

Sarina_Joy 12 Dec 2006 23:36

Re: The Christmas Repeal
 
Posting in the humble hope that TomKat can confirm whether or not he actually thinks about anything before he posts, or whether he just posts the first crap that comes into his head in the vain hope that he can fumble through with babbling afterwards.

Demon Dave 13 Dec 2006 00:12

Re: The Christmas Repeal
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by milo
bring back a right to silence

You have the right to remain silent. It's just that if you refuse to answer when questioned something which you later rely on in court... it err... doesn't look good or something. Anyone know the full thing?

Proteus 13 Dec 2006 00:55

Re: The Christmas Repeal
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Demon Dave
You have the right to remain silent. It's just that if you refuse to answer when questioned something which you later rely on in court... it err... doesn't look good or something. Anyone know the full thing?

"You do not have to say anything, but it may harm your defence if you do not mention when questioned something which you later rely on in court. Anything you do say may be given in evidence."

Blastoderm 13 Dec 2006 01:29

Re: The Christmas Repeal
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Sarina_Joy
Posting in the humble hope that TomKat can confirm whether or not he actually thinks about anything before he posts, or whether he just posts the first crap that comes into his head in the vain hope that he can fumble through with babbling afterwards.

He's got cancer, give him a break.

Demon Dave 13 Dec 2006 01:53

Re: The Christmas Repeal
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Proteus
"You do not have to say anything, but it may harm your defence if you do not mention when questioned something which you later rely on in court. Anything you do say may be given in evidence."

Thanks, I'd better get learning that

Tomkat 13 Dec 2006 02:17

Re: The Christmas Repeal
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Sarina_Joy
Posting in the humble hope that TomKat can confirm whether or not he actually thinks about anything before he posts, or whether he just posts the first crap that comes into his head in the vain hope that he can fumble through with babbling afterwards.

Which post are you referring to?

You honestly think I wasn't being sarcastic when I was asking who chooses peerages? Oh my :(

You can have a negrep for making the kind of post Yahwe would make. Insulting, with little point and little contribution to the thread. But well done! You look really clever making that kind of post!

Sarina_Joy 13 Dec 2006 07:59

Re: The Christmas Repeal
 
I wasn't referring to any particular post. I don't know, sometimes you seem to just post opinion without having any factual knowledge of the subject area and yet you still manage to seem highly opinionated, or that's how it comes across to me :| I don't purposely try to be insulting, although I know I very often come across that way.

I shall now contribute to the thread:

I would like to see the Smoking ban repealed in Scotland for the winter, or at least relaxed so that people could smoke in a designated smoking rooms at work.

JonnyBGood 13 Dec 2006 11:07

Re: The Christmas Repeal
 
I'd like to see farmyard animals run for public office.

Phil^ 13 Dec 2006 11:11

Re: The Christmas Repeal
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by JonnyBGood
I'd like to see farmyard animals run for public office.

You've been watching animal farm too much

Dante Hicks 13 Dec 2006 11:40

Re: The Christmas Repeal
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Tomkat
Which post are you referring to?

Almost every post you make about politics fits her description to be honest.

lokken 13 Dec 2006 11:54

Re: The Christmas Repeal
 
I'd go for the Anti Terrorism Crime and Security Act.

One of the worst and most rushed bits of legislation out there, nailing a few civil liberties, has resulted in a pretty botched job in tackling terrorism as they just bunged it all in with no thought to structure or indeed thinking whether the system that would result in prosecuting/dealing with terrorism would actually be easy to understand and execute. Absolutely ignores the fact that the point of terrorists is that they don't obey laws and giving them more to break isn't going to help and just hands the government stacks of unnecessary powers. But it looks and sounds great.

Although large parts of the sexual offences act 2003 are what I'd call counterproductive, considering the old law was more than adequate and at at time when the courts had concluded that subjectivity was the way forward in the criminal law instead of objectivity. The courts took many years considering this issue, in several different areas of the law. The government decided to 'get tough' on this area and passed an act that made all these years of consideration by judges and law lords wasted breath. Sadly there was something more pressing coming to mind so this piece of tat will stay.

The Parliament Act would have been an interesting choice, but although the Lords generally have a lot more time to think about these things and often have an opinion of great value, they can be rather pig headed about things because it doesn't stop the wise elders* from being old farts too. The thing about the Parliament Act is that it's a useful piece of kit to push things through of national/constitutional importance. Something as trivial as the Hunting Act did not warrant it's use in my opinion, especially when a large part of the reason the labour party wanted it was to just get at the old conservatives on the opposing bench. What a spiteful way to pass legislation. The way a government uses the Parliament Act tells you more about the government than the Parliament Act.

*yes this is a generalisation deal with it.


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