I have not seen anything written here on what is being called the Abolition of Parliament Bill – the Legislative and Regulatory Reform Bill that was going through Parliament last week (whilst ‘Dave’ Cameron was off on paternity leave).
I have heard it finally finishes off the delegated legislation process (the process by which ministers and civil servants pass regulations with power given them under enabling Acts of Parliament) – a process that A.V. Dicey observed before the First World War and Chief Justice Hewitt was the last major establishment figure to oppose (“The New Despotism” 1929). It has taken a very long time to finish the process, but it seems Mr Blair will complete it.
Of course in a modern big government Welfare State having every regulation examined by Parliament is not possible (one extra reason to oppose a modern big government Welfare State).
Still a Statute that allows ministers to alter any regulation (apart from in the field of tax) without coming back to Parliament, and set up to two years in prison as a punishment for failing to obey their arbitrary regulations – well it does seem to a bit much even for Britain.
Have I just dreamed it all then?
Also nothing on our dear friends the Local Government Standards Board – people have noticed them now they have suspended Red Ken from his position as Mayor of London for a month (for nasty things he said to a Jewish journalist).
However, the Board has been doing this sort of thing (and far worse) for years. For example, if a councillor writes to try and expose the “wind farm” con (it is a con because it does not greatly reduce CO2 production – as the wind turbines do not produce much power and have to be “backed up” by coal and gas fired stations which run all the time as a safeguard) they might not (if the Board feels like it) be allowed to speak (or vote) against “wind farms” in council debates.
Ditto saying that Council ‘Chief Executives’ are paid too much or are useless (‘Chief Executives’ are the highly paid useless trash who have replaced what used to be called Town Clerks) – if a councillor says that he is in big trouble.
There is no automatic right for an elected councillor to oppose government policy (or ‘best practice’) in modern Britain and has not been since Mr Blair set up the Board. If the Board will let you speak and vote fine – but they may choose not to.
I am not a fanatical supporter of democracy, but I thought that many people were supposed to be. I have heard very little about what is going on in Britain – most people seem either to not know or not care