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A Political Thread pt. 2

ncurd

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Will probably have to look at a written constitution and a president with the House of Lords getting abolished I would’ve thought but F knows to be honest.

I’ve never really brought into the tourism argument to be honest. People will still come here if we got rid just as they do with France or any other country that isn’t stuck in the 15th century.
House of Lords reform is far closer to happening than abolition of the monarchy. Most people forget (or weren't aware) as well the AV vote on the house of commons, the lords was supposed to be changed to a pure PR system as apart of the original coalition agreement between the LD's and Tory's its why many LD's supported it initally of course they got stabbed in the back for it.

Its also kind of the point we won't just suddenly go all French and get excited with the choppy choppy it'll be a gradual thing that occurs over time.
 

Welsh Exile

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House of Lords reform is far closer to happening than abolition of the monarchy. Most people forget (or weren't aware) as well the AV vote on the house of commons, the lords was supposed to be changed to a pure PR system as apart of the original coalition agreement between the LD's and Tory's its why many LD's supported it initally of course they got stabbed in the back for it.

Its also kind of the point we won't just suddenly go all French and get excited with the choppy choppy it'll be a gradual thing that occurs over time.

Yeah slow and gradual change is how the English roll, has always been like that.

I’m so depressed about the state of our so called democracy in this country. Getting rid of first past the post and introducing PR would go a long way to restoring some faith but I’m not holding my breath.
 

Ragey Erasmus

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Agree with a lot of what you say and they definitely don’t have the day to day worries of most of us.

But that's not to say they don't have stresses - they're not in control of their own lives which is a massive sacrifice that most people would hate. Some had no choice through birth, others have married into it. But they can't behave like us doing what we want when we want with very little consequence. Schedules programmed to the minute. Little privacy with staff and security always around. Cameras everywhere, always on display, always being judged by the media and keyboard warriors - what they say, what they do, what they look like, whether they've put on weight, what they wear, who they mix with etc. Every action magnified and picked over in the public eye.

For all the privilege and material benefits I wouldn't want to be a Royal in a million years.
TBH that is vastly over-exaggerated. How often are the royals in the limelight? Very rarely and more often than not when they are it's because they did something stupid. I'm not really in control of my life for 50% of my waking hours due to work so how is that different? Only thing is they simply get shuttled around and have to wave and mumble their way through small talk in a busy day. My busy day involves getting **** done because if I don't, projects overrun and I get shouted at. Anyone going to shout at the royals if something overruns or going to say they didn't perform well enough? Of course not. What do they actually have to do as part of their daily "work" that is even remotely stressful? They have no responsibilities and don't actually have to sort anything out at all, they just smile and wave.

So they basically face some of the same problems as any celebrity faces, have everything handed to them on a plate and simply have to put in the effort to get out of bed and allow someone to drive them round to all these meetings of no consequence and that is supposed to be a stressful existence? No, it really isn't. If it was really that stressful and terrible they could leave and live a life just like anyone else. The fact they don't should tell you they realise just how cushy their existence is.
 

The_Blindside

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House of Lords reform is far closer to happening than abolition of the monarchy. Most people forget (or weren't aware) as well the AV vote on the house of commons, the lords was supposed to be changed to a pure PR system as apart of the original coalition agreement between the LD's and Tory's its why many LD's supported it initally of course they got stabbed in the back for it.

Its also kind of the point we won't just suddenly go all French and get excited with the choppy choppy it'll be a gradual thing that occurs over time.

The whole point of HoL is to be a proper revising chamber. I recall my Constitutional law tutor always said the problem in our parliamentary democracy was reform of our HOC and not the HOL. Get that right and HOL will follow. Problem is HOC does not want to give up or be slowed down or have it’s legitimacy undermined by a legitimate upper chamber.

An upper chamber is could be elected by expertise and serve set limited terms.

Which comes back to whether we should have proper separation of powers in our constitution. With the executive branch properly sitting outside of a legislative lower and upper chamber. With a upper chamber properly representing the four nations. And that would probably mean we could then deal with what is point of the monarchy? And a written constitution. And an elected President whose role is to be guardian of the Constitution with the PM and cabinet serving that office to execute executive powers.

But god forbid a federalist structure. Better to have a hybrid Parliamentary democracy with devolved powers like we have at present.
 

ncurd

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The whole point of HoL is to be a proper revising chamber.
Yeah but it doesn't really work and only has a small group of dedicated individuals doing the actual work. Also either way currently doesn't work in terms of appointments life peerages are clearly a joke but political appointee are also a major issue see one I T Botham.

But god forbid a federalist structure. Better to have a hybrid Parliamentary democracy with devolved powers like we have at present.
Actually I think the US Senate is good place to start combined with our existed system. 1/3 of Lords up every 15 years (no on can serve more than once) elected by nominations lists of political parties decided by PR. You then keep the current Commons override but fix it slighly by allowing a supermajority of the Lords to defeat the Commons in the rare case of genuinely awful legislation. Something along these lines is what come up in ever consoltation but we we have the perennial problem


I see no real need for ceremonial president or monarch in terms of defender of the constitution. But then I by far and a way not a constitutional scholar and don't know why they are required.
 

The_Blindside

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A guardian of a written constitution would be head of state. The role the Queen and monarchy technically fulfills. Meeting of other heads of states when they come over.

They have been banging on about the need for a written constitution for years.

Get rid of hereditary peers for sure in a revised upper chamber. Also not in favour of life peerages. Fixed terms of say 7-10 years. There is of course the legitimate argument of who appoints the so called “the experts.”

I like the idea of regular people’s local community assemblies to feed through to a Lower chamber. Democracy shouldn’t be just about voting every four years.
 

Reiser99

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The whole point of HoL is to be a proper revising chamber. I recall my Constitutional law tutor always said the problem in our parliamentary democracy was reform of our HOC and not the HOL. Get that right and HOL will follow. Problem is HOC does not want to give up or be slowed down or have it’s legitimacy undermined by a legitimate upper chamber.

An upper chamber is could be elected by expertise and serve set limited terms.

Which comes back to whether we should have proper separation of powers in our constitution. With the executive branch properly sitting outside of a legislative lower and upper chamber. With a upper chamber properly representing the four nations. And that would probably mean we could then deal with what is point of the monarchy? And a written constitution. And an elected President whose role is to be guardian of the Constitution with the PM and cabinet serving that office to execute executive powers.

But god forbid a federalist structure. Better to have a hybrid Parliamentary democracy with devolved powers like we have at present.
House of Lords is a joke. For the few people who actually do their job well there are so many members who do almost nothing and collect their allowances. Both Conservatives and Labour spend their time stuffing the lords with more members to try and get a majority that it's just become bloated and pointless. Hell the conservatives just stuck their ex-MPs in there when they lost their seat (Zac Goldmsith). For me the House of Lords represents a past that for some reason British people want to cling onto as it's part of our history, but actually what it represents should be completely abolished in a modern democracy. While the majority are appointed by parties, some still are genuine lords with titles and hereditary positions. Why should people in this day still be given positions based on birth? I can at least understand the argument for the Royal family as a tourist attraction but the rest of these nobles that still exist are merely wealthy aristocrats who inherit advantages that others would not have access to. Why should these people have a say in how our country is run just because of their family? Our democracy based on tradition has shown to be flawed and with the blatant corruption and cronyism happening at the moment we no longer have the moral high ground over other countries (personally I don't we ever did, but most people in this country would think we do). I reckon they'll find that Cameron should have acted better, but didn't break any clear rules. However for me, all that says is the rules are not fit for purpose. Most of what the government has done has been within the rules, so clearly the rules aren't good enough to effectively police politicians and their behaviour. Overall we have an outdated democracy based on traditions that are no longer fit for purpose or even relevant in some cases.

For me we first of all need a clear constitution that has clear procedures and processes for how democracy in this country should work. Recently we've had potential issues and conventions from the 1800s being used. That's unacceptable and there should be no ambiguity. How it should be written? Ideally with as little influence from politicians as possible. It should be a neutral document that allows for a fair playing field. Need a group of experts from a wide range of professions and backgrounds to represent the whole of the United Kingdom.

Second FPTP needs to go. As long as we have that we will only ever rotate between the two main parties. There was a brief hope with the Lib Dems in power that the traditional system would break up, but that failed due to Lib Dems being useless and the fact that politics has become even more polarised. There is now no decent political debate. It's become vote for us because the other side will do this. There are also aspects of Americans tribalism where people just vote for their party regardless as that is their team. The people who don't vote like that vote for the party that is most likely to stop the party they don't want. Our politics is so negative and instead of getting the party that will do the best we get the party that will do the least worst. I don't think proportional representation would work with constituencies, so I would go with a transferable vote system. That way people can vote for the party they still think is the best and also still vote to keep the party they least like out. Whether it would be a single transferable vote or multiple transfers is debatable as each has merits and negatives.

HoL needs to be abolished and a new upper house without the taint created. This for me though is more widely open for debate. Should it be experts in fields with no political agenda (hard to find)? Should it be political representatives with some kind of proportional representation (how do you stop it become HoC v2?)? Should there be a mixture of different representatives serving different terms? (How can this be kept fair? Example would be the U.S supreme court?) Honestly I'm not sure right now which would be best.

Next papers should be banned from supporting political parties or rules need to be tightened so they make it clear where their bias lies and this should apply to all times, not just elections. I don't think Corbyn would have won anyway, but there is no doubt that he was targeted by a media smear campaign. Our politics is too heavily influenced by biased media and while some is on the left, the majority is clearly on the right.

Finally we need to address the issue of boundary changes. Too often it's become political and should be completely independent and unbiased. Again, the how is tricky, but we need to make sure that we never get into a situation like in America with gerrymandering.

Edit: Also more clearer and stronger rules to stop corruption & cronyism. The government shouldn't be able to ignore this and claim that the people will decide in 4 years. Voting should reflect the legitimate work and accomplishments of the government, not whether the country thinks they are corrupt or not.
 

Ragey Erasmus

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Personally this is how I think Parliament as a whole should be reformed:

General
Put fixed dates and times on the terms in power, not that half arsed useless bit of legislation the coalition did that has been ignored more than it has been implemented. Proper 5 year terms on years divisible by 5 (because it's got to be hasn't it?) Take away the power of the government to decide when elections are held.

Commons:
Keep the constituencies but replace FPTP with Alternative Vote. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Instant-runoff_voting In summary, any candidate must win 50% of the vote to get a seat. You rank candidates based on preference. If after 1 round 1 candidate gets 50% of the vote, it ends. If none achieve that then the least popular is eliminated and the votes of the people who chose them are then distributed among those peoples next choice. This continues with rounds of eliminations until 1 candidate has achieved 50% of the vote. It won't change anything in safe seats but could make a difference in closer seats, especially where 2 parties that attract a similar demographic are splitting the vote.

Strengthen the MP recall system to allow constituents to demand a by election if there is enough support. remove the requirement that the MP must have been involved in wrong-doing.

Lords:
Abolish and replace. Call it something like the National Elective or whatever. It should be similar to the US senate in that 1/3rd is up for election each time but it should be done on a proportional basis as part of a national vote. Any elective member may not serve more than 2 consecutive terms (30 years max, more than enough). No member of the Elective may have previously been an MP or run as one. The elective may not initiate legislation, only review legislation proposed by the Commons. The elective will have the power to completely stop legislation rather than simply blocking it. The Commons may force legislation through with a super majority (66%) but the Elective may also then block and kill that legislation if they can also get the same super majority.

On top of that I actually support the regions idea that was floated by Labour a few years ago. There should be regional assemblies for various regions and they should have limited local powers and also power over how funding for the region is spent. Each region should also have a presence in the elective house making up a proportion of the total seats (10-20%).

Hopefully such a system will increase the presence of smaller parties and also prevent more local issues from being completely ignored. It could also potentially lead to a logjam but then any system will fail if those involved are partisan enough.
 

Old Hooker

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TBH that is vastly over-exaggerated. How often are the royals in the limelight? Very rarely and more often than not when they are it's because they did something stupid. I'm not really in control of my life for 50% of my waking hours due to work so how is that different? Only thing is they simply get shuttled around and have to wave and mumble their way through small talk in a busy day. My busy day involves getting **** done because if I don't, projects overrun and I get shouted at. Anyone going to shout at the royals if something overruns or going to say they didn't perform well enough? Of course not. What do they actually have to do as part of their daily "work" that is even remotely stressful? They have no responsibilities and don't actually have to sort anything out at all, they just smile and wave.

So they basically face some of the same problems as any celebrity faces, have everything handed to them on a plate and simply have to put in the effort to get out of bed and allow someone to drive them round to all these meetings of no consequence and that is supposed to be a stressful existence? No, it really isn't. If it was really that stressful and terrible they could leave and live a life just like anyone else. The fact they don't should tell you they realise just how cushy their existence is.

You can't really compare their work / stresses to ours. But, doing the same things as you were 50 years ago has to be tedious in the extreme. Easy but mentally unrewarding. Most people feel better about themselves when they've achieved something or made a difference. Is the option of being fulfilled by their work open to the wavers and mumblers?

Yes they have cushy lives in the sense of wealth and having everything done for them, but as Stan Collymore pointed out for footballers, money and privilege does not necessarily equate to happiness and fulfilment. I'm not an arch royalist, but there's definitely an element of gilded prison about it all and if lockdown's taught us one thing, its that we like to be in control of our own destinies and resent loss of freedom.

Charles, rightly, wants to slim down the monarchy and steps have been taken with Andrew's daughters etc. But Harry has shown that if you're near the centre of things, it isn't all that easy to escape.....I can understand his viewpoint even if I disagree with the way he's done it. William by all accounts is a bit reluctant to be in the position he's in, albeit accepting.
 

Ragey Erasmus

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You can't really compare their work / stresses to ours. But, doing the same things as you were 50 years ago has to be tedious in the extreme. Easy but mentally unrewarding. Most people feel better about themselves when they've achieved something or made a difference. Is the option of being fulfilled by their work open to the wavers and mumblers?

Yes they have cushy lives in the sense of wealth and having everything done for them, but as Stan Collymore pointed out for footballers, money and privilege does not necessarily equate to happiness and fulfilment. I'm not an arch royalist, but there's definitely an element of gilded prison about it all and if lockdown's taught us one thing, its that we like to be in control of our own destinies and resent loss of freedom.

Charles, rightly, wants to slim down the monarchy and steps have been taken with Andrew's daughters etc. But Harry has shown that if you're near the centre of things, it isn't all that easy to escape.....I can understand his viewpoint even if I disagree with the way he's done it. William by all accounts is a bit reluctant to be in the position he's in, albeit accepting.
I still maintain, being bored is not really a sacrifice. Yes they have problems of their own etc but let's not pretend they live a life of abject misery and are making a great sacrifice for the good of the British people, that somehow they are all these fantastic individuals struggling against all odds to battle their way to a better Britain. They are people with EXTREMELY cushy lives, next to none of the worries everyone else faces and as part of having a life where they can be sure of their own security, they have a few downsides. Sorry but the fact that their lives aren't blissful perfection is not grounds to heap praise on them. In the grand scheme of things they are not making sacrifices and I just wish the media in this country would get a bit of bloody perspective. It's the same as the Diana hysteria all over again. Yeah she had a difficult life but the whole "people's princess" ******** that followed her death was cringeworthy. Not quite the same here but it's a similar situation of fawning over the royals and they have done sweet **** all to deserve such praise.

Quite frankly I wouldn't be surprised to see the media heaping praise on Philip for still being able to wipe his arse at 99.
 

Welsh Exile

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You can't really compare their work / stresses to ours. But, doing the same things as you were 50 years ago has to be tedious in the extreme. Easy but mentally unrewarding. Most people feel better about themselves when they've achieved something or made a difference. Is the option of being fulfilled by their work open to the wavers and mumblers?

Yes they have cushy lives in the sense of wealth and having everything done for them, but as Stan Collymore pointed out for footballers, money and privilege does not necessarily equate to happiness and fulfilment. I'm not an arch royalist, but there's definitely an element of gilded prison about it all and if lockdown's taught us one thing, its that we like to be in control of our own destinies and resent loss of freedom.

Charles, rightly, wants to slim down the monarchy and steps have been taken with Andrew's daughters etc. But Harry has shown that if you're near the centre of things, it isn't all that easy to escape.....I can understand his viewpoint even if I disagree with the way he's done it. William by all accounts is a bit reluctant to be in the position he's in, albeit accepting.

Charles just needs to slim it all the way down to zero and everyone will be happy.
 

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I cannot imagine the collective gnashing of teeth when the queen bites the dust. I'll have to stay offline for a minimum of a week.
 

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In other news, this is possibly the stupidest police shooting of all time. How does one confuse a gun for a taser...

They'll keep rioting like it's a race thing rather than just stupidity though which doesn't help anyone
Are you saying America doesn’t have structural race issues, particularly in the police?

I don’t know anything about this, What was this guy suspected of?
 

Not Mike Brown's Sock

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Are you saying America doesn’t have structural race issues, particularly in the police?

I don’t know anything about this, What was this guy suspected of?
Race issues in general, yes obviously, everywhere has issues with race. A systemically racist police force, no.

But that's not the point I was making here - when it happened Minneapolis started getting set on fire again because the assumption was immediately made that this was a race thing because there was a black guy involved.

Basically he was pulled over for a break light but also *apparently* had a warrant out on him for jumping bail on an armed robbery charge (there is a warrant floating around twitter but it may well not be real). Regardless, it's not really relevant.

What the police have said happened, and the video seems to back up is that he tried to run off after getting pulled over and the woman who the body cam is on intended to tazer him but shot him instead because, stupidity I guess. Essentially she just thought she was holding a tazer but most certainly wasn't. Stupidity at its worst.

100% a manslaughter charge and deservedly so - most definitely does not warrant BLM riots and calls for less funding as has once again happened tho. They need better training across the board, not less of it.
 

Welsh Exile

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Race issues in general, yes obviously, everywhere has issues with race. A systemically racist police force, no.

But that's not the point I was making here - when it happened Minneapolis started getting set on fire again because the assumption was immediately made that this was a race thing because there was a black guy involved.

Basically he was pulled over for a break light but also *apparently* had a warrant out on him for jumping bail on an armed robbery charge (there is a warrant floating around twitter but it may well not be real). Regardless, it's not really relevant.

What the police have said happened, and the video seems to back up is that he tried to run off after getting pulled over and the woman who the body cam is on intended to tazer him but shot him instead because, stupidity I guess. Essentially she just thought she was holding a tazer but most certainly wasn't. Stupidity at its worst.

100% a manslaughter charge and deservedly so - most definitely does not warrant BLM riots and calls for less funding as has once again happened tho. They need better training across the board, not less of it.
The structural element wouldn’t be concerned about whether the woman cop was racist or not. It doesn’t mean they assume the cop thought I’m going to kill this guy because he’s black. The structural element would focus on why he was pulled over in the first place and whether black people, particularly black men, are disproportionately pulled over for no reason. In this case maybe the “random traffic stop” wasn’t so random. I guess that would be the thing that would be frustrating for a lot of African Americans. I’d also say that perhaps, and I’d need to see evidence on this, that because there’s such an ingrained fear of black men in America, that these incidents tend to be handled very differently by police when it’s a white suspect compared to a black one.

Considering it’s history I’d say it would be very hard for America’s instititions not to be racist. It was founded on it. Same goes for us in the UK though to a lesser degree in my opinion.
 

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I don't really think incompetence is much of an excuse in one isolated incident. It's still police killing black people, an oppressed minority won't and shouldn't see it any other way until this is no longer an issue. It also raises the question of whether she'd have thoughtlessly reached for her gun had it been a white man.

Rioting as a form of protest is on its last legs, the message has been sent and something more structured, preferably more peaceful and on a grander scale is required soon but every incident like this needs a reaction in the States in my opinion.
 
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